University of Vermont

Master of Public Administration

MPA Requirements

MPA Program Requirements


Thirty six (36) academic credits are needed (12 courses) to earn an MPA degree. Six of of these courses are required core courses:

  • PA301 Foundations of Public Administration (Fall)
  • PA302 Organizational Theory and Behavior (Spring)
  • PA303 Research and Evaluation Methods (Fall)
  • PA305 Public and Non-Profit Financial Resource Management (Fall)
  • PA306 Policy Systems (Spring)
  • PA380 Internship
  • PA395 MPA Capstone

Students, with guidance from their advisor, select additional courses within the MPA program or other academic institutions at the University of Vermont to round out their academic experience. A full-time student will finish the MPA Program course work in 2 years, and for a part-time student, 5 years. All courses are offered as on-campus lectures or seminars. While the MPA Program at UVM does not offer explicit specializations, a student may pursue courses with a common thread or focus and can tailor their course selections to work toward that focus. Check out all the courses that the MPA program offers.

The MPA Program at UVM also offers an accelerated MPA degree to current undergraduates who may want to combine their undergraduate experience with a continuation of coursework to pursue an MPA degree. For more information please contact Julie Starr by email or phone (802.656.0009)


The Internship experience is a key opportunity to put into practice the concepts and theories of public administration. It is critical in gaining experience, building credentials and networking for future professional opportunities. A three-credit internship is required of all students, and students may apply up to 6 credits of internship experience toward the degree.

Public Administration Capstone

The Capstone is designed to provide MPA students with a summative experience that ties learning competencies to evidence drawn from their course of study.  This course is required for all MPA students as it also incorporates the spirit of the Comprehensive Exam within the curriculum. The Comprehensive Exam is a UVM Graduate College requirement.

Thesis Option

A six-credit thesis option is available to all students and strongly recommended for students interested in continuing on to a PhD. A student doing a thesis selects a three member thesis review committee to evaluate her/his work. If this is an option you would like to pursue, talk to your assigned advisor upon entering the program to allow plenty of time for the planning and writing of a thesis. Click here for a complete list of past MPA theses titles and abstracts.


Julie Starr is available to answer any questions that you might have on the MPA program or admissions. She can be found in 103 Morrill Hall, contacted by email (click here), or by phone (802.656.0009).

Last modified December 16 2014 12:37 PM

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