University of Vermont

2011-12 Online Catalogue

Public Administration (Master of Public Administration)


The Master of Public Administration (MPA) Program at the University of Vermont joins vigorous study of the foundations of public administration with the practice of public administration in the real world. Vermont's small size, open local and state government and wealth of nonprofit organizations make for an ideal environment in which to directly engage with the public administration field. More information on the MPA program can be found online at MPA Link out of catalogue site. website. Inquiries can be made through email or by phone (802-656-0009).


The Master of Public Administration at the University of Vermont is a professional interdisciplinary degree that prepares pre- and in-service public leaders by combining the theoretical and practical foundations of public administration with the democratic traditions that are a hallmark of Vermont communities.


The MPA program at UVM capitalizes on these unique traditions that have direct implications to our state and beyond to the public administration needs of a changing nation and world.

  • The recognition and importance of community building
  • The tradition of grassroots democracy
  • A history of strong local governance with citizen input
  • A record of fiscal conservatism combined with "progressive" positive change
  • A citizen legislature with limited staff support
  • An emphasis on efficiency, effectiveness, accountability and sustainability
  • Administrators serving their publics as "reflective practitioners"
  • A history of cooperation between private and public sectors for the public good
  • A vigorous non-profit sector, supported by citizens and organizations
  • A deep commitment to inclusion and cultural diversity

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Master of Public Administration

A sound academic record, including a baccalaureate degree from an accredited undergraduate institution, satisfactory scores on the general aptitude section of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), three letters of recommendation attesting to the candidate's academic potential for graduate work and motivation for pursuing the MPA. Past experience in public service will be considered. Persons currently employed in administrative positions are encouraged to apply. In addition, a student must have completed these prerequisite courses: Economics, American Government and Statistics.

For international students whose native language is not English or who have not completed undergraduate degrees in English, Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores must be submitted. Minimum acceptable scores for admission to the Graduate College at UVM: internet-based = 80; computer-based = 213; paper-based = 550. Minimum acceptable scores for a student receiving funding from UVM: internet-based = 100; computer-based = 250; paper-based = 600. Institution code for test scores for UVM is 3920.

NOTE: The application deadlines for the MPA Program are mid-February (for an acceptance decision by March 1) for fall funding consideration. Open enrollment for others.

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Public Administration

Successful completion of 36 credits, including core courses PA 301, PA 302, PA 303, PA 305 and PA 306, and an approved sequence of elective courses which may include up to nine credits of coursework from approved disciplines related to public administration. Pre-service students (those without substantial public administration experience) are required to complete an approved three-credit internship as part of their sequence of courses beyond the core courses.

Satisfactory completion of the written Comprehensive Examination, an evaluative device and capstone experience, offered two times per year (January and March) for students in their final semester of study in the UVM-MPA program.


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