Master of Public Administration (MPA) Government and Policy

Master of Public Administration with an Emphasis in Government and Policy

Offered By: College of Humanities and Social Sciences

What Is an MPA Degree in Government and Policy?

Prepare for a career in service to others by earning your Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree with an Emphasis in Government and Policy degree. It’s offered by the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at GCU. Explore ways of recognizing and addressing modern issues pertaining to policy and governance, leadership and human capital development. Cultivate your leadership style, ethical decision-making and problem-solving capabilities as you examine core issues in public sector organizations.

Candidates develop crucial competencies in the inner workings of local, state and federal government agencies. They consider ways of driving reform and forward progress to better serve the diverse needs of modern society. This government and policy degree focuses on law and administrative processes, public governance and strategic solutions to graduate fully informed and capable future leaders.

Earn Your Government and Policy MPA Degree Online

To enable working professionals to pursue higher education, GCU offers the Master of Public Administration in Government and Policy degree through our dynamic online degree platform. Learn from full-time faculty members and fully trained adjunct instructors. Benefit from engaging and intellectually stimulating discussions with your peers, who will contribute a diverse range of perspectives and worldviews. This program requires a total of 38 credits for completion. Most of the online courses are eight weeks long.

During the MPA program, you will deepen your understanding of constitutional law and public administration. You will explore how public and governmental entities execute their missions, manage resources and provide services to the public. You will also explore the role of regulatory powers. There is an emphasis on the importance of servant leadership. As a Christian university, GCU promotes a keen focus on the creation of interdependency through ethical servant leadership.

Prepare for a Career in Government With an MPA Degree in Government and Policy

The Master of Public Administration in Government and Policy degree includes coursework that provides an in-depth look at a broad range of topics. Some of the courses you can take may include:

  • Economics for Public Administrators
  • Influence, Power and Politics in Public Administration
  • Acquiring, Developing and Leveraging Human Capital
  • Public and Nonprofit Administration
  • Public Budgeting and Financial Management

During your coursework for the MPA in Government and Policy, you will explore key concepts in leadership, including best practices in human capital development. Delve into the details of far-reaching policy issues, including education, health care and social services. Develop critical thinking skills as you consider how policy decisions affect various populations. Other knowledge areas you will examine while earning this degree include:

  • Science of organizational behavior
  • Best practices in governmental transparency, participation and accountability
  • Ethical use of power and effective influencing of stakeholders
  • Allocation of goods and services

Prepare to serve the public by pursuing a career in local, state or federal government. Graduates with a government and policy degree are well-equipped to recognize and solve problems that affect the government programs that the public relies on. Some of the jobs that may be related to an MPA in Government and Policy include the following:

  • City or county manager
  • Government administrator
  • Policy analyst
  • Charity or foundation manager or director
  • Public administration consultant

Other possible career paths may include economic development director, public affairs director and nonprofit executive. A master's degree in government and policy may prepare you to pursue a career in a variety of settings, including nonprofit agencies, government agencies and non-governmental consulting and lobbying firms.

Government and Policy MPA Degree FAQs

An MPA degree is designed for individuals who want to advance their careers within a public or nonprofit organization. For example, someone who is looking to move into a management role, or transition from a private sector into a new field could benefit from an advanced public administration and policy degree.

Yes, the MPA is an interdisciplinary degree that provides a well-rounded education in economics, finance, psychology and political science. Particularly in today’s volatile political climate, the MPA degree is a great choice for individuals who are interested in working in the diverse and ever-changing world of pubic and government policy.

At GCU, online MPA degree allows students the flexibility to take courses on their own schedule. How long it takes to complete the program depends on how many credit hours one takes at a time. The MPA degree at GCU requires 38 credits to completion, with most courses being eight weeks in length. The program provides in-depth knowledge in public governance and administration, human capital, leadership, finance, policy and economics.

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Total Credits: 38
Online: 8 weeks
[More Info]
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the total program requirements in transfer (whichever is less)
Online: $565 per credit [More Info]

Course List

38 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
38 credits

Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the liberal arts. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course focuses on how government and public organizations serve their stakeholders, the manner in which their services are carried out, how resources are managed, and how regulatory powers are complied with and/or managed. The best practices in public governance, issues related to transparency, participation, and accountability are examined.

Course Description

This course examines the day-to-day duties of public administrators. Relationship building, political awareness, and collaborative strategies are highlighted throughout the course. How to best employ skills for the effective running of an organization is incorporated.

Course Description

The effective strategic management of human capital is the differentiator of every successful organization. This course examines talent management, workforce diversity, succession planning, employee development and motivation, and performance matrix. This course addresses human resource competencies identified by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM). Using the strong strategic human resource acumen provided by this course, students will be well-prepared for positions as senior human resources specialists or as general managers.

Course Description

This course examines power and political structures employed within public administration. The ethical use of power and how to effectively influence others in public administration is practiced.

Course Description

This course examines leadership practices and qualities necessary to lead an organization. A focus is given to the science of organizational behavior and how it contributes to effective leaders and managers.

Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the revenue and expenditure structure of the public sector, including revenue policy, expenditure policy, and budget structure and administration.

Course Description

This course focuses on how challenges and problems facing society become policy issues. Leading theories in policy analysis and the policy-making process are examined and critiqued. The impact of policy decisions on various groups within society (related to gender, age, ethnicity, etc.) is also examined.

Course Description

In this course, the role of government in the economy is explored within the general context of market failure and social equity. Topics include allocation of goods and services, income distribution, externalities, public goods, and public choice theory. This course also examines the impact of macroeconomic events and policy decisions on the budgets and service levels of public entities.

Course Description

This course examines systematic program evaluation using various research methods. A focus is given to Local and State programs and policies.


GCU Online Student

Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere.

GCU Evening Student

Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom.

* Please note that this list may contain programs and courses not presently offered, as availability may vary depending on class size, enrollment and other contributing factors. If you are interested in a program or course listed herein please first contact your University Counselor for the most current information regarding availability.

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Programs or courses subject to change.

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