Program Requirements

The M.P.A. degree is a 42-semester-hour program. At least 33 semester hours must be in courses numbered 5000 or above. Completion of the program is contingent upon passing a written portfolio.

M.P.A. Requirements Checksheet

The maximum course load for M.P.A. students is 12 hours, and 9 hours is considered a full load. Graduate assistants must take and complete 9 hours to maintain their assistantships.

I.      Required Courses (18 semester hours)

PLSC 5193 Seminar in Public Administration
PLSC 5113 Seminar in Human Resource Management
PLSC 5163 Public Policy Formation and Analysis
PADM 5913 Policy Analysis: Theory & Practice
PADM 5803 Quantitative Methods Analysis
PADM 5813 Methods in Public Management Information


II.     Select 1 course from the following 2 courses (3 semester hours): 

PLSC 5103 Human Behavior in Complex Organizations 
- or -
PLSC 5123 Public Budgeting and Finance


III.    Restricted Electives: Select 2 courses from the following 12 courses (6 semester hours): 

PLSC 4283 Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations 
PLSC 5103 Human Behavior in Complex Organizations* 
PLSC 5123 Public Budgeting and Finance* 
PLSC 5133 Nonprofit Management 
PLSC 5143 Administrative Law 
PLSC 5153 Environmental Politics and Policy 
PLSC 5173 Community Development 
PLSC 5243 Seminar in State Politics and Policy 
PLSC 5983 Mixed Methods Research Design 
PADM 5823 Grant Writing for the Social Sciences 
PADM 584V Special Topics in Public Administration 
PADM 5903 Risk and Public Policy
*May be used for either this requirement or to satisfy the 21 hour core requirement

IV.     Special Interest Areas: 9 to 15 graduate semester hours, depending on the number of internship hours taken.

This area may be chosen in PLSC/PADM and other disciplines with approval of the M.P.A. Program Director. The M.P.A Program Director, in consultation with the student, will develop a set of relevant graduate courses that will help the student in meeting career objectives. Concentrations may be developed for students interested in fields such as community development, environmental policy and sustainability, health services administration, higher education administration, non-profit management, public policy analysis, and recreation and tourism.

Other concentrations may be exercised with the consent, advice and approval of the M.P.A. Program Director.

Students who elect to take only 9 or 12 hours of coursework may satisfy the remainder of the required degree hours with optional thesis or professional development/internship credit. Please review the Special Interest Concentrations.

V.     All students must complete and submit a portfolio of their work.

Under certain circumstances, including scheduling difficulties, other similar and/or suitable courses may be substituted for those in the core. Any such substitution requires approval of the M.P.A. Program Director.

Transfer Credit

Courses may be transferred to a student's M.P.A. program from other accredited institutions. Such work must have been taken for graduate resident credit and passed with a grade of at least "B", and be approved by the Graduate Coordinator and the Dean of the Graduate School. Normally no more than 6 hours may be transferred.