Public Administration Degree: Prepare for a Satisfying Public Service Career

Public administration degree

If you are interested in topics like good governance and public ethics, earning a public administration degree may be right for you. Public administration programs arm students with the knowledge and skills to become administrative services managers in the public sector who can plan, coordinate, and direct a broad range of services. Public administrators work in federal, state, and local governments, as well as the private and non-profit sectors. Learn more about public administration schools now if you would like to work in this rewarding field.

Entrance Requirements for Public Administration Programs

Public administration degrees are available at the associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level. Degree programs are offered both on campus and online. The prerequisites for entry to undergraduate programs in public administration are typically a high school diploma or GED, a minimum required GPA, and minimum required SAT/ACT scores.

The prerequisites for entry to master’s and doctoral degree programs in public administration generally include a bachelor’s or master’s degree from an accredited institution, competitive GRE scores, a minimum required GPA, relevant work experience, and strong letters of recommendation.

A bachelor’s degree in the field may help you secure an entry-level position in public administration, but most advanced public administration positions require candidates to have at least a master’s degree. Those who want to pursue careers in public administration research and teaching need a doctoral degree.

Public Administration Program Curriculum

Public administration students learn to think critically and analytically about the development and implementation of public policy. They develop comprehensive knowledge of American politics and political institutions and also gain a clear understanding of the theory and practice of government. Public administration courses that students may be required to take include the following:

  • Program evaluation and performance improvement
  • Introduction to public administration
  • Fundraising and grantmanship
  • Leadership for public and non-profit organizations
  • American national government
  • Budget and finance for community organizations

Public administration classes provide students with strong oral and written communication skills, critical thinking skills, and decision-making skills. Associate’s degrees and master’s degrees in public administration take about two years to complete, bachelor’s degrees take four years to complete, and doctoral degrees take four to five years to complete.

Career Paths for Graduates of Public Administration Schools

Public administration graduates are qualified to pursue an array of career paths. The majority of public service graduates pursue public service positions. Examples of jobs for public administration professionals include city/county management, policy analysis, occupational safety coordination, budget consulting and analysis, lobbying, and grant writing. Potential job titles for public administration professionals include the following:

  • Community worker
  • Public policy analyst
  • Researcher
  • Labor relations specialist
  • Policy advisor
  • Non-profit administrator
  • Business administrator
  • Foreign service officer
  • Lobbyist
  • City manager

The public sector is in need of well-educated leaders with strong decision-making skills and the ability to make a difference. Obtain the knowledge and skills needed to become a successful leader in the public sector by pursuing a public administration degree today.