Why the Master's Program in Learning & Organizational Change?

Why the Master's Program in Learning & Organizational Change?

Masters in Learning and Organizational Change

The workplace grows more complex, and the pace of change continues to accelerate. That means opportunities for innovative, confident leaders to make an impact through an organization's most resilient resource: Its people.

The Master's Program in Learning and Organizational Change at Northwestern University (MSLOC) can enhance your career by helping you seize those opportunities.

Maybe you are an experienced leader who aspires to discover new paths to transform your workplace. Or a manager in human resources or learning and development looking for new angles to approach change management challenges. Or you are early in your career and see yourself as a human capital consultant or change management professional, knowing that real change happens because you understand people as much as you do the numbers.

Our close-knit community of students (on average 95 to 120) includes professionals who fit each of these profiles and more. Their common motivation: transforming their thinking about organizational change. And regardless of our students' professional starting place, we work with everyone throughout their time in our program to find the right career match, with more than half of our part-time students moving into new roles while they are still in our program.

We help you become a fearless change agent – for business, not-for-profit, education, design, technology, research, consulting and more.

An Alternative to the MBA

MSLOC offers an alternative to MBA programs and master's programs in organizational development, organizational behavior, I/O psychology, human resource development or similar graduate programs.

Compared to MBA programs, the center of our attention is not the business or enterprise but the people within the enterprise.

In every course our organizational focus is also broader than for-profit businesses. We engage organizations across sectors, from business to not-for-profits to educational organizations, and prepare graduates to operate effectively in any environment on strategic change, organizational culture, learning and performance.

A Multidisciplinary Approach

Compared with other master's degree programs that focus on organizational change or human capital management, MSLOC draws upon research and insights from a more diverse set of academic and professional disciplines. These include organizational development, organizational and social psychology, learning sciences and organizational learning. We also draw from the fields of strategy, change management, knowledge management, social networking, coaching and design.

Why do we explore multiple ways of thinking about learning and organizational change? Dealing with complex, ambiguous challenges in a changing environment depends on a practitioner's ability to continuously learn, to question assumptions and to innovate. And innovation happens at the intersection of different ways of thinking.

Curriculum Focused on Change Leadership

The curriculum of the Master's Program in Learning and Organizational Change is designed to develop the competencies required for leadership in the face of complex, continuous organizational change.

To meet that challenge, we continually update the curriculum to incorporate new research and concepts and to provide learning experiences that engage and inspire all members of our community.

One Curriculum, One Student Community

All students are part of a single community of learners – regardless of where you live or your status as part-time or full-time, master's degree or certificate candidate. Each of you will attend courses with a common learning and organizational change curriculum.

Download full course descriptions

Live Anywhere – Flexible Options for Part-Time Study

Our community of part-time and full-time students live and work coast-to-coast in the U.S.

One third of our part-time students live and work in places like San Francisco, Dallas, Denver and Washington, D.C. They take advantage of our unique alternative schedule option — part online and part on-campus. This option is open to all degree, coaching certification and graduate certificate students,

Degree Options


where you live

Anywhere in
the U.S.

average time to degree

18 months

(15 credits required)


where you live

Anywhere in
the U.S.

average time to degree

3.5 years

(15 credits required)

Learn How to Apply

Contact Us

Master's in Learning & Organizational Change

1800 Sherman Avenue
Suite 3500
Evanston, IL 60208
Northwestern University

Phone: 847/491-7376

The MSLOC staff are currently working remotely. Please email us with any questions about the program.

Email: msloc@northwestern.edu