This guide will focus on the top schools offering Online Masters in Public Policy. Before we provide you with this information, let us briefly consider what Public Policy major entails, the career prospect, and all what you need to know about this program.
What Is Public Policy Degree?
A public policy degree prepares students to conceive, execute, and evaluate policy solutions to society’s challenges. Students may investigate large-scale issues such as debt management or local issues such as homelessness. They then use interdisciplinary skills and critical thinking to assess government or charity success in these areas and develop new solutions.
Political science and economics majors, on the other hand, study the process of political decision-making and resource allocation, respectively. To make educated judgments, public policy involves an understanding of each of those disciplines, as well as mathematics and data collection. Finally, students in this discipline must learn to share their work with a variety of stakeholders, all of whom have different degrees of comprehension and participation. As a result, communication skills are critical to their success.
Public Policy Course Work
At its core, this style of education trains students to participate in the policymaking process. Students can concentrate in areas of interest by taking courses that are shared between departments and programs.
The first year of study for this major includes an introduction to the field, during which students get a high-level understanding of policy creation in response to significant problems in the public, nonprofit, and commercial sectors. Students discover how other topics such as political science, economics, and philosophy inform the major while also being exposed to basic ideas in ethics and leadership techniques. Additionally, courses in management, communication, data analysis, and research methodology are necessary. Many introductory courses include current events and policy topics to help students understand why these problems arise.
Two areas of specialty are natural resource management and local governance. Homeland security, law, and emergency management, to name a few, are all possible areas of study. It is up to the pupils to choose which path to choose.
What Can You Do With a Public Policy Degree?
Graduates of public policy can work in a variety of sectors, the most popular of which is civil service in the federal, state, or municipal government. Many graduates find entry-level management or analysis employment with government agencies or nonprofit organizations. For graduates interested in a career in politics or academics, consulting or legal employment are also common options. Graduates are also qualified for private sector careers in finance, transportation, and real estate, among other fields, thanks to their knowledge with forecasts, economics, and the political process. When collaborating with government agencies on significant projects, some businesses hire persons with these expertise as advisors.
Graduates interested in continuing their education might pursue a Master of Public Administration or Master of Public Policy degree to undertake independent research and specialize. Graduates of public policy programs can go on to law school or business school.
What You Should Expect From Online Masters In Public Policy
A career in public policy necessitates excellent analytical, negotiation, and communication abilities. Because research is so important, students should be proficient in data analytics and statistics, or be willing to study these sometimes-complex subjects.
The majority of online masters in public policy and public affairs programs demand 30-36 credits and take roughly two years to complete full-time. Some accelerated programs can lead to a bachelor’s degree in as little as a year. The majority of online master’s in public policy and public affairs programs demand 30-36 credits and take roughly two years to complete full-time.
These graduate programs include classes in political science, statistics, and economics. They frequently provide concentrations that might assist students in selecting an academic path that is aligned with their job ambitions.
What’s The Cost Of Online Masters In Public Policy?
Depending on the school and the student’s location, an online master’s in public policy and public affairs might cost anywhere from $440 to $1960 per credit.
Let’s now take a look at some of the top schools offering online masters in Public Policy…
Top Schools Offering Online Masters In Public Policy
The following schools offer the best online masters in public policy. You can contact them and get more information about their tuition fees and requirements.
Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, provides an online master’s in public administration. Students might concentrate on public administration and leadership, public policy assessment, or public financial management and budgeting.
Before moving on to six electives, students must complete five core courses, including public policy and evaluation. Learners can add a certificate in government analytics, intelligence, or nonprofit management to their degree to make it more tailored to their needs. During their final capstone experience, students write a 30-35-page paper. A bachelor’s degree from an accredited university is required, as is a policy-related essay. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has regionally accredited Johns Hopkins.
Northwestern University, which is based in Evanston, Illinois, offers part-time students an online master’s degree in public policy and administration. Students collaborate with Northwestern’s client base, which has included the American Red Cross and the Urban Institute in the past.
Public administration, public policy, global policy, global health, or data analytics are the five specialization areas available to students. Research methodologies, statistics for research, and ethics and leadership are among the nine core courses that participants must pass. Each specialist area also includes three courses, and students must complete a capstone project or thesis to graduate.
Part-time students can finish their education entirely online, with four start dates available each year. Applicants for positions in public policy must include a writing sample linked to public policy. The Higher Learning Commission has given Northwestern regional accreditation.
Pennsylvania State University
Penn State World Campus, based in University Park, provides a master’s degree in criminal justice policy and administration online. Students must complete 18 credits of necessary coursework, which includes criminal justice institutions, criminal process, and advanced criminal justice statistics. They then choose nine optional credits from topics such as law and society, global policing, and the American legal system. During their final semester, students work on a self-selected project with the help of a faculty mentor as part of a capstone experience.
Students must submit a writing sample and apply for one of two start dates each year. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has regional accreditation for Penn State World Campus.
AU provides an online master of public administration and policy from its Washington, D.C. campus. Working folks seeking a flexible education will benefit from the program.
Students take 36 credits over eight weeks, focusing on two courses each semester. Introduction to public administration and the policy process, legal issues in public administration, and organizational analysis are only a few of the topics covered in the program. Participants complete a detailed public policy analysis for a customer as part of a policy practicum at the end of the program. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited AU at the regional level. The Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration has given it accreditation in public administration and policy.
George Washington University
The George Washington University (GW) in Washington, D.C., provides an online master’s degree in international policy and practice. Students have the option of enrolling full-time or part-time. Nine core courses, including strategy and leadership, economic tools for global policy, and a leadership capstone, are included in the 27-credit curriculum. Students take 18 credits of electives from topics such as conflict resolution, security, and international development policy.
To qualify for the professional program, applicants must have seven years of professional experience or a master’s degree. The Middle States Commission on Higher Education has accredited GW at the regional level.
The O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, which is based in Bloomington, provides an online master’s degree in public policy.
Core courses, advanced electives, and an experience component are all part of the 48-credit program. Public management, economics of public management, and public finance and budgeting are all required subjects. Students then select electives to concentrate their study in areas such as nonprofit administration, policy research, or public budgeting.
Additionally, all students must complete an internship, an independent research project, or gain credit for past volunteer or professional experience. Students can apply for one of three start dates and receive up to six hours of credit for previous job or military experience. The Higher Learning Commission has granted Indiana University regional accreditation.
University Of Missouri
Mizzou’s Harry S. Truman School of Public Affairs, based in Columbia, provides an online master’s degree in public affairs. Students learn exclusively online over the course of eight weeks, focusing on only one lesson at a time.
Core subjects such as public service and democracy, public processes and strategies, and an introduction to public and nonprofit administration are among the 30 credits of study. Students select electives from one of three concentration areas: public management, nonprofit management, or public policy. Learners with less than three years of work experience are required to complete a capstone or internship experience. The Higher Learning Commission has given Mizzou regional accreditation. The Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration has accredited the school’s public affairs curriculum.
University Of Northern Iowa
UNI which is based in Cedar Falls, provides an online master’s degree in public policy. The curriculum prepares students for positions in public or nonprofit community groups by teaching them the necessary skills.
Policy analysis methodologies and approaches, public finance, public policy ethics, and program assessment in public policy are among the courses offered to students. At the conclusion of the program, participants complete a capstone project and an internship to gain hands-on experience in preparation for future professions. If a student already has job experience in public policy, the internship requirement can be waived. The Higher Learning Commission accredits UNI on a regional level.
OSU, which is based in Corvallis, provides an online master of public policy program. By providing flexible online courses, the program assists early- and mid-career professionals in completing their degrees.
Microeconomic theory, introduction to econometrics, public policy analysis, and comprehending social research are among the compulsory core courses. Students may also concentrate on one of four areas: energy policy, environmental policy, rural policy, or social policy. Students can add one of 15 graduate certifications to their concentration area, such as data analytics or water dispute management, by earning additional credits.
The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities has given OSU regional accreditation. The Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration has accredited the school’s public policy curriculum.
Is online Masters in Public Policy worth it?
A master’s degree in public policy and public affairs earned online can lead to a variety of jobs in the nonprofit, government, and commercial sectors. Graduates work for government agencies, non-profits, and businesses. Many students go on to work as policy analysts. These experts may work for the government or for huge firms’ think tanks.
Others go on to work as community and social service administrators, political scientists, or government affairs directors. Some people with a master’s degree in public policy work as political lobbyists or campaign managers for a particular political party.
How much can you make with a masters in Public Policy?
Salaries differ widely depending on the position, region, level of experience, and company. According to PayScale, persons with a master’s degree in public policy may expect to earn between $40,000 and $188,000 per year. Annual incomes range from $44,000 to $84,000 for policy analysts, a frequent job route for these graduates.
Economic development directors, research directors, and lobbyists are just a few examples of professional prospects and accompanying compensation. According to PayScale, these individuals make $70,100, $102,720, and $76,760 per year on average as of October 2021. Earnings could rise as a result of more experience and contacts in the sector.