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Human Resources

Effective human resource (HR) management and development are essential for organizations to become and remain great. Our human resources graduate programs set our students apart by enhancing their credibility and ability to contribute to the success of an organization. It prepares students to become true strategic partners in business, non-profit and government agencies.

The Graduate Certificate in Human Resources is a one year, four course (12 credit) program designed to prepare students to be successful professionals in this dynamic field. Course work covers aspects of law, labor management and employee development.

The Master of Science in Organizational Leadership (OL) with a concentration in human resources is an 11 course (33 credit) program designed for professionals who currently hold or aspire to hold management or supervisory positions in the HR field. The graduate-level coursework is applicable to all types of organizations including both for-profit and non-profit entities. In addition to applied research in leadership and human resources, students gain knowledge of financial operations, employee development and organizational communication.

Finally, consider enrolling in the new human resources PHR/SPHR Certification Preparation Course (OL 645), which prepares students for either the Professional Human Resources or Senior Professional in Human Resources certificate exams*. This course is open to undergraduate students, graduate students and HR professionals.

*To sit for the PHR/SPHR exams, you may have to meet additional requirements.

Cost and Career Information

In compliance with the “gainful employment” regulations under Title IV of the Higher Education Act, as amended, Mercyhurst is disclosing certain cost and career information to prospective students. You can view this information by clicking here.

Course Requirements


  • OL 507 HR Management
  • OL 528 HR Development
  • OL 532 Law for Leaders
  • OL 628 HR Professional Skills or Approved Elective


In addition to the four courses required for the graduate certificate (listed above), you will take seven core courses as part of the Organizational Leadership curriculum:

  • OL 500 Leadership Theory and Practice
  • OL 502 Leadership and Organizational Behavior
  • OL 504 Research Methods
  • OL 505 Organizational Ethics
  • OL 530 Organizational Communications for Leaders
  • OL 651 Financial Operations and Analysis
  • OL 676/677 Thesis or research-based project

 Download the Graduate Course Catalog for more information on these programs or to view course descriptions for the classes above.



Office of Graduate Studies
Phone: (814) 824-3351

Dr. Anne Zaphiris, associate professor of organizational leadership
Office location: Main 200
Phone: (814) 824-3382

Kristen Pepe, academic coordinator, graduate admissions
Phone: (814) 824-2297