Apply to USF Now | Graduate Admissions | Events & Workshops | Giving to the Office of Graduate Studies

Graduate Catalog 2016/2017

Public Administration (PAD)
with a Concentration in Executive Public Administration (EPA)

Catalog Photo

Master of Public Administration (M.P.A.)
CIP Code: 44.0401
College of Arts and Sciences (AS)
Total Minimum Program Hours Required (Post Bachelor's Degree): 36

Contact Information:
College of Arts and Sciences
School of Public Affairs Department (SPF)
4202 E. Fowler Avenue SOC107
Tampa FL  33620

Program Director or Coordinator:
Elizabeth Strom
Phone: 813-974-3439


Faculty Search: Arts and Sciences Faculty List

Program Information

The Public Administration Program offers a multi?disciplinary course of study leading to the Master of PublicAdministration (M.P.A.). The M.P.A. degree is designed primarily to prepare students for successful leadership rolesand management careers in the public (i.e., governmental and quasi?governmental organizations) and non?profitsectors. Students enrolled in the M.P.A. Program pursue careers in local, state, or federal agencies of government,non?profit organizations, and special service districts. Additionally the M.P.A. degree prepares individuals for furtheracademic study leading to a doctorate in Public Administration, a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Administration, as well as avariety of other disciplines. Those employed in public management positions may wish to pursue the M.P.A. in order tobroaden educational backgrounds to prepare for increased job responsibilities, or to change career paths. Such inservicestudents currently make up the majority of the M.P.A. student body.

The Public Administration Program also offers courses of study leading to a Graduate Certificate in Public Management (G.C.P.M.) and Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management (G.C.N.M.). These programs are designed for individuals who wish to acquire knowledge of public and nonprofit management theory and practices, but who do not find it necessary or feasible to pursue the M.P.A. degree. The M.P.A. Program also serves pre?service students who have recently completed a bachelors degree, who wish to gain entry to a professional career track. Students admitted to the M.P.A. are not eligible for the Graduate Certificate in Public Management.


Accreditation Information:

Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of College and Schools.

Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of College and Schools; the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA).


Admissions Information

Admission Deadlines

There is an established University deadline for the submission of admission application materials. Programs may have earlier deadlines than the University deadline. The deadlines reflected below are the earliest of the two deadlines. Graduate Programs may continue to accept and process applications after the published deadline if space exists within the program. Check with the Program for availability.

Application Deadline (domestic application)

Fall: February 15
Spring: October 15
Summer: February 15

International Students

Foreign applicants who are outside the U.S. are required to apply for a visa. Depending on the country of origin, this may take a few months. So the deadlines for these international applicants may be earlier than the Program deadline and these applicants must apply prior to both deadlines. They are strongly encouraged to apply as early as possible. Foreign applicants who are in the U.S. and are currently on a visa may use the domestic application deadline dates. In addition to meeting the published application deadline for the Program of interest, all immigration documents should be submitted as soon as possible, but must be on file at USF no later than the following processing deadlines:

Fall: February 15
Spring: September 15
Summer: February 15

Admission Requirements

You must comply with general University policies and meet general University Admission requirements in addition to those listed below.

Must meet University requirements (see Graduate Admissions) as well as requirements listed below.

Program Admission Requirements

Admission decisions to the M.P.A. Program are based on an overall assessment of the applicant's potential for successfully completing the M.P.A. degree. General admission criteria include scores obtained on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), performance as an undergraduate.

Specific criteria are:

  • Completion of a Bachelor;'s degree from a regionally accredited university.
  • The University of South Florida requires a 3.00 (B) grade point average (calculated using grades earned for all coursework completed during junior and senior years of undergraduate study).
  • Two letters of recommendation, one from a faculty member familiar with the applicant's academic performance and potential. Should the applicant be unable to provide the letter from a former professor, with the director's approval, letters from other sources will be accepted.
  • The submission of a one-page career statement detailing the applicant's career goals and aspirations, including ways in which the applicant believes the M.P.A. degree can help to facilitate the stated goals.
  • The submission of a Resume showing work experience.
  • Students entering the Executive Public Administration Concentration must have at least five years of cumulative experience in public service, including at least three years at the middle to upper level.
  • Approval by the M.P.A. Admissions Committee and, if deemed necessary, an admissions interview.
  • GRE is recommended with preferred scores of 60% V, 25% Quantitative and 4.0 AW. This provision applies to all applicants, including those who have already completed courses in the MPA curriculum. Regardless of GPA, those who score below 20 percentile on either the verbal or quantitative sections on the GRE are required to retake the exam.However, at the discretion of the MPA program, it may be waived under certain conditions. Examples where GRE requirements may be waived include:
    • Applicant already possesses a graduate degree from a regionally accredited university
    • Applicant has a 3.25, or higher, undergraduate GPA
    • A written application by the student and a current resume indicating senior level experience
    • Five years or more of practical, professional experience at a senior level (to be determined upon review of documentation by the admissions committee)
    • Documentation of past experience through letters of recommendation from senior management, and
    • Completion of the Graduate Certificate in Research Administration, Graduate Certificate in Public Management, or Graduate Certificate in Non-profit Management) with a grade point average of 3.5/4.0 or better in the Certificate and in the Certificate no certificate course grade less than a B?.
    • Approval of the Public Administration Admission Committee; decision to be made on a case by case basis. (Additional documentation and a personal interview may be required)

Admissions Status: Apply


Program Degree Requirements

There are two options for the M.P.A. Students are in either the Traditional M.P.A. track or the online Concentration in Executive Public Administration (EPA). Students in the Concentration complete a minimum total of 36 hours; students in the traditional M.P.A. complete a minimum of 42 hours. Traditional MPA (42 hrs minimum)Core 21 hoursCourse requirements 3 hoursElectives (12) and Internship (6)18 hours OR Electives (15) and Capstone (3)18Capstone 3 hours Executive Public Administration Concentration (36 hours minimum)Core 21 hoursConcentration requirements - 12Capstone 3 hours

College Degree Requirements

Refer to the College Section of theGraduate Catalog for College requirements and information.


USF Degree Requirements

See USF Degree Requirements —


Financial Assistance

Financial Aid

Fellowships & Scholarships

Graduate Assistantships


Registration Process

First, contact your graduate program advisor for guidance courses to register for. Obtain any electronic course permit if necessary. Register for the new student orientation online at Then go to the link to OASIS, USF's on-line registration system to register for your classes. Follow the directions given on-line.

To access online course materials, students must have a USF NetID (e-mail account). Please visit: to obtain your NetID.

New students, including those studying online, may obtain a USFCard. Please visit: to obtain your USFCard.

Tuition and fees: Fees are determined by the level of the course. Please visit Cash Accounting, Controller's Office, for information on tuition and fees.


Graduate Course Information

Use the list below to lookup graduate courses related to this program in the USF Course Inventory:

PAD5700, PAD6060, PAD6041, PAD6227, PAD6307, PAD6417, PAD6703, PAD6710, PAD6275, PAD6056, PAD6909,