MPA

MPA Program Overview

Create Your Own Path to a More Rewarding Career 

Ready to move into or advance within a public or nonprofit sector career? UT Permian Basin’s online Master of Public Administration program offers great flexibility: Select 15 credits of electives (including up to two clinical courses) to align your studies with your professional aspirations and personal interests. Choose from elective MPA courses and from other UTPB courses in areas such as marketing, organizational behavior, public relations, law, education, health care, and criminal justice. The MPA core plus the electives aim to promote excellence in public and nonprofit service. 

Our MPA program’s core courses will show you how to tackle organizational issues and policy questions in a practical, proficient, ethical, legal, and politically savvy manner while furthering your underlying goal of supporting the public interest. Graduates of our MPA program go on to apply their newly acquired expertise in a broad range of fields including criminal justice, economic development, fine arts, healthcare, human services, parks and recreation, public safety, and transportation.

 Our online MPA program empowers you to: 

  • Cultivate a variety of in-demand career skills.
  • Identify and address ongoing public administration challenges.
  • Add a recognized leadership credential to your resume.
  • Compete for rewarding leadership roles.
  • Move into or between the public and nonprofit sectors.  

Unequalled MPA Program Advantages

  • Gear your studies toward your specific areas of interest.
  • Finish your degree in as little as 12 months.
  • Complete coursework anywhere, 24/7.
  • Save with our competitive tuition rates.
  • Receive a top-quality education 100% online.
  • Learn from supportive faculty members with extensive practical experience in public and/or nonprofit service.
  • Earn a graduate degree with no thesis or internship requirement.
  • Choose from six start dates throughout the year.
  • Finish fall and spring courses in eight weeks and summer courses in seven.

Required Courses

21 Credits. The online MPAL courses explicitly listed in the plan immediately below are all required core courses that are part of the current standard schedule or “carousel” as shown. In addition to the current standard schedule, a few of the MPAL core courses (MPAL 6301, MPAL 6302, and MPAL6320) are presently offered twice per year.

Courses
Duration
Credits
MPAL 6302 - Organizational Leadership and Administration
8 weeks
3
Historical, theoretical, and practical applications of developments in public leadership, public policy, and public organizational theory.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring B 2024 Fall A 2024 Spring B 2025 Fall A 2025
MPAL 6301 - Public Leadership and Ethics
8 weeks
3
Theories and readings in public and nonprofit leadership and ethical issues facing public leaders.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Summer A 2023 Fall B 2023 Summer A 2024 Fall B 2024 Summer A 2025 Fall B 2025
MPAL 6320 - Leadership and Public Policy
8 weeks
3
Theories and practices in public policy agenda setting and formation, working with other policy actors, implementation of public policies, and policy evaluation.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring A 2023 Summer B 2023 Spring A 2024 Summer B 2024 Spring A 2025 Summer B 2025
EDUC 6305 - Research Design in Education and the Social Sciences
8 weeks
3
This course is designed to acquaint students with how research is conducted in the fields of education and the social sciences. Students will select and evaluate research findings within their fields and learn how to design their own research studies.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Whole Summer 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring B 2024 Whole Summer 2024 Fall A 2024 Spring B 2025 Whole Summer 2025 Fall A 2025 Spring B 2026 Whole Summer 2026
MPAL 6303 - Analytical Techniques
8 weeks
3
Social science research and data analysis techniques and their practical application to issues in public and nonprofit administration.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Spring B 2024 Spring B 2025
MPAL 6305 - Public Personnel Administration
7 weeks
3
Theories and practices of personnel administration in governmental agency and nonprofit organizational environments. Emphasis on civil service systems and volunteer-paid employee relationships.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Summer A 2023 Summer A 2024 Summer A 2025
MPAL 6304 - Public Budgeting
7 weeks
3
Fundamental concepts, methods, and political/administrative processes of public sector budgeting in the United States (with a state and local emphasis).
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Summer B 2023 Summer B 2025
Elective Courses

15 Credits. Regarding electives, students may choose from a variety of courses offered by MPAL and other programs at UTPB (e.g., the MBA program, the Master of Arts in Educational Leadership program, and others). Selection of electives is subject to review by the MPAL coordinator to ensure appropriateness. See example courses below. Other UTPB courses from the catalog may be acceptable as electives. A few of the elective courses listed below indicate a prerequisite. This does not apply to Master of Public Administration students.

Courses
Duration
Credits
MPAL 6380 - Financial Management for Public and Nonprofit Organizations
8 weeks
3
Examines fundamental issues, principles, and tools of financial management for government and nonprofit organizations. Explores accounting concepts, basic financial statements, and key financial analysis techniques.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring A 2023 Summer A 2023 Spring A 2024 Summer A 2024 Spring A 2025 Summer A 2025
MPAL 6381 - Issues in Health and Human Services Policy and Management
8 weeks
3
Explores service areas such as healthcare, child welfare, and education (K-12). For each area, will consider structure (including intergovernmental aspects), funding, and selected policy and management issues.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Fall B 2023 Fall B 2024 Fall B 2025
EDLD 6365 - School Public Relations
8 weeks
3
An analysis of school public relations from a perspective of communication and collaboration with all community constituents and responding to diverse interests and needs to promote student success.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Fall B 2023 Spring B 2024 Fall B 2024 Summer A 2025 Fall B 2025 Summer A 2026
EDLD 6361 - School Law
8 weeks
3
Effects of Federal and Texas law on processes of public school education and its relationship to school administrators. (Code of Ethics & Federal Programs.)
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring B 2024 Spring B 2025 Summer B 2025 Spring B 2026 Summer B 2026
EDUC 6302 - Cultural Diversity in Education and the Social Sciences
8 weeks
3
This course gives candidates the opportunity to develop cultural diversity competence in order to face challenges in education and the social sciences. Research and reflection are emphasized.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Summer B 2023 Fall B 2023 Spring B 2024 Summer B 2024 Fall B 2024 Spring B 2025 Summer B 2025 Fall B 2025 Spring B 2026 Summer B 2026
EDLD 6369 - School Human Resources Management
8 weeks
3
Personnel management theory and research. Emphasizes skills in recruitment, selection, assignment, staff development, supervision, and evaluation.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring B 2024 Fall A 2024 Spring B 2025 Fall A 2025 Spring B 2026
MNGT 6360 - Organizational Behavior
8 weeks
3
The systematic study of individual, team, and structural characteristics that influence behavior within organizations. Cross-cultural applications are discussed.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring A 2023 Summer A 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring A 2024 Summer A 2024 Fall A 2024
MRKT 6310 - Marketing Management
8 weeks
3
An analysis of the customer/market relationships with the company in an open market system characterized by the presence of strong competition within a very fluid business environment. Managerial decision making with this matrix will be stressed.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Spring A 2023 Summer A 2023 Fall A 2023 Spring A 2024 Summer A 2024 Fall A 2024 Spring A 2025 Spring B 2025 Summer A 2025 Summer B 2025 Fall A 2025 Fall B 2025
MNGT 4331 - Healthcare Management
8 weeks
3
This course engages students in an overview of the management concepts and issues related to the effective/efficient delivery of services in healthcare organizations (HCOs). Students will be introduced to a wide range of managerial, policy, and other issues that they are likely to encounter in healthcare management. The course prerequisite is not applicable to Master of Public Administration students.
Prerequisites: MNGT 3310 - Principles of Management
Semesters Offered: Spring B 2023 Spring B 2024
MRKT 4335 - Healthcare Marketing
8 weeks
3
This course provides an overview of the role of marketing in the healthcare industry. It will examine the methods for designing healthcare systems responsive to patient needs and the promoting and pricing of healthcare services. Issues relating to ethic and social responsibility in the marketing of healthcare services will be studied.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Summer B 2023 Summer B 2024
MPAL 6382 - Innovation in Public & Nonprofit Organizations
8 weeks
3
Will explore innovative tools and practices in the public and nonprofit sectors, including innovative collaboration, performance measurement, and the use of the social media to engage the public and to improve service delivery.
Prerequisites: N/A
Semesters Offered: Fall A 2023 Fall A 2024 Fall A 2025

MPA Program Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Two years of full-time professional work experience in public, non-proft, or for-profit organizations
  • Two letters of recommendation
    • These letters should be from persons who have knowledge of the applicant's academic preparation and potential in the areas of public and community service


Conditional Admission Requirements

In addition to the requirements below, factors such as extensive professional work experience, completion of graduate courses, and relevant volunteer work will also be considered.

  • Bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.50-2.99
  • Two letters of recommendation
  •  Minimum GRE score of 280 may be considered, but is not mandatory
  • Other evidence (at least one of the following):
    • Completion of graduate courses
    • Current or previous professional service in governmental, public service, nonprofit, or for-profit organizations

Official Transcripts

Official hard copies of transcripts must come directly from the school in a sealed envelope to this address:

UT Permian Basin
Graduate Studies Office
4901 E. University Blvd.
Odessa, TX 79762

Official transcripts in electronic format can be sent to gradstudies@utpb.edu

Supporting Documents

All supporting documents related to a graduate program, such as letters of recommendation, essays, statements of interest, resumes, professional work experience, and awards should be sent to the Graduate Studies Office:

UT Permian Basin
Graduate Studies
4901 E. University Blvd.
Odessa, TX 79762-0001

Electronic versions of supporting documents may be emailed to gradstudies@utpb.edu. 

Application Fee

The application fee is $40.

Social Sciences Department Chair
Associate Professor
Master of Public Administration Program Coordinator
College of Arts and Sciences
abrams_h@utpb.edu

Dr. Abrams came to UT Permian Basin in 2008 for a second career in academia after working for years in managerial roles for a variety of public and nonprofit agencies in New York City and Boston. His service areas included child welfare, emergency medical services, mental health, education, and social services. He completed a doctorate in public administration from New York University in 1991. Dr. Abrams has published articles in peer-reviewed journals such as Public Performance and Management Review, the Journal of Public Affairs Education, and Resuscitation. His research centers on performance management, improving out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival rates, and issues in healthcare system policy and management.

Assistant Professor
College of Arts and Sciences
hijal_i@utpb.edu

Dr. Hijal-Moghrabi has been teaching at UT Permian Basin since 2016. She earned her PhD in public affairs from UT Dallas and a BA and MA in public administration from the American University of Beirut. She has been a financial controller responsible for promoting proper budget execution by diverse national public agencies in Lebanon. Her research interests include innovation and change, performance management, performance budgeting, government ethics, organizational stress, and other human resource management-related issues. Dr. Hijal-Moghrabi’s scholarly work has appeared in Administration & Society, Public Administration Quarterly, Public Performance & Management Review, Public Organization Review, Public Integrity, and Review of Public Personnel Administration.

Adjunct Professor
College of Arts and Sciences
mcmichael_t@utpb.edu  

Dr. McMichael received his PhD from Texas Tech University in 2015. He is an expert in game theory, empirical modeling (econometrics), and public policy. Dr. McMichael has published in journals including the Japanese Journal of Political Science and Asian Survey and co-authored the forthcoming book Toxic Chemicals in America: Policies, Trends, and Controversies in Public and Environmental Health.

We’re pleased to offer program admission on a rolling basis.

Rolling admission refers to our process of accepting and evaluating applications as we receive them and moving any applications that miss the deadline to the next semester. However, if you want to enroll in courses for a specific semester, you will need to make note of the application deadlines found below. If you don’t complete your application and submit the required materials by the deadline, your application will be rolled over to the next semester. 

LengthApplication DeadlineDocument DeadlinePayment DeadlineFirst Day of ClassLast Day of Class
Spring A1/3/231/10/231/13/231/17/233/10/23
Spring B3/6/233/13/233/17/233/20/235/12/23
LengthApplication DeadlineDocument DeadlinePayment DeadlineFirst Day of ClassLast Day of Class
Summer A5/1/235/8/235/12/235/15/236/30/23
Summer B6/19/236/26/236/30/237/3/238/17/23
LengthApplication DeadlineDocument DeadlinePayment DeadlineFirst Day of ClassLast Day of Class
Fall A8/14/238/21/238/25/238/28/2310/20/23
Fall B10/9/2310/16/2310/20/2310/23/2312/15/23
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