Department of Public Policy & Administration
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Overview

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     Department of Public Policy & Adminstration
     Description of MPA Program
     Master Of Public Administration
     Admission Requirements
     Comprehensive Examination
     Certificates


DDPA Organizational Chart 2013 Department of Public Policy and Adminstration

The Department of Public Policy & Administration is the tenth and newest department in the College of Business and Public Affairs at West Chester University. The Department houses the Master of Public Administration program and the Center for Social & Economic Policy Research. The Department has seven full-time faculty and a program coordinator.

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Description of MPA Program

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) is a professional degree that offers concentrations in human resource management and nonprofit administration. The program currently only offers only in-class face-to-face instruction. In addition, graduate certificates, which can be coupled with the MPA general degree, are offered in such areas as Urban and Regional Planning. The degree is designed to equip students with the skills necessary to enhance the field of public service through positions both inside and outside of government in the nonprofit and even private sector (e.g., as consultants to governmental organizations or as governmental service providers). The MPA curriculum provides students with a foundation in the practice of public administration. Beyond that, students earning the degree will possess a high level of competency in administrative processes for the public sector.

The degree is designed for individuals with professional work experience who desire to enhance their administrative and public management skills as well as pre-service students who do not have professional experience. Students who lack work experience will incorporate a relevant internship or other job experiences into their programs.

The curriculum consists of 18 semester hours in the public administration core, a 3 semester hour capstone and 15 semester hours in a selected concentration area. In addition, those pursuing the general degree can earn a graduate certificate concurrently with their MPA such as a graduate certificate in Urban and Regional Planning. Students pursuing full-time study (9 credit hours per semester) can complete the degree in two years. Students needing to complete an internship will require additional time or will have to increase their number of credit hours in one semester to finish in two years.

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Master Of Public Administration

(36-39 semester hours)

The curriculum consists of 18 semester hours in the public administration core, a 3 semester hour capstone and 15 semester hours in a selected concentration area:

  1. Administrative core (required): PPA 500, 501, 502, 503, 504, and 505 (18 semester hours)
  2. Elective courses or an optional area of concentration (15 semester hours)
    1. Human Resource Management
    2. Nonprofit Administration
  3. Capstone (3 semester hours)
  4. Internship (3 semester hours -- required for per-service students)

In addition, students pursing the general concentration can complete a graduate certificate in a variety of specializations (such as Urban and Regional Planning) concurrently with the MPA degree.


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Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting the general requirements for admission to a degree program at West Chester University, applicants must submit a personal statement with a clear focus on career plans; a resume; and two letters of reference from professional supervisors that address the applicant's management potential. All application materials are to be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies using the online application process. After all materials have been received by the Office of Graduate Studies, the MPA director will review the materials and forward a recommendation regarding to the Dean of Graduate Studies. Students will be notified of admissions decisions by the Office of Graduate Studies.

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Comprehensive Examination

No comprehensive examination is required for the administrative core. However, in lieu of an examination, each of the six administrative core courses must be completed with a grade of at least "B." In addition, all students are required to complete a Capstone Seminar that will serve as a culminating experience for the program as well as a required competencies portfolio.

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Certificates

For students who do not wish to pursue a Master's degree but who are seeking to specialize in a specific area, we offer graduate certificates in the following areas: public administration, nonprofit administration, or human resource management. Certificates are designed for persons who desire to enhance their management and supervisory skills in these particular areas. To earn the certificate, students must complete 18-semester hours with a minimum grade of "B" in each course. Those interested in the certificate option must follow and meet the same admissions criteria as master's degree students. Degree students also may apply for the certificates after completing the certificate course requirements with a minimum grade of "B" for each course.

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