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The Nova Southeastern University Master of Public Administration Program is accredited by the NASPAA Commission on Peer Review and Accreditation and listed on the Annual Roster of Accredited Programs in conformity with NASPAA standards.
The mission of the M.P.A. program is to enhance local and state governance as well as nonprofit organizations through education, research and service. On-campus and accessible distance-learning educational programs are provided in public administration for a diverse student population to enhance and advance their careers as managers. The program cultivates analytical skills and public service values like accountability, integrity, diversity and ethical decision-making by engaging students and faculty in innovative, life-long learning experiences.
With more than 40 years of experience in public administration, the Huizenga College of Business is uniquely poised to meet the needs of an expanding population and government through training and community development. The Master of Public Administration program develops skills to lead public and community agencies, as well as to understand the social, economic, and political context in which public decisions are made.
The M.P.A. program's curriculum has been designed to meet public sector, government, and nonprofit needs in the new millennium based on emerging theory, employee surveys, and focus groups of professional administrators. The result is one of the most current, relevant, and practically focused curriculum anywhere.
We reflect the public service values that follow in our mission, and emphasize them in our academic program and practice. Our values are consistent with those of the University.
Public service: serving public interests by contributing to the field through public administration projects by providing business, management, and cross-discipline know-how to resolve public sector problems.
Accountability: determining and communicating optional and optimal courses of action by applying leading edge leadership, management, strategic, best practice, and analytical models and methods to public organizational issues.
Integrity and ethical decision making: applying the professional ethics code and additional relevant principles and frameworks to promote trust, fairness, and representativeness, and to help guide objective decision-making.
Diversity: applying diversity frameworks to organizational challenges to help utilize multiple perspectives, to promote opportunities for all, and to avoid discrimination. This allows us to work effectively in the public sector environment.
Engagement: relating effectively with participants to add value; e.g., faculty designing learning experiences to enhance student achievement of learning outcomes, the College of Business supporting faculty for professional development, and the PA Group supporting professional community activities.
Innovation: using teaching, research, scholarship and service creatively and effectively to benefit education and the academic, professional, and public sector community.
Upon successful completion of the Master of Public Administration degree program, graduates will be able to:
The purpose of assessing student achievement of the Master of Public Administration's (M.P.A.) Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs) is to continually enhance the quality of our program. This also assists us in fulfilling our relevant goals and objectives consistent with University, College and accrediting body standards. The 2013-2014 results are below.
On November 17, 2014, the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) acknowledged our Self Study Report and recommended that we proceed with a Commission on Peer Review and Accreditation (COPRA) Site Visit to evaluate our alignment with their standards.
One of NASPAA's standards states that we develop "competencies related to our mission, public service values and the abilities to:
Please use the legend below with the following graphs. The graphs show how the results of the Assessment of the M.P.A. Program Learning Outcomes Results align with NASPAA's five key abilities.
|Vertical Axis Label In Graphs That Follow||
M.P.A. Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs)
Upon successful completion of the Master of Public Administration Program, graduates will be able to:
|PLO 1||Determine optional/optimal courses of action to public sector challenges.|
|PLO 2||Contribute to the policy process.|
|PLO 3||Apply (a) leadership / management, (b) strategic / decision-making, and (c) continuous improvement values, principles and best practices to public sector situations.|
|PLO 4a||Apply legal frameworks to organizational challenges in public sector organizations.|
|PLO 4bc||Apply ethical and diversity frameworks to organizational challenges in public sector organizations.|
|PLO 5||Analyze public sector organizations using (a) financial/economic, (b) statistical and (c) technological models.|
|PLO 6||Contribute to the field through public administration projects.|
|PLO 7a||Communicate effectively interpersonally in the public sector organizational context.|
|PLO 7b||Communicate effectively in writing in the public sector organizational context.|
|PLO 7c||Communicate effectively verbally in the public sector organizational context.|
|Additional Measures from Specific Courses|
|PUB 5409||Public Administration Theory and Application, evaluate ~ PA values|
|PUB 5922||Emergency Management in the Public Sector, innovation ~ policy decisions|
|PUB 5403a||M.P.A. Integrative Capstone, recommend optimal solution|
|PUB 5403b||M.P.A. Integrative Capstone, demonstrate transparency|
For more information about the program, please contact:
Required Admissions Documentation:
Nova Southeastern University
Enrollment Processing Services (EPS)
Attn: H. Wayne Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship
3301 College Avenue
PO Box 299000
Fort Lauderdale-Davie, Florida 33329-9905
To be considered for acceptance into the M.P.A. program, international applicants must fulfill additional admission criteria.
Applications are evaluated as soon as the student's file is complete.
As of fall 2014, there are 159 students enrolled in M.P.A. coursework at NSU.
Based on the latest degree completion data for full time (FT) students entering Fall Term 2008, 61% completed the degree in three years; 68% had completed their degree within five years. Students who are taking two courses each term are considered FT students. Most of the students in the NSU M.P.A. program have been working professionals and FT vs. PT status is only applicable to the course load that they maintain.
For part time (PT) students, 24% completed the degree in three years; while 59% completed it within five years.
Based on the results of a 2010 survey of our graduates, 85% of respondents were employed one year after graduation.
The M.P.A. curriculum is divided into three sections: a core, a concentration, and a capstone. All students are required to complete the core courses. Students individually select a concentration, as well as the courses within the selected concentration, which best achieves their personal career goals. To complete their program of study, students select a capstone that best suits their personal learning needs based on their work backgrounds.
For students who need to meet the prerequisites for American government and statistics, the M.P.A. program also offers two foundations workshops. These workshops are equivalent to an undergraduate course in the topics covered. The workshops provide students one means to meet the prerequisites. Students may meet the prerequisite by another means in consultation with their academic advisors.
Total credits: 42
I. Core Curriculum:
|Each of the following courses is required – 21 total credits|
|PUB 5409||Public Administration in Theory and Application|
|PUB 5419||Public Sector Human Resource Management|
|PUB 5429||Public Sector Statistical Analysis|
|PUB 5439||Administrative Law and Ethics in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5449||Public Policy Analysis|
|PUB 5459||Managing Information and Technology in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5469||Public Finance|
II. Concentrations (Each student will choose one of the following concentrations)
|State & Local Administration
(Choose 6 courses from the following – 18 credits)
|PUB 5921||Intergovernmental Relations|
|PUB 5922||Emergency Management in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5923||Project Management for Public Sector Managers|
|PUB 5924||Entrepreneurial Public Management|
|PUB 5925||Leadership in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5926||Public Budgeting|
|PUB 5927||Evaluation of Public Policies and Programs|
|PUB 5928||Economic Development Policy|
|PUB 5929||Introduction to E-Government and Social Media in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5931||Public and Non-Profit Strategic Management|
|PUB 5930||Introduction to City Management|
|PUB 5932||Sustainable Community Development|
|REE 5884||Land Use Regulation|
(Required – 3 total credits)
|PUB 5901||Introduction to Non-Profit Management|
(Choose 5 courses from the following – 15 total credits)
|PUB 5902||Grant Development in the Public & Non-Profit Sector|
|PUB 5903||Comparative and Cross-cultural Perspectives for Non-Profits|
|PUB 5904||Non-Profit Governance|
|PUB 5905||Financial Management and Sustainability for Nonprofit Organizations|
|PUB 5906||Major Gifts, Planned Giving, and Building Endowments|
|PUB 5924||Entrepreneurial Public Management|
|PUB 5925||Leadership in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5927||Evaluation of Public Policies and Programs|
|PUB 5931||Public and Non-Profit Strategic Management|
(Classes with CJI prefix are taken from the School of Criminal Justice – 18 total credits)
|CJI 0510||Survey Issues in Criminal Justice|
|CJI 0520||Social Administration of Criminal Justice|
|CJI 0530||Legal Issues in Criminal Justice|
|CJI 0540||Program Evaluation in Criminal Justice|
|CJI 0550||Investigative Processes|
|PUB 5931||Public and Nonprofit Strategic Management|
|Disaster and Emergency Management|
(Classes with DEP prefix are taken from the College of Osteopathic Medicine – 3 required courses and 3 elective courses, 18 total credits)
|PUB 5922||Emergency Management in the Public Sector|
|PUB 5925||Leadership in the Public Sector|
Elective Courses (Choose three)
|DEP 5020||Preparedness, Planning, Mitigation, and Continuity Management|
|DEP 5070||Risk Assessment and Mitigation|
|DEP 5090||Weapons of Mass Threat and Communicable Diseases|
|DEP 6110||Community Vulnerability Assessment|
|DEP 6424||Community Disaster Preparedness|
|Choose one – 3 total credits|
|PUB 5945||Master of Public Administration Integrative Seminar|
|(Term-long online course with one week-end meeting on the main campus)|
|PUB 5941||Public Administration Internship|
|PUB 5949||Public Administration Practicum|
|*Must be taken during the last two terms of the student's curriculum and student must be in good academic standing to register.|
Full-Time professionals are available to discuss the Master of Public Administration curriculum with you in greater detail. Simply call 800.672.7223 Ext. 25168 or contact our Enrollment Services Staff.
PUB 5409 Public Administration in Theory and Application (3 cr.)
This course examines the role of public administration and non-profit organizations in a democratic society. Students examine the cultural and intellectual evolution of the field, the theories, forces, and people that drive the public sector and the specific management techniques used to implement public policy. Special emphasis is placed upon the application of organizational theory and organizational behavior concepts in the public and non-profit contexts. Prerequisite: PUBP 5003.
PUB 5419 Public Sector Human Resource Management (3 cr.)
The political and institutional environment of public human resource management is examined. Emphasis is given to the challenges facing the public sector in attracting and developing human assets in an environment of conflicting goals, stakeholder obligations, and a highly aware electorate. Specific topics include the evolution of the modern public service, the functions of human resource management, employment discrimination, labor management relations, professionalism and ethics and how assessment centers evaluate potential applicants. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.
PUB 5429 Public Sector Statistical Analysis (3 cr.)
Students gain an overview of commonly applied statistical methods in public administration including confidence intervals, t-tests for means and proportions, ANOVA, and non-parametric tests. The emphasis is on practical use of statistics to analyze real-world data and performance criteria. Prerequisite: PUBP 5002 or equivalent and PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.
PUB 5439 Administrative Law and Ethics in the Public Sector (3 cr.)
The course introduces students to the field of ethics and shows how ethical principles are applied to administrative agencies to ensure not only legal but also moral government decision-making. Administrative law is the body of law concerned with the actions of administrative agencies, frequently called the "4th branch of government" in the United States. The course thus examines how administrative agencies are created, how they exercise their powers, how they make laws and policy formally as well as informally, the laws that govern agency rulemaking and adjudications, especially the Administrative Procedure Act, Constitutional and other legal protections afforded against agency actions, and how agency actions are reviewed and remedied by the courts and legislative branch of government. The course also examines the intergovernmental relations and the political and practical constraints that influence administrative policy. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.
PUB 5449 Public Policy Analysis (3 cr.)
Students develop a working knowledge of public-sector policy making and learn to analyze public policy problems in order to understand how public policy is formulated, decided upon, and implemented. Emphasis is on agenda setting, program design, and implementation. Prerequisite: PUB 5450 or PUB 5409.
PUB 5459 Managing Information and Technology in the Public Sector (3 cr.)
Students gain an overview of the key issues and challenges involved in managing information flows, and their related technologies, strategically. The course emphasizes the development of students' analytical skills and the application of knowledge through problem solving exercises. Students are provided with tools and techniques for managing information as a resource and for using it to transform public sector organizations.
PUB 5469 Public Finance (3 cr.)
This course focuses on the economics of the public sector. It delineates the goods and services provided by government and how they are funded. It deals with the public goods and their characteristics. It explores income redistribution. The efficiency, equity and incentive effects of taxation are studied. Multilevel government relations and finances are examined. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.
REE 5884 Land Use Regulation (3 cr.)
This course discusses the legal and regulatory requirements of the entitlement and development approval or permitting process. This includes discussion of laws pertaining to wetlands, endangered species, historical and archaeological sites, air and water quality, hazardous wastes and toxic substances, as well as the purpose, content, and use of environmental impact statements. Issues of Smart Growth and sustainable development are covered. Also covered is the impact on private property rights of land use regulation and growth management through developments of regional impact, comprehensive planning laws, adequate public facilities requirements, concurrency requirements, zoning, and impact fees and other exactions. The course emphasizes strategic thinking and creative approaches to navigating the labyrinth of federal, state, and local laws, rules, and regulations. Primary attention will be focused on growth management and development controls in Florida, but not to the exclusion of other states.
PUB 5901 Introduction to Non-Profit Management (3 cr.)
This course is an introduction to the nonprofit sector and its role in society, economy, and service delivery. The course surveys historical, legal, political, socio-cultural, ethical environments, and best practices and research literature in nonprofit management. Topics include managing and improving nonprofit organizations, resource development, funding for nonprofits, financial management, managing human resources and volunteers, information technology, marketing, performance measures, nonprofit leaders and boards, developing and managing relationships with the community, funders and media professionals.
PUB 5902 Grant Development in the Public & Non-Profit Sector (3 cr.)
The content of this course provides the knowledge and skills to write grant proposals by sourcing and selecting appropriate grant resources for public and non-profits organizations. In addition to sourcing grants, the content includes how to manage grants and build relationships with grantors to achieve maximum long-term value.
PUB 5903 Comparative and Cross-cultural Perspectives for Non-Profits (3 cr.)
At the heart of this course is collaboration. Partnerships between private firms as well as other nongovernmental actors may work with nonprofit organizations to achieve public service delivery but it is fraught with choices and challenges. This course provides insight into cross-sector collaborations at the global, federal, state and local levels. Students gain tools to assess the tradeoffs and use option-choices to improve service delivery. The case studies provide specific examples and a framework for managing the participants while insuring accountability and ethical behavior that are in the public interest. Examples are provided for choosing, designing, governing and evaluating networks, partnerships and independent providers of public services considering democratic accountability.
PUB 5904 Non-Profit Governance (3 cr.)
The course covers ideas and approaches related to nonprofit law, essential responsibilities of nonprofit boards, governance and mission. The course examines theories of governance and executive leadership, legislative and regulatory concerns. Topics include trustee issues, board-management relations, advocacy, lobbying, nonprofit liability, strategic thinking, alternative board structures, contemporary roles and responsibilities of engagement in different settings, and cross cultural comparison of nonprofit boards. It provides an introduction to philanthropy and a grant-makers guide to evaluation and selection of social investments. The course prepares students to assume the role of innovators and problem solvers in identifying needs in various communities and release their ingenuity to establish, manage and sustain organizations to best address needs for societal benefits.
PUB 5905 Financial Management and Sustainability for Nonprofit Organizations (3 cr.)
This course focuses on best practices and standards of nonprofit financial management. The course comprises appropriate techniques for ensuring probity, transparency and accountability as it relates to nonprofit financial responsibility. The course exposes students to the similarities and differences between budget, financing and accounting in nonprofits and local governments. Topics include budgeting, fund accounting, cash flow analysis, expenditure control, and financial planning and reporting, taxes and audits among others.
PUB 5906 Major Gifts, Planned Giving, and Building Endowments (3 cr.)
In this course, students develop appropriate skills useful in individual non-profits as well as in foundations including annual campaigns, special activities and charitable events, gifts from major donors and programs of planned giving. The concepts of capital campaigns, development offices and endowment creation and management are included. Real-life examples, class projects and proposal writing exercises contribute to the development of fundraising skills and abilities.
PUB 5921 Intergovernmental Relations (3 cr.)
This course examines the nature and practice of federalism and intergovernmental relations in the United States. The course will begin with a review of the origins of federalism in the U.S. and various theoretical approaches to understanding the relationships between levels of government. Subsequently, we will look more closely at the specific ways in which different levels of government relate to one another both vertically and horizontally by looking at such specific issues as the federal grant process, interstate cooperation and competition, the chartering of municipal governments, and metropolitan regional cooperation. Various components covered in IGR include fiscal, regulatory, and policy implementation issues in addition to state-local and inter-local or regional management considering third parties such as non-governmental organizations and tax-exempt entities.
PUB 5922 Emergency Management in the Public Sector (3 cr.)
This course will explore the major issues, theories, and strategies in contemporary disaster and emergency management. This course will expose the students to: 1) The historical, administrative, institutional, and organizational framework of disaster and emergency management in the United States; 2) The role of the federal, state, and local governments in disasters; 3) The role of non-profit organizations in emergency management; 4) The management of a natural or man-made disaster; and (5) How event plans evolve to meet new or recurring threats.
PUB 5923 Project Management for Public Sector Managers (3 cr.)
This course examines the general concepts and political considerations of project management within public institutions. The continued trends of governments to privatize, stabilize or decrease costs, and reduce paperwork, add to the pressure to meet new standards of performance in service. This situation requires public administrators to rely more heavily on project management as a means of accomplishing near-term objectives, or delivering ad-hoc services, in the 21st century. The course focuses on pragmatic applications of PM techniques in the public sector.
PUB 5924 Entrepreneurial Public Management (3 cr.)
The purpose of this course is to prepare graduate students with the necessary basic knowledge and skills to practice entrepreneurial public management and consider innovations in government for service success. We will adopt a business approach and apply principles and practices that have proven to be successful in some of the largest companies, as well as many medium and smaller ones, in the United States. Although it is fully understood that government cannot operate as a business in all ways - especially in light of legislative and budgetary constraints - there are many approaches that can be taken by government agencies that would better prepare it for the mandates of the 21st Century.
PUB 5925 Leadership in the Public Sector (3 cr.)
This course will explore the dimensions of leadership and decision making within the public sector. Students will explore the major theoretical frameworks of leadership as well as the relationship of leadership to organizational change and effective management strategies. Utilizing in-depth reflection for self-development in such areas as ethical decision-making, students will combine theoretical and practical applications to create and present a unique leadership model.
PUB 5926 Public Budgeting (3 cr.)
The process of developing, implementing, and monitoring a public budget is a complex one. The public budget is also the central vehicle for carrying out the public policy agenda. Public budgeting is highly technical and structured, as well as politically charged and controversial. Public budgeting involves leadership and management, contributes to public policy, and includes decision-making that touches legal, ethical, and diversity frameworks. This course examines the theoretical and practical applications of public budgeting. Students will analyze and critique an actual budget, followed by assembling and presenting their own budget recommendations.
PUB 5927 Evaluation of Public Policies and Programs (3 cr.)
Students develop a working knowledge of public sector policy and program evaluation with an emphasis on the history of evaluation, the social indicators movement, the politics of program evaluation, goal identification, Wilson's Law, performance measurement, methods of analysis, who uses evaluations and the problem of partisanship. Prerequisite: PUB 5449 or PUB 5480.
PUB 5929 Introduction to E-Government and Social Media in the Public Sector (3 cr.)
Digital government ranges from the ability to answer routine citizen inquiries to democratic voting online. This course presents a survey of successful e-government initiatives and the intertwined and complex issues related to their implementation. New sharing of power between supervisors and professionals facilitate highly interactive exchanges with new responsibilities for citizens, groups, and administrators. Students gain insight related to going beyond the static presence of a Web page to conceptually providing services such as paying taxes, applying for licenses and permits, and routine requests for information online. The course explores the myriad uses of social media in an interconnected world with networked governance, transparency and information management. Real-life examples and case studies provide insight to what has already proved both innovative and responsive for governance that empowers public employees, managers and citizens that are breaking old paradigms.
PUB 5928 Economic Development Policy (3 cr.)
Economic growth is achieved through a variety of public and private initiatives. This course explores the role of local, state and national governments in the United States and in the globe in guiding and stimulating their respective economies. Emphasis is placed on distinguishing growth from development and in analyzing the particular characteristics of the institutional arrangements deployed by various levels of government in providing public goods.
PUB 5930 Introduction to City Management (3 cr.)
Regardless of the formal structure of the local government, the emergence of professionally trained administrators as chief operating officers marks a significant difference from the days when part-time elected officials attempted to run cities without much assistance. Sometimes called city managers, sometimes city administrators, and sometimes names not fit to print, occupants of these positions must be able to manage the careful balancing act required of any successful public administrator - seeking to provide services and administer regulations in the most cost-effective manner possible while continuing to be responsive to legitimate political and equity concerns of the elected officials and residents of the community. And these goals must be achieved while operating within a legal and constitutional framework principally concerned with protecting the rights of individuals and limiting the power of municipalities.
PUB 5931 Public and Non-Profit Strategic Management (3 cr.)
Strategic management is defined as "a disciplined effort to produce fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, what it does, and why it does it." The focus of strategic management is on "fundamental decisions." Strategic management is about shaping the mission and goals of an organization. Strategic management focuses on the future of an organization by trying to define the opportunities to act and the barriers to action that prevent us from achieving a desired future state. The goal of the process is to implement a program and complete a set of tasks, not to produce a plan (hence the shift in terminology from strategic planning to strategic management). Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.
PUB 5932 Sustainable Community Development (3 cr.)
Sustainability concerns for communities and regions deals with such things as financial resources and burdens on citizens as well as visitors in addition to changes in the environment resulting from e.g., climate change and industrial pollution. The capacity of any community or region to sustain growth must realize that growth creates demands on publicly provided services that have financial and environmental as well as social implications. The ability to sustain the population and local economies is also concerned with the integration of land-use planning and transportation alternatives for urban regions with considerations for density, mass-transit and zoning if communities are to be sustainable.
PUB 5945 Master of Public Administration Integrative Seminar (3 cr.)
The M.P.A. Integrative Seminar focuses on the knowledge, skills, and abilities that define a competent public or non-profit sector manager. A central theme of the course is the roles, responsibilities, and outlooks of the manager today and the competing influences in public decision-making under fragmented authority that result in public sector management as the art of compromise. Through role-playing in the various roles of elected officials or professional administrators, students will conduct a city council meeting to experience the actual administration of the political agenda. Pre-requisites: (PUB 5409 OR PUB 5450) AND (PUB 5419 OR PUB 5465) AND (PUB 5439 OR PUB 5461) AND (PUB 5449 OR PUB 5480) AND (PUB 5469 or PUB 5472).
PUB 5949 Public Administration Practicum (3 cr.)
The practicum is for students already working within the field. During the semester, students will prepare a research paper directly relevant for and intended to serve their department or agency outside of their normal employment duties. The practicum research paper will be supervised by a faculty member with interim reports and a final paper. Prerequisites: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450, and PUB 5419 or PUB 5465, and PUB 5439 or PUB 5461, and PUB 5449 or PUB 5480, and PUB 5469 or PUB 5472.
PUBP 5002 Statistics Workshop (0 cr.)
Statistics Workshop provides a review of the statistical concepts that form the foundation of statistical analysis. These concepts include probability, descriptive statistics, bivariate measures of association, sampling distributions, and statistical inference. After completing the workshop students will be able to calculate and interpret descriptive statistics, bivariate measures of association, confidence intervals, and tests of statistical significance.This course is a prerequisite for PUB 5429 for those who did not complete a comparable course at the undergraduate level. This course is Pass/ Fail and online only.
PUBP 5003 American Government Workshop (0 cr.)
The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the structures, functions, and processes of American government. We will explore the philosophical and historical roots of American politics, the Constitutional foundations, the three branches of government, and various political institutions and interest groups. This includes a federalism model that defines the relationship between the national and sub-national levels of government in which the field of public administration operates. This course required to be taken concurrently with PUB 5409 for those who did not complete a comparable course at the undergraduate level. This course is Pass/ Fail and online only.
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