ODKM, MS

Organization Development and Knowledge Management (ODKM)

Develop the essential leadership, creative problem-solving, and analytical skills needed to become a change agent in your organization, work, and life with the organization development master's degree, while also earning an accredited coaching certification from International Coach Federation (ICF).

In this cohort-based program, you will be part of a dynamic community of professionals. Explore organizational leadership theory and practice, the shift from hierarchical structures to group-based learning, and best practices to promote the creation of adaptive, collaborative work environments. You will graduate from the organization development master's program with the capacity to manage, evaluate, and affect rapid change in government, corporate, and nonprofit organizations.

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Upcoming Events for Prospective ODKM Students

After registering for each of these events, you will receive an email with a zoom link 24 hours in advance of the session.

Application Drop-In Hours:

"Drop-In" during our virtual application drop-in hours to ask the admissions team any questions you may have about your master’s application.

   Friday, December 9 at 12 to 1 p.m. ET (Virtual).  Register.

   Friday, December 16 at 12 to 1 p.m. ET (Virtual). Register

Organization Development and Knowledge Management (ODKM) Lunch and Learn Event: 

Join us virtually on your lunch break to hear more about the ODKM program, including information about the application process, student experience and graduate outcomes.

   Thursday, December 8 at 12 to 1 p.m. ET (Virtual)Register.

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Skills You'll Gain


This program develops three levels of core competencies:​

  • Individual: analytical skills, emotional intelligence, mindfulness, and appreciative intelligence ​

  • Group: coaching skills, dialogue, change conversations, and process work​

  • Organizational and Societal: systems thinking, knowledge management processes, organizational analysis and diagnostic tools,  appreciative inquiry, action research, dialogical organization development, and organizational transformation  ​

A Degree That Works With Your Schedule


This unique cohort-based program is offered in a part-time* executive format, with classes offered primarily held Friday evenings and Saturdays on alternating weekends on George Mason University's Mason Square campus in Arlington or online. Learn more about the program schedule.

Students can take classes:

  • On-campus
  • Entirely online in a synchronous format
  • Through a combination of on-campus and online classes

*Full time offered only under certain circumstances, such as when required by an external scholarship or the military.

 

Become a Certified Coach

As part of the master’s program, students enroll in two required courses on coaching: Foundations of Coaching and Coaching and Organization Development, which fulfill approved coach training hours required by the International Coach Federation (ICF) for a first level coach credential (ACC). These courses include a total of 79 ICF-approved training hours (ACSTH). View the coach training courses.

Photo of Ajay Narayanan

"I believe that being a part of this [master's program] was one of the best decisions I have taken. The program creates a wonderful learning experience that provides students with a strong theoretical foundation covering current thinking on [organization development] and [knowledge management] in a rich experiential cohort-based learning environment."

Ajay Narayanan
Master of Organization Development and Knowledge Management

Application Requirements in Brief

  • 750-1,000 word written goal statement
  • Current resume
  • Unofficial transcripts 
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Graduate application and fee
  • No GRE required

Program Deadlines

  • Priority Application Deadline for Fall 2023: February 1
  • Final Application Deadline for Fall 2023: May 1

Where Our Recent Graduates Work


Pie chart showing: Academia 18%, Federal government 16%, Local Government 4%, Multilateral/International 2%, NGO/Nonprofit 7%, Private Sector (Consulting) 29%, Private Sector (General) 24%

Top Employers of Recent Graduates


  • Accenture
  • Brighter Strategies
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • Deloitte Consulting
  • Defense Logistics Agency
  • Grant Thornton
  • GroupSense
  • Organization of American States
  • Pew Charitable Trusts
  • Target Corporation
  • The World Bank
  • U.S. Department of Defense
  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security
  • U.S. Department of Labor

The average salary of 2020/2021 program graduates surveyed after graduation was $78,600.

 

Lea M. Pickett

"I am in awe at the level of intentionality that is built into the program for its students to undergo a transformational and life-changing experience. As a result of this phenomenal program, I am not only a trained [organization development] practitioner, I now have a completely new sense of awareness, mindfulness, and way of being."

Lea M. Pickett, Master of Organization Development and Knowledge Management

The Master of Science in Organization Development and Knowledge Management program is a 35- to 38-credit executive format program.

Students work in teams and complete most of the courses in sequence. The second academic year includes an action learning component, in which participants undertake projects in organizations and apply research methods.

Core Curriculum

Students are required to take the following core courses:

  • Foundations of Organization Development and Knowledge Management
  • Group Dynamics and Team Learning
  • Social and Organizational Inquiry
  • Creating Learning Organizations
  • Foundations of Coaching
  • Coaching and Organization Development:
  • Knowledge Management and Collaborative Work
  • Leadership and Social Justice
  • Organizational Development Practices
  • Learning Community

Practitioner Faculty

With George Mason University's prime location in the Washington, D.C. area, Schar School students gain access to leading scholars and practitioners who bring real-world experience to the classroom, providing you with the mentorship and skillsets needed to advance in your career.

The Schar School has 80+ faculty members, as well as hundreds of adjunct faculty, allowing students to gain access to a variety of perspectives and subjects through elective courses. Notable faculty members in the organization development and knowledge management program include program director Tojo Thatchenkery, Jessica Srikantia, Sheldon Edner, and more.

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Professor Tojo Thatchenkery
Program Director