Online Public Administration, MPA | University of Nebraska at Omaha

Public Administration, MPA (Public Policy)

Public Policy

University of Nebraska at Omaha

  • Course Delivery
    Fully Online
  • Total Credits
  • In-State Tuition Per Credit
  • Out of State Tuition Per Credit

Earn your degree from the University of Nebraska at Omaha

Get the same diploma as on campus students

The online Master of Public Administration program offers a concentration in Public Policy which is designed to develop the key skills necessary to design, implement, analyze and evaluate public policy.

Students of the Public Administration, MPA (Public Policy) program will gain skills to:

  • Develop, implement and evaluate public policy.
  • Design strategies that are mutually beneficial to constituencies ranging from the most vulnerable to the most affluent populations.
  • Protect natural resources, build cities and lead communities.
  • Become a steward of the democratic way of life.

The Public Policy Concentration provides a foundation for understanding the policy process and gaining policy-relevant skills such as policy analysis, policy evaluation, strategic planning and research methods.

Students choose the online Master of Public Administration program because of the:

  • High-quality curriculum from a distinguished, accredited university.
  • Low tuition from a convenient, accessible location.
  • Faculty members regarded as national and international scholars and leaders in the field of public administration.
  • Flexible coursework offered 100% online, allowing for personal and skill development on a schedule that is conducive to busy professionals.
  • A community of scholars and practitioners who share a deep commitment to effective teaching and rigorous research on public administration.

Career Outlook: In today's working world, an advanced degree is essential. A degree in public administration prepares graduates for leadership positions in state and local government, health care administration, nonprofit management and human resources management. According to the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration, graduate education is expected to continue giving persons working or seeking careers in the public and nonprofit sectors a competitive edge.

This program is ideal for professionals looking to work in areas such as:

  • Public service
  • Health care management
  • Federal, state and local government
  • Nonprofit management
  • Human resource management

Specific job titles may include:

  • City Director
  • Policy Manager
  • Urban Planning and Development Director
  • Public Affairs Director

More about the Public Administration, MPA:

The mission of the School of Public Administration at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is to strengthen the public service in a democratic and diverse society by educating students to manage and lead public and nonprofit institutions effectively, ethically and democratically. The MPA degree is the recognized graduate degree for professionals in public service.

A master's degree in Public Administration is more than a professional degree. Its a gateway to transforming society through a career in public service. The mission of the program is to strengthen public service in a democratic, yet diverse society by educating students who manage and lead public and nonprofit institutions effectively, ethically and democratically.

The online MPA offers several concentrations, including:

  • Criminology and Criminal Justice
  • Local Government
  • Nonprofit Management
  • Public Management
  • Public Policy
This program is described by the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration as a model program.
Jodi Beneson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

Jodi Beneson’s research interests include social policy, nonprofit organizations, civic engagement and inequality. Previously, Benenson was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University. At Tufts, she worked on several projects in the areas of youth civic engagement, political learning and engagement in higher education and national service and employment. Prior to returning to graduate school, Benenson worked in the nonprofit sector in the Twin Cities.

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A bachelor's degree

  2. 3.00 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale

  3. Previous work experience

  4. Taken the GRE

  5. Taken the TOEFL or IELTS

    (Only required if English is not your native language)

  6. A written personal statement

    What are the factors in your background that will help us understand your interest in a profession in the public or nonprofit sectors? What are your professional goals? Ten years from now, what do you hope to be doing professionally? How can an MPA from UNO help you to achieve these goals?

  7. Official transcripts from all previous schools

NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states

To apply to this program:

  • Complete and submit the online application for admissions .
  • Pay the $45 non-refundable application fee.

Apply Now

Application Deadlines

Fall Semester
June 1
Spring Semester
October 1

Core Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
PA 8050Foundations of Public Service3

Course Number: PA 8050

The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the art and science of public administration and to enable the student to develop the knowledge, skills and abilities requisite to the pursuit of graduate education in public administration.

PA 8090Organization Theory & Behavior3

Course Number: PA 8090

A study of the various approaches to understanding public organizations and people in them with special emphasis on the design, functioning and management of public agencies.

PA 8100Advanced Management & Leadership for Public & Nonprofit Professionals3

Course Number: PA 8100

This course is designed to advance students' understanding and techniques about the role of leadership and ethics in the public and nonprofit sectors. Special attention will be paid on the application of theories of leadership and ethics to manage various boundary spanning activities including managing external relationships, collaborations/networks, performance and innovation and change.

PA 8120Analysis & Decision Making3

Course Number: PA 8120

This course assists students to develop their skills in research design and data analysis, covering both qualitative and quantitative data relevant to public affairs. The course introduces students to the fundamentals of research design, data collection, data and statistical analysis and drawing pertinent policy and management recommendations.

PA 8300Policy Design & Implementation3

Course Number: PA 8300

This course examines the formulation, adoption, implementation and evaluation of public policy. Important topics include the basic features of American government, the causes and determinants of public policies, the dynamics of decision-making in the public sector, the obstacles to "successful" public programs, and the criteria for the assessment of a public program's impact. Special emphasis is given to the role public managers play within the policy process.

PA 8320Policy Evaluation3

Course Number: PA 8320

This course is designed to have the students understand the role of evaluation in the policy process, to demonstrate how to conduct and implement evaluations of public programs, to illustrate the procedures for presenting an evaluation report to public officials and citizens, to introduce operational issues and problems associated with management of an office of policy evaluation and to insure the exploration of conflicts and limitations inherent to public policy evaluation.

PA 8330Policy Analysis3

Course Number: PA 8330

Application of analytical techniques to the assessment of alternative courses of public action and the development and design of public programs; utilization and impact of expert analysis by public officials and political groups; impact and role of technical analysis in a democracy; management of policy analysis units within government.

PA 8400Public & Nonprofit Budgeting3

Course Number: PA 8400

The purpose of the course is to familiarize public administration students with the basic characteristics and features of public budgets and enable them to deal competently with them.

PA 8530Planning & Evaluation3

Course Number: PA 8530

The basic question presented in this course is how we can use strategic planning and evaluation to build public and nonprofit organizations that function creatively and effectively, and that enhance the overall public value of their services.

PA 8600Administrative Law3

Course Number: PA 8600

A review of the principal elements of the role and character of legal processes in government administration, including delegation of powers, legal forms of administrative action, liability of government units and officers and judicial review of administrative action.

PA 8990Capstone Project3

Course Number: PA 8990

The Capstone Project offers each student the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of the theory and practice of public administration by applying the knowledge and skills gained in the MPA program to a project of the student's choice. This involves completing a project report reflecting the cumulative knowledge gained from these experiences. The course is intended only for students who are completing their Masters of Public Administration (MPA).

Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
PA 8010The Public Economy3

Course Number: PA 8010

This course introduces microeconomic principles and applies these concepts to policy issues that are relevant for public and nonprofit managers and analysts, with specific focus on tradeoffs between values of efficiency and equity. Strengths and weaknesses of private markets in allocating resources are discussed. The roles of government and the nonprofit sector in the financing and provision of services are also examined, along with economic criteria for decision-making.

PA 8206Community Organizing & Social Change3

Course Number: PA 8206

This course will focus on various theories and applications of organizing communities and neighborhoods to effect change. Of particular interest is the role of engaging citizens in improving their communities.

PA 8410Public Human Resource Management3

Course Number: PA 8410

A study of the personnel process in American governmental administration. The processes and problems of recruiting, structuring and operating public bureaucracies are examined as well as problems in personnel leadership, neutrality, accountability and performance.

PA 8436Municipal Administration3

Course Number: PA 8436

The administrative structure and administrative practices of American cities covering such areas as finance, personnel, public works, public safety, health, utilities and planning.

Cost for Nebraska Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $365.00
  • Fees: $52.25
  • Total: $417.25
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $1095.00
  • Fees: $156.75
  • Total: $1251.75

Cost for Out of State Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $600.00
  • Fees: $52.25
  • Total: $652.25
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $1800.00
  • Fees: $156.75
  • Total: $1956.75

Questions about tuition? We can help.

What's it like to take a program online?

  • Quality learning experience

    The University of Nebraska has offered distance education courses for more than 100 years so you can expect a quality, rigorous experience. Online courses are often highly interactive with faculty and students communicating through e-mail, discussion forums and chat groups. You’ll have direct access to world-class faculty – researchers who are experts in their fields or practitioners with real-world experience. Also, you’ll be part of a community of learners and can benefit from the perspectives of students from across the globe.

  • Flexibility

    Online learning gives you the flexibility and freedom to attend your classes wherever is convenient to you. You can save time and money by being able to continue to work and by avoiding relocation or travel costs. You will be required to complete assignments in a certain timeframe, but in most instances, you can log in and complete coursework during the time of day that works best for you. You aren’t tied to a specific class time.

  • Service you expect from a leading University

    Online learners at the University of Nebraska have access to the same student services available to on-campus students. An academic adviser will guide you along your journey, library services are available to help you excel in your program and career services are available when you are ready to take your next step. These are just a few of the services in place to help you succeed.

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