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Master of Public Policy (M.P.P.)

The MPP program requirements are designed to provide students with a solid, interdisciplinary foundation in public policy analysis. Students master a common set of concepts and analytical tools, and complete additional courses in a study specialization. The curriculum is divided into 3 categories for a total of 37 credits. Courses are 3 credits each unless otherwise indicated.

Core courses – 7 courses (16 credits)

Basic concepts (10 credits):

  • PUBL 603 Theory and Practice of Policy Analysis
  • PUBL 613 Managing Public Organizations
  • PUBL 623 Governmental Budgeting
  • PUBL 697 Internship Course (0 credit)
  • PUBL 699 Policy Analysis Paper (1 credit)

Research methods and quantitative analysis (6 credits):

  • PUBL 600 Research Methodology
  • PUBL 604 Statistical Analysis

Disciplinary foundation courses – 3 courses (9 credits)

  • ECON 600 Policy Consequences of Economic Analysis or ECON 601 Microeconomic Analysis
  • PUBL 601 Political and Social Context of the Policy Process
  • SOCY 606 Social Inequality and Social Policy

Study specialization courses – 4 courses (12 credits), with one course a specialization-approved statistical/methodological/analytical course.

Our study specializations are:

  • Evaluation and Analytical Methods
  • Health Policy
  • Public Management
  • Social Policy
    • Urban Policy
    • Education Policy

Learn more about study specializations.

Specific course requirements for each area of specialization are listed in the Graduate Student Handbook.

M.P.P. students who have completed 15 credits of course work, and are do not have relevant public policy work experience, are required to complete a departmentally-approved internship as a condition of graduation. Students serving the internship must register for PUBL 697. For information on the MPP internship requirement, contact Sally Helms (410-455-3202;

MPP Policy Analysis Paper
Master’s students are required to take a 1 credit course (PUBL 699) in which each student produces a policy analysis paper.

Master’s Thesis Option
Students may write a master’s thesis instead of the policy analysis paper. They will then substitute a 6 credit hour master’s thesis for the 1 credit hour policy analysis paper. Students choosing this option will be required to take only 3 track courses instead of the 4 required of other students. As a consequence, students choosing the master’s thesis option will engage in a 39 credit hour master’s program instead of the 37 hour program required of the other students.