Public Administration and Community Management (MA)

A multidisciplinary degree program oriented toward examining and understanding the broad range of problems and opportunities associated with the nation's urban and regional areas. Students in the degree program may prepare themselves for professional leadership careers in local government management and public administration, or use the degree as preparation for Ph.D. study. The program requirements are designed to provide flexibility while ensuring a multidisciplinary, problem-solving perspective. 

Current Catalog Year
Master of Arts
Major / Total Credits
36 / 36
Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration


The Master of Arts in Public Administration and Community Management (MPACM) prepares students for professional local and regional public service leadership careers in the U.S. system by instructing in the application of law, ethics, equity, and current trends in governance through a combination of public administration theory and applied skills training. (Adopted academic year 2014- 2015).

Note: The Urban and Regional Studies Master of Arts program has merged with the Master of Public Administration Program to form the Master of Arts in Public Administration and Community Management.


If you were in enrolled in either of these two programs prior to this change, please view older catalogs with applicable program requirements and course information.

View the URSI Graduate Handbook (PDF)

View Program Details and Data View Faculty and Staff

MPACM Public Service Values

  • Professional competency:  MPACM will provide education and hands-on training to meet market demand for public administrators, ensuring students are wholly prepared for the profession with theoretical and hands-on experience before they graduate.
  • Law: MPACM will train students to serve the public in a way that is consistent with local, state, and federal legal standards to ensure policy is enforced and enacted fairly and legally consistent at all levels of governance.
  • Ethics: MPACM will provide instruction in the ethical standards necessary to establish and maintain public trust and faith that the profession is acting in the best interest of the communities it serves.
  • Equity: MPACM will recognize and instruct in equitable and inclusive public administration, cultivating an understanding of respect, fairness, and justice to the public to enhance the profile of the profession among colleagues and a diverse citizenry.
  • Continuous improvement: MPACM recognizes the evolving world of public administration, and will seek ways to improve the program to meet market demand, community needs, and keep faculty and student skills up to date.

Program Requirements

Common Core

Complete a minimum of 15 credits

This course is a survey of the local community--the forces which shape it, the significance of a democratic public, and professional practice of local government service.

Prerequisites: none

This course is designed to develop the skills needed to gather, analyze, and present information for resolving applied problems in local government and community settings.

Prerequisites: none

This course will cover the concepts and methods of conducting applied social science research focused on local government and public administration applications.

Prerequisites: none

An advanced learning experience working in small group settings on applied projects and problem solving. The team project produced in the studio meets graduate student's capstone project requirements.

Prerequisites: none

Scheduled work assignments varying in length and content under the supervision of selected professional sponsors.

Prerequisites: none

Restricted Electives

Choose 12 Credit(s).

This course is designed for students preparing for a professinal career in local government or public service, focuses on media relations and building citizen involvement through public awareness projects.

Prerequisites: none

An examination of modern principles and techniques of leadership and management. Emphasis is placed on the interactive style of leadership and behavioral concepts of management.

Prerequisites: none

This course provides a set of concepts and tools to consider the design and development of public sector policies and decision making.

Prerequisites: none

Changing nature of management of urban and human behavior in the municipal organization. Emphasis on the development of decision-making and communication skills.

Prerequisites: none

Provides an overview of urban administrative services with an emphasis on urban finance systems and human resource management. Examines the economic and human resource environment for local government managers' decision-making.

Prerequisites: none

Course examines financial management utilizing accurate forecasting, fund accounting and fiscal reporting. Covers budget cycle including legal limitations on local taxation, expenditures, and debt financing.

Prerequisites: none

Unrestricted Electives

Choose 9 Credit(s). Student chooses courses from URSI, POL, or other departments with consent of advisor