Organizational Leadership Comprehensive Exam


Comprehensive Examination
Student: Caleb Simmons
Date emailed: Monday, September 26, 2022
Exam Due Date:
Exam an Automatic Failure if not received by:
Standard Time

Good Morning!

This email provides you with instructions for your comprehensive exam. We recognize the hard work and commitment required to get to this point in your academic career at OU. Please know that we want you to not only pass your exam but to do so with excellence. These instructions provide a roadmap to help you succeed during your comprehensive-exam journey. So carefully review and follow the instructions below.

Comprehensive Exam – General Descriiption

The Organizational Leadership (OL)/Administrative Leadership (AL) comprehensive exam asks you to demonstrate your knowledge across the entire curriculum of the OL/AL program. Unlike an assignment you complete in a single course, the comprehensive exam requires you to integrate the knowledge acquired throughout your course-of-study in the OL/AL program. The exam will present you with four broad questions from the following general areas:

Interdisciplinary Approaches to Learning – Discuss the role of interdisciplinarity when leading
Research Methods – Examine your understanding of best practices in organizational research
Core Study Area – Explore knowledge about your specific track in the OL program (organizational leadership, nonprofit/volunteer, or government/military)
Critical Analysis of Readings – Analyze the strengths and limitations of prior leadership literature

Please see the attached file with your four specific comprehensive exam questions.

Timeframe & Deadlines

You have two weeks to return your four exam responses. We do not accept exams after the due date and missing the deadline results in automatic failure.

Your Comprehensive Exam Committee has a minimum of two weeks to score your exam.

Grading Criteria and Passing Scores (Grading Rubric)

The attached grading rubric identifies the four criteria that your Comprehensive Exam Committee will use to evaluate your exam. We strongly recommend that you invest time in studying the comprehensive grading rubric thoroughly. If you do, you will discover (1) how your work will be evaluated, and (2) what you need to do to succeed.

What if I Don’t Pass My Exam?

OL/AL students have two opportunities to take the exam. If you attend to the grading criteria provided in the rubric, and you invest time in studying the Comprehensive Exam Tutorial Video (see below), you will likely do well. However, if you do not pass the exam on your first attempt, you may receive a second opportunity to take the comprehensive at the discretion of your exam committee. If you do not achieve a minimum 7.0 score on one or two questions, you only need to retake the exam in those areas in a subsequent semester. However, if you do not achieve a 7.0 in three or four content areas, you will need to retake the entire exam. You will receive new questions for any necessary retakes. As with the initial exam, you will have two weeks to respond.

Correct Format & Writing Guidelines

You should submit ONE Microsoft Word document that contains all four of your responses. The Comprehensive Exam Canvas course (see the Writing and APA tab of the Home page) provides you with an APA-formatted template to help you organize your response. For more information about how to use the template, watch the
Comprehensive Exam Tutorial Video.

Important – You should prepare four separate reference lists corresponding to each question. Place each of these four reference lists immediately following your response to each of the four questions. Said another way, your response to each question should present a separate set of references. Do NOT compile one reference list for all of your responses. Also, make sure that you adhere strictly to APA guidelines outlined in the PACS APA Guide, based on the 7th edition of the APA manual.


Plagiarism is a matter that OU takes very seriously and will quickly disqualify your exam from grading consideration. Put simply, if you plagiarize, you will not pass your exam, and you risk being expelled from the university. Because several different types of plagiarism exist, some students unintentionally engage in this practice, and as a result, they suffer the unfortunate consequences. We do not want these consequences to happen to you. To avoid these severe problems, we strongly urge you to:
Familiarize yourself with the university’s plagiarism policies – You will find information about these policies on the Avoid Plagiarism tab of the Comprehensive Exam Canvas course. Pay particular attention to the information about self-plagiarism.
Watch the Plagiarism and TurnItIn Tutorial – The video (which is on the Avoid Plagiarism tab) provides detailed information about how to (1) avoid plagiarism and (2) interpret TurnItIn reports.
Use the Check the Originality of Your Writing assignment (which is on the Avoid Plagiarism tab) to generate TurnItIn reports for each of your responses BEFORE submitting your exam for evaluation – Just follow the step-by-step instructions in Canvas.

Whether or not you take the time to review and understand the plagiarism policies, it is your responsibility to adhere to the requirements, and we will hold you accountable for them.

Comprehensive Exam Tutorial Video

To succeed on the exam, it is imperative that you watch the Comprehensive Exam Tutorial Video.
The tutorial provides valuable information about the exam process as well as how your committee will evaluate your exam.