Most commonly available as a Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree program, several universities throughout Massachusetts offer graduate programs in public policy. Some of these programs are available in flexible formats and/or may offer additional areas of concentration. Explore some of the program options, available concentrations, and other degree details below.
Massachusetts Schools with Public Policy Graduate Programs
Brandeis University in Waltham offers an MPP that can be completed in 2 years. Students can choose from a variety of concentration areas, including children, youth, and family policy, poverty alleviation, and social policy. For hands-on learning during the program, students participate in internship opportunities. The program concludes with a capstone course that requires a final paper and oral presentation.
University of Massachusetts Amherst
The University of Massachusetts Amherst provides a Master of Public Policy and Administration (MPPA), an MPP, and an accelerated 4+1 MPP for undergraduates. The MPPA is a 2-year program, totals 48 credits, and can be taken part-time. The MPP can be completed in 1 year, totals 37 credits, includes on-campus and online coursework, and allows students to participate in internships. Although it is a 1-year program, students can still pursue the MPP part-time if they would like.
Tufts University in Medford has an MPP that is designed for students with at least 7 years of professional work experience. The program totals 30 credits and can be taken full- or part-time. Full-time students can complete the program in as little as 1 year. The program's curriculum includes an MPP seminar and allows students to choose coursework from various public policy areas to further focus their studies, such as courses in climate change, social welfare policy, international planning and urban policy, or environmental policy research.
Harvard University in Cambridge offers an MPP that can be completed in 2 years. Students can choose from several concentrations in areas like social and urban policy, international and global affairs, or business and government policy. The program requires at least 72 credits and includes a year-long seminar in students' Policy Area of Concentration (PAC). Students in the program must maintain a 'B' average and make a 'B-' or higher in all of their MPP courses.
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
Through its Online and Continuing Education program, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth provides an online MPP. Students can choose from a concentration in education policy, public management, or environmental policy. Students are required to take 12 courses in areas like policy analysis, administrative law, and research methods. Online students also have access to the school's writing center and free online or face-to-face tutoring.
Common Entrance Requirements
Students pursuing graduate programs in public policy in Massachusetts generally need to have a bachelor's degree, and some programs may require or prefer candidates with professional work experience. Several of these degree programs also require the GRE, but some programs may not require the exam or may waive the exam if students meet other criteria, such as already having a master's degree. Many of these degree programs require applicants to submit their transcripts, letters of recommendation, resume, and/or personal statement with their application. Some programs may also recommend a personal interview.
Students in Massachusetts can typically earn an MPP in 1 to 2 years on-campus or online and may specialize in additional areas, like social policy or international and global affairs. Some of these programs also include experiential learning opportunities through internships.