Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations (11:607:400)

Fall 2018 Syllabus


Principles of Leadership (11:607:200) or equivalent with instructor approval.

Important Dates

The course begins and ends according to the academic calendar of the University.

Course Description

3 credits. Regardless of title or role, there are ample opportunities to serve in a leadership capacity while working at a nonprofit organization. Whether coordinating a project, chairing a committee, or managing a team, the goal is always to lead effectively. This course will focus on effective leadership for the nonprofit sector. Students will learn about their personal leadership style and develop goals to improve it. Strategic planning, fundraising, lobbying and advocacy along with managing employees in the nonprofit sector will be addressed.

Catalogue Description

Regardless of title or role, there are ample opportunities to serve in a leadership capacity while working at a nonprofit organization. Whether coordinating a project, chairing a committee, or managing a team, the goal is always to lead effectively. This course will focus on effective leadership for the nonprofit sector. Students will learn about their personal leadership style and develop goals to improve it. Strategic planning, fundraising, lobbying and advocacy along with managing employees in the nonprofit sector will be addressed.

Learning Goals

As a result of participating in this course, students will:

  • Identify distinguishing characteristics of nonprofit organizations
  • Develop leadership skills for leading both employees and volunteers in nonprofit organizations
  • Apply tools for developing a strategic plan for nonprofit organizations
  • Develop skills in marketing, communication, grantsmanship and advocacy for the nonprofit sector

Required Text

Nonprofit Management: Principles and Practice, Michael Worth, 4th edition, Sage Publications Inc., Thousand Oaks, California, January 2016

Nonprofit Management: Principles and Practice addresses key topics affecting governance and management of nonprofit organizations. Worth covers the scope and structure of the nonprofit sector, leadership of nonprofits, managing the nonprofit organization, fundraising, nonprofit lobbying and advocacy. Including current data, relevant cases, and timely examples, and text balances research, theory, and practitioner literature.

Introduction to Nonprofit Management, W. Glenn Rowe and Mary Conway Dato-on, Sage Publications Inc., Thousand Oaks, California, 2013

This casebook helps students gain a better understanding of nonprofit management by providing contemporary cases from around the world, illustrating the complexity of nonprofit management in a variety of different sectors. Each chapter begins with a substantive introduction to the chapter topic by the editors. The book matches cases to the key concepts in nonprofit management, allowing students to discuss the outcomes and consider the reasons for success or failure.

Technology Requirements

Baseline technical skills necessary for online courses

  • Basic computer and web-browsing skills
  • Navigating Canvas

Required Equipment

  • Computer: current Mac (OS X) or PC (Windows 7 or newer) with high-speed internet connection

Required Software

  • Microsoft Word or equivalent

Technology Problems

Are you having technical difficulties? Don't worry.

General Online Learning

Email: onlinelearning@docs.rutgers.edu
Phone: 848-932-4702


Email help@canvas.rutgers.edu or call 848-260-2941 if you have a technical problem.

Please do not contact the Instructor with technical issues.


Assignment Summary

Below are the assignments required for this course and the value of each assignment to the course grade as a whole. Please refer to the assignment table at the bottom of the Syllabus for specific due dates.

Assignment Points/Percentage
Threaded Discussions (4 @ 50 each; 1 @ 25) 225
Case Analysis (6 @ 75 each) 450
Papers (3 @ 75 each) 225
Organizational Review and Analysis 100
Total 1000

Grading Scale

Your grade for the course will be based on the accumulation of points for each completed assignment. Students are assessed on quality and effort of their work, timeliness and participation.

Grade Range
A 900–1000
B+ 870–899
B 800–869
C+ 770–799
C 700–769
D 600–699
F Below 600

Student Participation Expectations

Because this is an online course, your attendance is based on your online activity and participation. The following is a summary of everyone's expected participation:

    Be sure you are logging in to the course in Canvas each week, including weeks with holidays or weeks with minimal online course activity. (During most weeks you will probably log in many times.) If you have a situation that might cause you to miss an entire week of class, discuss it with me as soon as possible.
  • Time Commitment: 8–10 HOURS
    To be successful in this course, you should plan to dedicate approximately 8–10 hours per week.
  • Office hours: FLEXIBLE
    You are free to try to reach me via phone or email at any time. If I am available, I will respond immediately. Emails will be returned within 24-48 hours. To set up a specific time to discuss your concerns, please contact me via email to make an appointment.
  • Participating in discussion forums: 2 OR MORE TIMES PER WEEK
    As participation, each week you can expect to post at least two times as part of our substantive class discussion on the week's topics.

Course Policies

Distance Education

Students should be reminded that the same dedication required for an on-campus course is required for a distance education course. Students must be self-motivated, manage time efficiently, and approach their studies seriously. Students are also expected to be computer literate and should be familiar with how to access articles online from the University library since this will be necessary throughout the semester.

This 14 week course will be comprised of weekly modules that will address issues of nonprofit leadership.

Please note: this course is reading and writing intensive.

How It Works

Students should log onto Rutgers Online at the start of each week (Tuesday) to review assignments and post their work. The course syllabus is accessible at all times throughout the semester so that students are always aware of upcoming assignments and deadlines. Deadlines for weekly assignments will be on Monday at midnight, unless otherwise noted. Please consult the assignments links for each week to read the most updated list of assignments. Any changes will be communicated to students via the Announcements Page and/or via email.

Online Attendance/Expectations for Participation - Students

Your attention and active participation in this online course will enhance this unique learning experience for all. Contact with your instructor and fellow students is crucial to your success. It is expected that you will log on 3 times each week to check and post assignments and participate in the threaded discussion or write in your student journal. If you foresee a conflict in participating at any time during the semester, you must contact the instructor(s).

As class assignments and points are the basis for final grading and are distributed week to week, if a student has not "attended class" for two consecutive weeks, the student will be at risk for failing the course and/or may result in being dropped from the course.

Any and all absences must be cleared by the instructor(s) in advance.

Keep in mind that our course is available anytime, anywhere 24-hours a day.

Threaded Discussions

Threaded Discussions will provide an interesting forum for students to expound on theory discussed in the text and apply it to personal experience. Additional assignments will also allow students to examine personal beliefs and think critically about leadership and communication.


Confidentiality is key in this course. Be circumspect as you share information and likewise respect confidentiality of your classmates. From my corporate training background at AT&T Bell Labs, we would couch this as 'Only the learning leaves the training room'.

Types of Assignments

Weekly readings (textbook, additional articles/books/websites, as noted); threaded discussions with classmates; case studies; papers).

Submission of Written Assignments

All written assignments should be double spaced with 1" margins. Type style used should be Arial or Times New Roman in 12-point font. Each assignment should include the following information in the header: Student Name, Title of Course, Title of Assignment, and Due Date.

Due Dates

Assignments are typically due at the end of the weekly module—which in this course is Monday—assignments can be posted until 11:59 pm on Mondays (always be sure to check due dates as holidays, etc. can cause schedule changes).

Late assignments will not be accepted without instructor(s) approval and will not be accepted more than one week after the original due date.

Entries into a threaded discussion cannot be posted late, as essentially that class discussion has ended.

Tips for Threaded Discussion - Students

The inclusion of Threaded Discussions in this course will allow you to post your own thoughts on readings, as well as comment on your classmates' posts. Please keep in mind that you may not agree with what someone else has to say. Because we all come from different backgrounds and possess different cultural values, it is expected that a difference of opinion will exist. Sharing your point of view is important to the progress of the course and will demonstrate your critical thinking.

The threaded discussion questions will change and relate directly back to the reading(s) for the week so it is important that you read the assignment first and then think about the question and how you will respond. The first post for the week should refer back to the text using a quote(s) or a point(s) that relates and include page references. If a personal experience is applicable to the question be sure to share that individual perspective. Being able to relate these concepts to your personal experiences will make the learning process even richer.

Quantity and Quality of Posts

The threaded discussion portion of this course may become a favorite assignment for some of you. Keep in mind that your grade is based on depth and quality of your posts, as well as participation. The threaded discussion should be viewed as an interesting forum in which to post and read the viewpoints of others. Keep in mind that you should respond to a classmate's post as it relates to a point you are making, if it provided fresh insight into the reading or theme for the week, or if you have an opposing viewpoint. If you seek to challenge one another in your posts by offering unique thoughts or personal experiences, it will provide a greater learning experience for all. As a guideline, students are required to post a minimum number of substantial posts per week, including an initial response(s) by Thursday and 1 or more additional substantive comment(s) to fellow class peers by Monday. See Threaded Discussion Grading Matrix in Course Home. All posts must contain citations from the text or other source that reference the concept(s) being covered.

Contact with Your Instructor

Your instructor will be available via email and voicemail. Students should expect a response to an email inquiry within 24–48 hours, unless otherwise noted during a particular week. Your instructor is interested in seeing all students succeed, and therefore, is available for phone conferences to answer questions or listen to concerns.

Online Etiquette

We live in a world where technology has become a stronghold for how we communicate on a daily basis. While many of us are used to interacting in this manner, keep in mind the rules of etiquette, or "netiquette", in order to ensure respect for all. It is assumed that all students in this distance course will:

  • Be considerate when interacting through email or online, considering the vocabulary and length of the communication
  • Be aware that body language is not visible through online communication and there is room for misinterpretation—choosing words carefully and being clear and concise should help alleviate any issues
  • Understand that profanity, sarcasm, and hurtful language will not be tolerated. An environment of professionalism and respect will prevail and be maintained by all students
  • Proofread all entries prior to posting work both in written assignments, student journal exercises, and in threaded discussions. This includes attention to spelling, tone, message content, grammar, and proper sentence structure.

Academic Integrity

The consequences of scholastic dishonesty are very serious. Please review the Rutgers' academic integrity policy.

Academic integrity means, among other things:

  • Develop and write all of your own assignments.
  • Submit your work for evaluation only once. Resubmitting your own work that has been previously evaluated in this or any other course is plagiarism and will be treated as such.
  • Show in detail where the materials you use in your papers come from. Create citations whether you are paraphrasing authors or quoting them directly. Be sure always to show source and page number within the assignment and include a bibliography in the back.
  • Do not fabricate information or citations in your work.
  • Do not facilitate academic dishonesty for another student by allowing your own work to be submitted by others.

If you are in doubt about any issue related to plagiarism or scholastic dishonesty, please discuss it with your instructor.

Other sources of information to which you can refer include:

Accessibility Statement

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: see documentation guidelines. If the documentation supports your request for reasonable accommodations, your campus's disability services office will provide you with a Letter of Accommodations. 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.

For more contact information, see the Support Services page.

Threaded Discussion and Communication Guidelines

The following are my expectations for how we should communicate as a class. Above all, please remember to be respectful and thoughtful.

  • Writing style: Remember to write using standard grammar, spelling, and punctuation. Informality (including an occasional emoticon) is fine for non-academic topics. Please also refrain from using all CAPITAL LETTERS, as this is often interpreted as shouting.
  • Tone and civility: Let's maintain a supportive learning community where people can disagree amicably. Remember that sarcasm doesn't always come across well online. Treat your instructor and fellow students with respect at all times, and in all communications.
  • Citing your sources: When we have academic discussions, please cite your sources to back up what you say. (For the textbook or other course materials, list the author and page numbers. For online sources, include a link.)
  • Backing up your work: Consider composing your academic posts in a word processing program (e.g. Word, Pages, Open Office), where you can save your work, and then copying and pasting into the online discussion.

Style Guidelines

Whenever you use the words or ideas of another in your written work, you must attribute what you are using to the original source. To not do so is considered plagiarism. Different disciplines use different formats when citing sources. Since all of you come to this class from different disciplines, I would prefer that each of you use the format that you are familiar with for your citations. For those of you who do not yet have a preferred style, below are some options of acceptable styles:

APA or MLA Publication Style Guidelines

When quoting, paraphrasing or referring to the works of others (books, journal, film), it will be important to provide a reference of the cited material. In several of your papers, you are being asked to include at least 3–4 key quotes and paraphrase at least once as well as refer to source material when necessary to support your analysis. The style guidelines provide information about the organization of your paper in terms of margins, font-size, document spacing, and headings. The guidelines will also provide a sample paper. Read APA or MLA style guidelines for your paper for formatting, content, and references, the links below will be helpful.

Include the following:

  • Margins: 1 inch, left and right margins, top and bottom margins
  • Font: Times New Roman, font 12
  • Document Spacing: double-spaced
  • Title Page: course title, assignment name, your name, email address, date that paper is submitted, university name, running footer with assignment and page number (this may be different than website links).
  • Body of Text:
    • Follow style guidelines for citing within the body of the paper.
    • Headings—provide headings for different sections of your paper.
  • Reference List: create a separate reference list, follow the guidelines.

APA (American Psychological Association) Style Guidelines

This style is appropriate for written works in many disciplines, such as psychology, behavioral and social sciences, nursing, human resources, and criminology discipline areas that contain cited materials. For More Information, search and download PDF of "Example of References Commonly Used at HGSE Using APA Style"-6th edition (PDF).

Also more information and in-text citation guidelines can be found at owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/2/10/

MLA Style Guidelines

This style is commonly used for written works in the humanities and liberal arts discipline areas that contain cited materials. For more information, look at owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/2/11/.

SELECT Style Guideline that most appropriately fits your discipline!!! APA is used across disciplines and widely accepted by many academic journals. The use of Zotero, Bibme, Refworks, Son of Citation Machine, or EndNotes as a bibliographic and citation manager is permissible.

Late Work

Late assignments will not be accepted without instructor approval and will not be accepted more than one week after original due. Entries into a threaded discussion cannot be posted late as essentially the discussion has ended and class has been dismissed. Medical emergencies, etc. may override the stated policy at the instructors discretion. Contact the instructor as soon as you are able to make arrangements.

Faculty Feedback and Response Time

Grading and Feedback

For weekly assignments, you can generally expect feedback within 7 days.


I will reply to emails within 24–48 hours. Please include course number AND section in the subject line as I may be teaching multiple courses in any given semester.