MPA Program Options and Foundation Courses

Please note: The following program requirements apply to new MPA Students that begin in Fall 2010 or later. Current MPA Students can refer to the university catalog that was in effect when they started the MPA Program.

Foundation Courses:

Before starting the graduate core courses, students must satisfactorily complete four foundation courses:

  • PUAD 4800: Public Administration and Society (with a grade B or better)
  • PUAD 4830: Organization Theory and Behavior (with a grade B or better)
  • PUAD 4840: Fundamentals of Information Management in the Public Sector (with a grad of B or better)
  • PUAD 5000: Philosophy of Public Administration (with a grade B or better)

All applicants must pass the Foundation courses and be admitted into the program before enrolling in 6000 level courses.

Writing Skills Test:

All students are also required to take and pass the University Writing Skills Test (WST) during their first quarter of enrollment. The WST is a state requirement for all students enrolling in the CSU system. Students should consult the University Catalog for full information on the WST.

Please note: Students will not be allowed to take any 6000 level courses until the WST requirements have been met.

Degree Requirements - 48 UNITS

The program requires completion of 48 QUARTER UNITS beyond the foundation courses, at least 35 units of which must be completed in residence at CSUEB:

  • Core Courses -- 20 units
  • Required and Elective Courses in an Option Area -- 24 units
  • The Capstone Course -- 4 units


All students must take the following five courses prior to taking the option courses:

  • PUAD 6801: Public Policy Formulation and Implementation
  • PUAD 6811: Human Organizations and Social Realities
  • PUAD 6812: Changing Human Organizations
  • PUAD 6831: Research Methods in Public Administration I
  • PUAD 6832: Research Methods in Public Administration II

(Notes: 6811 must precede 6812. 6831 and 6832 are not sequential - 6832 may be taken before 6831.)


Students choose one of the following options to specialize in the area of their choice in the MPA Program (a double option is also available). Options include four courses designated for the option and 8 units of electives which may be taken outside the department with prior approval of the student’s advisor. All PUAD courses carry 4 units.

Option 1: Health Care Administration (24 units)

Designed for students who are preparing for a management or policy development career in the health field. The option area focuses on issues of health policy development and the delivery of health care services and management issues in a variety of health care organizations.

Required courses (16 units):

  • HCA 6200 US Health Care System (4)
  • HCA 6250 Strategic Management of Health Care Organizations (4)
  • HCA 6260 Health Care Policy Analysis (4)
  • HCA 6270 Health Care Management (4)

Electives (8 units):

Select two from the following:

  • HCA 6201 Introduction to Health Informatics (4)
  • HCA 6202 Project and Change Management in Health Informatics (4)
  • HCA 6210 Leadership and Change in Health Care Organizations (4)
  • HCA 6225 Organization Theory and Behavior in Health Care (4)
  • HCA 6240 Health Care Financing and Budgeting (4)
  • HCA 6275 Evolution of Managed Care (4)
  • HCA 6280 Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care (4)
  • HCA 6290 Health Care Quality Assessment and Improvement (4)

Option 2: Public Management and Policy Analysis (24 units)

Designed for students who are focused on managing organizational resources and who wish to be actively involved in the design and implementation of policy. This option area gives students the skills and knowledge base necessary to be an effective public manager or policy analyst.

Required courses (16 units):

  • PUAD 6815 Ethics and Administrative Responsibility (4)
  • PUAD 6842 Governmental Budgeting(4)
  • PUAD 6850 Human Resource Management in the Public Sector (4)
  • PUAD 6864 Managing Public Organizations (4)

Electives (8 units):

Select two from the following:

  • PUAD 6802 Seminar in Public Policy Implementation (4) „X
  • PUAD 6809 Seminar in Public Program Evaluation (4) „X
  • PUAD 6830 Advanced Information Management in Public Organizations (4) „X
  • PUAD 6840 Seminar in Public Finance Administration (4) „X
  • PUAD 6854 Seminar in Public Labor Relations (4)
  • PUAD 6762 Group Procedures and Facilitation (4) „X
  • PUAD 6765 Organizational Diagnosis and Assessment (4) „X
  • PUAD 6869 Topics in Public Management (4) „X
  • PUAD 6893 Internship in Public Administration (4) „X
  • PUAD 6999 Issues in Public Administration (4)


The Department of Public Administration sponsors a graduate internship program as an integral part of the Master's program. The internship program provides students with an opportunity to complement their academic studies with practical administrative experience in a city, county, state, federal or non-profit agency. The internships vary from three to nine months and average 10 to 30 hours per week. Some pay a stipend, others are on a volunteer basis. An internship is not a job placement, but an opportunity for gaining experience.

For information on how to have the Department periodically email you information on internship opportunities, click here.


Students are required to take one of the following:

  • PUAD 6901: The Graduate Synthesis and Comprehensive Examination
  • PUAD 6909: The Department Thesis or
  • PUAD 6910: The University Thesis

Students must satisfy the University Writing Skills Test requirements before they will be allowed to enroll in PUAD 6901, PUAD 6909 or PUAD 6910. Please refer the Testing Office website at for additional information.

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