skip to main content

Celebrating 75 Years of Innovation in Nursing Education and Research

Learn More | Watch Video

Back to Top



Half Course


Not offered



Permission of Course Coordinator

NUR 724: Theoretical Foundations of Leadership and Organizational Effectiveness


This course, an elective in the MSc. and Ph.D. programs, will explore organizational effectiveness and leadership paradigms and theories that inform the nurse and the profession. The pertinent literature related to issues impacting organizational effectiveness and leadership, in particular, recruitment, retention, professional practice environments, mentorship, and entrepreneurship in nursing and the broader health care environment will be critically analyzed and applied. Topics will include, but are not limited to: a) exploration of current and future organizational effectiveness issues in nursing and health care, b) critique of theories that impact organizational effectiveness and leadership, and c) examination of the leadership role in addressing nursing and health care system issues. The foci of the course are the exploration, critical analysis, and application of theory and research findings related to organizational effectiveness and leadership.

Key components of the course

  1. forces and influences impacting organizational effectiveness and leadership in today?s nursing and health care environments
  2. influence of the leadership paradigm in achieving and maintaining organizational effectiveness
  3. major theoretical contributions to leadership and organizational effectiveness
  4. role of recruitment and retention in achieving organizational effectiveness
  5. impact of professional practice environments on the effectiveness of the organization
  6. influence of mentorship and preceptorship in creating effective leadership in organizations
  7. impact of culture on organizational effectiveness
  8. role of entrepreneurship in current and future organizations as a means of achieving effectiveness
  9. future directions for the nursing profession and health care system to create and sustain effective organizations

Evaluation Methods

Individual Seminar 35%

Each student will conduct a two?hour presentation (1½ hour for presentation and ½ hour for class discussion), which integrates a theoretical framework to a real organizational effectiveness issue from clinical or administrative practice. Each individual presentation will include a comprehensive presentation of the opportunity, challenge, issue, or problem and the contextual factors impacting the situation. A focus on one component of the situation supported with rationale is required. Theory, concepts, and a framework relevant to the situation will be presented for their applicability to the issue. Proposed strategies, interventions, and evaluation measures to address the situation will also be presented based on a review of the literature.

Annotated Bibliography 25%

The purpose of the annotated bibliography is to develop skill in abstracting key ideas from selected organizational effectiveness literature and offering a commentary on the relative usefulness for practice settings and/or research. Each student will select six references from peer reviewed leadership literature, monographs, and/or technical and research reports and complete an annotated bibliography. The student will also submit a copy of the six references with the assignment. The type of reference will be addressed and include a) an overview and description for a theoretical source and b) the question, design, subjects, methods, and major findings for a research source. The student will provide a brief commentary for each source used. This commentary includes the applicability of the organizational effectiveness concept, framework, or theory to the clinical or administrative practice environment. Once the six references have been critiqued, conclusions are drawn from the group of readings to integrate the main themes and messages. A discussion related to the applicability of these concepts, frameworks, and/or theories to the student?s work environment will complete the annotated bibliography.

Theoretical Analysis and Leadership Strategy 30%

The purpose of the theoretical analysis and leadership strategy assignment is to develop skill in analysis of selected organizational effectiveness and leadership literature and to offer a commentary on the relative usefulness to the practice settings. Each student will select a clinical or administrative leader in a health care setting and meet with the leader to reach agreement on an organizational effectiveness issue/opportunity of importance and interest to both parties. Once the interview is completed the student will undertake a critical analysis of relevant literature, specifically, an appropriate theoretical model/framework and critically appraise its applicability to the issue/opportunity. Best practice and/or benchmarking literature will also be integrated and used to augment the analysis. Based on this analysis of the literature the student will develop a leadership strategy to address the issue/opportunity. An executive summary will be provided to the leader

Abstract Presentation 10%

Each student will share her/his leadership strategy pertaining to the organizational effectiveness issue/opportunity with the class. The student may think of this opportunity as a presentation of a strategy to colleagues or leaders in the work place. Key areas of focus include a statement of the issue, the theoretical framework used, a short description of the strategy, evaluation measures, and a short analysis/interpretation.

© 201​​7 McMaster University  |  1280 Main Street West  |  Hamilton, Ontario ​L8S 4K1  |  905-525-​9140905-525-​9140   |  Contact Us | Terms of Use & Privacy Policy