If you have had the opportunity to search through varying degree programs at schools within your area, you might have noticed that some of your reviewed programs consist of program accreditation for majors in this field.
The leading accreditation agency for programs in these fields is the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA).
NASPAA accredited programs in Public Affairs, Public Policy, and Public Administration can lead into careers in management, financial roles, and even those at the government level. The skills learned in these programs can provide you with a strong foundation for success within your career, making your choice of school an important step along the way.
NASPAA Accredited Online MPA Programs
Agencies such as the NASPAA were developed in an effort to provide upcoming students with a higher level of quality through institutions, especially when degree programs are completed in the online setting.
As you read through this guide provided by our educational experts, you can read more about why accreditation by the NASPAA can be important for a public administration degree, and take a look at individual programs that have met the recommendations for accreditation.
You might consider a featured Online MPA that is currently accepting applicants.
- USC's Online MPA Program - Earn your MPA online from USC Price, ranked #3 for public affairs.
- UNC-Chapel Hill's Online MPA Program - GRE Waivers available, can be completed in less than two years
- Norwich University - Online MPA Program - 8 different concentrations, graduate in as few as 18 months. No GRE or GMAT requirement.
- George Washington University - Online MS in Political Management - 100% online, learn at your own pace. No entrance exam for qualified applicants.
- American University - Online MPA Program - NASPAA accredited MPA program. Graduate with your MPAP in 24 months. 100% Online MPA Program.
Why is NASPAA Accreditation Important for a Master of Public Administration Degree?
Online educational programs in Public Administration, Public Affairs, and Public Policy can be found at a large number of colleges across the United States. Students are drawn to the convenience of online learning, since it can provide the flexibility of attending classes at varying times and asynchronous classes during programs. The draw towards convenience could potentially lead students into universities that have not met the standards required for high quality major programs in this field.
NASPAA accreditation on your degree's program page can ensure you that the curriculum and any experience requirements included are in line with standard requirements for all programs in this field. NASPAA accreditation is not a one-time check of the quality of programs.
Schools that receive proper accreditation are also required to maintain accreditation over a term of 2-5 years. Once the accreditation period has expired, the college will need to be re-reviewed for accuracy and relevance.
Benefits of Studying 100% Online
Changes in technology and the migration of society into the digital age has contributed a lot to the interest of online educational programs. These types of programs offer conveniences that cannot be found in the traditional setting, since in-person attendance is not required. Assignments, discussions, and studying can be completed at various times of the day or night, depending on what fits into the schedule of each student enrolled.
Completely online degree programs can also provide students with the option to engage in classes that are guided by their instructors (synchronous) or take courses that allow students to move at their own pace without direct interaction with the teacher in their courses (asynchronous). Students with the self-discipline and motivation to learn independently might be more suited for education in the online environment.
List of 100% Online NASPAA Accredited MPA Programs
Arkansas State University
The online MPA program at Arkansas State University is a diverse option for students interested in NASPAA-accredited options. Degree programs through Arkansas State have been offered since its opening in 1909, with degree programs like the MPA being added in the years following. The current MPA at this school is offered with specializations in Public Management and Non-Profit Management, each providing their own benefits to learners pursuing careers in the public domain.
Each specialized program can be completed in as few as 18 months, with 36 credit hours required for graduation. ASU promotes the opportunity for students to engage in asynchronous classes in this setting, allow for students to learn at their own pace. While in online programs through ASU, students can log in to their courses to gather information about each course, read literature pertaining to their subjects, communicate with other students and instructors, and submit assignments through virtual drop-box tools.
California State University, Dominguez Hills
The MPA online through California State University, Dominguez Hills can provide students with the opportunity of learning how public administration functions in specialized areas such as Criminal Justice Policy and Administration, Health Care Policy and Administration, and Nonprofit Management. CSU, Domiguez Hills has a long history of university accreditation, with its first approval in 1968. Since that time, multiple program accreditations have been achieved – most notably from the NASPAA.
Courses for each of these specializations are offered in 8 week online asynchronous formats, with two classes taken at a time. The 100% online MPA program is designed to be completed in 2 years for most students. While face-to-face interaction is not required, students are required to log in to Blackboard several times per week to study and submit assignments. Through this system, students can ask questions, gather insight into their assignments, and share assignments with their instructors through virtual upload tools.
Central Michigan University
Originally established in 1978, the Master of Public Administration program at Central Michigan University is a long-standing a respected learning program for upcoming professionals. In recent years, an online version of this reliable option has emerged, offering students the opportunity to maximum flexibility in their college experience. There are 37 credit hours required for this degree program, all of which can be completed in around 2 years.
CMU’s Blackboard platform allows learners to interact virtually for asynchronous class discussions or information gathering over the course of their online experience. Tests are conducted in the online classroom and assignments are submitted by uploading them into the class drop box. Most online programs also provide students with an introductory course that outlines the different features found in the online classroom.
In 1946, Columbia University introduced its School of International and Public Affairs. Since the creation of the Master of Public Administration program in 1977, this sector of the university has transformed the MPA into a reliable and convenient option for upcoming students. The online MPA at Columbia University can be completed in as little as 21 months, making it a great option for students ready to get started in the professional field. In the online classroom, students may be expected to have discussions with their classmates on different topics and submit homework through the online classroom by certain due dates.
The online MPA program at this university offers students the opportunity to learn more about diverse topics within the field of public administration, so that they can apply their expertise in a wide variety of professional areas. Some of the courses included in the curriculum focus on Economics, Politics, Nonprofit Leadership, and Financial Management. Courses in the online environment through Columbia University are found in synchronous and asynchronous format, making this degree program suitable for different types of learners.
DePaul University seeks to prepare students for leadership careers in the field of public administration. The online MPA offered through this school has specialization options including Emergency Management, Public Management, Metropolitan and Urban Affairs, and International Public Management currently open to new students. Taking 2 classes per quarter can result in completion of the program in around 2 years. Students can participate in courses via the internet, with discussions completed in the online classroom and assignments being submitted through online upload tools.
The online MPA at DePaul was founded after the university received accreditation for its online programs in 2007. Improvements and further program accreditation from the NASPAA followed, allowing for more students to engage in this reliable and dedicate public administration program. The implementation of the online version of the MPA program can allow students to learn through asynchronous courses that provide added convenience to their already busy lifestyles.
Eastern Kentucky University
The MPA program at Eastern Kentucky University was the first of its kind to be offered in this state. This program has developed into a more flexible option as technology has progressed, with classes available in both synchronous and asynchronous format. Students can engage in online courses as a means for virtual communication and submission of homework assignments through the school’s dedicated class website.
The online MPA at EKU can be a program that prepares you for a profitable career in the public domain. The educational curriculum for this program includes a 39 credit hour requirement that can be completed in 1.5-2 years. Concentration options for this degree program include Community Development and customizable options in General Public Administration, Homeland Security, Emergency Management, and Occupational Safety.
Florida International University
Since its introduction in 1972, Florida International University has been a leader in innovation and progression in the field of education. This university can provide you with the opportunity to engage in an online MPA program suitable for leaders in your field. Students in this major program can enroll in 1-3 classes per term in order to maximize their time and move quickly towards graduation. The entire online program consists of 42 credit hours, which most students complete in around 2 years.
During enrollment in the online MPA program, students can learn through access to virtual study tools and prepare for their career through the completion of assignments each week. All assignments are submitted through the class’s web page, which provides students with added convenience compared to traditional programs. Specializations for this major include Human Resources Management, Public Management, Homeland Security and Emergency Management, Nonprofit and Community Development, and Comparative and International Public Administration.
Georgia College & State University
The history of the MPA program at Georgia College and State University is one filled with high rankings and student satisfaction. This degree program has also been modified to fit the needs of even the busiest students, since it has introduced a completely online MPA program. The online MPA consists of 36 credit hours that students can complete in 1-2 years depending on their enrollment status. The goal of this degree program is to better prepare learners for diverse and intensive careers within the public domain.
The courses for this degree option can include those that allow students to work at their own pace. Asynchronous courses do not require students to log in at the same time as their instructors, making this option suitable for even the busiest professional. The online MPA also includes a capstone project or thesis, both of which are completed and submitted through the online course room. Elective hours that contribute to the granting of a concentration with your degree can focus on subject areas such as Urban and Regional Planning, Environmental Policy, National Security, and Management.
Indiana University, Bloomington
The 48 credit hour online MPA option at Indiana University Bloomington can provide you with the skills you need to operate public organizations within your community. Students enrolling in this program can choose from a wide range of concentration options including Public Management, Nonprofit Management, Policy Analysis, and Public Financial Administration. The classes within each of these unique programs can allow you to complete work at a pace that works for you, without having to schedule your learning around your instructor’s schedule.
Students learning in the online environment can utilize the internet to gather resources for learning, communicate with other students and their instructors, and submit assignments through easy online drop box tools. The entire online program can take around 2 years to complete, with some students using prior work experience as a means for shortening the length of their admissions.
John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY
Students interested in preparatory programs in nonprofit leadership and government positions can consider the online MPA offered through the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY. This program option includes a 42 credit hour curriculum that students can complete in 2 years. Specialization options available for consideration include Criminal Justice Policy and Administration, Emergency Management, Human Resources Management, and Management and Operations.
In recent years, the trend towards online education has modified this program into one that can allow professionals from all walks of life to further their learning. Through asynchronous courses, students can engage with their instructors at times that work for their schedule and submit assignments weekly through the virtual course room. These convenience options can provide learners with an environment that is flexible according to their schedules.
Kent State University
The development of the MPA at Kent State University has allowed numerous public professionals to gain the training needed to obtain successful positions in the field. The implementation of online MPA programs has extended that reach to even more students – even those with full-time careers. In the online setting, students can take advantage of asynchronous courses that can be attended at any time of day or night.
The online MPA at Kent State University requires that students complete a total of 36 credit hours in order to graduate. This translates to around 2 years of higher learning at full-time enrollment. Courses last a total of 7 weeks each, with most students taking 2 courses at a time. A certificate option in Nonprofit Management can also be added to the online MPA for students interested in pursuing a career in the nonprofit setting.
Students seeking flexible online MPA programs can review programs offered by Northeastern University for their degree. The online MPA offered at this school can help you maximize your opportunity through convenience and virtual learning. Most students enrolled in this college program complete it within 1-2 years – depending on full-time or part-time enrollment status. Convenient and asynchronous courses make it possible for students to learn on the go at any time of day.
If you have a specific area of interest that you would like to focus on for future careers, you can consider specialization options such as Nonprofits or Urban Analytics through this degree option. Students that choose to pursue their education at this university can learn through optimized online classrooms that encourage self-motivation and independent research. Turning in assignments and communication with the class is completed using easy-to-use tools provided in the virtual classroom.
Penn State Harrisburg
Penn State University has long been a reliable resource for collegiate learners seeking success. The implementation of the Penn State World Campus has opened up doors for students on the go, seeking higher education to change their lives. The online MPA available through this university can provide you with the opportunity to gain knowledge in specialized areas such as Nonprofit Management, Policy Analysis and Evaluation, Public Budgeting and Financial Management, and State-Local Government and Administration.
The online learning setting consists of unique features such as asynchronous courses, which allow you to learn at your own pace. In the online class, you can review assignments, read your syllabus, and submit assignments through your program’s submission tools. The credits required for graduation of this program are 36, making the estimated completion time about 2 years for most.
Rutgers University, Newark
Earning a MPA from Rutgers University can be an individualized experience focused on your unique needs. This online option provides students with the opportunity to engage in courses at a part-time or full-time rate, which can create an estimated completion time from 2-3 years. Courses were designed to accommodate the needs of all students, featuring asynchronous format for maximum convenience. If you choose this program, you can pursue specializations in Public and Nonprofit Performance Management, Healthcare Administration, and Finance and Budgeting Management.
The implementation of the online version of this major option has promoted enrollment of students from all walks of life. Online classes allow students to contact their teachers through embedded email tools, as well as review and submit assignments from anywhere with an internet connection. The online MPA can be an excellence resource for current professionals in the field or new students with the desire to maximize their flexibility during their learning.
Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
The online Master of Public Administration available through SIUE consists of 21 hours of core courses and 18 hours of emphasis courses. Students choosing this degree option can graduate in around 2 years at full-time enrollment. There are 2 specializations available to choose from with the general MPA program: Public Management and Nonprofit Administration. Course work in this area is conducted through use of the online classroom, which consists of elements that can assist you with communication, assignment submission, and testing.
The development of online MPA programs at this university provide opportunities learning to busy adults that lack the free time to attend class in person. SIUE’s MPA online consists of asynchronous courses that permit students to learn at a speed that works for their schedule, without logging in at certain times of the day for lectures or meetings. Students in need of flexibility can consider programs like this one on their path to graduation.
Southern Utah University
The online Master of Public Administration through Southern Utah University can help prepare students for a career in the field of public policy and public service. This program requires that students complete 36 credit hours, which can translate to 2 years of higher learning for full-time students. Enrollees into this program can choose from specialization options in Criminal Justice, Higher Education Administration, and State and Local Government.
One major aspect of online MPA programs that students are often curious about are the scheduling requirements. Asynchronous courses at Southern Utah University can provide you with information about your course up front, so that you can plan out your course from start to finish. These courses do not require that you participate in live lectures or mandatory log-ins, making them great for current professionals in the field. When turning in assignments, you can utilize the upload function of your course’s drop box to timely submit your homework.
Texas A&M International University
Historically, Texas A&M International University has offered traditional MPA program designed for upcoming leadership professionals. Recently, this institution has created a whole new take on the MPA program by offering it in the online setting. The Executive Master of Public Service and Administration option contains courses that are 100% online and can be completed in 2-3 years at full-time enrollment. Students participating in this program may be required to attend 2 campus residencies lasting 1 week each. Students can also choose a concentration such as Homeland Security, Nonprofit Management, or Public Management.
Online courses through this university are offered in asynchronous format, meaning you would not be required to be online at certain times of the day or night. Students in the online learning environment may be expected to contribute to weekly discussions through online discussion boards and submit assignment documents each week through the course’s upload tool. Accredited online degree programs can assist you in developing the skills you need to effectively lead public service organizations within your local area.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The University of North Carolina at Chapel provides upcoming students with a versatile online MPA program suitable for busy adult learners. This online program consists of a 27 credit hour requirement, which is significantly lower than most schools offering the same program. Students can potentially graduate from this program in as little as 18 months. Students interested in working in specific areas within the field of public administration can choose from concentrations such as Local Government, Public Management, Nonprofit Management, Public Health, and International Relations.
UNC Chapel Hill provides students with the virtual tools they need to successful pass each class. During your experience in this program, you can engage in your classes at any time of the day, from any location that can connect to the internet. Asynchronous courses are some of the most popular options for upcoming graduate students, since they provide course information up front for students to begin and complete at their own rate. The online MPA through UNC Chapel Hill can provide you with a reliable and accredited program with flexible learning opportunities fitting for any schedule.
The University of Texas at Arlington
The NASPAA-accredited online MPA program available at the University of Texas at Arlington can be an excellent tool for students with the desire to pursue a career in the field of public administration. The requirement for graduation in this program is 39 credit hours, which can be finished in as little as 24 months. As part of the general MPA requirements, enrolled students are required to take electives in either Capital Budgeting or Nonprofit Management and Social Entrepreneurship.
A unique aspect of the online MPA at the University of Texas at Arlington is its precision in the field of public administration and its convenience for dedicated learners. When enrolled in the online MPA, students can contact their instructors with ease through the course email tool, review weekly assignments and directions in just a few clicks, and upload assignments straight from their computer. Benefits of the online MPA also include asynchronous courses, which can be found throughout the virtual MPA option.
University of Baltimore
If you have experience in the field of public administration, you can use that experience to reduce the amount of credits required for graduation in your online MPA program the University of Baltimore. The 45 credit hour program can be reduced to 42 with relevant experience. Students can typically complete this program in 2-3 years, making it a great option for quick entry into the field. The only specialization option currently available through this online MPA is Public and Nonprofit Management.
Students enrolled in the online MPA at the University of Baltimore may be curious about the schematics of learning and participating in the online setting. The University of Baltimore provides learners with access to an online classroom that is organized according to week and provides students with the tools they need to complete their course goals. Homework is turned in using virtual submission tools that are easy to use, discussions are posted on a public forum within the classroom, and email tools are available for students that have questions regarding their material.
University of Central Florida
Enrolling in the online MPA through the University of Central Florida can put you in line for structured learning in the field of public administration. This accredited program consists of 42 credit hours of course work in the field, which can prepare you for leadership careers in city management, education, and healthcare. Concentration options offered through elective course work include Nonprofit Management, Urban and Regional Planning, and Emergency Management.
Students at UCF may participate in their online courses through logging in to their school’s virtual classroom. Once you begin your class, you can access your syllabus, assignments, and expectations through just a few clicks. Asynchronous courses provide students with total information for their course upfront and allow students to complete their assignments by predetermined due dates posted in the classroom. When submitting homework, students in online courses can upload documents directly onto the website, provide ease of submission from start to finish.
University of Colorado – Colorado Springs
The online MPA at the University of Colorado can help you prepare for specific careers in the public domain through partnering your general online MPA with certificate programs. Current options for certification include Criminal Justice, Grant Writing and Program Evaluation, Homeland Security, National Security Intelligence, and Nonprofit Management. Completion time for this college program is around 2-3 years, with 36-39 credit hours required for graduation.
The online courses at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs consist of similar components as traditional classes. As an online student, you may be expected to turn in assignments each week, through logging in and uploading your documents in the class’s drop box. Most online courses at this university are asynchronous, meaning you can log in at any time you desire. Synchronous courses may require that you log on for lectures or weekly meetings with your instructor throughout the duration of the course.
University of Colorado Denver
UC Denver’s online MPA program can be the option of choice for students with a wide variety of dreams for their future. Concentration options included in this educational sector include Disaster Management, Emergency Management and Homeland Security, Environmental Policy and Law, Gender Based Violence, Nonprofit Organizations, and State and Local Government. The entire program consists of 36 credit hours, which may take at least 2 years for students to complete at the full-time enrollment rate.
One of the major benefits of online MPA programs is the class format. Online programs are well-known for their asynchronous options, which can provide students with maximum flexibility during enrollment. The University of Denver allow students to engage in asynchronous courses as a means for better convenience. The online classrooms provide students with weekly expectations and assignments, as well as list future due dates for students to plan for. Rather than handing in weekly assignments, students are expected to upload their completed work through the online classroom when due.
University of Delaware
Online MPA programs at the University of Delaware require that you complete 36 credit hours within a 30 month time frame. This can be a quick entry path into the professional field of public administration, through only accredited and reliable means. The online option for the MPA does not include any specific specialization options, but does include course work that can prepare you for working in diverse fields such as healthcare, public policy, and national government.
Most students choosing online MPA programs are in need of convenience when working towards graduation. The online MPA programs at the University of Delaware can be your resource for asynchronous courses that can be worked around your schedule. If this will be your first experience in an online classroom, you can take advantage of introductory training videos and training courses to help get you situated in the online environment at this school. These experiences can help teach you about virtual submission of assignments and online communication, so that you can jump right in to course work when your first class starts.
University of Illinois at Springfield
If you are intrigued by public service and are seeking a degree program to align with your goals, the online MPA through the University of Illinois at Springfield may be what you are looking for. This institution requires 36 credit hours for graduation, which can mean 2 years of advanced course work for you to engage in. Graduate certificate programs to accompany your general MPA degree include those in Management of Nonprofit Organization and Community Planning. This college also offers students the option of pursuing a joint MPA/MPH degree program in the online domain.
The implementation of online programs was due in part to the need for more convenience in higher learning institutions. The University of Illinois at Springfield provides online MPA programs that you can easily fit into your busy schedule, since classes within can be attended at times that work best with your schedule. Asynchronous courses include the convenience of flexible log-in opportunities, as well as the addition of future due dates so that you can plan accordingly.
University of Missouri-Columbia
The online Master of Public Affairs can be a unique choice for new collegiate learners interested in the field of public administration. This 100% online and accredited degree program contains 33 credit hours of higher education courses focused specifically on your role in public service. If you are interested in adding a specialization to your MPA program, you can enroll courses focusing on Human Resources Management, Budgeting and Financial Management, and Public Budgeting and Taxation.
The University of Missouri at Columbia’s online MPA program was designed for upcoming public service professionals with the desire to specialize in specific fields in the public domain. Through specialized course work in the online setting, students can gain skills in independent research, leadership, and policy review that can be beneficial to improving programs in society. Online asynchronous courses can allow students to engage in independent learning experiences while maintaining the structure needed for success in their courses. Students may be required to complete discussions and upload assignments before a certain due date in order to remain compliant with course expectations.
University of Nebraska at Omaha
As the first MPA program to become accredited and available online, the University of Nebraska’s convenient option towards higher education in this field continues to be high ranked among other options in the U.S. Students can complete this 39 credit hour program in a little over 2 years, 2 classes per semester. Specializations in many different sectors of public administration are available, including Emergency Management, Healthcare Administration, Local Government, Public Management, and Public Policy.
The online MPA at the University of Nebraska consists of courses that allow students to review assignments and complete their work over the course of a week. These asynchronous courses do not require students to log in at certain times during the day, making them great options for students with busy personal schedules. The way that students receive credit for participation in these courses is through completing discussions during the week and submitting assignments via the drop box tool by preset due dates.
University of San Francisco
The University of San Francisco targets current professionals in the field of public administration for its online MPA program. The goal of this program is to further educate professionals through involvement in 39 credit hours of master’s level course work over the course of 2 years. Course work included in this generalized program focuses on Human Resources, Policy Evaluation, and Leadership within the public sector.
Busy professional interested in pursuing higher education as a means for better opportunity often need more flexibility in their courses. Asynchronous courses were developed in order to provide students with an outline of what is expected in the course, as well as dates in which certain milestones should be completed. Students in online MPA programs through the University of San Francisco may be required to submit assignments weekly, participate in topic discussions with the class, and keep in regular contact with instructors through online email tools.
Valdosta State University
Students enrolled in Valdosta’s online MPA program can participate in 24 credit hours of core course work and 12 hours within their specific concentration area. The total curriculum for this program can amount to around 2 years of intensive education, with students expected to take a minimum of 2 classes per term to meet this time frame. There are currently 3 specializations offered through this institution, including Public Sector Management, Public Sector Human Resource Management, and Public Policy.
Valdosta State University can be an incredibly satisfying institution for students in need of independence with their degree program. The way that this school encourages success in students with busy lifestyles is through flexible asynchronous courses. These courses do not have any specific time requirements for logging in, but do require that students turn in assignments via the online upload tools by certain points during the semester. Students can also expand their expertise in their subject areas through constructive discussions each week with others in their class.
Wichita State University
Wichita State University seeks to provide a medium between finance, humanities, and behavior science within its online MPA program. Consisting of 39 credit hours, students can expect to spend 2-3 years working towards their degree, depending on how much time they have available for their course load. 15 credit hours of the total requirement are within a concentration area, which can modify your education to include topics of interest in your specialized field. WSU offers 3 concentration areas for consideration, including Public Management, Public Finance, and Public Policy.
If you are looking for programs that can satisfy your need for higher learning in the field of public administration, Wichita State University may have what you are looking for. Online MPA courses included in this program can provide you with the opportunity to learn about a wide variety of subject in an asynchronous environment free of strict scheduling requirements. If you are curious about the dynamics of online MPA classes, you can expect to log in a few times each week to review assignments, participate in discussions, email your instructor when necessary, and submit assignments through your courses drop box feature.