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Master of Public Administration, Hybrid Track

The Hybrid Track is ideal for current and aspiring public service professionals who are seeking an innovative, yet more traditional graduate education experience.  This track provides an effective education that combines the best of online and in-person course delivery.  For example, a typical course divides up online (50%) and in-person (50%) instruction across the semester.  In-person instruction takes place on Georgia Southern’s Statesboro Campus, which is the oldest and largest campus at the University.

In the Hybrid Track, you can tailor your MPA degree education with a concentration in either Public Management or Nonprofit Management.

Are you READY to make a difference?

MPA Degree Curriculum, Hybrid Track

The Hybrid Track requires 24 credits of core courses, twelve (12) credits of emphasis courses, three (3) credits of internship (depending on whether student is pre-service or in-service), and a comprehensive examination.

MPA Program of Study (PDF)

Core Requirements (24-credit hours)

  • PBAD 7631 Foundations of Public Administration
  • PBAD 7430 Public Human Resource Management
  • PBAD 7230 Budgeting in Public Service Organizations
  • PBAD 7130 Ethics for Public Service Organizations
  • PBAD 7531 Public Program Evaluation
  • PBAD 7532 Public Policy
  • PBAD 7530 Research Methods for Public Service Organizations
  • PBAD 7134 Advanced Management

Concentration Requirements (12-credit hours)

Select one of the following:

  • Public Management
  • Nonprofit Management

Internship (3-credit hours)

The internship (PBAD 7730) requires a minimum of 300-hours in an approved public or nonprofit organization.  The internship is required of all pre-service students.  Students who do not have a minimum of three years relevant work experience in the public (civil or military) sector, nonprofit organization, or closely related position are required to complete an approved internship before completing the program.  Students must have completed at least nine credits and have a GPA in the MPA program of at least 3.0 before enrolling for credit in the internship.

In consultation with a student’s faculty advisor, in-service students may use (1) their current position for the internship or (2) complete an additional seminar course.

Comprehensive Examination

Students must pass a written comprehensive examination.  Students may sit for the comprehensive examination after completing a minimum of 27 credit hours in the MPA program with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 and by permission of the MPA Program Director.

MPA, Concentration in Public Management

The public management concentration is designed to provide students with the theoretical and practical training necessary to be effective managers and administrators of public sector organizations €”in local government, state government, or the federal civil service.  In addition to taking core courses that directly address public management issues, students are able to individually tailor their program of study by choosing from several elective public management concentration courses including:

  • Organization Development and Leadership
  • Information Technology
  • Administrative Law
  • Budget and Financial Management
  • Public Policy and Analysis
  • Grant Writing

Upon successful completion of the public management concentration, students will be proficient in a variety of public sector management techniques necessary for working in a number of administrative government settings.  Specifically, students will explore:

  • Contemporary best practices, challenges, and general trends in the public management field.
  • The foundational literature on which the field of public management was built.
  • The quantitative, qualitative, and other analytical methods needed to promote greater effectiveness, efficiency, and equity in public service organizations.

Graduates of the public management concentration within the MPA program typically seek employment in government jobs at the local and state levels.  However, it also common for students to explore opportunities at the federal level. In particular, the public management concentration prepares students to pursue employment as:

  • City Managers
  • Budget Analysts
  • Human Resource Managers
  • Program Evaluators
  • Policy Analysts
  • Government Contractors

Public Management Concentration (PDF)

MPA, Concentration in Nonprofit Management

The nonprofit management concentration is designed to provide students with the practical and theoretical training they need to work in the nonprofit sector.  In addition to the MPA core curriculum students complete 12-credit hours of nonprofit management electives, selecting from courses including:

  • Philanthropy
  • International Nongovernmental Organizations
  • Community Development
  • Nonprofit Administration
  • Strategic Management
  • Board Governance and Executive Leadership
  • Financial Management for Nonprofit Organizations
  • Resource Development and Grant Writing

Upon successful completion of the nonprofit management concentration students will have an understanding of the broad questions and issues facing the nonprofit sector as well as the practical managerial and administrative techniques necessary for success.  Specifically, students will explore:

  • The role of the nonprofit sector in democratic society.
  • The historical institutional evolution of charity and philanthropy in the United States.
  • The diverse roles of philanthropic institutions in the political, social and economic environment.
  • The financial realities of nonprofits and the importance of accountability and ethical questions facing nonprofits.
  • The legal framework of nonprofit organizations.
  • The critical issues related to board governance, strategic planning, fundraising and financial management.

The nonprofit sector provides graduates a breadth of professional options. Typical careers that a graduate of the MPA program with a nonprofit management concentration would be prepared for include:

  • Executive Director
  • Fundraiser
  • Event Planner
  • Program Officer
  • Foundation Official
  • Community Engagement/Organizing
  • Administrative and leadership positions within nonprofits in a variety of areas such as education, arts, health services, and international humanitarian organizations.

Nonprofit Management Concentration (PDF)

Georgia Southern’s Master of Public Administration program is recognized as one of the top graduate programs at the University and one of the best and most affordable MPA programs in Georgia.*

*Ranked No. 2 in Affordable Colleges in Georgia 2021 by College Affordability Guide, No. 4 for 2020 Most Affordable Online Public Administration Degrees by OnlineU. Ranked No. 4 in Georgia for the MPA program in the 2020 Best Public Administration Colleges in Georgia.

MPA Degree Fast Facts

Degree: Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Format: Hybrid (Online and Statesboro Campus), also available as a fully online Executive Track

Concentrations: Public Management or Nonprofit Management (Hybrid Track Only)

Credit Hours: 39 Hours

Completion Time: Five semesters

Priority Deadline: March 15, 2023

Admission Deadline: August 1, 2023

Benefits of the MPA Hybrid Track:

  • Curriculum that provides ‘real world’ knowledge and experience
  • Concentrated programs of study in public and nonprofit management
  • Hybrid course format that combines online and in-person instruction on the Statesboro Campus
  • Dedicated MPA faculty and staff committed to student success
  • Graduate Assistantships and other financial assistance
  • Large network of Georgia Southern MPA alumni

Master of Public Administration Info Booklet

If you are unable to use the section below, please refer to the PDF version of the Info Booklet here.

Course Descriptions

The Department of Public and Nonprofit Studies offers courses under the Public Administration (PBAD) prefix and Nonprofit Management, Leadership, and Innovation (NMLI) prefix.

PBAD 7030 – Selected Topics in Public and Nonprofit Management: This course examines specific topics in public and nonprofit management not addressed by other courses. May be repeated once as topics change.

PBAD 7130 – Ethics for Public Service Organizations: This course examines the experiences, approaches, and strategies for confronting and solving the complex problems facing public and nonprofit organizations. An emphasis is placed on accountability and responsibility of public servants, the methods of moral reasoning and their connection to behavior, specific ethical concerns of public organizations, and ethical decision-making.

PBAD 7133 – Administrative Law: This course examines the intersection of public administration and the law, giving particular attention to U.S. Supreme Court decisions pertaining to the constitutional and statutory authority of agencies, rulemaking, policy enforcement, administrative transparency, judicial deference, judicial review, and the law of public employment.  Extensive attention will be given to both the relationship between courts and modern administrators and the ways in which elements of administrative law and the practice of public administration can be integrated.

PBAD 7134 – Advanced Management: This course provides the key insights and skills necessary to manage and lead in public service organizations. It focuses on contemporary practices of public and nonprofit management such as cross-sector collaborations, networks, negotiations, and other technical skills needed to lead in the twenty-first century.

PBAD 7230 – Budgeting in Public Service Organizations: This course examines both the politics and techniques used in formulating and implementing budgets by governmental and nonprofit organizations. It provides a bridge between budgeting theory and practice and its relationship to the administrative processes of control, management, and planning. Attention is also given to understanding the complexities of designing a tax system that conforms to principles of good tax policy.

PBAD 7232 – Financial Management in Public Service Organizations: This course provides a theoretical and practical introduction to financial analysis and management in public service organizations. Topics include processes, tools and methods used in financial planning and control of public and nonprofit organizations, including cost estimation, strategies for long-term and short-term investing, and financial statement analysis utilizing critical performance indicators.

PBAD 7233 – IT for Public Service Organizations: Provides a guide to the electronic delivery of government information and services and the management of information technology in the public sector.  Topics include the digital divide, information security, privacy, transparency and accountability issues, and evaluation of the government’s use of social media in the provision of service to citizens.

PBAD 7235 – Leadership of Public Organizations: This course examines the extensive literature on successful leadership broadly and its existence within and application to public service organizations more specifically. Particular attention is given to identifying strong leadership practices and distilling principles of exemplary leadership. This includes an emphasis on conceptual, technical, and human skills.

PBAD 7330 – Intergovernmental Relations: Examines the interaction between the federal, state, and local levels of government in the United States. Special attention is given to the constitutional and fiscal relationships between these levels of government and the historical evolution of the nature of the relationships. The concept of federalism and its relationship to effective intergovernmental relations is also examined.

PBAD 7331 – Local Government Management: This course examines the political and administrative processes of municipalities, counties, and other units of local government in the United States. Special focus is placed on the role and responsibilities of the city/county manager, enhancing manager–council effectiveness, managing citizen engagement, and implementing innovative service delivery strategies.

PBAD 7333 – Social Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: This course examines the ways in which differences in demographic characteristics affect the work of public and nonprofit managers, and explains how gender, race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, and other dimensions of diversity influence organizational behaviors and outcomes. Special attention is given to social equity, diversity and inclusion, representative bureaucracy, and implementing culturally competent strategies to address the challenges of serving an increasingly diverse public.

PBAD 7335 – Urban Management: Examines the problems confronting public managers in large municipalities and the unique responsibilities of urban governments. Special attention will be paid to policy areas such as transportation, housing, social welfare, public safety, and infrastructure management.

PBAD 7336 – Comparative Public Management: Examines public administration through two differing viewpoints–domestic and international. Special attention is paid to the unique problems and circumstances surrounding domestic and international governments and how they relate to and differ from each other.

PBAD 7337 – Environmental Management and Policy: This course provides an overview of environmental and natural resource management in the United States. Particular attention is paid to the topics of federalism and cooperation. Issues of regional importance are also covered, including water quality and availability, regulation and monitoring compliance, sustainable growth, and management within overlapping jurisdictions.

PBAD 7338 – Managing Economic Development: Examines the strategies, tools, and techniques used by local, state, and national governments to generate economic growth in and revitalization of economically depressed areas as well as maintaining economic growth in stable areas.

NMLI 7339 – Community Development: Examines the history and theory behind the practice of community organizing, civic engagement, and public participation.  Provides students with practical and effective community organization skills and civic engagement strategies.

PBAD 7430 – Public Human Resource Management: Examines the functions, policies, and techniques of human resource management in public and nonprofit organizations.

PBAD 7431 – Organizational Behavior: This course examines human behavior in organizations, with a focus on the practical application of theories related to the management of individuals and groups within public service organizations.

NMLI 7432 – Nonprofit Administration: Examines the management of nonprofit organizations, with a focus on areas of management most different from the public sector, such as legal requirements, ethics, board governance, strategic management, ethics, and financial management.

PBAD 7530 – Research Methods for Public Service Organizations: This course examines quantitative techniques for public and nonprofit organizations. Emphasis is placed on understanding and using techniques appropriate to categorical analysis and the simple linear model. Students are exposed to research design, measurement, and the use of computer program packages appropriate to public service organizations.

PBAD 7531 – Public Program Evaluation: This course examines the design and implementation of policy and program evaluation in public and nonprofit organizations. Special attention is given to developing logic models, selecting appropriate research designs, and monitoring agency operations through performance measurement. The mechanics of benefit and cost-effectiveness analysis are examined. Various evaluation methods are used in assessing the efficiencies and effectiveness of programs. Prerequisite(s): PBAD 7530

PBAD 7532 – Public Policy: This course examines how public policy is developed, implemented, and evaluated with special attention being given to policy formulation, analysis, and interpretation.

PBAD 7533 – Geographic Information Systems and Public Planning: Examines the practice of urban, regional, and state planning with focus on the use of geographic information system (GIS) applications for state and local decision-making. Includes an introduction to the scope, theories, and politics of planning.

PBAD 7631 – Foundations of Public Administration: This course surveys the field of public administration and explores the historical foundations and theories of public administration as well as the diverse political, social, and economic contexts within which they exist.

PBAD 7638 – Capstone Seminar: This course prepares students to sit for the comprehensive examination by undergoing a review of the major theories underlying the field of public administration. This course also addresses issues related to a student’s professional development. This course is for students admitted prior to Fall 2021.

PBAD 7651 – Organization Development: This course examines the theoretical basis of organization development (OD) and demonstrates how OD technologies can be applied to public and nonprofit organizations for improving organizational quality and performance.

NMLI 7652 – Board Governance and Executive Leadership: This course provides an introduction to the fundamentals of governance, trusteeship, and executive leadership in nonprofit organizations. The course critically examines the principal models, processes, and practices used in governing nonprofit organizations and the relationships between the governing boards and executive leaders of such organizations.

NMLI 7653 – Foundations of the Nonprofit Sector: This course surveys the history, scope and role of the nonprofit sector. Special attention is given to the economic, political and philanthropic theories of the nonprofit sector.

NMLI 7654 – Strategic Management: This course examines the principal models, processes, and practices used in strategic management, familiarizing students with essential management skills. The course focuses on the key internal and external factors that drive strategic management decisions within nonprofit and governmental organizations, including leadership, external resources, and stakeholder involvement.

NMLI 7655 – Resource Development and Grant Writing: This course introduces the tools, techniques, and strategies associated with the principles of successful fundraising for nonprofit organizations. The class also introduces students to the fundamentals of grant writing.

NMLI 7656 – International Nongovernmental Organizations: This course introduces international nonprofit/non-governmental organizations and explores contemporary challenges these organizations face including issues of accountability, governance, effectiveness, and fundraising.

NMLI 7657 – Theory and Practice of Philanthropy: This course examines the theoretical framework for institutional philanthropy in the United States. The course explores the strategies, tools, and techniques for the role of strategic philanthropy in both programming and policymaking. It provides students with insight into the work of philanthropy.

PBAD 7730 – Internship in Public Administration: This course requires students to intern in a professional capacity with a public service organization. The internship requires a minimum of 300 hours working in the organization and as approved by the MPA internship coordinator.

PBAD 7731 – Local Government Practicum:  This course provides students with experience conducting research and policy analysis for local government. Projects are proposed by municipalities within Georgia and students are allowed to choose projects aligned with their interests. Students work individually, or in pairs on larger projects, under the direction of the course instructor. This course expands research skills, enriches understanding of local government policy processes, and exposes participants to issues they are likely to face when employed in local government.

PBAD 7810 – MPA Professional Portfolio:  The MPA Professional Portfolio is a work product that will be prepared, presented, and evaluated. Students will collect academic and professional artifacts throughout their program tenure, which will be incorporated into a portfolio. The portfolio is designed for students to demonstrate competencies gained in established academic and professional areas. The portfolio will also allow students to highlight their growth and development of the course study. Finally, the portfolio will provide MPA program faculty with an invaluable artifact in which to assess student learning.

PBAD 7820 – Immersion I:  Immersion I exposes MPA Executive Track students to a range of topics that supplement and support classroom learning, while providing opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of the discipline.

PBAD 7821 – Immersion II:  Immersion II exposes MPA Executive Track students to a range of topics that supplement and support classroom learning, while providing opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of the discipline.

PBAD 7890 – Directed Reading: A structured set of readings and assignments mutually designed by the student and the instructor on a specific area of public administration.

Still Have Questions? Contact Us!

Department of Public and Nonprofit Studies
Georgia Southern University
P.O. Box 8048
Statesboro, Georgia 30460-8048

Phone: 912-478-1400

A Nationally Accredited Program

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) program is a NASPAA accredited degree program. The Department of Public and Nonprofit Studies is a member of the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council (NACC).

NASPAA Accredited. The Commission on Review and Accreditation.

Last updated: 1/3/2024