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MPP Degree Programs Online & Graduate Rankings

Ten Masters in Public Policy Schools

The Master of Public Policy can be a somewhat elusive degree, in that it is often an academic specialization within the context of a Master of Public Administration program. The same is true of graduate programs in health policy, which are a MPH specialization at many schools. Our list of programs presented here includes the programs in public policy and public administration that are offered by schools with online programs in addition to any campus options they may have. A Master of Public Policy is in most cases a career track for work in the public sector, within a public agency, for a legislative body or in some cases in a research environment. Many people with this degree get a start working as interns in a legislator's office or for a committee staff. Internships or summer jobs in a public service environment can be an important addition to the educational experience.

1. Northwestern University is one of the finest national universities, public or private, in the United States. The Northwestern School of Continuing Studies has introduced a Master of Arts in Public Policy & Administration (MPPA) that is available on the Chicago campus and online. The campus version of the degree offers specialization in Health Services Policy, Public Policy, Public Safety & Security, and Urban Policy & Administration. The online program is offered in scheduled classes that have 20-25 students in each, with technology that allows students and the professor to interact.

2. Walden University offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree with thirteen areas of specialization, several of which are in academic areas not associated with public policy analysis or development. However there are several areas of concentration that allow the student interested in public policy to target the curriculum carefully. Among the options are the MPA in Policy Analysis, the MPA in Law & Public Policy, the MPA in Health Policy, and the MPA in Interdisciplinary Policy Studies.

3. Western International University has a Master of Public Administration degree that is a thirty nine credit hour commitment, but that incorporates some essential undergraduate prerequisite courses in order to make sure all students are prepared for the graduate level work. These prerequisites include Financial & Managerial Accounting, Organizational Theory & Behavior, and Political, Legal & Ethical Issues in Business. Transferred credits may account for some or all of these courses.

4. Capella University has three degrees that are relevant to a career track in public policy. The Master of Public Administration is one option; the Master of Health Administration with specialization in Health Policy, and the Master of Health Management & Policy which is a specialization as part of the Master in Public Health program. All programs are designed for completion in eighteen months to two years.

5. Kaplan University has a Master of Public Administration program with areas of concentration that may be attractive to mid-career professionals interested in varying areas of public policy. The MPA in Criminal Justice is the right degree for a career law enforcement professional who is interested in a leadership or policy position. The MPA in Healthcare Management is an administrative variation on a public health degree, and the MPA in Governmental Management is designed for professionals interested in career administrative positions in the public sector.

6. New England College offers a Master of Arts in Public Policy as an online program for working professionals who are employed in state or local government. There is also a Master in Strategic Administration program that is offered as an ancillary are of concentration for the MAPP. New England College is located outside of Concord, NH where it has been in operation for over fifty years.

7. American Military University is an adjunct to the American Public University; both schools offer the online Master of Public Administration as a thirty six credit hour program for applicants with any sort of undergraduate degree. There are four areas of concentration for this MPA program including Environmental Policy, Health Policy, Human Resources, and Security Management. Two of these options are policy oriented; one is an HR specialization and the last is designed for law enforcement or emergency management professionals.

8. Argosy University operates nineteen campuses in thirteen states with an excellent online education program to complement them. The Master of Public Administration is offered in both environments. It is designed for working adults, either professionals who are already engaged in public sector work, or people who want to switch careers and move into the public policy and management arena. The three areas of specialization offered are in State & Local Government, Emergency Preparedness & Response, and Homeland Security.

9. South University has an online degree division in addition to the eight campuses located in the southeastern corner of the country. The Master of Public Administration. The program offers three curriculum options, one of which is a general MPA degree with a selection of relevant electives. The second option is a customized program that allows the student a substantial range of choices in order to shape the curriculum for a specific goal. The third choice is selection of one of four areas of specialization: Criminal Justice, Information Technology, Non-Profit Administration, and Public Policy.

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