Jul 15, 2024  
2018-2019 Cal State East Bay Catalog 
2018-2019 Cal State East Bay Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Public Administration, M.P.A.: Public Management and Policy Analysis Concentration

Public Administration, M.P.A. Program

Program Description

The Department of Public Administration offers a program of study leading to the degree of Master of Public Administration, with concentrations in public management and policy analysis (PMPA) and health care administration (HCA). The program is designed to assist full and part-time students in preparing for professional careers in positions of administrative leadership in public and quasi-public organizations, for teaching positions in the community colleges, and for advanced doctoral studies in public administration. 

Graduate courses are offered Monday through Thursday evenings and some Saturdays to meet the needs of working adults. 

Program Perspective

Public Administration is a rich and challenging multi-disciplinary field drawing from the disciplines of political science, sociology, anthropology, philosophy, psychology, economics, and urban and organizational studies. The Department focuses on expanding the meaning of public administration in government agencies and non-profit and community organizations. The MPA Program provides students with a grounding in major philosophical and social science thinking about the nature of organizations and helps students build the intellectual and practical policy tools needed to become effective organizational leaders in the public and non-profit sectors. The MPA Program is designed to increase students’ personal and professional effectiveness as employees of public, non-profit, and private organizations. The purpose of the Program is to prepare students for leadership positions in organizations with a commitment to social purpose, the public interest, and effective public problem solving. Overall, emphasis is placed upon developing in its graduates sensitivities to a wide variety of human, social, and organizational realities in order to assist public organizations in formulating and achieving their goals and striving toward responsible social change.

The program builds on several assumptions:

  • that many complex and far-reaching social problems require the stewardship of public agencies;
  • that the citizens are the central focus of everything public administration does or ought to be;
  • that public agencies should encourage democratic practices, personal education and growth, and the improvement in the quality of life within the public sector workplace;
  • that public agencies should nurture and support a critical awareness on the part of public administrators, leading to an ability to challenge and change administrative practice; and
  • that public administrators need to find creative and innovative ways to provide quality public services, especially in times of resource scarcity.

In sum, we believe the challenge of our changing post-industrial era is best met by humanizing public organizations, by strengthening their capacities for intelligent policy analysis and effective action on behalf of the public good, and by encouraging public administrators to embrace learning, creativity, and innovation.

Career Opportunities

The demand for the public administration degree and profession has continued to grow and much of the growth has been driven by the complex requirements for capable government employees to serve the needs of citizens. Public administrators manage nearly every aspect of public service at the federal, state and local levels offering the opportunity to help shape the future of our society. With vast numbers of citizens seeking help to access services at all levels of government and other public service organizations, the MPA program is designed to equip our graduates with skills in areas such as policy analysis, management analysis, public policy, public management, nonprofit management, eligibility assessment, and program assessment, just to name a few. In addition to meeting “demand” projections based on growth of job categories, the MPA program faculty are also interested in graduates enhancing their effectiveness for jobs they may already hold. Improving work effectiveness of seasoned professionals who seek the MPA program is another component of the opportunities we provide. 

Admission Requirements

The MPA degree program is open to students planning careers in public organizations who have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution. Admission will be granted based upon the Admission Committee’s overall assessment of the student’s qualifications and academic/career potential, using the following criteria:

  • Cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5;
  • Students with GPA below 2.5 will not be considered for admission.
  • Statement of Purpose in pursuing the MPA degree. In a 1-2 page essay double-spaced, please explain who you are, your career goals and how the MPA degree will help you achieve those goals;
  • Two letters of academic and/or professional recommendation (on professional letterhead - company or educational institution stationery). The letter writers should include how they know you, if they think you would be successful in the program and why. Letters must be current, dated and signed.
  • Professional resume/vita;
  • All undergraduate/graduate transcripts. (These must be sent directly to University Admissions - NOT the Department.)

All applicants must submit an online Graduate Admission application declaring Public Administration as a degree objective, and transcripts, at CALSTATE Apply with a non-refundable fee.  For the “Statement of Purpose” and “References” sections on the CALSTATE Apply application, applicants may put “submitted directly to the department.”

In addition, applicants must also submit the above application materials (Statement of Purpose, 2 letters of reference and resume) directly to the Department of Public Affairs and Administration at the following address:

California State University East Bay
Department of Public Affairs and Administration
25800 Carlos Bee Boulevard,  MI 4122
Hayward, CA 94542-3040

The Department cannot accept materials sent electronically.  We prefer all documents be mailed to us but will accept faxed documents if necessary.  The Department fax number is 510 885-3726.



Applicants will be notified of the Department’s decision via email. Applicants will be required to confirm acceptance of admission by the deadline stated in the email or the offer may be withdrawn. 

Student Standing and Progress Toward the Degree

There are three categories of student status, which reflect student progress toward the degree: “Conditionally Classified Graduate” student, “Classified Graduate” student, and “Advancement to Candidacy.”

  1. Students achieve “Conditionally Classified Graduate” status when they have been admitted to the MPA program, but have not yet completed the prerequisites for the “Classified Graduate” status in the MPA program.
  2. Students achieve “Classified Graduate” status when they have successfully completed four of the required program courses with a grade of C or better, have a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or better, and have satisfied the University Writing Skills Requirement. For information on meeting the University Writing Skills Requirement, see the Testing Office website at www.csueastbay.edu/testing or call 510.885.3661. 
  3. Students are “Advanced to Candidacy” when they have successfully completed all of the required program courses with a grade of C or better and have a cumulative GPA of 3.00 or better.  

Please note that a minimum of 22 units must be completed in residence after admission to the program.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • MPA PLO 1: Lead and manage in public governance while demonstrating an understanding of the role of theory in humanizing public organizations and the application of these theories toward administrative inquiry
  • MPA PLO 2: Participate in and contribute to the policy process
  • MPA PLO 3: Analyze, synthesize, think critically, solve problems and demonstrate an understanding of interpretive and quantitative research methodologies
  • MPA PLO 4: Articulate and apply a public service perspective that integrates social purpose, the public interest, and effective participative problem solving
  • MPA PLO 5: Communicate and interact productively with a diverse and changing workforce and citizenry with a commitment to social equity and justice 

Public Administration Degree Requirements (32 units)

Capstone Requirement

Complete one (1) course for 4 units from the following to complete the program:

Public Management and Policy Analysis Concentration

The following 8 units are required for the concentration:

Other Graduate & Post-Baccalaureate Degree Requirements

In addition to departmental requirements, every student must also satisfy the University requirements for graduation as described throughout this catalog. These include the 70% unit residence requirement; the five-year rule on currency of subject matter; the minimum number of units in 600-level courses; the “C” minimum grade for each graduate course; the 3.00 cumulative grade point average; and the University Writing Skills Requirement.

Note: For information on meeting the University Writing Skills Requirement, see the Testing Office website at www.csueastbay.edu/testing or call (510) 885-3661.

Department Courses Listed by Course Type

Public Affairs and Administration Courses

Department of Public Affairs and Administration

Go to information for this department.


Health Care Administration: Graduate

Public Administration

Public Administration: Graduate