Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit



Teaching organisation

This unit involves 150 hours of focused learning, which reflects the standard volume of learning for a unit in a University qualification of this Australian Qualifications Framework type.

Unit rationale, description and aim

Graduates of programs in Leadership should develop knowledge and skills in this discipline and be able to reflect critically on the ways in which their personal development impacts upon their professional roles. This unit will help students to apply key concepts of organisational behaviour, psychodynamics, systems thinking and spirituality to the task of leadership. The student will be supported in the role of leader in his or her current working situation, and to develop the capacity to lead adaptive change in the workplace. The aim of this unit is to give students a framework for understanding leadership that integrates its spiritual dimensions.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Describe their organisation as a living human system and explain how people behave on the basis of their internalised organisational pictures (GA5); 

LO2 - Demonstrate an understanding of the concept of role and the experience of being a person in a leadership role in an organisational system (GA5); 

LO3 - Appropriate and demonstrate the skills of adaptive leadership (GA5); 

LO4 - Reflect on and integrate an understanding of what it means to be contemplatives in action in the workplace (GA5);

LO5 - Articulate the meaning of faith, values and belief in their own work and life, and that of the workplace (GA5; G6).

Graduate attributes

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA6 - solve problems in a variety of settings taking local and international perspectives into account


Topics will include:

·       Key principles of organisational behaviour;

·       Introduction to psychodynamics;

·       Introduction to systems thinking;

·       The role of spirituality in leadership;

·       Leadership in the workplace;

·       Leading for adaptive change in the workplace.

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

This unit involves 150 hours of focused learning, which reflects the standard volume of learning for a unit in a University qualification of this Australian Qualifications Framework type.

THSP513 will be delivered in multi-mode, that is, in various combinations of face to face and mediated learning environments, utilising strategies which may include:

·       Self-directed activities (such as completing scaffolded reading tasks or web-based exercises) which enable each student to build a detailed understanding of a topic;

·       Small-group tasks and activities (such as contributing to discussion forums or undertaking peer review) which enable students to test, critique, expand and evaluate their understandings;

·       Plenary seminars and webinars which enable students to link their understandings with larger frameworks of knowledge and alternative interpretations of ideas;

·       Practical or fieldwork activities which enable students to rehearse skills necessary to the discipline and to be mentored in that practice;

·       Critically reflective activities (such as a guided Examen or private journal-writing) which assist students to learn reflexively, that is, to identify their affective responses to the learning and to integrate their learning with action.

The unit is delivered with the expectation that participants are adult learners, intrinsically motivated and prepared to reflect critically on issues as well as on their own learning and perspectives.

Assessment strategy and rationale

In order to pass this unit, students are required to complete all assessment tasks and achieve an overall minimum grade of pass. All assessment tasks are designed for students to show their achievement of each learning outcome and graduate attribute. They require students to demonstrate the nexus between their learning, dispositions, and leadership practice, and the evidence on which this demonstration is based.

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

1. Review of literature (1500 words). This task is designed to enable students to develop skills in critical reading on the theological foundations of the Exercises.


LO1, LO2


2. Contributions to each online forum (equivalent to 1500 words). This task is designed to enable students to test and review the quality of their learning in the context of peer discussion.


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5

GA5, GA6

3. Integrative essay (3000 words). This task is designed to enable students to consolidate their learning by reflecting critically on their leadership in narrative form.


LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4, LO5

GA5, GA6

Representative texts and references

*recommended texts

Anderson, Robert. Scaling Leadership: Building Organisational Capacity to Create Outcomes that Matter Most. New Jersey: Wiley & Sons, 2019.*

Armstrong, David. Organisation-in-the-mind: Psychoanalysis, Group Relations and Organizational Consultancy. London, UK: Karnac Books, 2005.

Barton, Ruth Haley. Strengthening the Soul of your Leadership: Seeking God in the Crucible of Ministry. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2008.

Denning, Stephen. The Secret Language of Leadership: How Leaders Inspire Action through Narrative. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass, 2007.

Heifetz, Ronald, and Marty Linsky. The Practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactics for Changing Your Organization and the World. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business Press, 2009.

Greenleaf, Robert. Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness. Mahwah, NJ: Paulist Press, 2002.

Kegan, Robert and Lisa Lahey. Immunity to Change. Boston, Massachusetts: Harvard Business School Publishing Co, 2009.*

Long, Susan. The Perverse Organisation and its Seven Deadly Sins. London: Karnac Books, 2008.

Lowney, Christopher. Heroic Leadership: Best Practices from a 450-Year-Old Company That Changed the World. Chicago, IL: Loyola Press, 2005.

Pitcher, Patricia. The Drama of Leadership (Kindle Edition). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons, Inc. 2008.

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