MPA — Master of Public Administration

The Hugo Wall School of Public Affairs offers a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree for students who aspire to serve in decision making positions in public and nonprofit organizations. MPA coursework builds skills in the areas of finance, management and policy analysis. A mix of preservice and inservice students participate in the degree program. Preservice students have limited work experience in public or nonprofit management. Inservice students seek advancement while working in a public or nonprofit organization. For this reason, inservice students pursue the degree on a part-time basis.


Admission to the Master of Public Administration degree requires students to have completed an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university and have a grade point of at least a 3.000 (4.000 system) in the last 60 credit hours of coursework, including any postgraduate work. International students must attain a minimum score of 575 paper-based, or 88 internet-based on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or an overall band score of 7.0 on the IELTS, or a score of 65 on the PTE-Academic.

Application Requirements

Admission is on a rolling basis but the deadline for consideration for an assistantship or fellowship is February 15 for fall semester.

  1. Applicants must submit the online application through the Graduate School website. Students will be asked, as a part of that application, to upload/provide the following:
    1. Copies of official transcripts from all schools previously attended;
    2. A letter of application outlining a student’s career plans and how the MPA degree would further those plans;
    3. A resume including the student’s work and volunteer experience; and
    4. Contact information for two people with direct knowledge of a student’s work experience or academic performance, to provide letters of reference.

Note: Students are required to have an intermediate level of skill or better using word processing, spreadsheet and presentation software programs. Programs such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint, which are provided on the Wichita State University campus, or their equivalents are acceptable. Students can obtain these skills by taking short courses and through other means.

Faculty will consider exceptions to the minimum grade point requirement based on a student’s academic record, career plans, work and volunteer experience, and letters of reference. In reviewing requests for exceptions, faculty give consideration to achieving a diverse student body, racially and culturally, and a balance of preservice and inservice students.

Program Requirements 

The Master of Public Administration degree consists of 39 graduate credit hours, taken over at least five semesters of study. The MPA degree is designed for students to begin study in the fall semester. It can be completed online or on campus.

Course Title Hours
Core Curriculum
PADM 701Public & Nonprofit Governance3
PADM 702Research Methods3
PADM 710Public Sector Organizational Theory and Behavior3
PADM 725Public Management of Human Resources3
PADM 765Public Sector Economics3
PADM 802Quantitative Methods for Public Sector Professionals3
PADM 865Public and Nonprofit Financial Management3
PADM 895Public Decision Making3
In addition to the core, students develop a plan of study for 15 credit hours of electives which must be approved by an advisor.15
Total Credit Hours39

Applied Learning

Students in the Master of Public Administration program are required to complete an applied learning or research experience to graduate from the program. The requirement can be met by successful completion of the capstone course PADM 895 Public Decision Making.