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Course Descriptions & Schedules

Master of Arts Courses | Graduate Certificate Courses

Students enter the Sustainability Leadership program with a wide variety of degrees and professional backgrounds. There is not a prerequisite field of study or professional experience needed to succeed in the program. Sustainability Leadership courses accommodate traditional students as well as working professionals. Required courses are taken in-person with a cohort of peers. There are elective offerings that allow you to specialize in your field of interest – some of these courses may be offered online. Contact us to determine a schedule that fits with your personal and professional goals and responsibilities.


Master of Arts in Sustainability Leadership

A total of 33 credits is required to complete the Master of Arts in Sustainability Leadership, including 6 required courses (21 credits) and 4 elective courses (12 credits). A total of 9 credits can be transferred and applied to degree requirements from approved courses.
 

Required Courses (21 credits):

  • Sustainable Development Leadership (SUST 650, 4 credits)
    8-day, Residential immersion course.
    July 25 – August 1 (resident immersion) and August 22, 2015
    This course provides the foundation for the Sustainability Leadership Program. It creates a community of reflective learners that support each other in becoming effective social entrepreneurs and sustainability change agents. We introduce major approaches to and measures of sustainability (e.g., ecological design, permaculture, biomimicry, life-cycle analysis, triple bottom line, natural capitalism, ecological footprint, The Natural Step, Transition movement); explore relationships among sustainability, economic development, and social justice; and apply systems thinking, change leadership and sustainability principles to specific issues. We also use existing models and team projects to examine how personal values, goals, and communication styles influence our roles as change leaders, and we practice a variety of methods (e.g., Scenario Thinking, Appreciative Inquiry, World Café, Open Space) that can promote networking, public engagement, planning, and participatory decision-making on sustainability issues.
     
  • Ecological Sustainability (SUST 651, 4 credits)
    7 Saturdays in the Fall Semester, 2015 
    September 5 – December 5, 2015 (9/6, 9/19, 10/3, 10/17, 10/31, 11/14, 12/5)
    In this course, we use an ecological framework to explore the scientific basis of sustainable systems and the extension of principles of ecology and natural systems design into the realms of organizational change leadership, social science and humanities. We focus on the functioning of natural systems at multiple levels of organization, with emphasis on the fundamental roles of energy flow, nutrient dynamics, and hydrological cycles in ecosystem and biosphere function, and we examine the application of these concepts to social and economic systems. We work extensively with principles of ecological design, resilience, and restoration, and we critically analyze key sustainability indicators and reporting frameworks (e.g., ecological and carbon footprints, green building certifications, Global Reporting Initiative, Genuine Progress Indicator). Key related concepts include: ecosystem services, risk perception, precautionary principle, permaculture, biomimicry, deep ecology, integral ecology, indigenous knowledge systems and ecospirituality. Prerequisites: SUST 650.
     
  • Social and Economic Sustainability (SUST 652, 4 credits)
    8 Saturdays in the Spring Semester, 2016 
    January 23 – April 30, 2016 (1/23, 2/6, 2/20, 3/5, 3/19, 4/2, 4/16, 4/30)
    How is public policy made, and how can we best facilitate systematic change toward sustainability in our organizations and communities? In this course, we consider the challenges to such change presented by global trends and by traditional socioeconomic and public policy models, and we introduce alternative models aimed at meeting these challenges: ecological economics, sustainable development, social innovation and participative democracy. We discuss how deeper knowledge of human perception and behavior can help us formulate transformative communication and education strategies and practices. Key concepts include: social capital, corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, social equity, urban design, transformational leadership and ecopsychology. Prerequisites: SUST 651.
     
  • Urban Community-based Sustainable Development (with UW-Madison) (SUST 751, 3 credits) 
    Fall Semester 2015, Wednesdays, 5:30-8:00pm
    Practical application of broad-based sustainability principles to the design of infrastructure, neighborhoods, and watersheds in the urban environment. Students and instructors will collaborate with community leaders, from grassroots activists to agency staff and elected officials, in developing and implementing sustainability plans. Students will have the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills in any of the following areas, depending on their own interests: watershed management; green infrastructure; ecological design; community engagement; placemaking; liveability; walkability. Prerequisite: SUST 652 or consent of instructor
     
  • Innovative Leadership in Community Well-being (SUST 752 3 credits)
    Spring Semester 2016, Wednesdays 5:30-8:00pm 
    How can we best lead change within our organizations and communities to increase sustainability, resilience, health, and happiness? Partnering with local community leaders and organizations, our interdisciplinary group of students and faculty will create a "social innovation lab" that works to build and support collaborations among community members, non-profit organizations, businesses, and government agencies aimed at improving social, environmental, and economic "well-being" in impoverished, marginalized neighborhoods. Using tools of participatory, transformative leadership (including asset-based community development, collective impact, and crowd-sourcing), we will work toward the achievement of sustainability goals that build social capital; improve public health; prevent violence; increase access to open space, public transport, and healthy foods; encourage social entrepreneurship; promote community economic development; and support community and youth leadership development. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.
     
  • Sustainability Leadership Capstone Completion (SUST 759, 3 credits)
    SUST 759 A, B and C are all offered in the Fall, Spring and Summer terms (each is worth 1 credit, to toal 3 credits). Students may take A, B and C all in one term or they may take 1 credit per term and complete the 3 credits of SUST 759 over the duration of 3 terms.
    In this course, students apply concepts and skills of sustainability leadership to complete directed projects under the supervision of Edgewood faculty and community mentors. Students are expected to synthesize relevant theoretical, practical, and technical content; identify appropriate social change processes; and implement a focused sustainability plan that integrates multiple academic and stakeholder perspectives and generates support for change through the effective use of communication skills. Prerequisites: SUST 652 and consent of instructor.
     


Elective Courses (12 credits):
 

  • International Engagement: Sustainable Community Wellbeing (SUST 745, 1-3 credits)
    Gain intercultural leadership skills through collaborative, community-based social innovation initiatives in Alto Cayma, Peru. Enhance global understanding of sustainability through hands-on projects that contribute to cultural, social, economic and ecological wellbeing.
     
  • Ethics (IC 800, 3 credits)
    Offered in Spring and Summer Terms 2016, Course is not a full-semester length
    Weekday, 6:00-9:00pm or offered Online
    This course examines ethical issues in the practice of professions in public life. Significant issues such as justice, honesty, and respect for persons are examined in study and dialogue as they emerge in human experience. Philosophical and religious perspectives regarding ethics are considered. Prerequisites: None
     
  • Studies in Change (IC 850, 3 credits)
    Offered in Fall, Spring and Summer Terms 2016, Course is not a full-semester length
    Offered Online or Predominantly Online
    This course is designed to develop an understanding of personal, social, and organizational change. Such issues as personal commitment, social conditions, and technological developments are examined as they impact on personal, social and institutional situations. Research strategies provide opportunities to strengthen logical thinking, analysis of evidence and written expression. Prerequisites: None

    Business Electives
  • BUS 616 Business Ethics (3 credits)
  • BUS 603 Organizational Development and Behavior (3 credits)
  • PSY 603 Organizational Interventions (3 credits)
  • BUS 606 Strategic Marketing (3 credits)
  • BUS 738 Entrepreneurship (3 credits)
  • BUS 755 Consumer Behavior (3 credits)
  • BUS 792 International Study Tour (1 credit)
  • BUS 793 International Study Tour II (2 credits)
     
    Education Electives
  • PSY 606 Adult Learning & Organizational Development (3 credits)
  • ED 620: Leadership and Organization (3 credits)
  • ED 618 Diversity/Culture/Literacy (3 credits)
     
    Healthcare Electives
  • NRS 625: Healthcare Systems & Policy (3 credits)
  • NRS 635: Foundations of the Healthcare System (3 credits)

    Electives from University of Wisconsin Sustainable Management Graduate Program
    (up to 9 graduate transfer credits can apply from this UW program or other approved institutions):
  • SMGT 720: Applied Research and the Triple Bottom Line
  • SMGT 730: Policy, Law, and the Ethics of Sustainability
  • SMGT 740: Economics of Sustainability
  • SMGT 760: Geopolitical Systems – Decision Making for Sustainability on the Local, State, and National Level
  • SMGT 782: Supply Chain Management
  • SMGT 784: Sustainable Water Management
  • SMGT 785: Waste Management and Resource Recovery


     

Graduate Certificate in Sustainability Leadership
 

Detailed program schedules for SUST 650, SUST 651 & SUST 652: 2015-16 (pdf)

  • Sustainable Development Leadership (SUST 650, 4 credits)
    8-day Residential immersion course
    July 25 – August 1 (resident immersion) and August 22, 2015
    This mostly residential course provides the foundation for the Sustainability Leadership Program. It creates a community of reflective learners that support each other in becoming effective social entrepreneurs and sustainability change agents. We introduce major approaches to and measures of sustainability (e.g., ecological design, permaculture, biomimicry, life-cycle analysis, triple bottom line, natural capitalism, ecological footprint, The Natural Step, Transition movement); explore relationships among sustainability, economic development, and social justice; and apply systems thinking, change leadership and sustainability principles to specific issues. We also use existing models and team projects to examine how personal values, goals, and communication styles influence our roles as change leaders, and we practice a variety of methods (e.g., Scenario Thinking, Appreciative Inquiry, World Café, Open Space) that can promote networking, public engagement, planning, and participatory decision-making on sustainability issues.
     
  • Ecological Sustainability (SUST 651, 4 credits) 
    7 Saturdays in the Fall Semester, 2015 
    September 5 – December 5, 2015 (9/6, 9/19, 10/3, 10/17, 10/31, 11/14, 12/5)
    In the second course of the Sustainability Leadership Program Certificate sequence, we use an ecological framework to explore the scientific basis of sustainable systems and the extension of principles of ecology and natural systems design into the realms of organizational change leadership, social science and humanities. We focus on the functioning of natural systems at multiple levels of organization, with emphasis on the fundamental roles of energy flow, nutrient dynamics, and hydrological cycles in ecosystem and biosphere function, and we examine the application of these concepts to social and economic systems. We work extensively with principles of ecological design, resilience, and restoration, and we critically analyze key sustainability indicators and reporting frameworks (e.g., ecological and carbon footprints, green building certifications, Global Reporting Initiative, Genuine Progress Indicator). Key related concepts include: ecosystem services, risk perception, precautionary principle, permaculture, biomimicry, deep ecology, integral ecology, indigenous knowledge systems and ecospirituality. Prerequisites: SUST 650.
     
  • Social and Economic Sustainability (SUST 652, 4 credits)
    8 Saturdays in the Spring Semester, 2016
    January 23 – April 30, 2016 (1/23, 2/6, 2/20, 3/5, 3/19, 4/2, 4/16, 4/30)
    This is the final class of the Certificate sequence. We learn how public policy is made, and how we can best facilitate systematic change toward sustainability in our organizations and communities. We consider the challenges to such change presented by global trends and by traditional socioeconomic and public policy models, and we introduce alternative models aimed at meeting these challenges: ecological economics, sustainable development, social innovation and participative democracy. We discuss how deeper knowledge of human perception and behavior can help us formulate transformative communication and education strategies and practices. Key concepts include: social capital, corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, social equity, urban design, transformational leadership and ecopsychology. Prerequisites: SUST 651.