CurriculumPage title

Here is a complete listing of all MPA courses. Click on the individual class link for a full description.
Required Core (21 credits) PAF 9100 Introduction to Public Affairs
3 hours; 3 credits
The course is an introduction to politics, government, and public policy in the U.S. It provides a rigorous, scholarly, yet practical view of governmental institutions, policy making, administration, and contemporary public policy. Attention is given to the role of governmental and nongovernmental actors, as well as the influence of history, culture, public opinion, and political economy. Students develop skills in thinking critically and writing clearly about issues of public importance.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9103 Communication in Public Settings
3 hours; 3 credits
Introduces students to communication in public settings and provides extensive opportunities for practice with basic written and oral forms. Interrelationships among communicative activities and organizational goals. Internal and external messages are given equal weight. Argumentative structures necessary for constructing sound policy and persuasive techniques relevant to funding, regulation, client, and public constituencies. Topics will vary somewhat from semester to semester depending on the instructor's and students' interests. The course follows a workshop/laboratory format with intensive attention to student work as a fulcrum for the application of theory and refinement of skills.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9120 Public and Nonprofit Management I
3 hours; 3 credits
This course introduces the fundamental concepts and techniques for managing government and not-for-profit agencies, including schools. This course focuses on structural models; individual behavior, including group dynamics and leadership; effective use and management of human resources; and political and cultural frameworks. Questions of effectiveness, responsibility, and professional relations are considered.
PAF 9130 Economic Analysis and Public Policy
3 hours; 3 credits
Introduction to concepts and analytic tools necessary to economic examination of individual and firm behavior; analysis of causes and consequences of public sector intervention in the economy.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9140 Budgeting and Financial Analysis I
3 hours; 3 credits
This course focuses on the budget cycle and budget decision-making. It includes tools for developing, implementing, and controlling a budget within a, typically, public organization. Topics include development of operating budgets, cash budgets, break-even analysis, cost behavior, the time value of money, capital budgeting, long-term financing, and variance analysis. Basic budget accounting concepts are studied. The course includes development of spreadsheet skills for budgeting.
Prerequisite: none
PAF 9170 Research and Analysis I
3 hours; 3 credits
The first course in a two-course sequence (the second course is PAF 9172) that provides an introduction to research and analytical methods as applied to public policy and management. Students will develop expertise as consumers of research findings and learn methods for designing and conducting research. This first course provides an introduction to data analysis and statistical inference, with an emphasis on policy and management applications. Topics include graphing and numerical summaries, normal distributions, descriptive correlation and regression, basic probability and sampling distributions, confidence intervals, significance tests, chi-square tests, and inference for regression. Students learn these techniques through hands-on work with real data and statistical software.
Prerequisite: Not open to students who have completed PAF 9317
PAF 9172 Research and Analysis II
3 hours; 3 credits
The second course in a two-course sequence (the first course is PAF 9170) that provides an introduction to research and analytical methods as applied to public policy and management. Students will develop expertise as consumers of research findings and learn basic methods for designing and conducting research. Topics include the use of theory or models, identifying causes, experiments and quasi-experiments, the logic of control variables and the interpretation of multiple regression, measurement concepts and methods, qualitative methods, and complex sampling. The emphasis is on learning these ideas through practice with many different examples of real-world research and empirical evidence.
Prerequisite: PAF 9170 or permission of instructor
Internship Courses (3 credits, if required)PAF 9195 Public Affairs Internship
This course provides students with real-world administrative experience in a public or nonprofit organization. It is required for Masters of Public Administration (MPA) students without at least one year of public administration work experience.
It may be used as an elective course for students with a public administration work history. The work assignment requires 150 hours. Class sessions are determined by the instructor. The course is graded on a pass/no-credit basis. The internship pass/no-credit selection does not preclude the completion of another MPA elective course for pass/no-credit. PAF 9195 may be repeated, but only with the permission of the instructor and the Associate Dean of the School of Public Affairs. It is not open to students who have completed PAF 9191, PAF 9192, or PAF 9322
Prerequisite: Instructor permission.
PAF 9198 Public Affairs Workshop
15 class hours (total over the semester, offered in three intensive class sessions); 1 credit
This one-credit course provides focused training in a range of public policy and public or nonprofit management topics. Offered at several points during the semester, the workshop will be taught by external practitioners and/or Baruch faculty with special expertise in the subject matter. Sample topics include Total Quality Management, Board Relations for Nonprofits, Proposal Writing, Media Relations, and Building an Agency Budget. The workshop format includes: (1) assignment of readings and other materials, mailed to students 2-3 weeks prior to the initial class, (2) an all-day Saturday meeting, followed by two to three weeks to work on written assignments, (3) a second all-day Saturday session, and (4) a final assignment completed after the second Saturday session and mailed or e-mailed to the instructor.
Prerequisite: Open to all Public Affairs graduate students; Students may take the workshop up to three times, with the permission of their advisor
Electives (18 credits)
The Marxe School offers different PAF electives every term. Please consult the online Schedule of Classes each semester on CUNYFirst to see the current offerings. MPA electives are always 9000+ level, 3 credits, and can be any of the non-core PAF listings with the exception of the following sections and/or designations: NUF, XMPA, MIA, or HEA.

Final Requirement in Last Semester (3 credits)PAF 9190 Capstone Seminar
Advanced seminar in which students produce a semester project drawing from the full course of study toward the Masters of Public Administration. The project may involve policy research, intensive study of an organization, development of a rationale for new or changed service programs, or some combination of these. Special attention is placed on incorporating knowledge from the core curriculum.
Prerequisites: Completion of ALL core MPA classes