Program Requirements

Getting your degree

Want to make an impact in the local government or nonprofit world? You’ll be prepped to take the lead with your Master of Public Administration.

With just 36 hours of course work – available completely online – you can earn your degree as well as increase your job opportunities and salary.

Degree requirements (minimum of 36 hrs)

  1. Required Core:
    Course Code Course Title Credit Hours
    PLS 673 Policy Analysis 3 hrs
    PLS 676 Quantitative Methods of Political Science and Public Policy 3 hrs
    PLS 752 Public Personnel Management 3 hrs
    PLS 753 Management Techniques and Organizational Behavior 3 hrs
    PLS 756 Budgeting and Financial Management for State and Local Government 3 hrs
    PLS 771 Seminar in Public Administration 3 hrs
    PLS 778 Ethics and Leadership in the Public Sector 3 hrs
    Total Core 21 hrs

    Note: If the student has taken a 500-level required course for undergraduate credit, he/she shall substitute a 600 or 700-level course selected with the approval of the advisor and the department for the course already taken.

  2. Internship.​​​​​​​ ( PLS 781 In-Service Training in Public Administration). In-service training in an approved local, county, state, federal, non-profit or other approved agency (unless waived for candidate with adequate experience). 0-3 hrs
  3. Research:
    1. Non-thesis option. Complete required core courses and up to 18 hours of courses in student’s chosen area of concentration (see #4 below).
    2. Thesis option. Complete required core courses, PLS 799 Thesis (6 hours), and up to 12 hours of courses in student’s chosen area of concentration (see #5 below).
  4. Comprehensive Examination. The Director of the MPA Program will prepare and administer a written comprehensive examination covering the general field of public administration, reflected in the required core courses offered. All students except those who choose a thesis option and successfully complete a master’s thesis will be required to take and pass a written comprehensive examination. Students who do not perform at satisfactory level on their comprehensive examination will be required to pass an oral examination.
  5. Areas of Concentration. The MPA student will take the required courses in his/her area of concentration that will result in earning a certificate to compliment the core courses. They will also select other courses to fill out the elective requirements depending on whether the internship is waived. Certificate 12 hrs

Focusing your studies

To complete your master’s degree, you will select one primary area of concentration. You’ll earn a graduate certificate when you complete these courses.

Concentration areas