Public Administration (Graduate Certificate)

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The graduate certificate program in public administration prepares students for work at all levels in governmental and nonprofit organizations.

Through comprehensive coverage of topics in public administration, management and policy, students discover the challenges of management, learn how to lead a public organization and understand the process of policy development. The program is designed to give students a solid foundational understanding of administration, leadership and policy analysis in service to the public good.

Required Courses (6 credits):

  • PAF 503 Public Affairs
  • PAF 505 Public Policy Analysis

Elective Courses (9 credits):

  • Any 500-level PAF course

Total (15 credits)

From a public affairs program consistently ranked among the top 20 in the country, gain a deeper understanding of leadership and managerial skills. The courses are completed in downtown Phoenix, the heart of government in Arizona.

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Through comprehensive coverage of topics in public administration, management and policy, students in the graduate certificate program in public administration discover the challenges of management, learn how to lead a public organization and understand the process of policy development. The program is designed to give students a solid foundational understanding of administration, leadership and policy analysis in service to the public good.

At A Glance

Public Administration (Graduate Certificate)

Plan of study

The Plan of study is the required curriculum to complete this graduate level program.

View Plan of Study

Degree requirements

Required Core (6 credit hours)
PAF 503 Public Affairs (3)
PAF 505 Public Policy Analysis (3)

Electives (9 credit hours)

Additional Curriculum Information
Electives are chosen from a list of preapproved courses and are selected with the faculty advisor. The faculty advisor directs the selection of the electives to ensure they focus on a common theme and to see that the student's experiences in the courses align with the learning goals outlined for the certificate. For the electives, the student must select any three 3-credit PAF courses at the 500-level. Students should note that PAF 504 is a prerequisite for PAF 505.

Students are required to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") and to have no more than one grade below a "B-" in courses taken to complete the certificate program.

Admission requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree, in any field, from a regionally accredited institution.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. statement of career and educational goals
  4. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

International students who need an F1 or J1 visa first need to apply to and be accepted into a graduate degree program prior to being considered for the certificate program. International students residing in the USA on other types of visas must adhere to all Graduate College policies and procedures regarding admission to be considered for admission to this certificate program.

Students from related fields such as public policy, political science, planning, urban and metropolitan studies, sociology, as well as other social science degrees might be interested in this program. However, all eligible students are considered.

Students should see the program website for application deadlines and admission terms.