public administration, MPA

Answers to our most commonly asked questions

Application deadline dates - see Admissions Information 

GPA requirement and waiving GRE - see Admissions Information  

 

Summer 2018 MPA/MPP Information Sessions

Students in a Classroom

The ASU School of Public Affairs will host four information sessions at the ASU Downtown campus this spring to provide information about the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees. Information sessions will be conducted on:

Times and locations for all sessions are 6:00-7:00 p.m. in the University Center (UCENT) building, room 480A.

During the Information sessions, ASU’s School of Public Affairs’ faculty and academic advisor will be discussing the value of an MPA/MPP degree, courses offered, admissions, application procedures, tuition cost, financial aid, scholarships, and internship opportunities.

If you cannot attend but would like to learn more about the MPA or MPP programs, please schedule an in-person or phone appointment with Mark Reed, the School of Public Affair's graduate academic advisor by calling 602.496.0450. Questions are also welcomed via email. Email Mr. Reed at mbreed@asu.edu. The Information Session Powerpoint presentation (in pdf format) is here.

Why an MPA from ASU?

A Master of Public Administration from the ASU School of Public Affairs offers:

  • a nationally-ranked, high-quality professional degree program for those aspiring to leadership and management positions in the public sector
  • internationally renowned faculty whose research is on the cutting edge of public management innovation and urban governance
  • expert faculty practitioners who hold top-level executive positions across the Phoenix metropolitan region
  • course work that is paced to fit your schedule and designed to provide real-world skills necessary to advance your career
  • a community of fellow students from diverse educational and professional backgrounds from around the globe
  • a network of proud alumni throughout the US and the world

Listed as one of the best MPA programs by US News & World Reportthe School of Public Affairs at ASU is ranked 9th overall in the country. The school is also ranked:

  • 2nd in Local Government Management
  • 3rd in Homeland /National Security and Emergency Management 
  • 4th in Information and Technology Management
  • 5th in Urban Policy
  • 7th Public Management and Leadership
  • 8th in Environmental Policy and Management
  • 9th in Nonprofit Management
  • 10th in Public Finance and Budgeting
  • 12th in Public Policy Analysis

Rankings of master’s programs are based on a survey of 272 programs nationwide.

Learn more about the Marvin Andrews Fellowship in Urban Management, the nation's premier program in urban management leadership.

Program details

A Program of Study is the set of classes that is recognized by ASU, the Graduate College and the School of Public Affairs as sufficient to grant a degree. Programs of Study for the MPA total 42 hours of graduate credit and include core courses, concentration courses (if applicable) and approved electives. Students have 6 years from the term of their first class to complete the degree.

No more than 12 credit hours of graduate courses taken before admission to the School and can be included in the Program of Study. Students from institutions other than ASU may transfer a maximum of 12 credit hours to the MPA degree program, provided those classes were not used to satisfy requirements for another degree earned. All transfer credit must be approved by the MPA/MPP Director. 

More information is available in the Graduate Student Guide.

Cost:

Approximate cost per year for tuition and fees (full-time) is:

  • $14K - resident
  • $24K - nonresident
  • $28K - international

To view the source of this cost information, and to inquire about the cost of part-time status, try our tuition estimator - https://students.asu.edu/tuition - using the following values:

  • My Student Status: Graduate
  • My Location: Downtown Phoenix
  • My College:  Public Service and Community Solutions
  • Academic Programs with Differential or Program Tuition: Public Administration, Master of

Program Fees:  Every ASU graduate degree program has a “program fee” assessed for students in that program. These fees vary for each program. The more competitive/highly ranked a degree program, the higher the fee. The MPA/MPP degrees charge a program fee of $5,000, split among the first three semesters of the student’s coursework regardless of the number of credits taken in that semester. These fees cannot be waived.

Modes of instruction:

Classes for the MPA degree are taught in three modes:

  • in-person: one evening per week, 6 - 8:45pm
  • iCourses (internet)
  • weekend-intensive format

Each semester, MPA courses are taught in one or more of these formats. The MPA degree is not an ASU Online degree, but students seeking an online experience will find most core courses offered online each semester, and all core courses will be offered in an online format at least one semester each year. Careful class scheduling in consultation with the graduate academic advisor will ensure timely graduation.

Minimum Competencies

Students must demonstrate minimum competency in (1) statistics and (2) American Government. These competencies are demonstrated by having taken a basic statistics course and American government-related course (earning a B or higher) any time in the past. These competencies do not need to be met to be admitted, but students admitted to the MPA or MPP program who have not satisfied one or both competencies will be required to take related classes by the end of their first semester of study. These classes can be taken at ASU or another college before starting the graduate program or during the first semester after being admitted. Again, both courses could have been taken any time in the past, however, for statistics, use your best judgment. If it's been 10 years since your statistics course, you may want to take a refresher course or engage in self-study to prepare for your first MPA/MPP research course, PAF 501 - Public Service Research I.

Statistics – Competency in statistics is met with a grade of B or higher in one of the approved ASU courses:  PAF 301, POS 401, PSY 230, QBA 221, SWU 321, ECN 221, STP 226 or SOC 390. If you plan to take a course at a local Maricopa community college, the following course is recommended:  PSY 230. Other courses taken at ASU or another college/university may be substituted upon approval of the MPA/MPP Director. Please email a course description to the School of Public Affairs graduate academic advisor, Mark Reed - mbreed@asu.edu 

American Government – Competency in American government is a demonstrated understanding of major institutions of modern government and processes of individual and group political activity. This competency is met with a grade of B or higher in one of the approved ASU courses: PAF 200, PAF 300, PAF 340, POS 110 or POS 310. If you plan to take a course at a local Maricopa community college, the following course is recommended:  POS 110. Other courses taken at ASU or another college may be substituted upon approval of the MPA/MPP Director. Please email a course description to the School of Public Affairs graduate academic advisor, Mark Reed - mbreed@asu.edu 

The CLEP Exam can be used to demonstrate competency in American government. Find out more about the CLEP or about taking the test at ASU.

Capstone

The MPA and MPP degrees require students to demonstrate competency for public service or public policy by synthesizing and applying core knowledge, skills and abilities to public problems. Students demonstrate competency by earning an A or B in the program capstone course. The capstone is an applied project course and is taken after completing all core courses.

Internship

A public service internship is recommended for students without previous work experience in the government or non-profit sector, however, an internship is not required to graduate with an MPA or MPP. The purpose of the internship is to provide students with practical and professional experience in a specific career area. Students work for public organizations applying the skills and knowledge acquired in their program of study. During an internship, students can develop a professional network that will aid them in their career endeavors. Students can use three hours of internship credit to the degree program by taking PAF 584.

Mission

The mission of the ASU MPA program is to prepare a new generation of public service professionals that can successfully address problems of democratic governance in public administration at the local, state and national levels. We expect our graduates to serve the public through their work in neighborhoods and communities, in urban regions, nationally and globally. We expect them to be capable of rigorous problem analysis, successful collaboration leading to comprehensive solutions, clear communication of those solutions, and the ethical and effective management of public institutions.

Accreditation

The MPA program at Arizona State University has successfully met the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) Standards for Professional Master’s Degree Programs in Public Affairs, Policy and Administration.

The NASPAA Standards are the quality benchmark used by graduate public service programs around the world. NASPAA’s accreditation process is mission-based and driven by public service values. Accredited programs must contribute to the knowledge, research, and practice of public service, establish observable goals and outcomes, and use information about their performance to guide program improvement. They must practice truth in advertising and ensure their students achieve learning objectives in five domains essential to public service.

application deadline:

We admit students on a rolling basis for fall, spring, and summer semesters. You can apply as late as 30 days before a given semester starts, but are encouraged to apply 60-90 days in advance of the semester you wish to begin.

 

modes of instruction:

Classes for both the MPA and MPP degrees are taught in the following modes:

  • in-person: one evening per week, 6 - 8:45pm
  • i-Courses
  • weekend-intensive format