Public Administration: Online Degree and Certificate Programs

Learn about the different degrees programs in public administration. Find out which programs are available online as well as common coursework, admission requirements and career options for graduates. Schools offering Public Administration degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Online Degrees and Certificates in Public Administration Are Available?

Online undergraduate degrees in public administration are rare, but distance-learning graduate degrees are plentiful. Occasionally, you may also find graduate certificate programs offered online. Graduate program in this field are largely designed for working professionals looking to advance their career or enter a new field.

Master's degree programs in this field generally lead to a Master of Public Administration. Although uncommon, a few schools offer a Bachelor of Public Administration online. Online graduate certificates are available in public administration and public personnel administration.

Program Levels Bachelor's degree, master's degree, graduate certificate
Online Availability Online programs are available; certificate and undergraduate online programs are more rare
Common Courses Statistics, public economy, finance, human resources, organizational behavior
Prerequisites Bachelor's degree with microeconomics and American government coursework; resume and work experience in public administration field
Possible Careers Lobbyist, city manager, city planner, community developer

What Will I Study?

Coursework in a public administration program focuses on public service and is designed to provide you with solid leadership and management skills. Courses may include:

  • Budget and finance
  • Human resources
  • Public economy
  • Organizational development
  • Policy design and evaluation
  • Statistics
  • Organizational behavior
  • Democracy

Some programs offer concentrations in aviation, local government, public management or public works administration, which will require additional coursework. You may also be required to complete a practicum, internship or capstone project as part of your degree requirements.

How Do I Take Part in Online Programs?

Online programs are designed to allow you to study at your own pace and convenience according to your family and professional responsibilities. You'll attend classes, turn in assignments, and interact with your classmates and instructors completely online by logging into the school's website. Note that in some graduate programs you may be required to visit the campus for a comprehensive, proctored exam before being granted your degree.

Are There Any Prerequisites?

Prerequisites vary by school, so it's important to review the admissions material very carefully when applying. Almost all online graduate programs require you to have a bachelor's degree for enrollment. Some, but not all, may also require a current resume or proof of prior work experience in public administration. In some cases, you may also be required to take prerequisite courses in American government and microecomonics if your undergraduate coursework didn't include them.

What Careers Will I Be Prepared for?

Graduates with a master's degree or graduate certificate in public administration are prepared to work for government agencies, non-profit organizations and, if they chose it as a specialization, airports and the aviation industry. Fields within these organizations include management, marketing and human resources. Popular job titles include city planner, city manager, lobbyist and community developer.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Ashford University

    Ashford University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Ashford University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Colorado Christian University

    Colorado Christian University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado Christian University:

    • Master
    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Strayer University

    Strayer University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Strayer University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Brenau University

    Brenau University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Brenau University:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Keiser University

    Keiser University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Keiser University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • New England College

    New England College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at New England College:

    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Regent University

    Regent University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Northcentral University

    Northcentral University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Northcentral University:

    • Doctoral

    Online Programs Available

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