With a strong emphasis on ethics and leadership, the master of arts in leadership studies (MLS) program is designed to help you lead with character wherever you go. You will be expected to demonstrate your competency in leadership practice by employing discernment to real life situations. You will learn to make tough choices about critical issues that today's leaders face daily in our global environment.

Past questions regarding comparisons of the MLS curriculum to the MBA curriculum prompted us to provide the current information below.

Differences in core curriculum between
Leadership Studies and Business Administration

Master of Arts in Leadership Studies
Master in Business Administration (MBA)
  • LEDR 6000: History and Theory of Leadership Studies and Ethics
  • LEDR 6005: Self-Leadership
  • LEDR 6010: Conflict Resolution, Negotiation and Teams
  • LEDR 6015: Influence of Leadership on Behavior in Organizations
  • LEDR 6020: Leaders as Worldly Citizens
  • LEDR 6025: Research Methods
  • LEDR 6030: Qualitative Research and Social Impact
  • LEDR 6035: Applied Quantitative Methods in Leadership Studies
  • LEDR 6040: Introduction to Business Processes (prereq for all LEDR course work)
  • ACCO 6100: Managerial Accounting
  • ECON 6100: Managerial Economics
  • FINA 6100: Financial Management
  • MARK 6100: Marketing Management
  • MANA 6100: Organizational Behavior
  • OSCM 6100: Operations and Supply Chain Management


Leadership Studies compared to
Business Administration at-a-glance

Master of Arts in Leadership Studies (MLS) Master in Business Administration (MBA)
  • 36 credits
  • Classes offered in a blended on-campus and online format or a fully online format
  • Choose from three different integrative learning options:

    1. Professional Project (completed with an organization or agency)
    2. Research article of publishable quality
    3. Six credits of additional coursework followed by a comprehensive exam
  • 40 - 50 credits
  • Classes offered at three sites
  • Enroll in Strategic Management in Global Economy (final integrating experience in the program):

Study of comprehensive business cases involving problematic situation of top management significance and requiring the application of mature and resourceful diagnostic, problem-formulating, and problem-solving competence.


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How will the degree help me professionally?  According to a survey conducted by Working Families, Partnership for 21st Century Skills, and SHRM®, employers are looking for employees who possess soft skills (such as the ones listed below), in addition to strong leadership skills.  The MLS degree is focused on developing these skills:

      • Communicate a compelling vision to multiple audiences
      • Formulate and apply ethical decisions and choices
      • Create and maintain collaborative and productive teams
      • Celebrate the advantage of diversity
      • Conduct win-win negotiation
      • Enact and support socially responsible behavior
      • Understand global issues

        Source: http://www.p21.org/documents/FINAL_REPORT_PDF09-29-06.pdf

  2. What is the per credit cost of Marquette graduate coursesThe 2013-2014 per credit cost is $1,025.

  3. Are there any specialization options?  In addition to doing a straight leadership track, the master in leadership studies offers the following optional specializations:

    • Criminal Justice Administration
    • Dispute Resolution
    • Health Care Administration
    • Nonprofit Sector Administration
    • Public Service
    • Sports Leadership
  4. Does this master's program accept transfer credits?  The university may allow students to transfer up to nine credits, depending on the date the course was taken, the grade achieved, and the relevance to the program.

  5. What are the application requirements?  A completed online application and $50 fee, three letters of recommendation, all transcripts from previous universities, GRE scores, and a statement of purpose.

    Note: The GRE is used to determine what additional help a student may need to be successful in the program rather than a screening tool to keep applicants out. All GRE results remain confidential and are NOT shared with your employer.

  6. It is mentioned that this degree is taught in a blended
    on-campus and online format. What does this mean?
    These courses have reduced face time with online learning that occurs outside of the traditional face-to-face classroom.

  7. On average, how long does it take to complete this degree?  For full-time students taking three classes a semester, it will take a minimum of two years.  Students are allowed up to six years to complete their degree program.  On average, most students take three to four years to complete the degree.

  8. How would I know which program is better for me?  Before making a decision, you should consider your career goals and research both programs. 


Contact College of Professional Studies

Email the college

Marquette University College of Professional Studies
707 Building, Room 403
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee WI 53201-1881
Phone: (414) 288-3153 or (800) 793-6450, extension 2
FAX: (414) 288-3298