Elevate Your Leadership
& Give Power to Your Performance

Master’s in
Values-Driven Leadership


World-Class Curriculum & Convenient Formats, So You Can Go Further, Faster.

Benedictine University’s M.S. degree in values-driven leadership (MSVDL) will help you master the art and science of leadership. Delivered in two formats – customized for your company, or online – the program will help you identify new tools you can apply immediately to advance your career and elevate your impact. 


Are you ready to take your career to the next level?

Bring our in-house leadership development programs in-house at your company, and earn graduate credit through our Master's in Values-Driven Leadership program. Equip your high potentials for senior leadership roles as they learn new tools to set vision, create strategy, transform culture, drive change, and lead through influence at three levels:

  • Leading self;
  • Leading others;
  • Leading strategically.

This program helps leaders develop their strengths and capacities through industry-leading assessments, then expands those capacities further and faster, through action learning projects and our world-class curriculum, all from a values-driven perspective.

Coming in 2020, the MSVDL will also be offered online for individual participants, so you can give power to your performance, advance into senior leadership roles, and make your impact on the world. Share your information below to receive additional details, or scroll to find more on the curriculum and format. 


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About the Program


Target audience Emerging and experienced leaders from the business, public, or non-profit sectors, with 5+ years of work experience.
Curriculum focus Developing strategic leadership capacity to advance your career and equip yourself for senior leadership roles.
Curriculum modules (1) Leading self, (2) leading others, (3) leading strategically
Format Offered in two formats – online (coming in 2020) and inside your company (available now)
Program length 18 months
Assessments Hogan Leadership Assessments with  personalized results interpretation with a Hogan-certified executive coach.
Ongoing concurrent executive coaching Available through the Center for Values-Driven Leadership for an additional fee.
Faculty with Ph.D. 100%
Program cost $900 credit hour, 30 credit hours in total

Master’s in Leadership: A World-Class Program, Designed to Grow Your Career

Benedictine University’s M.S. in Leadership is designed to equip you with the personal, organizational, and global competencies you need to lead with excellence, advance your career, and make a transformative impact on business and society.

Develop practical tools that are immediately applicable at work as you grow as a leader, expand your influence, pursue your purpose, and advance your career – all in our convenient 18-month master’s in values-driven leadership program. Become part of a network of leaders, committed to a values-based approach to business, while you prepare yourself for senior leadership roles.

Benchmarked against the best leadership development programs in the world, this program incorporates many powerful features, including cutting-edge research and practice, industry-leading Hogan Leadership Assessments and personalized development plans.

This M.S. in leadership is a sister program to our Ph.D. program in leadership, named the #1 leadership Ph.D. program in the nation. Our world-class curriculum will help you go further, faster so you can strengthen your leadership capability and accomplish your strategic objectives at work.

Format & Focus:

Focus your learning on three levels of leadership capacity: leading self, leading others, and leading strategically.

Participate in a dynamic learning environment in a cohort of your peers. (The program is currently available to bring in-house at your company, for cohorts of high potential leaders. Beginning in 2020, the program also will be available online.)

Dive deep with our world-class curriculum, apply what you’ve studied through action-learning initiatives, measure your development with the Hogan Leadership Assessments, learn to combine ethics and effectiveness for stronger business results, and receive personalized support from our award-winning faculty.


Our master’s program offers you an opportunity to transform your leadership and advance your career through distinctive features such as:

  • A unique curriculum (modeled after our award-winning doctoral program, named #1 in the nation) that integrates global leadership, strategic change, and personal leadership excellence.
  • A values-driven approach that will help you leverage your core principles and purpose to be a more effective leader.
  • Learning that’s focused on performance, so that what you study is research-based, practice-proven , and immediately applicable.
  • Hogan Leadership Assessments with a Hogan-certified executive coach, to help you gain fresh insights into your leadership capacity and potential.
  • 100% of course faculty have earned their doctorates and are also business leaders with real-world insights to deepen your learning experience.
  • As a student with the Center for Values-Driven Leadership, you join a network of likeminded peers, all working to build flourishing companies, with access to ongoing research, workshops, events, and networking potential.

Curriculum in the MSVDL program is centered around learning modules designed to strengthen your leadership at three levels:

#1: Leading Self: Great leaders are great learners.
The program will invite you to dig deep, understand yourself and what you value, and clarify the impact you want to make in the world. Courses include:

  • Leadership Foundations
  • Leadership Effectiveness
  • Leadership Impact

#2: Leading Others: Great leaders are great developers of people.

The program will strengthen your capacity to lead high-performing teams and help others to learn, grow, develop, and succeed. Courses include:

  • Leading & Developing Others
  • Leading High-Performance Teams
  • Leading Positive Change

#3: Leading organizations: Great leaders build great companies.
Learn to lead strategically and build organizational cultures that empower employees, delight customers, support their community, and consistently produce significant and sustainable results. Courses include:

  • Leading Financial Performance
  • Leading Organizational Effectiveness
  • Strategic Leadership

Leadership Practicum: Great leaders do great things for the world.
The program’s final course will challenge you to think big, manage across differences, change the game in your industry, solve intractable problems, and shape the global conversation. In addition to these four learning modules, all courses are tied to the our unique values-driven leadership competency model, which will help you think deeper and lead stronger as you integrate a values-driven approach into your work.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is values-driven leadership?

Who will benefit from this program?

How is this program different from an MBA?

I don’t have five years experience yet. Could I still qualify for the MSVDL program?

When is the next start date and when are applications due?

Does this program have required residencies?

What should I expect from online learning?

What is the values-driven leadership competency model?

Is the GRE or other testing required for admission to the program?

Is the program accredited?

How do companies use the program for leadership development?

How much does the program cost?

What if I need longer than 18-months to complete the program?

Question 1

What is values-driven leadership?

Values-driven leadership implies a conscious commitment by leaders at all levels to lead with their values and create a corporate culture that optimizes financial performance, ethical practice, social contribution and environmental impact. Values-driven leaders lead from a deep sense of purpose and a demonstrated commitment to life-affirming values, such as honesty, integrity, excellence, courage, humility, trust, care for people and social and environmental responsibility.

 Question 2

Who will benefit from this program?

Since the Center for Values-Driven Leadership was founded in 2008, C-suite executives have mentioned one persistent business challenge: companies often promote individuals who are gifted with the technical skills of their field (such as accounting, engineering, or marketing) but who have no real leadership training. As the individual’s responsibilities grow, the challenges they face require solutions that technical competency alone cannot deliver.

This program is designed for leaders who want to match their established technical skill with exceptional leadership capacity – it prepares you for senior leadership roles and the complex and strategic opportunities they offer.

This program is for business professionals who want to expand their influence and drive strategic change with a values-driven approach to leadership. Anyone who needs to align others and the organization around business goals will benefit from this program.

When executives and talent development professionals bring our MSVDL curriculum in-house at their organizations, they equip a new cohort of high-capacity leaders with the skills they need to create vision, set strategy, align people and resources, and drive business results. 

 Question 3

How is this program different from an MBA?

The program is housed in Benedictine University’s Daniel L. Goodwin College of Business and is designed for business leaders. Despite this clear focus on business leadership, this program differs from traditional MBA programs in that the curriculum unapologetically focuses is on the practice of leadership, that transcends industry and sector. Rather than learning technical business skills such as accounting or marketing, master’s students explore interpersonal and strategic leadership in the context of complex change and demanding business environments. Graduates are equipped with the capacity to design strategy and positively influence others to make it happen.

Question 4

I don’t have five years experience yet. Could I still qualify for the MSVDL program?

The MSVDL program is designed for emerging and experienced leaders with who are preparing to advance their careers. If your work experience is shorter but contains significant depth, we encourage you to still apply, as applicants’ experience will be reviewed holistically.

Question 5

When is the next start date and when are applications due?

The master’s program can be brought in-house at your company at your convenience. Our online MSVDL program for individual learners is scheduled to launch in 2020. Contact Amber Johnson at aajohnson@ben.edu for additional information about both formats. 

Question 6

Does this program have required residencies?

Companies who bring the MSVDL program in-house can determine whether the program is offered in-person, online, or in a mixed format.

Our MSVDL for individual learners will be fully online with no on-campus classes.

All students are invited to participate in events hosted by the Center for Values-Driven Leadership, such as our Senior Executive Roundtables, in order to connect in-person with faculty and peers and build their network of likeminded business leaders.

Question 7

What should I expect from online learning?

If you have not recently taken an online course, you may be surprised by the academic rigor and robust dialogue that can occur in an online learning classroom.

Online courses vary in structure based on the instructor and the course’s objectives. However, elements often include online access to articles and videos; course lectures; opportunities to discuss course readings and share insights drawn from professional experience; presentations from students and guest lecturers; and assessments. Students are encouraged to access the online classroom three to five times per week; by doing so, they will be able to actively participate in discussion forums, complete assignments, and access announcements in a timely manner.

Each course is eight weeks in length, and students may complete the course components at their convenience, in keeping with course deadlines.

Question 8

What is the values-driven leadership competency model?

Developed through scholar-practitioner research over the past 20 years, the values-driven leadership competency model provides leaders with the tangible skills and behaviors necessary to take their leadership to the next level. Explore the model in detail at this link.

Question 9

Is the GRE or other testing required for admission to the program?

No. No formal testing is required for application to the program. International students, however, may be required to show proof of TOEFL scores to affirm their English-language competency.

Question 10

Is the program accredited?

The M.S. in Values-Driven Leadership degree is offered through Benedictine University’s College of Business and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA) of Colleges and Schools.

Question 11

How do companies use the program for leadership development?

Companies may use this master’s program in leadership as their training program for high potential employees or managers, sending a few students through at a time. Companies may also identify a cohort of 10 or more students to complete the program; in this case, Benedictine University can work with the organizations to start the cohort at a convenient time, to host classes on the company’s campus or online, and to tailor learning (where possible) to fit the industry and needs of the organization.

For more information on this opportunity visit this page, then contact Amber Johnson at aajohnson@ben.edu.

Question 12

How much does the program cost?

The cost of the online program for the 2018-19 academic year is $900/credit hour. In total, the MSVDL program is a 30 credit program, or $27,000. 

Question 13

What if I need longer than 18-months to complete the program?

We know work demands and family events occasionally mean you need to take a break from your studies. Students in the online M.S. degree program in leadership may pause between courses, choosing to enroll in the next offering of the course (usually 3-6 months later). Each course is built independently of previous courses, which means courses do not need to be taken in a specific order.

Learn More: Master’s Degree in Values-Driven Leadership 

1. Watch our video. 

This :50 second video gives you a fast but thorough introduction to the MSVDL program.  

2. Ask to speak with a program team member.  

Learn more about the program through a one-on-one conversation with a program team member. Email Amber Johnson, aajohnson@ben.edu, to schedule a conversation or complete the form below.


Leadership Development Offerings for Companies

This master’s in values-driven leadership is modularized and designed for individuals or companies, to advance their leadership capability and capacity. Companies can send enroll students in the online program to supplement their internal leadership development offerings, or can host a cohort on their campus, for a customized learning experience. For more on these opportunities visit this page, then contact info@cvdl.org.

Rise Above

We Help Senior Executives Lead Boldly at Four Levels


Grow as a values-driven leader.


Develop people and teams.


Build flourishing companies.


Transform business and society.

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