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Master of Public Administration Graduate

M.P.A. concentration in State and Local Administration

Contact Us

Graduate Admissions
(954) 262-5168
800-672-7223 ext. 25168
hcbeinfo@nova.edu

Mission Statement

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.

Admissions Deadlines:

Winter I 2019: December 21, 2018
Fall I 2019: August 5, 2019

NASPA COPRA

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. View Program Data

There are over 90,000 units of government at the state and local level in the United States – many looking for innovative and forward-thinking leaders.

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.

  • Courses offered Saturdays on the Davie campus, select campuses, and online.
  • Program can be completed in as little as 16 months.
  • Program begins two times annually with starts in August and January.
  • International students on a F1 visa are not eligible for this program.

For more information about the program, please contact:

The Office of Graduate Admissions
(954) 262-5168
1-800-672-7223 ext. 25168
  • A conferred bachelor's degree earned from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or equivalent for international applicants, with a 3.0 GPA overall may be considered for admission.
  • Applicants with a GPA between 2.5-2.99 overall or in the last 60 credit hours of their undergraduate program may be considered for admission, based on the overall review of the application package.
  • Applicants with a GPA between 2.25-2.49 overall or in the last 60 credit hours of their undergraduate program, and/or applicants with an undergraduate degree from a non-regionally accredited institution may be granted admission at the discretion of the Dean in consultation with the M.P.A. Faculty Admissions Committee. This consideration is based on an overall review of the application package.
  • For all applicants with an undergraduate GPA below 3.0, the M.P.A. Faculty Admissions Committee reserves the right to place conditions on the applicants' first terms, such as: remedial coursework in appropriate subjects, limit course enrollment to appropriate levels, suspend or dismiss such applicants based upon first term course grades or require GMAT scores of 450+ or GRE scores of 306+.
  • A Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL or IELTS or PTE Academic) is required for any applicant whose native language is not English and whose bachelor's degree education was not completed in English. The minimum required scores are as follows: a TOEFL score of 550 (paper test) or 79 (Internet test), a score of 6.0 on the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam, or a score of 54 on the PTE Academic exam. Test scores cannot be more than two years old. A letter on official letterhead from the applicant's prior university stating that all bachelor's degree course material was taught and studied in English may suffice for the TOEFL requirement.

Required Admissions Documentation:

  1. Completed Master's Application for Admission.
  2. $50 non-refundable application fee.
  3. Official transcripts from all colleges and universities previously attended. The applicant's bachelor degree transcript must show degree conferral date in order to be evaluated for admission consideration. Electronic transcripts can be sent to electronictranscript@nova.edu. Hard copies may be mailed to:
    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
  4. Resume
  5. 2 Letters of Recommendation from employment supervisors (Only required if students overall GPA is less than a 3.0).
  6. An essay of 500-750+ words explaining why you wish to pursue the Master of Public Administration degree and how it will help to fulfill their personal and professional goals. Also, describe in detail your accomplishments, experiences, value, potential for professional excellence and commitment to complete the degree program.

International Applicants

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.

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.

Total credits: 42

I. Core Curriculum:

Each of the following courses is required – 21 total credits
MGT 5000* Orientation for Success  (0 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  
* MGT 5000 and PUB 5409 must be taken in the first semester.

II. Concentration

State & Local Administration
(Choose 6 courses from the following – 18 credits)
PUB 5902 Grant Development in the Public & Non-Profit Sector  
PUB 5921 Intergovernmental Relations  
PUB 5922 Emergency Management in the Public Sector  
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 5930 Introduction to City Management  
PUB 5931 Public and Non-Profit Strategic Management  
PUB 5932 Sustainable Community Development  
REE 5884 Land Use Regulation  

III. Capstone*

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.

Course Descriptions

MGT 5000     Orientation for Success   (0.00 cr.)

The H. Wayne Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship`s Real World Orientation focuses on preparing new graduate students for academic and career success. Topics include working effectively in teams, academic writing and research skills, networking, business ethics, social responsibility, sustainability and leadership qualities for effective performance in the work place. Through formal and informal interactions with faculty and business leaders students will examine, explore, and practice skills necessary to perform successfully in their academic and professional life. This course is mandatory for all MBA and should be taken concurrently with MGT 5105. This course is mandatory for all MPA and should be taken concurrently with PUB 5409.

PUB 5409     Public Administration in Theory and Application   (3.00 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.

PUB 5419     Public Sector Human Resource Management   (3.00 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   (3.00 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: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.

PUB 5439     Administrative Law and Ethics in the Public Sector   (3.00 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   (3.00 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   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5469     Public Finance   (3.00 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.

PUB 5902     Grant Development in the Public & Non-Profit Sector   (3.00 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 5921     Intergovernmental Relations   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5922     Emergency Management in the Public Sector   (3.00 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.Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5924     Entrepreneurial Public Management   (3.00 cr.)

The public sector has borrowed language and practices from the private sector for more than one hundred years. One such concept, "Entrepreneurship," has grown in the public sector within the current management trend for more innovative ways to provide public services in a responsible manner, while holding down the burden of cost. We will address the question, "What is an Entrepreneur?" This course will consider the three basic streams of (1) how the public sector intervenes in the private to encourage entrepreneurial behaviors, (2) the delivery of public services through entrepreneurial means, and (3) the adoption of private sector practices into the public sphere. This course will explore the critiques of entrepreneurial practices and then offer a framework for Entrepreneurial Governance to address public problems. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5925     Leadership in the Public Sector   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450)

PUB 5926     Public Budgeting   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5927     Evaluation of Public Policies and Programs   (3.00 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 5409 or PUB 5450 and 5449 or PUB 5480

PUB 5928     Economic Development Policy   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5929     Introduction to E-Government and Social Media in the Public Sector   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5930     Introduction to City Management   (3.00 cr.)

An overview is provided of sub-national governments with a specific focus on municipalities within the American federal system. Students will gain an understanding of the role of local political institutions and political stakeholders in developing policy outcomes. Attention is given to the importance of citizen involvement and key issues that impact quality of life. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450

PUB 5931     Public and Non-Profit Strategic Management   (3.00 cr.)

This course will examine the “big picture” of how public and non-profit organizations are led and managed through Strategic Management. We will look at how organizations plan, conduct self-assessment, collaborate, and set a path for the future for success. This is among the fundamentals of public and non-profit organizations and in line with current management trends. This course explores both the “art” and “science” behind Strategic Management. The most significant portion is Strategic Planning, the engine upon which Strategic Management is run. In Strategic Planning, the organization sets is vision, mission, goals, and objectives, in order to set Strategic Management into motion. This course will show how all aspects of an organization; budget, resources, personnel, stakeholders, services provided, and others; come together to formulate a clear progression to the future. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.

PUB 5932     Sustainable Community Development   (3.00 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. Prerequisite: PUB 5409 or PUB 5450.

PUB 5941     Public Administration Internship   (3.00 cr.)

Students without public sector work experience will undertake an Internship. The purpose of which is to be able to: 1. Perform specific job functions in the field of choice under supervision; 2. Apply specific academic knowledge, skills and values to tasks in the work setting; 3. Apply a successful strategy for achieving professional/personal goals. Students will formulate specific goals for their Internship in consultation with a faculty advisor and will complete a formal performance appraisal by both the academic advisor and the employer supervisor according to required interim and final written reports and papers. Prerequisite: (PUB 5409 OR PUB 5450) AND (PUB 5419 OR PUB 5465) AND (PUB 5429 OR PUB 5477) AND (PUB 5439 OR PUB 5461) AND (PUB 5449 OR PUB 5480) AND (PUB 5459 OR PUB 5451) AND (PUB 5469 or PUB 5472).

PUB 5945     Master of Public Administration Integrative Seminar   (3.00 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   (3.00 cr.)

The practicum is for students already working within the field in a mid-level to senior management position. Students should have a demonstrated record of growth in their career with a minimum of five years experience with progressive responsibilities 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 5429 OR PUB 5477).

REE 5884     Land Use Regulation   (3.00 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.

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events

November 15 | Virtual Information Meeting

Start off 2019 right! Please join NSU’s Huizenga College of Business to learn more about our MBA, MPA, Master of Accounting, and MSRED programs. Take this opportunity to learn more about our admissions criteria and have your application fee waived. Information about scholarships and financial aid will also be available. We look forward to welcoming you to the Shark Nation!!!

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