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Bachelor of Science in Public Administration

Program Description

The Bachelor of Science in Public Administration program prepares students for careers in public service that require various administrative skills including federal, state and local government agencies, nonprofit organizations and other public sector-oriented entities.  Courses focus on building skills around the topics of budgeting, personnel and financial administration, the management of organizations, public service leadership, law, political and government institutions, ethics and global awareness that are critical for not only public administration, but all global citizens.

Program Objectives

The curriculum of the BS in Public Administration program is based on the standards of the Network of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) and emphasizes the following public service values:  accountability; transparency; respect for citizen privacy; ethical actions and values; and participatory processes that encourages citizen engagement.

As the basis for the curriculum, the program adheres to the following competencies related to the public service values. The competencies include five domains: the ability

  • to lead and manage in public governance;
  • to participate in and contribute to the policy process;
  • to analyze, synthesize, think critically, solve problems and make decisions;
  • to articulate and apply a public service perspective;
  • to communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry.

Curriculum

Curriculum

Required Courses (27 credits)

POLSC 100 American Government and Politics
PA 201 Public Administration
PA 202 Studies in Public Administration
PA 305 State and Local Government
PA 306 City Management
PA 340 Public Policy
PA 362 Public Personnel Administration
PA 363 Public Financial Administration
PA 364 Organizational Theory and Management

Major Electives (9 credits)

Select three courses in public administration, political science, or other approved areas.

Core Curriculum (30 credits)

Includes two writing courses (including Expository Writing and Critical Writing for the Professional); a Mathematics skills course; Effective Speaking Across Audiences and at least one approved course from each of the following categories: Natural Science, Humanities, Fine Arts, and Social Science; and additional liberal arts electives for a total of 30 credits. 

Free Electives (54 credits)

Total Credits required to Graduate: 120


Minor in Public Administration

This program requires the completion of the following six (6) courses :

POLSC 100 American Government and Politics
PA 201 Public Administration
PA 202 Studies in Public Administration (or approved substitute)

Any three additional courses in Public Administration

Total Minor Credits 18 credits

Course Descriptions

POLSC 100 – American Government and Politics
Fulfills a course requirement in the Political Science Core Concentration Provides a practical examination of how things get done politically in the United States, including analysis and discussion of American attitudes and institutions. Topics include: the actual making of the U.S. Constitution; the relationship between the national government and the states; civil liberties and civil rights; the role of the President, the Congress and the Supreme Court; elections, interest groups, the media and public opinion; and various contemporary public policy issues. Prerequisite for all advanced courses in the American Politics. (3 credits) Fall, Spring

PA 201 – Public Administration
Co-listed as POLSC 260 Introduces the theory, forms, and practice of public administration at the national, subnational, and international levels. Emphasizes administrative theories, concepts of bureaucracy, the environment of public service, and the role of administrators in government. (3 credits)

PA 202 – Studies in Public Administration
Examines the relationship between theory and practice of Public Administration through a review and analysis of selected problems, issues, and case studies at the national, subnational, and international levels. Administrative theories, concepts of bureaucracy, the environment of public service, and the roles of administrators in government. (3 credits)

PA 305/POLSC 361 – State and Local Government
Cross-listed as POLSC 361 Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor Analysis of state and local governments with emphasis on the distribution of political power and administrative responsibility in selected public programs and areas of public policy. (3 credits)

PA 306 – City Management
Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor Study of municipal administration, including organization, financial management, personnel and labor relations, municipal services, and political and public relations; analysis of city governments and the role of city and local government managers; examination of the planning, policy, management, evaluation, and financial dimensions of cities. (3 credits)

PA 340/POLSC 380 – Public Policy
Cross-listed as POLSC 380 Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor Systematic analysis of critical domestic issues and areas: poverty, race relations, crime, etc. Consideration of the entire public policy cycle: recognition and definition of potential “problems”; formulation and implementation of governmental policy solutions; and assessment of the impact of policies. (3 credits)

PA 362 – Public Personnel Administration
Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor Focuses on the primary personnel functions including job evaluation and compensation; staffing; employee training and development; employee relations; collective bargaining; and other issues and concerns of public sector personnel management. (3 credits)

PA 363 – Public Financial Administration
Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor This course explores administrative, political, and institutional aspects of the budgetary and financial management processes within the public sector. A review of federal, state, and local financial, budget, and revenue systems. (3 credits)

PA 364 – Organizational Theory and Management
Prerequisite: POLSC 100 or PA 201 or PA 202 or consent of instructor Study of the historical evolution of organizational thought and theories. An analysis of the basic concepts of organizations within both a contemporary and future view of the public sector. (3 credits)

Outcomes

At the completion of the program students should be competent to:

  • Undertake an administrative or entry-level leadership role in a public or nonprofit organization;
  • Participate in and contribute to the policy process;
  • Think critically;
  • Analyze and synthesize data and information for decision-making
  • Communicate, collaborate and interact with diverse groups in diverse settings

Faculty