Public Administration AMP

All students must meet the Requirements for the Accelerated Master's Degree Programs


The Accelerated Master’s Entry Program in Public Administration (AMP-PA) offers University of Vermont students the opportunity to secure a sound undergraduate and graduate program of study in five rather than a minimum of six years. The program closely integrates both programs of study, and enhances competitiveness in a marketplace stressing broad undergraduate and focused professional graduate education. The AMP-PA welcomes students majoring in administrative, behavioral, health, environmental, organizational, social science and related disciplines requiring graduate work in administration, or planning and policy capacities in the public service. Application to the program is typically made during a student's junior year. More information on the AMP-PA Program can be found on the Master of Public Administration website. Inquiries can be made through email or by phone (802) 656-0009.

Specific Requirements

Requirements for Admission to Graduate Studies for the Degree of Master of Public Administration for Accelerated Students

The Accelerated Master’s Entry Program requires that students fulfill the same entrance requirements as for all  candidates for the Master of Public Administration (MPA) Program and be accepted in order to matriculate and advance to candidacy.  The following criteria must be met to gain admission to the AMP-PA program:

  • A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 at the beginning of the second semester the candidate's junior year

  • Three letters of recommendation attesting to the candidate’s academic performance

  • A strong motivation and academic potential for graduate work articulated in a statement of purpose

Required academic prerequisites, which include course work in economics, statistics, and American government, must also be completed. These prerequisites can be completed at any accredited institution of higher education. Admission into the MPA program is not contingent on completion of these prerequisites, but they must be completed within the first year of course work.

Applicants to the AMP-PA program must submit the standard Graduate College Application form. Completed applications will be reviewed in the month of May and a formal decision on admission will be rendered by the PA faculty by no later than May 15 of each year to afford potential new AMP-PA students the opportunity to enroll in Summer Session.

Following formal Graduate College admission to the Accelerated Master's Program, up to 9 credits of approved graduate course work may be taken that may be counted toward both the undergraduate and graduate degree requirements.

Minimum Degree Requirements

Successful completion of thirty-six credits, including:

Core Courses:
PA 301Foundations of Public Admin3
PA 302Org Theory & Behavior3
PA 303Research & Evaluation Methods3
PA 305Public and Nonprofit Budgeting3
PA 306Policy Systems3
PA 326Community Economic Development3
PA 375Public Administration Capstone3
PA 380Internship3 or 6
Total Credits24
An approved sequence of elective courses which may include up to twelve credits of course work from approved disciplines related to public administration12

The Capstone is designed to provide M.P.A. students with a summative experience that ties learning competencies to evidence drawn from their course of study.  This course is required for all M.P.A. students as it also incorporates the spirit of the Comprehensive Exam within the curriculum. Students in their final spring semester of the program are eligible to take this. This course counts as the “comprehensive exam” for the M.P.A.  at UVM.

The Internship experience is a key opportunity to put into practice the concepts and theories of public administration. It is critical in gaining experience, building credentials and networking for future professional opportunities. A three-credit internship is required of all students, and students may apply up to 6 credits of internship experience toward the degree.

A six-credit thesis option is also available to all students and strongly recommended for students interested in continuing on to a Ph.D. A student doing a thesis selects a three member thesis review committee to evaluate her/his work. Students who would like to pursue this option should talk to their assigned advisor upon entering the program to allow plenty of time for the planning and writing of a thesis.

Comprehensive Examination

The Comprehensive Examination requirement is met when a student completes the Capstone during their final spring semester. The Capstone is designed to provide M.P.A. students with a summative experience that ties learning competencies to evidence drawn from their course of study.

Requirements for Advancement to Candidacy for the Degree of Master of Public Administration

Thirty six (36) academic credits are needed (12 courses) to earn an M.P.A. degree. These eight courses are required core courses:

  • PA 301 Foundations of Public Administration 
  • PA 302 Organizational Theory and Behavior
  • PA 303 Research and Evaluation Methods
  • PA 305 Public and Non-Profit Budgeting
  • PA 306 Policy Systems 
  • PA 326 Community and Economic Development
  • PA 375 M.P.A. Capstone 
  • PA 380 Internship

Students, with guidance from their advisor, select additional courses within the M.P.A. program or other academic units at the University of Vermont to round out their academic experience. A full-time student will finish the M.P.A. Program course work in 2 years, and a part-time student, 2 – 5 calendar years. While the M.P.A. Program at UVM does not offer explicit specializations, a student may pursue courses with a common thread or focus and can tailor their course selections to work toward that focus. Students may also choose to pursue a Certificate of Graduate Studies as an additional credential to fulfill elective requirements.