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The Master of Public Administration (MPA) at DePaul University prepares students interested in public administration to serve the common good and advance a just society, in the spirit of St. Vincent de Paul. The MPA is designed for current government professionals or individuals seeking to pursue a career in the public sector. The degree equips students with a broad public administration knowledge in government—local, state, federal and international.

The MPA program offers six on-site concentrations: public management; emergency management; health care administration; international public management; standard; and metropolitan planning and urban affairs. Four of these concentrations can be completed in the online only MPA: public management; emergency management; standard; and metropolitan planning and urban affairs.

This degree is accredited by Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).

Mission Statement

The Master in Public Administration (MPA) degree prepares students for leadership and administrative roles in the public sector. We educate students on the technical, managerial, informational, and leadership skills required to deliver effective, accountable, and equitable government services to the public. We promote compassion for marginalized communities and ethical service to all people with a focus on social justice, professionalism, cultural sensitivity, and transparency. 

Program Requirements Quarter Hours
Core Requirements 36
Concentration Requirements 16
Total hours required 52

The Master of Public Administration may also be expanded to include select graduate certificate programs covering particular areas of interest. Students participating in a combined MPA/certificate program should consult with their academic advisor (SPSAdvising@depaul.edu) to determine what coursework might count toward both programs. A separate application process for the certificate is required. A separate application process for the certificate may be required. Students who are interested in any of the following combination programs should contact the Graduate Student Services Office for additional information.

  • Public Administration + Community Development Certificate
  • Public Administration + Critical Ethnic Studies
  • Public Administration + Emergency Management Administration Certificate
  • Public Administration + Geographic Information Systems Certificate
  • Public Administration + Global Health Certificate
  • Public Administration + Health Care Administration Certificate
  • Public Administration + Metropolitan Planning and Development Certificate
  • Public Administration + Social Research Certificate
  • Public Administration + Strategic Writing and Advancement for Nonprofits Certificate
  • Public Administration + Sustainable Urban Food Systems Certificate
  • Public Administration + Translation and Interpreting
  • Public Administration + Women's and Gender Studies Certificate
 
 

Learning Outcomes

​Students will be able to:

  • apply leadership and organizational management skills and concepts in an ethical manner amidst an ever-changing public sector.
  • analyze and interact with governance structures, jurisdictional boundaries and the public policy and implementation processes.
  • analyze and synthesize data regarding an existing public affairs issue and use empirical analysis to prepare solutions for informed, decision-making in the public sector using critical thinking.
  • articulate in written or oral forms a commitment to ethical service to all people with a focus on social justice, professionalism, cultural sensitivity, and transparency.
  • integrate the social justice lens in delivery of services and programs to a diverse public and workforce.

Degree Requirements

Students complete a total of 13 courses (52 credit hours). Nine courses (36 credit hours) of core course work and four courses (16 credit hours) in a concentration are required.

Core Courses

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 500INTRODUCTION TO PUBLIC SERVICE MANAGEMENT4
MPS 501CROSS-SECTOR ANALYSIS4
MPS 514GOVERNMENT FINANCIAL ADMINISTRATION4
MPS 522FUNDAMENTALS OF HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT4
MPS 533APPLIED STATISTICS FOR PUBLIC SERVICE (USING EXCEL)4
or MPS 536 APPLIED STATISTICS FOR PUBLIC SERVICE (USING SPSS)
MPS 541ECONOMIC FOUNDATIONS OF PUBLIC SERVICE4
MPS 583RESEARCH METHODS FOR PUBLIC SERVICE4
MPS 593INTEGRATIVE SEMINAR4
MPS 594ETHICAL LEADERSHIP IN PUBLIC SERVICE4

Internship Capstone Option

Students may choose to replace MPS 593 with MPS 610 Internship Capstone option. 

Concentration

Students in the MPA program are required to choose one of six concentrations: Emergency Management, Metropolitan Planning and Urban Affairs, International Public Management, Health Care Administration, Public Management and Standard. Four of these concentrations are available to students pursuing the online only MPA: Metropolitan Planning and Urban Affairs, International Public Management, Standard, and Public Management concentrations.  

Internship Option

Students can opt to complete an internship or professional development experience in a government setting. The student would enroll in MPS 601 for course credit, which will be applied to the MPA degree by the student's adviser. Contact SPSAdvising@depaul.edu for more details.

Concentration Requirements

​Emergency Management Concentration

Emergency Management is a critical concern for the public, private and non-profit sectors. The concentration explores both the conceptual elements of emergency preparedness and the practical implementation of emergency management that typically occur at the intersection of local and national politics. Courses will address topics such as public safety and law enforcement, crisis management, disaster response and recovery. This concentration will provide students with both theoretical and practical knowledge that will prepare them for private or public sector employment in the area of emergency preparedness for both security and non-security related incidents.
 

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4
MPS 554PRINCIPLES OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING4
Select two electives from the following:8
VOLUNTEERISM IN GLOBAL CIVIL SOCIETY
LOCAL GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATION
BEHAVIORAL STRATEGIES FOR PUBLIC SERVICE
GIS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
PUBLIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION AND PLANNING
URBAN RESILIENCE AND CLIMATE ADAPTATION POLICY
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNSHIP
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND CONFLICT MANAGEMENT
CRISIS COMMUNICATION MANAGEMENT
HUMANITARIAN LOGISTICS
HUMANITARIAN SUPPLY CHAIN

Health Care Administration Concentration

The Health Care Administration concentration provides students with the managerial and analytical skills necessary to understand and influence the processes through which hospitals, associated health care organizations, and public and private agencies provide health care opportunities to explore the roles of specific nonprofit and governmental health care providers and regulatory agencies.

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 531HEALTH CARE ADMINISTRATION4
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4
Select two electives from the following:8
VOLUNTEERISM IN GLOBAL CIVIL SOCIETY
MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT
BEHAVIORAL STRATEGIES FOR PUBLIC SERVICE
STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING
MEDICAL SOCIOLOGY
HEALTH CARE POLICY
COMPARATIVE HEALTHCARE SYSTEMS
ADVOCACY AND LOBBYING
GIS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
INTRODUCTION TO HEALTH LAW
STUDY ABROAD SEMINAR
ENERGY POLICY AND THE ENVIRONMENT
URBAN RESILIENCE AND CLIMATE ADAPTATION POLICY
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNSHIP
SPECIAL TOPICS

International Public Management Concentration

Students intending to work in international organizations require a special understanding of how public and non-profit institutional structures and managerial processes vary around the world. This concentration emphasizes the interdependence of government and non-government organizations (NGOs), while addressing a variety of management, ethics, and policy issues.
 

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 510INTERNATIONAL DIMENSIONS OF PUBLIC SERVICE4
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4
Select two electives from the following:8
SUSTAINABLE INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT
MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
LEADERSHIP IN PUBLIC SERVICE
GIS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
STUDY ABROAD SEMINAR
ENVIRONMENTAL CONFLICTS AND MEDIATED SOLUTIONS
URBAN RESILIENCE AND CLIMATE ADAPTATION POLICY
SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT POLICY AND INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNSHIP
MANAGEMENT OF INTERNATIONAL NGOs
INTERNATIONAL POLITICAL ECONOMY
MANAGEMENT OF INTERCULTURAL DIVERSITY
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND CONFLICT MANAGEMENT
MIGRATION AND FORCED MIGRATION
INTERNATIONAL LAW

Metropolitan Planning and Urban Affairs Concentration

This concentration is for students wanting to work in land use, transportation, economic development, zoning, housing, and other areas of community development. Coursework emphasizes the technical skills of public administration and the tools of analyses and development as applied in a broad public setting. Students study best practices to illustrate the effectiveness of alternative designs and models.

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4
MPS 571METROPOLITAN PLANNING4
Select two electives from following:8
VOLUNTEERISM IN GLOBAL CIVIL SOCIETY
MANAGEMENT OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
LOCAL GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATION
BEHAVIORAL STRATEGIES FOR PUBLIC SERVICE
GIS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
PRINCIPLES OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING
POVERTY, INEQUALITY AND PUBLIC POLICY
HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
STUDY ABROAD SEMINAR
ENERGY POLICY AND THE ENVIRONMENT
URBAN RESILIENCE AND CLIMATE ADAPTATION POLICY
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNSHIP
SPECIAL TOPICS
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND CONFLICT MANAGEMENT

Public Management Concentration

For those who aspire to become city managers, chief administrative officers, department directors, and senior project managers, this concentration focuses on the roles, requirements, challenges, and processes of running a public organization. Students gain the knowledge and skills needed to work successfully with professional staff, an elected governing board, consultants, and the public in the implementation of broad policy decisions. Legal issues of interest to public managers are also included.

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 526LOCAL GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATION4
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4
Select two electives from the following:8
VALUES-CENTERED LEADERSHIP
LEADERSHIP IN PUBLIC SERVICE
BEHAVIORAL STRATEGIES FOR PUBLIC SERVICE
STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING
POLICY IMPLEMENTATION
ADVOCACY AND LOBBYING
GIS FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
PRINCIPLES OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW
PUBLIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION AND PLANNING
METROPOLITAN PLANNING
HOUSING AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
POVERTY, INEQUALITY AND PUBLIC POLICY
STUDY ABROAD SEMINAR
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND INTERNSHIP
SPECIAL TOPICS

Standard Concentration

For students who want to design their own concentration. Students complete MPS 542 and then choose three additional electives in consultation with an advisor.

Course Title Quarter Hours
MPS 542POLICY DESIGN AND ANALYSIS4

Student Handbook

Students in the School of Public Service will follow many of the requirements, rules, and regulations set by the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences and the DePaul University Graduate Handbook. There are additional academic regulations specific to students in the School of Public Service. Please see information below.

Academic Probation

All students within the School of Public Service must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 or higher as part of their requirements for graduation. As a result, any student who earns a cumulative GPA below 2.7 (B-) is placed on academic probation. Students on academic probation are required to meet with the Assistant Director for Academic Advising to discuss their performance and determine a plan for improvement.

Dismissal

Students who are not able to raise their cumulative GPA to a minimum of 2.7 within two academic quarters (after being placed on academic probation) are subject to dismissal from the program.

Readmission

If a student is dismissed from the program (as outlined in the dismissal policy), he or she may reapply through the formal admission application process.

Graduation Requirements

In order to graduate from the program, students must complete all program requirements with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 or higher. If a student's cumulative GPA is below a 2.7, he or she may be denied graduation.

Non-Degree Seeking Students

While School of Public Service courses are open to non-degree seeking graduate students, pre-requisite requirements for certain courses may be enforced.