Principles of Leadership (11:607:200)

Spring 2018 Syllabus

Course Description

3 Credits. Described as "a complex, multidimensional process," leadership can be conceptualized as "a trait, an ability, a skill, a behavior or a relationship" (Northouse p. 9, 2012). Learning about leadership is useful regardless of one's professional position or status as each of us may need to assume a leadership role. This course provides students with an introduction to today's popular topic of leadership. Students examine their leadership philosophy and its impact on their leadership style. Topics covered include: the nature of leadership, leadership traits, style, and skills. Leadership obstacles along with strategies for effective leadership are addressed.

Learning Goals

As a result of this course, students will:

  • Clarify personal beliefs about leadership & implications on application
  • Identify leadership philosophy, styles and traits
  • Develop core leadership skills and behaviors
  • Identify leadership obstacles/strategies for effective leadership
  • Define characteristics of ethical leadership
  • Identify individual strengths/areas for improvement as a leader

Required Text

Introduction to Leadership: Concepts and Practices (4th ed.), Peter G. Northhouse, 2018, SAGE Publications, Inc.

Text is available in: paperback, eBooks, bundle (combination book and eBook, at no additional cost) and book rentals. Paperback text available at RU Bookstore.

Course Assignments

  • Assigned Readings: Chapters 1–13
  • Case studies and Leadership articles
  • Seven Online Threaded Discussions
  • Five Reaction Papers
  • One Leadership Development Plan (Strength Assessment)
  • One Leadership Interview Project/Paper
  • Six Quizzes

Assigned Readings

Readings are from the required text listed above. Each week you will be expected to read all the assigned materials and to be prepared to participate in online discussions as described in the Weekly Content tabs (Week 1, Week 2, Week 3...). The readings associated with each chapter are meant to provide an overview of the weekly course topic, facilitate online discussions and contribute to the development of your personal leadership profile. Additional readings are assigned and will appear in the weekly course tabs.

Online Threaded Discussion

Throughout the semester, you are expected to contribute to online discussions. There will be 7 graded threaded discussions for the semester. After completing the weekly assigned readings, you are required to respond to online discussion questions and activities drawn from the readings, as well as respond to your peers in the threaded discussions. You will also be divided into smaller groups to facilitate more in-depth discussion. The specific discussion questions will be indicated in the Threaded Discussion tab of each Weekly Content section. It is expected that you will participate fully by addressing each question and acknowledging the responses of others when responding to threaded discussion questions.

The threaded discussions allow students to discuss weekly course topics and weekly assigned readings as well as practice leadership skills and competencies. This includes sharing your thoughts, knowledge about the discussion topic, the outcomes of your self-assessment, and insights about what you have learned from the contributions of others.

As part of the discussion, it is important that you incorporate the readings and provide constructive responses regarding the ongoing conversation. The objective of the threaded discussion is not to just repeat what other students have said, but to add something new to the ongoing discussions. These discussions allow the professor to determine if you comprehend and can apply the course content. During online threaded discussions, please reference course materials, quote from the text, provide your opinions agree or disagree with text or classmates, expand on the ideas of others, and present a new perspective regarding discussion topic. When you are citing, quoting, or paraphrasing additional source materials, make sure references are included. Your online contributions should be A MINIMUM of 100 words in length. Proper grammar and word usage are also required.

Your contributions to the online discussions will be graded for quality ie: your ability to critically evaluate the question/information you are discussing. Review Threaded Discussion Grading Matrix for information at how to provide quality responses and how your responses will be graded.


There are 6 quizzes. Weekly quizzes will be available from 6 a.m. Friday until 11:59 pm on Sunday.

Basis for Grading

Students are assessed on quality and effort of their work, timeliness, and participation.

  1. Participation in Threaded Discussions (7 Discussions @ 35 points each)
  2. Reaction Papers (5 Assignments @ 75 points each)
  3. Quizzes (6 Quizzes @ 25 points each)
  4. Leader Interview Justification (25 points)
  5. Leadership Project Interview (125 points)
  6. Strength Assessment Paper (75 points)
  7. Introductory Threaded Discussion (5 points) Class participation

Accumulation of points will result in the following grade ranges for this course:

A = 900–1000 points
B = 800–899 points
C = 700–799 points
D = 600–699 points
F = below 600 points

Academic Integrity

As an academic community dedicated to the creation, dissemination, and application of knowledge, Rutgers University is committed to fostering an intellectual and ethical environment based on the principles of academic integrity. Academic integrity is essential to the success of the University's educational and research missions, and violations of academic integrity constitute serious offenses against the entire academic community. This academic integrity policy is designed to guide students as they prepare assignments, take examinations, and perform the work necessary to complete their degree requirements. Students are required to adhere to the professional standards outlined in the Rutgers University policies on academic integrity, which are available Policy on Academic Integrity and at: Office of Student Judicial Affairs.

Attendance and Participation Policy

Students are expected to actively participate in all of the online activities for the course as outlined in the Course Outline below. Attendance in the online sessions is determined by thorough, thoughtful, relevant and on time contributions made in the weekly assignments including threaded discussions, reaction papers and quizzes. It is expected that students will contribute 2 entries to each Threaded Discussion, on time, throughout the specific week for each assignment discussion. The course proceeds with the assumption that students have thoughtfully read and reviewed the assigned materials. Weekly course reading assignments, online class discussions and PowerPoint's summaries will clarify, elaborate, and demonstrate the major concepts of the course. Students are responsible for completion of all assigned readings, materials discussed and assignments on or before the assigned due date.

Accessibility at Rutgers

Rutgers University welcomes students with disabilities into all of the University's educational programs. In order to receive consideration for reasonable accommodations, a student with a disability must contact the appropriate disability services office at the campus where you are officially enrolled, participate in an intake interview and provide documentation. For a the full explanation of the process, go to Documentation Guidelines. If the documentation supports your request for reasonable accommodations, your campus's disability services office will provide you with a Letter of Accommodation. Please share this letter with your instructors and discuss the accommodations with them as early in your courses as possible. To begin this process, please complete the registration form on the ODS website.