What class?

LSAL 5463 – U.S. Military Leadership: Insights and Applications

Why is it cool?

In just a few hundred years—quite a minuscule span of time in the context of human history—the United States military has evolved from a small 18th century army and wooden sailing ship navy to a globe-dominating colossus. Advanced technology, maturing military theory and the changing position of the U.S. in the world all had a hand in making the U.S. military what it is today. As can be expected, each shift produced diverse leadership styles, illustrated in the careers of military leaders like George Washington, Ulysses S. Grant, Robert E. Lee, John Pershing, Hap Arnold, Douglas MacArthur, Norman Schwarzkopf, Colin Powell, David Petraeus, Stanley McChrystal and many others. U.S. Military Leadership: Insights and Applications puts this into perspective and explores how lessons of military leadership might be helpful to leaders and managers in various professional sectors.

This class is cool because it guides students in the study of leadership, both uniformed and civilian, in the U.S. military from the American Revolution to the war in Afghanistan, all within the context of the evolution of American military. Throughout the course, students  learn how military leadership differs from its other forms, what constitutes outstanding success or incredible failure of leadership and how lessons from U.S. military leadership may be applied in civilian leadership and management. 

But that’s not all. One of the best parts of this course is that it gives students the opportunity to explore pressing and popular topics, like the various ways scientific and technological advances in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries have affected the global geopolitical balance of power, or the war powers of the President and Congress under the U.S. Constitution. Students leave the class as better-informed citizens, ready to banter and discuss current events at the ready—all for course credit! 

“The course helps students examine how lessons of military leadership can be used to enhance civilian leadership,” said SME Steve Gullberg. “Members of the military will see the value that the leadership they learn will have when they leave the service, and it also will give them greater insight and understanding in the present by exploring military leadership from an outside perspective. Civilian students greatly benefit by this exposure to some of our country’s greatest historical leaders too. They take away a much better understanding of how to lead and motivate those with whom they work.”

See what else is offered at the College of Liberal Studies.

Mary Wuestewald
Mary Wuestewald specializes in digital and content marketing at OU Outreach. In 2015, she earned a master's degree in Strategic Communication from OU’s College of Journalism and Mass Communication. She currently contributes to Insight magazine, the CLS blog and CLS social media efforts.

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