Master’s Degrees in Public Policy
Whether you are interested in playing a role in political functions within society or you simply want to make a difference in the quality of public services within your area, a Master's in Public Policy can be a great way to meet your goals.
This type of degree program may be the first choice for people that have the drive and desire to improve public programs, wish to establish plans for more inclusive public services, or want to work with communities in need of guidance.

Master’s Degrees in Public Policy

If any of these goals sounds like something you can relate to, you should read more about this incredible degree program in the guide below. For over a decade, our team of educational experts has been reviewing and reporting on educational programs all over the U.S.

Master’s in Public Policy Programs to Consider

Probably one of the most important parts of your degree seeking process may be finding the right school. There are so many to choose from that it may be difficult to tell which one is the best or which program best fits your needs.

Online Master’s in Public Policy programs are some of the most popular choices for upcoming students with busy work schedules and family lives. If online education is what you desire, check out some of the example programs listed below. Each of these programs can be completed 100% online – making them a great option for busy working adults.

Ohio University

The field of Public Policy can be a great place for structure-minded individuals to set their roots. Ohio University current provides an online MPA – Public Policy that is geared towards providing students with the information they need to be successful professionals in the field. This online program can cater to the flexible needs of students while still providing a rigorous curriculum throughout the process. The entire MPA-Public Policy program at Ohio University can be completed in as little as 2 years.

Oregon State University

OSU’s online Master’s in Public Policy program was created in an effort to help newcomers to the field of Public Policy become more familiar with the topics and skills needed to be a helpful public service professional. This online program can be a great resource for individuals that are currently working in the public field, or even for those transitioning from other bachelor’s programs. OSU’s program may require that students complete 62 credit hours before being approved for graduation.

American Public University

American Public University currently provides an online Master of Public Policy program for students that are intrigued by reviewing and improving public policies throughout the United States. This program can be helpful for students interested in building their understanding of the U.S. Government, as well as the different sectors that may influence the development and change of policies over time. This program can be a great way for students to move forward into influential positions within society and can be completed in around 2 years for most students.

Common Master’s in Public Policy Coursework to Expect

Part of choosing the right school should also involve a look into the courses you might be expected to take while enrolled. Most online Master’s in Public Policy programs may have a similar goal of introducing you to advance topics in public service, while some may provide more insight and focus into specialized areas within the field.

While you look at colleges and programs available, be sure to take a look at the curriculum to ensure that you are aware of what exactly will be covered. In order to make this part a little easier, our team of educational experts has provided a few example courses below for you to browse. Take a look to see the types of classes you could be enrolled in during this program.

Public Policy and Finance

In order to truly understand how policies can be influenced by financial support and spending, students should take a dive into courses surrounding this aspect of Public Policy. This course can be a great way for students to learn about taxation, budgeting, and economics in relation to policy formation and maintenance. Engaging in this course can help students become more knowledgeable about the financial practices common within public services agencies, which can lead to exciting positions in the professional field.

Program Evaluation

Part of the responsibilities of public service workers may include a look into how social programs operate and how well they meet their stated goals. This course can provide students with the tools necessary to perform evaluations on public agencies in order to suggest methods for change or improvement. Throughout this course, students may learn to use qualitative and quantitative tools to help assess the efficiency of organizations and implement programs for change.

Research and Evaluation

Since a lot of the work in Public Policy careers may involve reviewing organizations for validity and efficiency, upcoming professionals should have a strong understanding of research practices relevant to their service area. In this course, students can learn how to accurately develop a research program, test theories and hypotheses and implement program changes to help make necessary improvements. These skills can be great for students interested in working on improving public services within their communities.

How Much Does A Master’s in Public Policy Graduate Make?

We pulled some data on careers that might be associated with graduates of this Master’s program.

Career Options Associated With Master’s in Public Policy

Obtaining a higher degree in Public Policy can be a great outlet for showcasing your talents and expertise in the field of public administration. Public Policy degree programs can prepare you to manage public service organizations of varying types, such as those concerned with providing services to the less fortunate, people affected by abuse or addiction or even in fields such as healthcare and education.

Organizations in the public domain may require educated professionals to assist with ensuring that services are up to par with what is required by the government, as well as meeting pre-determined goals set forth during planning stages. If you want to know more about career options for this degree program, take a look at a few listed below.

  • Social Research
  • Government Officer
  • Charities Specialist
  • Housing/Food Service Management
  • Lobbyist

Public Policy Versus Public Administration Masters Degree Comparison

Finding the right degree specialization or major can be a daunting task for upcoming students. Some students may be well aware of what they want to do with their degree after graduation, while others may be open to new suggestions or not totally committed to one certain area.

The field of public administration as a whole is broken into many subsections that can provide students with focus in different areas. In this section, our team will examine the differences between 2 common degree programs within this field: public administration and Public Policy. Take a look at what they have found during their comparison below this paragraph.

Public Policy may be in a field all of its own in terms of public administration options. Public Policy as a field may be concerned with the actual implementation of policies within the public service field, which is slightly different that other fields under the public administration umbrella.

If you were to pursue a degree program in Public Policy, you might find that the curriculum can help to prepare you for careers as quality-attentive leaders, program evaluators, and planning specialists. In addition to these careers, you can also work for government offices responsible for ensuring the compliance of public service agencies.

In public administration, students can gain a more widespread outlook on the field of public services. The goal of the public administration degree program may be to create knowledgeable and effective leaders to help organize and operate public service organizations.

While policy does find its place within this realm of expertise, it may not be the only area of focus for those in this field. If you are more interested in moving up the ladder and providing management to large teams of public service workers, public administration may be the better specialization option for you to pursue.

All Programs

See below for the list of programs. You can filter down by state, accrediting board, or program to find the best program for you.
Programs That May Be Currently Accepting Applicants
Adler University - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Chicago IL
American University - Master of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
Washington DC
Arizona State University-Downtown Phoenix - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Phoenix AZ
Brandeis University - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Waltham MA
Brigham Young University-Provo - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Provo UT
Brown University - Master of Public Affairs
Accredited
Providence RI
Carnegie Mellon University - Master of Science in Public Policy and Management
NASPAA Accredited
Pittsburgh PA
Claremont Graduate University - Master of Public Health
Accredited
Claremont CA
College of William and Mary - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Williamsburg VA
Delaware Valley University - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Doylestown PA
NASPAA Accredited
Chicago IL
Drexel University - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Philadelphia PA
Duke University - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Durham NC
Duquesne University - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Pittsburgh PA
George Washington University - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Washington DC
Georgetown University - Master in Public Policy
Accredited
Washington DC
Georgia Institute of Technology-Main Campus - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Atlanta GA
Harvard University - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Cambridge MA
Jacksonville University - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Jacksonville FL
Johns Hopkins University - Master of Arts in Public Management
Accredited
Baltimore MD
Liberty University - Master of Arts in Public Policy and Public Administration
Accredited
Lynchburg VA
Accredited
Chicago IL
Marshall University - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Huntington WV
Michigan State University - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
East Lansing MI
Michigan Technological University - Master of Business Administration and MBA
Accredited
Houghton MI
Mills College - Master in Public Policy
Accredited
Oakland CA
Accredited
West Long Branch NJ
National Louis University - Master of Public Policy and Administration Degree
Accredited
Chicago IL
New England College - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Henniker NH
New Jersey Institute of Technology - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Newark NJ
Northwestern University - Master of Public Policy and Administration
Accredited
Evanston IL
Oregon State University - Master of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
Corvallis OR
Pardee RAND Graduate School - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Santa Monica CA
Pepperdine University - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Malibu CA
Princeton University - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Princeton NJ
Accredited
Virginia Beach VA
Rochester Institute of Technology - MS of Public Policy
Accredited
Rochester NY
Rutgers University-New Brunswick - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
New Brunswick NJ
Rutgers University-Newark - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Newark NJ
Rutgers University, New Brunswick - Master Of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
NJ
Stanford University - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Stanford CA
Stony Brook University - Master of Arts in Public Policy
Accredited
Stony Brook NY
SUNY at Albany - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Albany NY
The George Washington University - Master Of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
DC
The New School - Master of Science in Urban Policy Analysis & Management
NASPAA Accredited
NY
The New School - MS in Urban Policy Analysis and Management
NASPAA Accredited
New York NY
The Ohio State University - Master of Arts in Public Policy and Management
NASPAA Accredited
OH
The University of Tennessee-Knoxville - Master of Public Policy and Administration
Accredited
Knoxville TN
The University of Texas at Austin - Masters Degree in Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
Austin TX
The University of Texas at Dallas - Master of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
Richardson TX
Trinity College - Master of Arts in Public Policy
Accredited
Hartford CT
Trinity Washington University - Master of Science in Administration
Accredited
Washington DC
Tufts University - Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning
Accredited
Medford MA
University of California-Berkeley - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Berkeley CA
University of California-Irvine -
Accredited
Irvine CA
University of California-Los Angeles - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Los Angeles CA
University of Chicago - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Chicago IL
University of Denver - Master of Arts Program in International Administration
Accredited
Denver CO
University of Maryland-Baltimore County - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Baltimore MD
University of Maryland-College Park - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
College Park MD
University of Maryland, Baltimore County - Master Of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
MD
University of Maryland, College Park - Master Of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
MD
University of Massachusetts-Amherst - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Amherst MA
University of Massachusetts-Boston - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Boston MA
Accredited
North Dartmouth MA
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Ann Arbor MI
University of Michigan-Dearborn - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Dearborn MI
University of Minnesota - Master Of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
MN
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Minneapolis MN
University of Nevada-Las Vegas - Master of Arts in Public Policy
Accredited
Las Vegas NV
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Chapel Hill NC
University of Northern Iowa - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Cedar Falls IA
University of Pennsylvania - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Philadelphia PA
University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Pittsburgh PA
University of Rhode Island - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Kingston RI
University of Southern California - Master of Public Policy
NASPAA Accredited
Los Angeles CA
University of Southern Maine - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Portland ME
Accredited
Saint Paul MN
University of St Thomas - Master of Public Policy and Administration
Accredited
Houston TX
University of Utah - Master of Public Policy
Accredited
Salt Lake City UT
University of Virginia-Main Campus - Public Administration Graduate Certificate
Accredited
Charlottesville VA
University of Washington-Bothell Campus - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Bothell WA
University of Washington-Seattle Campus - Masters Degree in Public Policy
Accredited
Seattle WA
University of Wisconsin-Madison - Master of Public Affairs
Accredited
Madison WI
Walden University - Master of Public Administration (MPA)
Accredited
Minneapolis MN
Washington State University - Master of Public Affairs
NASPAA Accredited
Pullman WA