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Online M.A. in Public Administration Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need experience in public administration to apply?
No. The program is appropriate for those seeking to join the field as well as individuals already working in it who wish to advance further.

Can I get credit for work experience or previous academic work?
Credit for work experience in the field or prior academic work is not offered for this program.

Does this program focus mainly on government or nonprofit organizations?
Unlike most public administration programs, Saint Mary’s online Master of Arts in Public Administration incorporates perspectives from both areas, providing you with an exceptionally comprehensive understanding of the field.

Do I need to choose between a government or nonprofit focus?
You will choose between a government or nonprofit focus for classes in finance and human resources. If you choose a government focus, you will take MAPA 620 Managing Public Finances and MAPA 630 Public Human Resource Management. If you choose a nonprofit focus, you will take MAPA 625 Nonprofit Fund Development and Financial Management and MAPA 635 Nonprofit Human Resource Management. All other classes incorporate both a government and nonprofit perspective.

What kinds of jobs will this degree prepare me for?
Graduates are qualified for a wide variety of jobs in local, state and federal agencies; NGOs; charities; foundations; and more. Program outcomes can even be applied to private sector jobs, especially those that intersect with the public or nonprofit sectors. For more detailed information, go to the Career Outlook page.

How long will it take me to complete the program?
The online M.A. in Public Administration can be completed in two years.

Are there any campus visit or residency requirements?
No, coursework is completely online.

I don't have an iPad. Is one required to pursue this degree?
All coursework can be completed through Saint Mary’s Learning Management System, Engage, but every online Saint Mary's University student is also issued his or her own iPad, which is included in the tuition.

What are the admissions requirements?
You must have a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GP of 2.75. For more specific information, go to the Admissions page.

Is support available if I have a question about homework or need help with a technical issue?
Yes. All of the support systems available to on-campus students at Saint Mary's University are available for online learners as well. From academic support to career counseling, a team of advisers is ready to assist. Instructors are just a phone call or email away, and each student is paired with a dedicated student services coordinator, who will make sure your educational and professional goals stay on track. Technical support is also available to online students 24/7 at 877-308-9954 ext. 3.

Is financial aid available?
Absolutely. Many different types of financial aid are available to those who qualify. To discuss tuition rates and your aid options, call 877-308-9954 to speak with an enrollment counselor.

How do I get started?
Take the first step toward a new or reinvigorated public administration career by calling 877-308-9954 to speak with an enrollment counselor, or you can request more information and we’ll reach out to you.