MPA Public Administration MPA

Public administration student with tablet
UCAS Code
Non-UCAS
Mode of Study
Part-time, Full-time, Part-time by distance learning
Duration
1 year full-time, 2 years part-time
Start Date
September 2019

Overview

If you're already working in public administration, a Master's degree can give you the knowledge, skills and experience you need to advance your career, take on ambitious roles, and become an expert in your field.

On this MPA Public Administration degree course, you'll cover public policy, service and administration from an inter-cultural, inter-professional and inter-organisational perspective. You'll unpack specialist subjects, such as the legal system and corporate governance, and learn transferable skills that will be valuable in your career.

We'll provide the expertise and support so you can take your skills and knowledge straight into your job – so that once you graduate, you'll be able to explore new options, or seek promotion opportunities.

You can study this course on campus or via distance learning. If you choose to study via distance learning, you can fit your studies around your existing commitments.

On this course, you'll:

  • Look at how and why public policies are produced and implemented
  • Get specialist subject knowledge in fields relevant to your career choices, like citizenship issues, the legal system and corporate governance
  • Compare policy processes and outputs within specific fields, including health, education, welfare, economic development, defence, policing and European integration
  • Understand public policies, management systems and administrative systems from an international perspective
  • Learn how to assess the effectiveness of public organisations
  • Complete a personal project on a topic of your choice
  • Make the most of our facilities, including a study centre and library, with 24/7 access to publications, including ejournals and newspapers
  • Be supported by professional, enthusiastic staff and benefit from our flexible approach to learning, with web, email and phone access to many of our facilities and services

Work experience and career planning

We'll help you to identify internships, voluntary roles and opportunities that will complement your studies.

When you finish the course, our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job that puts your skills to work.

After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.

Careers and opportunities

The course delivers lifelong transferable skills that you'll be able to apply to complex issues, both systematically and creatively, throughout your career. When you graduate, you'll be able to work with self-direction and originality, and contribute to public administration in local, regional or central government, or in an organisation working in partnership with the Government.

We'll provide you with as much support as possible in finding employment through close industrial contacts, careers events, recruitment fairs and individual advice.

Entry requirements​

Entry Requirements

  • A good honours degree in a relevant subject, or equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications
  • Preferably, applicants will have experience of working in a managerial role in a public sector organisation
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0

​Course costs

Tuition fees (2019 start)

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students

  • Full-time: £7,000
  • Part-time: £2,300 in year 1 (60 credits) and £4,670 in year 2 (120 credits) (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Distance learning full-time: £4,625 (180 credits)
  • Distance learning part-time: £2,310 per year (may be subject to annual increase)

International students

  • Full-time: £13,900
  • Part-time: £4,630 in year 1 (60 credits) and £9,720 in year 2 (120 credits) (may be subject to annual increase)
  • Distance learning full-time: £4,625 (180 credits)
  • Distance learning part-time: £2,310 per year (may be subject to annual increase)

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending. 

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

We cover the travel costs for the trips that you take as part of this course, though you'll need to cover your own living costs on these trips.

If you take the optional campus based option, you'll need to cover the cost of travel to and from Portsmouth, as well as accommodation and living costs. These can range from £50 to £1000, depending on travel distance.

​What you'll study

Each unit on this course is worth a certain number of credits. To graduate, you need to study units worth a total of 180 credits. 

Units currently being studied

Core units include:

  • Strategic Public Management and Leading Effective Change
  • Dissertation or Major Project
  • Comparative Public Policy and Public Administration or Public Management

Options to choose from currently include:

  • Contemporary Security in International Relations: Providers and Challenges
  • From Security to Risk: European International Relations in the 21st Century
  • Nation and Identity
  • Negotiation and Lobbying in the EU: A Simulation Game
  • Practice-Based Knowledge in British Public Administration
  • Work Related Learning or Independent Learning

Changes to course content

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.

Learning support

As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

Teaching​

Teaching on this course includes:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • student presentations
  • visting speakers
  • visits to public sector organisations

How you'll spend your time

Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and an assessment period:

  • Autumn teaching block – September to December
  • Spring teaching block – January to Easter
  • Assessment period – Easter to June

Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.

How you're assessed​

You'll be assessed through:

  • work-related assignments
  • essays
  • examinations
  • presentations
  • reports
  • dissertation or report

Apply

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study with us, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply. 

Apply for this course using our online application form

International students

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply directly to us or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region. To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.