Public Administration

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Application Procedures

The M.P.A. in Public Administration program gives preference to students with undergraduate grade point averages of at least 3.0. In-service applicants with strong professional experience may be admitted with grade point averages below 3.0 in some cases. Admission decisions are made by the M.P.A. in Public Administration Director with the advice of the M.P.A. faculty for students who submit complete applications by the submission deadlines given below. Applications will be ranked for the purpose of final admissions decisions. The number of students admitted to the program for a given semester will be determined by program capacity and enrollment. Students must also be admitted to the Graduate School.

Applications completed after the stated deadlines will be reviewed if space becomes available.

  • April 1 - Summer and Fall Admission
  • June 1 - for all other applicants
  • December 1 - Spring Admission

Applicants interested in being considered for graduate assistantships must have a complete application turned in by the February 1st deadline (including valid GRE scores) and must indicate interest in the assistantship on the application. Students wanting to be considered for Graduate School Fellowships must indicate their interest on the application and submit it by December 1st.

Master of Public Administration (M.P.A.) in Public Administration

Admission

Students applying to the M.P.A. in Public Administration program are admitted as either pre-service or in-service. To be admitted as in-service, the student must have significant professional experience in a public or quasi-public agency. This can generally be defined as at least one year of full-time administrative work experience. Students having less than one year of professional experience are admitted as pre-service.

To be considered for admission, applicants must have: (1) graduated from an accredited four-year college or university and (2) received an overall grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, or a 3.0 overall grade point average for the last two years of undergraduate work. In instances where a candidate’s promise is indicated by professional experience rather than undergraduate record, consideration for admission will be given on an individual basis. Admission exceptions may be granted by the director upon careful review of the student’s entire application including: letters of recommendation, a personal statement, and a writing sample. All international M.P.A. applicants, except those from English-only speaking countries, must submit either an Internet-based TOEFL or IELTS official score report. If you obtained (or are obtaining) an undergraduate or a graduate degree in an English-only speaking country, your TOEFL/IELTS score requirement will not be waived. The M.P.A. program requires a minimum TOEFL score of 80 (internet based) overall or minimum IELTS score of 6.5. The program requires a nonrefundable $65 application fee that must be submitted with the Application for Admission to Graduate Study in Public Administration. A GRE score is required of all applicants wishing to be considered for a graduate assistantship or fellowship.

Degree Requirements

M.P.A. students complete a 40-credit hour program of study as follows: (1) nine required courses totaling 25 credit hours; (2) 12 credit hours of elective course work; (3) an internship for three credit hours; and (4) successfully passing a comprehensive final examination. Of the 40 credit hours of graduate level coursework, at least 19 credit hours must be taken in M.P.A. program. Each of these requirements is described below. In-service students are not required to complete an internship, reducing the total number of credit hours needed to graduate to 37.

Retention

All M.P.A. students are required to maintain a minimum level of academic performance. Any student earning a C grade or below in two or more M.P.A. required courses will be dismissed from the program. Students must otherwise conform to the standards set out in the M.P.A. Student Handbook. Issues not addressed by the Handbook fall under retention policy provisions in the Graduate School Catalog.

Prerequisites

Students lacking undergraduate preparation in public administration must complete PADM 537 (Foundations of Public Administration) during their first semester of study. Exceptions to this may be granted to in-service students, on a case-by-case basis. Additionally, PADM 503 is a prerequisite to enrollment in PADM 539 and is recommended prior to enrollment in PADM 542. PADM 540 can only be taken after at least three other core courses have been successfully completed.  

Core Requirements - 25 credit hours

  • PADM 503: Research Methods for Public Administrators (3 CH)
  • PADM 535: Ethical Foundations of Public Service (3 CH)
  • PADM 539: Program Analysis and Evaluation (3 CH)
  • PADM 540: Seminar in Public Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 542: Public Budgeting and Fiscal Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 543: Human Resource Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 545: Organization Theory and Behavior (3 CH)
  • PADM 546: Leadership in Public Administration (3 CH)
  • PADM 594: Preprofessional Seminar in Public Administration (1 CH)

Internship Requirement - 3 credit hours

  • PADM 595: Internship in Public Affairs (3 CH)

Elective Requirements - 12 credit hours

  • Elective courses are selected by the student and the Field Representative.

To facilitate the work of employed students, each of the required courses is offered in the evening at least once every three years. A substitution for one core course may be allowed if the substituted course is similar in content to the core course, or if competence in the subject matter of the course is clearly evident. All substitutions must be approved by the director of the program. M.P.A. students concentrating in aviation administration will substitute PADM 557 (Public Financial Administration) for PADM 539 (Program Analysis and Evaluation).

Electives

Elective courses may be selected from the offerings of various programs across the University, as well as those in the M.P.A. program. The student and the M.P.A. Director consult in selecting courses best suited to the student’s individual career goals. 400-level courses, of an introductory technical nature and other specialized courses especially relevant to the public administration profession, may be taken with the consent of the director of the program. Students may count no more than six credit hours of 400-level courses toward fulfillment of the degree. 

Internship

Pre-service students must register for PADM 595 and serve an internship in a governmental agency, nonprofit organization or quasi-governmental agency. The internship requires a minimum of 300 hours of work and must be approved by the program. In extraordinary circumstances, a pre-service student may substitute three credit hours of coursework for the internship if a request is approved by the program.

Aviation Administration Concentration

To be considered for admission into the aviation administration concentration, pre-service applicants will have graduated from an accredited four-year college or university with a major in some aspect of aviation, with a minimum grade point average of 3.0. Inservice applicants with strong professional experience may be admitted with undergraduate grade point averages below 3.0, and with undergraduate majors outside of the aviation field. Prerequisite coursework including PADM 537 and additional aviation administration courses may be required in these situations.

Core Requirements - 25 credit hours

  • PADM 503: Research Methods for Public Administrators (3 CH)
  • PADM 535: Ethical Foundations of Public Service (3 CH)
  • PADM 540: Seminar in Public Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 542: Public Budgeting and Fiscal Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 543: Human Resource Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 545: Organization Theory and Behavior (3 CH)
  • PADM 546: Leadership in Public Administration (3 CH)
  • PADM 557: Public Financial Administration (3 CH)
  • PADM 594: Preprofessional Seminar in Public Administration (1 CH)

Aviation Requirements - 12 credit hours

(Select four of the five aviation courses, register for cross listed AVM courses.)

  • AVM 551/PADM 551: Aviation Policy, Law and Regulation (3 CH)
  • AVM 552/PADM 552: Advanced Airport Administration (3 CH)
  • AVM 553/PADM 553: Advanced Airport Safety Administration (3 CH)
  • AVM 554/PADM 554: Aviation Planning (3 CH)
  • AVM 555/PADM 555: I International Aviation (3 CH)

Internship Requirement - 3 credit hours

  • PADM 595: Internship in Public Affairs (3 CH)

Master of Public Administration/J.D. Concurrent Degrees

Students who have been admitted separately to the Southern Illinois University School of Law and the Master of Public Administration program may study concurrently for the Juris Doctorate and M.P.A. degree. Students interested in concurrent study should inform both programs before entering the second academic year as law students. Students will not be permitted to take course work outside the prescribed law curriculum during the first year of law school. The required courses for joint degree students are as follows:

Core Requirements - 22 credit hours

  • PADM 503: Research Methods for Public Administrators (3 CH)
  • PADM 539: Program Analysis and Evaluation (3 CH)
  • PADM 540: Seminar in Public Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 542: Public Budgeting and Fiscal Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 543: Human Resource Management (3 CH)
  • PADM 545: Organization Theory and Behavior (3 CH)
  • PADM 546: Leadership in Public Administration (3 CH)
  • PADM 594: Preprofessional Seminar in Public Administration (1 CH)

Law Requirements - 15 credit hours
(Select five law courses from the list below)

  • LAW 533, LAW 539, LAW 548, LAW 552, LAW 553, LAW 558, LAW 568, LAW 579, LAW 585, LAW 589, LAW 593, LAW 596, LAW 600, LAW 619, LAW 620, LAW 622, LAW 642, LAW 650, LAW 651, LAW 662, and LAW 668

Internship Requirement - 3 credit hours

  • PADM 595: Internship in Public Affairs (3 CH)

Law students accumulating 300 hours working in the field may petition to waive the PADM 595 service requirement. Successful petitioners will be granted in-service status. As in-service students, they will be required to submit the in-service paper. Students without any background in public administration may be required to enroll in PADM 537 as a prerequisite to the program.

Differential Tuition

The College of Business and Analytics has a differential tuition surcharge of 15 percent of applicable tuition for graduate College of Business and Analytics majors. The differential tuition surcharge will be assessed at the in-state tuition rate and will be capped at 15 credit hours per semester.