About the Program
UT Arlington's Master of Public Administration provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to pursue management careers in public services at all levels of government, non-profit and even in businesses such as consulting firms. The program focuses on some of the special challenges faced by managers who serve in urban areas.
Students should refer to the course syllabi for textbook information.
Please note that textbook requirements may be subject to change.
The UT Arlington MPA program offers an exciting opportunity to intern for one semester to gain public sector professional experience. The internship is required for individuals with less than 1 year of professional public sector work experience. The internship may be waived if you meet the criteria outlined in the internship waiver section.
This internship course is designed for students to earn 3 credit hours for completing a one semester long internship leading to public sector professional experience. There are no prerequisites that must be met before entering an internship or enrolling in URPA 5360, therefore you can immediately begin an internship within their first semester and thereafter.
Applying for Internship Credit
Internships must be approved by the program. You must submit an Internship Agreement Form describing the duties and hours with a signature from the sponsor before registration for internship credit. At the end of the internship, you must complete and submit an Internship Report on their experiences and the sponsor must complete and submit an Internship Performance Evaluation verifying the internship requirements have been met. Both these forms must be submitted to the MPA Director by the end of the semester in order to receive credit and a grade.
URPA 5360 (Internship) can be waived by newly admitted students and current students who have previously earned at least 1 year of professional public sector work experience. The procedure that must be followed by every student wishing to pursue the waiver is as follows:
- Submit an Internship Waiver Form to your Graduate Advisor with signature and all necessary information
- Attach a professional resume, illustrating at least one year of professional experience of public sector work
- Once approval or denial decision is made, you will then be notified as to whether or not the URPA 5360 – Internship course will be waived.
Our Master of Public Administration Program is certified by the Network of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).
To find out more, contact an enrollment specialist at 866-489-2810.
U.S. News & World Report (2016) ranks the UT Arlington Master of Public Administration degree program in the top third of MPA programs in the nation.
Upon acceptance to our program, a course carousel indicating the course sequence will be provided. Please be aware that courses may be pushed back to the next start date if there is an insufficient number of enrolled students. Our expectation is that all students will enroll in courses as indicated on the carousel and that the program will be completed in a reasonable time frame.
Students who have Technical Writing or an equivalent will not be required to enroll in Technical Writing (ENGL 2338). The equivalent courses for Technical Writing are any sophomore level (2000 level course) Literature, Philosophy, or Speech course. Course equivalency Charts are available here.
Intro to Public Administration
This graduate-level introductory course is designed to give students an understanding of public administration as a field of academic inquiry and professional practice within the context of American federalism, democratic values, institutional dynamics and bureaucratic politics. In addition to contextually defining public administration, the course addresses government reform, intergovernmental relations, public ethics, organizational dynamics and behavior, personnel issues, budgeting and e-governance.
Public and Non-Profit Human Resources
The purpose of this course is to familiarize students with key functions of government personnel systems, discuss various theoretical approaches and techniques and understand the major legal requirements of public personnel management. The course examines the structure, role and evolution of the Civil Service, current personnel policies and personnel management tasks such as examination, recruitment, position classification and collective bargaining.
Ethics in Public Service
This course examines public service theoretical ethics literature to provide a basis for each student to both reflect upon and expand their comprehension of the values and processes of ethical decision making. Beyond theoretical works, it addresses the application and evaluation of theory against the professional, workaday reality of case studies, ethical codes and other relevant materials. Three major learning objectives are: 1) achievement of a solid understanding of the dominant theoretical perspectives in the public service ethics literature; 2) competency in the development of guidelines and procedures that encourage ethical behavior and 3) enhancement of the reach and resiliency of each member's personal commitment to public service ethics.
Foundations of Urban Research and Analysis
An introduction to research methodologies, both quantitative and qualitative and statistical techniques useful in the analysis of urban trends and administrative programs.
This course introduces students to the principles and practices used by federal, state and local governments to acquire and spend revenues within the context of American democracy, capitalism, federalism and economics. The primary objective of this course is to provide students with the practical skills and theoretical knowledge to enable them to be effective participants in the budgeting process and critical consumers and producers of research relevant to public budgeting. Offered as CIRP 5328 and URPA 5326. Credit will be granted only once.
Financial Management in the Public and Non-Profit Sectors
Overview of the principles of finance as they apply to the public and non-profit sectors, financial reporting for state and local governments and non-profit organizations and evaluation.
Public and Non-Profit Human Resources Law
This course examines the legal background pertinent to public human resource management. Topics addressed include compensation and benefits, employee discrimination, gender and family issues legislation, environmental, safety and health issues, whistleblower legislation, immigration law, worker compensation and drug and alcohol issues.
This course examines non-profits as community institutions with an outward focus: the political, economic and inter-organizational environment, fund-raising and financial management, community relations and needs assessment, the role of the volunteers, boards and community leaders, marketing and legal and government issues.
Methodological issues in evaluating public programs; identification of variables, indicators and analyses formats presented.
Critical analysis of the implications of federalism and the changing nature of intergovernmental relations on state and local management, administration, planning and policy making.
Public and Non-Profit Organization Theory
Historical evolution of administrative theory including classical, sociological and social-psychological dimensions; decision-making theory; implications of public interest theory for public management; basic concepts of organization development and impact on public administration paradigms; new public administration; and future of public urban organization. Also offered as CRCJ 5309 and POLS 5303; credit will be granted only once.
Public Administration Capstone
This integrative applied research course assesses the student's ability to analyze, synthesize and formulate cogent recommendations to solve a real public sector problem. Students will write the capstone paper using concepts drawn from the MPA core curriculum, their chosen emphasis track and the student's professional public work experience. Students are required to successfully defend their capstone paper before a Public Administration Forum consisting of SUPA faculty, students and other interested parties. Prerequisite: Completion of all other course work required for the MPA degree, including core courses and emphasis area courses, unless an exception is approved by the MPA advisor.
Urban Management/Planning Internship
Designed to integrate work experience and coursework through a series of brief work-related assignments; presentations by local planning and management practitioners and class discussions and exercises. Enrollment is open to both pre-entry and in-career students. Formal internship placements with agency mentors will be arranged. P/F only. Urban Management/Planning Internship for students with less than one year of appropriate work experience.
Examines governmental capital budgeting processes with a focus on understanding the significance of capital improvement planning, public facility investment, and project evaluation to sound infrastructure financing and regional economic growth . Governments purchase or construct long-lasting physical assets or facilities financed mostly through borrowing. This course aims to understand the rationale for public capital budgeting and debt instruments used to finance capital investment in the political context of public budgeting in America.
Nonprofit Management and Social Entrepreneurship
This course prepares students to be entrepreneurs, innovators and change leaders by using social entrepreneurship perspective to examine leadership and management practices of nonprofit organizations. Through hands-on experiential training, developing skills in needs assessment, and formulating interventions for social change, students develop a blueprint of a nonprofit organization that takes an innovative approach for sustainable solutions of social problems.
- A preferred Verbal GRE score of 450 (Revised GRE Test: 150), Quantitative GRE of 450 (Revised GRE Test: 141), and combined Verbal and Quantitative score of 1,000 (Revised GRE Test Combined: 291). Under certain conditions, the GRE requirement may be waived. See GRE Waiver, below.
- Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 based on the last 60 hours of course work as calculated by the Graduate School
- Strong Letters of Recommendation (3 required)
- Essay of approximately 250 words: Why do you want to earn a Master's degree in the program for which you are applying and what relevant background and experience do you bring to the program.
- Non-native English speakers only: TOEFL or IELTS scores
- Complete online application and submit application fee.
- Submit official transcripts.
- U.S. Transcripts: Official transcripts from all senior or four-year institutions are required. Official transcripts are those mailed directly to the University of Texas at Arlington Office of Graduate Studies by the Registrar of the institution of attendance OR official original "issued to student" transcript with the official university seal and signature of the Registrar of the institution of attendance. Official original "issued to student" transcripts may be mailed or hand-carried to the Office of Graduate Studies.
- UT Arlington Transcripts: The Office of Graduate Studies has access to UT Arlington transcripts. Therefore, currently or previously enrolled UT Arlington students do not need to request their UT Arlington transcript be forwarded to the Graduate School from the UT Arlington Office of Records (Registrar.)
- Foreign Country Transcripts: Official foreign country transcripts or marksheets and diplomas are those bearing the original seal of the institution and the original signature of the Registrar or responsible head of the institution. Those not issued in English must be accompanied by an exact word-for-word original English translation bearing the original university or translation agency attestation. Upon written request original documents will be returned to the applicant.
Send transcripts to:
Office of Graduate Studies
UT Arlington Box 19167
701 S. Nedderman Dr.
Davis Hall, Room 332
Arlington, TX 76019
The MPA program waives the requirement that an applicant take the GRE under any of the following conditions:
- A 3.25 or higher undergraduate GPA based on the last 60 hours of course work AND at least three years professional non-profit or public service work experience (as judged by the MPA admission committee. Applicants should submit a supporting resume or other relevant documentation to the MPA Graduate Advisor)
- A completed graduate degree from an accredited program in a related field such as, but not exclusively, political science, economics, urban planning, social work, criminal justice, and sociology OR a 3.0 or better higher after 12 hours of coursework in the accredited graduate degree program.
- A completed UTA B.A. or B.S. with 3.0 or higher GPA
- An equivalent GMAT or LSAT score from an exam taken within the last two years preceding the time of application.
Information for Permanent Residents and International Applicants
At this time, the program is only open to United States Citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (Green Card holders) and individuals who hold an H1-B Visa. In addition to items 1 through 3 above, the following materials must be submitted:
- Lawful Permanent Residents: Submit a copy of your Resident Alien Card (green card).
- International Applicants (H1-B Status): Submit proof of current visa status.
- The TOEFL or IELTS is required if an applicant's native language is not English or if the applicant does not hold a bachelor's or master's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. However, students may apply without the TOEFL or IELTS GRE and be considered for provisional admission. While there is no guarantee that provisional admission will be granted, if it is approved, take the TOEFL or IELTS right away. It typically takes 10-15 business days for scores to be sent after they are requested and an additional two weeks for processing after receipt in the Office of Graduate Studies. You must take the test in time for your results to arrive and be processed in the Office of Graduate Studies before completion of the second course. Those wishing to pursue a waiver of this requirement should contact the graduate advisor.
Types of Admission Decisions
- Unconditional - An applicant who meets all requirements is normally considered for unconditional admission.
- Probationary - An applicant who does not meet all requirements for unconditional admission nevertheless may show promise for successful graduate study and, upon recommendation of the appropriate Committee on Graduate Studies and approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies, may be granted probationary admission.
- Provisional - An applicant unable to supply all required documentation prior to the admission deadline but who otherwise appears to meet admission requirements may be granted provisional admission upon recommendation of the appropriate Committee on Graduate Studies and approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies.
- Deferred - If an applicant does not present adequate evidence of being able to supply required application materials or must complete additional preparatory work before their admissibility can be determined, the admission decision may be deferred until records are complete.
- Denied - If an individual fails to meet more than one of the admission standards of the department to which he or she applied and the admission committee feels that there is insufficient basis to justify a probationary, provisional or deferred admission recommendation. As the admission process is competitive, students meeting basic admission requirements who are less well qualified than other applicants may also be denied admission. Please see this link for more detailed information about the Types of Admission.
Affordability You Can Count On
|Program||Per Credit Hour||Per Course*||Per Program|
|Master of Public Administration||$425.00||$1,275.00||$16,575|
*Per-course tuition based on 3-credit hour courses. Spring 2012 rates are for students with an admit term of Spring 2012 or later. Tuition may vary by admit term.
The tuition deadline is the Friday (by 11:59 PM CT) before the course begins. If tuition is not paid before the deadline, you will be dropped from your course(s).
No late payments will be allowed and no reinstatement granted if you are dropped for non-payment. If you plan to use the UT Arlington website to make payment, please note that it may be down for maintenance on Sunday mornings. You may also contact Student Accounts at 817-272-2172 for additional information regarding payment.
All degrees are subject to application fees and graduation fees. Additional fees may apply.
A non-refundable fee as indicated below is required:
- US Citizen and US Resident Alien Applicants with NO foreign college or university course work: $40
- US Citizen and US Resident Alien Applicants WITH foreign college or university course work: $70
- International Applicants: $70
To read the Reactivation/Readmission policy, visit the Admission Requirements.
$40 for first diploma effective Spring 2012, $20 each additional diploma plus applicable mailing fees, and $60 for late application for graduation effective Spring 2012.
Graduation fees are non-refundable and non-transferrable. The fee will be billed to the student's MyMav account.
- Pay by term
Students wishing to drop a course and maintain no financial responsibility must do so by 11:59 PM CT before the first class day. The official class day begins at 12:00 AM CT.
The refund policy for sessions of five weeks or less is as follows:
- Before the first class day: 100 percent.
- First class day: 80 percent.
- Second class day: 50 percent.
- After the second class day: No refunds.
The refund policy for sessions greater than five weeks but less than 10 weeks is as follows:
- Before the first class day: 100 percent.
- First class day through the third class day: 80 percent.
- Fourth day through the sixth class day: 50 percent.
- After the sixth day: No refunds.
The refund policy for sessions ten weeks or greater is as follows:
- Before the first class day: 100 percent.
- First class day through the fifth class day: 80 percent.
- Sixth day through the tenth class day: 70 percent.
- Eleventh day through the fifteenth class day: 50 percent.
- Sixteenth day through the twentieth class day: 25 percent.
- After the twentieth day: No refunds.
The Academic Calendar indicates the deadlines to drop a course with a "W".
Join the first class!
Common Job Titles/Positions*
- Assistant city manager
- City manager
- County support manager
- Data manager
- Economic development manager
- Fundraising and development manager
- Government relations manager
- Human services manager
- Nonprofit manager
- Parks and recreation manager
- Planning manager
- Political leader (city official, mayor, governor)
- Policy advisor
- Policy analyst
- Program officer
- Public safety manager
- Public works manager
- Research assistant
- Social service provider or administrator
- Health Services manager/director (at a government agency)
- Project Director (at a charitable trust)