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School of Urban and Public Affairs

School of Urban and Public Affairs

Master of Public Administration (On-Campus)


See MPA Overview.


URPA 5302 Foundations of Urban Research and Analysis
URPA 5309 Intergovernmental Relations
URPA 5320 Public Organization Theory
URPA 5326 Public Budgeting
URPA 5329 Financial Management in the Public and Non-Profit Sectors
URPA 5345 Evaluation Research
URPA 5350 Public Administration
URPA 5351 Public Human Resources
URPA 5358 Ethics in the Public Service
URPA 5399 Public Administration Capstone


Students select an emphasis area and take a total of three courses: two required courses plus one elective from the list below.

Public Budgeting and Financial Management

Objective: Review, recommend, and interpret operating and capital budget requests taking political, economic, and decision-making processes into account. Assist the budget officer and other higher-level public officials in performing comprehensive financial analyses and developing financial and budgetary recommendations. Click here for Public Budgeting and Financial Management curriculum.

Local Government Management

Objective: Demonstrate proficiency in the use of applied analytic tools such as program evaluation, policy analysis, cost-benefit analysis, and other management decision-making tools to aid the public manager make more informed decisions; Assist public managers and other higher-level public officials to understand, analyze, and recommend appropriate solutions to complex public policy issues. Click here for Local Government Management curriculum.

Urban Nonprofit Agency Management

Objective: Understand the different management areas and techniques within the nonprofit organization, including institutional management, leadership, fund-raising, financial administration, human resources coordination, and planning and performance measurements. Understand the role of nonprofits as community institutions with an outward focus, including the political, economic, and inter-organizational environment, as well as marketing, legal, and government policy issues. Click here for Urban Nonprofit Agency Management curriculum.

Strategic Human Resources Management

Objective: Demonstrate an understanding of public human resource policies, programs, procedures, and legal issues relevant to the field; and demonstrate knowledge of techniques employed in designing performance appraisals, recruiting and selecting employees, and developing rewards systems. Click here for Strategic Human Resources Management curriculum.

Economic Development Management

Objective: Demonstrate a general comprehension of the politics, organization, policy issues and legal and financial dimensions of local economic development; and demonstrate knowledge of techniques employed in location and impact analysis, strategic planning, revenue generation, marketing, cluster development, site planning, and business recruitment, development and retention. Click here for Economic Development Management curriculum.

INTERNSHIP (3 hours)

The MPA program does require an internship course to be completed (URPA 5360). This 3 hour course is designed for students to earn 3 credit hours for completing a one semester long internship leading to public sector professional experience. There are no prerequisites that must be met before entering an internship or enrolling in URPA 5360, therefore students can immediately begin an internship within their first semester and thereafter.

Interns are placed in a variety of government and nonprofit organizations as well as private organizations engaged in public service activities. Seven students requested and were placed for AY 12-13. Example placements between Fall 2011 and Spring 2013 include:

  • City of Southlake
  • Mayor’s Office, City of Fort Worth
  • Genesis Women’s Shelter
  • Environmental Defense Fund
  • Barner Prox Law, PLLC
  • Deloitte Consulting (Dallas Branch)
  • Tarrant  County-Emergency Management
  • Municipal Administrative Management
  • Clayton Yes!
  • City of Arlington

Applying for Internship Credit
Internships must be approved by the program. A student must submit an Internship Agreement Form describing the duties and hours with a signature from the sponsor before registration for internship credit. At the end of the internship, a student must complete and submit an Internship Report on their experiences and the sponsor must complete and submit an Internship Performance Evaluation verifying the internship requirements have been met. Both these forms must be submitted to the MPA Director by the end of the semester in order to receive credit and a grade.

Internship Waiver
URPA 5360 can be waived by newly admitted students and current students who have previously earned at least 1 year of professional public sector work experience. The procedure that must be followed by every student wishing to pursue the waiver is as follows: 1. Submit an Internship Waiver Form to the Graduate Advisor with signature and all necessary student information 2. Attach a professional resume, illustrating at least one year of professional experience of public sector work 3. Once approval or denial decision is made, the student will then be notified as to whether or not the URPA 5360 – Internship course will be waived.