Missouri Public Administration and Public Policy Graduate Programs On Campus

Thinking about exploring public administration or public policy graduate programs on campus? Pursuing graduate school may be one way to prepare for future professional opportunities and potentially make a positive impact in your field. Below is some helpful information about possible paths, ranging from master of public policy or administration programs to doctorate programs. You’ll also find some Campus Public Administration Graduate Programs FAQs about what to expect, plus some program listings that may interest you.

Who might pursue public administration or public policy graduate programs?

The answer varies, since public policy and public administration graduate programs may interest candidates from a variety of professional areas – like government administration, nonprofit management, and even the private sector. Political scientists typically earn at least a master of public policy (MPP) or master’s in public administration (MPA), while many pursue doctorate degrees.[i] Here are a few stats about Campus Public Administration Graduate Programs degree attainment:

  • 17% of political scientists said they needed to earn a master’s degree for their current role.[ii]
  • 78% of political scientists said they needed to earn a doctorate degree.ii
  • 19% of postsecondary political science teachers said they needed to earn a master’s degree for their current role.[iii]
  • 74% of postsecondary political science teachers stated they needed to earn a doctorate degree.iii

What are great public policy graduate programs for me?

That depends on your career goals! Here are a few types of graduate degree programs you may encounter as you explore possible paths:

Master’s in Public Administration[i] – Often abbreviated as MPA, a master’s in public administration is typically a multi-disciplinary program where students may study areas like program evaluation, policy

formation, and more. Students may explore the administration of public, nonprofit, or even private-sector organizations, while studying the impact of economic and political factors. Political scientists may pursue this degree in preparation for possible careers dealing with government structure, operations, and more. ii

Master of Public Policy[i] – Abbreviated as MPP, this master’s program may share some similarities with MPA programs while focusing more specifically on the policy process. Areas of study may include policy formation, statistics, research methodologies, and more. As with the MPA, pursuing this degree program may be a perfect choice for political scientists! 

Public Administration or Public Policy Doctoral Programs[i] – In many cases, political scientists or postsecondary political science instructors [iii] may opt to pursue a doctoral degree, such as a PhD. Exploring doctor of public administration programs may be the perfect next step for those pursuing executive-level leadership paths in government, nonprofit, or even private-sector administration; students could explore program leadership, evaluation, implementation, and more. Public policy doctoral programs may be of interest to those who hope to make an impact in areas like environmental policy, international development, economic policy, etc. In general, doctoral-level programs require independent research and the defense of a dissertation. 

Public Policy or Public Administration Certificate – Certificate programs are typically non-degree programs that may allow students to explore a particular professional area – like healthcare policy, public sector service, etc. Whether you’re hoping to explore a new career path or brush up on your professional knowledge for an existing role, public policy or public administration certificate programs may be worth looking into.  

Why pursue public policy graduate programs on campus?

Today’s students may be able to pursue a couple of different learning formats, like online or hybrid programs. Your choice may depend on your lifestyle, learning preferences, and other factors. However, there may be a few potential benefits to studying on campus:

It’s traditional – Studying on campus may be how you always envisioned grad school! If you’re hoping to live in a dorm, relax on the commons, or spend long hours in the library, you might want to check out brick and mortar public policy graduate schools that appeal to your interests and requirements.

There may be social benefits – Hoping to network, join student organizations, or volunteer in the surrounding community? It may be a bit easier to get involved and meet likeminded people if you’re studying on campus.

You could enjoy campus resources – While online learners may have access to many resources, like research databases or IT support, it’s pretty hard to use the fitness center remotely! Depending on what you’re looking for in your grad school experience, learning on campus may be a perfect fit.

What are the best public policy graduate programs and the best public administration graduate programs?

The answer may depend on a lot of factors – like what you’re looking for in a prospective graduate program, and your personal opinion. While it may be possible to find listings of the “best public policy graduate programs” or the “best public administration graduate programs,” those rankings might not align with your own needs and preferences! A few factors you may wish to keep in mind when exploring Campus Public Administration Graduate Programs that may be a good fit for you include:

  • School accreditation by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education[iv]
  • Program reputation
  • Program cost and potential financial aid
  • School location
  • Campus look, feel, and amenities
  • Curriculum and available majors/concentrations
  • Admission requirements
  • Extracurricular activities and student organizations
  • Flexibility for working students, e.g. evening and weekend courses
  • And anything else that may be important to you!

It may be a good idea to speak to a program representative, chat with current or former students, and even take a campus tour to learn more about a prospective graduate school.

Campus Public Administration Graduate Programs: Ready to get started?

Below, you’ll find some listings for campus-based public administration and public policy graduate programs that may interest you. On the left sidebar, you can try filtering by degree type – like doctorate or certificate – to narrow down your results! Good luck finding perfect Campus Public Administration Graduate Programs for you.

Sources: [i] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/political-scientists.htm#tab-4 | [ii] onetonline.org/link/summary/19-3094.00 | [iii] onetonline.org/link/summary/25-1065.00 | [iv] studentaid.ed.gov/sa/prepare-for-college/choosing-schools/consider#accreditation

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