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Choose to make a difference.

The Master of Public Administration degree will provide you with the applied skills needed to succeed in today’s workforce. You will be prepared to lead and grow in your career through a solid grounding in the study of public policy, economics, management and data analysis.

MPA Core Curriculum

The MPA core curriculum is 52 credit hours and designed to provide students a solid grounding in the study of public policy, economics, management and data analysis. MPA students often complete core coursework during the first year of study. During year two, students are able to specialize coursework through skills courses, electives and a Capstone course. (Courses may not be offered every term.)

Public Policy Stream

PUBAFRS 6000 – Public Policy Formulation and Implementation

Analysis of the operating environment of the public administrator: public policy processes, public organization behavior and policy formulation in the U.S. federal system.

PUBAFRS 6010 – Legal Environment of Public Organizations

Examination of public administration within the managerial, political and legal traditions of the U.S. Constitution with the goal of teaching public managers how to work with the law through an understanding of legal concepts, jargon, skills and issues. The course covers federal and Ohio law

Economics Stream

PUBAFRS 6030 – Public Sector Economics

Economic analysis applied to problems of public policy selection and government management operations; efficiency criteria, market failure and public choice applied to administrative decision-making.

PUBAFRS 6040 – Public Budgeting and Finance

Comprehensive survey and analysis of the principal fiscal activities of contemporary governments; logic of public-sector activity; taxation principles and practice, intergovernmental relations and current fiscal problems. Budgeting as analysis of resource allocation, planning evaluation and control; tools of analysis for program budgeting and measurement of program results; case studies. Prerequisite: PUBAFRS 6030

Management Stream

PUBAFRS 6050 – Managing Public Sector Organizations

Analysis of alternative approaches to the management of public agencies. Examination of alternative strategies that managers may use to link the agency to its operating environment.

PUBAFRS 6060 – Managing Human Resources in Public Organizations

Development of analytic and interpersonal skills needed for public sector management. Analytical and experiential learning through reading, lecture, discussion, case analysis, in-class presentations, management decision-making simulations and role-playing.

Decisions Support Systems Stream

PUBAFRS 6070 – Public Affairs Statistics

Techniques and statistics used in the analysis of public policy issues and problems

PUBAFRS 6080 – Public Affairs Program Evaluation

Survey of the conceptual, methodological, bureaucratic, political and organizational issues surrounding evaluation research. Prerequisite: PUBAFRS 6070

MPA Preparation and Work Experience

Students are expected to be familiar with basic concepts of statistics and economics, and knowledgeable about the workings of the U.S. government. Undergraduate courses in microeconomics, statistics and government are strongly recommended. 

Students are also required to have completed a four-year undergraduate degree from an accredited institution to enroll, with a minimum GPA of 3.0. If you do not meet the minimum requirements set by the university, but would still like to apply, contact the Glenn College to discuss additional options.

Work Experience
Most of our MPA students work 20 hours per week in addition to the full-time curriculum. The Glenn College Career Services staff is available to help students seeking options for gaining work experience while obtaining their master’s degree.

Before applying

  1. Complete our Inquiry Form: Introduce yourself to the Glenn College admissions team, express interest in our programs, and receive additional information about the Glenn College experience and offerings.

  2. Review the step-by-step instructions for applying below, which include important deadlines and other required materials.

Application Deadlines:

  • Priority for funding: Dec. 1
  • Final for autumn admit: April 15
  • Final for spring admit: Nov. 1
  • Final for summer admit: March 1

Program Code: PUBADM-MPA

The status will first become available two to three days after your application is received. Visit appstatus.osu.edu to check the status of your application during the admissions process.

Application Fee:

  • $60 for domestic applicants
  • $70 for international applicants
  • This fee is nonrefundable

Application Fee Waivers (U.S. applicants only)

If you feel you qualify for an application fee waiver based on your participation in any of the diversity initiatives through the Graduate School Program or Ohio State’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion, or if you feel you qualify because of economic hardship, please select the appropriate box(es) under the application fee waiver section of the online application. 

  • You must submit proof in order to qualify for an application fee waiver. 
  • Qualifying criteria are listed at admissions.osu.edu/apps/pdfs/pfwf.pdf.
  • You cannot submit your online application until your application fee waiver request is approved or your application fee is paid. You will be notified if your application fee waiver request is not approved, at which time you should return to the online application and submit the application fee.

Indicate your academic and career goals, your interest in the John Glenn College of Public Affairs, and how your education and work experience qualify you for admission. There is no length requirement for the personal statement.

*If you are an internal transfer student who started an Ohio State degree that you do not plan to complete before entering the Glenn College, please describe why you do not plan to complete your current degree (e.g., unable to pass qualifying exams, change in research interests), and why you think that the Glenn College is a better fit.

Resume or CV: Be sure to include work experience, volunteer activities, academics and professional honors, honorary societies, extracurricular activities, offices held, any publications and other significant activities.

Three letters of recommendation are required and should reflect the academic and, if relevant, job capability and experiences of the applicant. The letters should speak to the applicant’s ability to excel in an academic professional program. 

Requirements:

  • Letters must be submitted electronically using the online application (select “Public Policy and Management”).
  • While completing your online application, please provide your recommender’s name and email address. The Office of Graduate & Professional Admissions will send an email to the recommenders instructing them to complete a short assessment and upload a PDF recommendation letter. 
  • Inform your letter writers that they will receive an email from Ohio State once you submit the online application. It is the responsibility of the applicant to make sure letters of recommendation are completed by posted deadlines. 
  • If recommenders experience difficulties accessing the link or using the online system, please contact the Office of Graduate & Professional Admissions directly at gpadmissions@osu.edu.
  • Letters of recommendation sent directly to the Glenn College will not be accepted.

Upload transcripts from ALL of the universities and colleges you attended with your online application as an attachment. 

  • Transcripts are required, even for classes transferred from another institution, including classes attended during high school or completed through a study abroad program.
  • Transcripts are not required for coursework completed at Ohio State. 
  • Submit copies (front and back) of official transcripts. Please submit only scanned images of official transcripts issued by your institution’s registrar. Ohio State will not accept web reports, advising reports, self-reported scores or transfer credit on another school’s transcript.

Transcripts submitted with the online application are considered unofficial and, if admitted, you will be required to submit an official set of transcripts with statement of degree (if appropriate) prior to enrolling at Ohio State.

GRE Scores Now Optional

Starting with applications for spring 2021 and continuing for a pilot study, the GRE will be optional for applications to the MPA program. During this pilot, we will collect data and gather additional input to create a more permanent GRE policy for future terms. 

  • The GRE is required if the applicant’s GPA for the last degree earned is less than 3.0. 
  • GMAT and LSAT scores will be accepted on a case-by-case basis.

Official GRE and GMAT Codes:
GRE Institution Code: 1592; Department Code: 2204
GMAT Program Code: ZLJ-GT-29 Master in Public Policy

Live, learn and work in Washington while earning your degree.

The Glenn College MPA-DC program allows you to complete your MPA while gaining professional experience in the nation's capital.