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Master of Health Studies (MHST/NURS) 621

Coaching and Leading: The Human Side of Organizational Change

Delivery Mode:Paced/home-study online


Area of Study:Applied Studies

Centre:Centre for Nursing and Health Studies


Change is the one element consistent across all types of organizations that affects people at all levels within each type of organization. Change is a constant we all, no matter what our discipline, must learn how to thrive within. As successful health care leaders, the affect of change on the humans within our organizations becomes one of our priorities. Yet, for something so common, our general understanding of change is often limited.

This course provides us with the opportunity to study organizational change in depth maintaining the focus on how change affects people and how we can help others, and ourselves, to survive and thrive in a constantly changing work environment.

Course Goals

By the conclusion of this course students will be able to:

  1. define organizational change and differentiate between change and transition
  2. understand and apply various models of organizational change to real-life case situations
  3. identify and anticipate the phases or stages of change within an organization
  4. utilize specific change leadership skills and strategies to facilitate change within their own organizations
  5. take care of themselves in an environment where continuous change is the norm
  6. be aware of aspects of organizational life that constrain change
  7. identify and create catalysts for organizational change.
  8. understand the influence of organizational culture on change
  9. identify the relationship between organizational philosophy, mission and values and profound change, and
  10. appreciate the complexities of organizational change.

Course Materials

Course Textbooks

Bridges, W. (2009). Managing transitions: Making the most of change (3rd ed.). Don Mills, ON: Addison-Wesley.

Senge, P., Kleiner, A., Roberts, C., Ross, R., Roth, G., & Smith, B. (1999). The dance of change: The challenges to sustaining momentum in learning organizations. Toronto, ON: Doubleday.

Online Articles

Course readings are located online and are accessible through individual Web addresses (URLs) - I also encourage you to find and read one extra article each week. Please share the addresses with the rest of the class during discussion.

Technical Requirements

Computer System

In order to successfully complete this course, you must own or have ready access to certain computer hardware and software programs. For complete and up-to-date information on the minimum computer requirements required to complete the graduate nursing courses, visit the Centre for Nursing and Health Studies technical site.

Course Outline

MHST/NURS 621 consists of the following 11 units

Unit 1: Orientation and Overview
Unit 2: Initiating Change
Unit 3: Launching a New Beginning
Unit 4: Moving Through Change
Unit 5: Cementing the Change
Unit 6: Dealing With Non-Stop Change
Unit 7: Constrained Change
Unit 8: Catalysts for Profound Change
Unit 9: Organizational Culture and Change
Unit 10: Collaborative Group Projects
Unit 11: Wrap-Up

Assessment Structure

Case Study Document 20%
Case Study Analysis 40%
Group Presentation 30%
Participation 10%
Total 100%

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

View previous syllabus

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Last updated by G. Zahara  09/17/2013 09:31:11