Influence lawmaking. Change the world.

Public policy is a branch of political science that addresses public concerns and problems. Policymakers influence lawmaking at the local, state and federal levels to address those issues. Public administrators draft, analyze and implement policies through a wide range of government agencies and directly impact who has access to resources, general living standards and opportunities for diverse communities.

Accelerated Program

The accelerated program is a unique dual degree program that provides a pathway for students to earn both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Public Policy Administration with fewer total credit hours than would be required to complete each degree independently. Once all requirements have been met, students will be awarded both a BSPPA and an MPPA and are able to enter the job market with a competitive edge.


Program type:

Major, BSPPA



Take the next step

Request more information below:



Bachelor of Science in

Public Policy and Administration

The BS in Public Policy and Administration is designed for students who are interested in working in government or nonprofit organizations and who have a passion for making a positive impact on society. In this program, students gain understanding of public and nonprofit administration and policymaking in the United States while developing sought-after and transferable skills, such as information-gathering and processing, analysis, research, decision making, and oral and written communication.

You can choose from three emphasis areas: public administration, nonprofit management and public policy. Areas of concentration for the public policy emphasis include American politics, international and comparative politics, urban politics, public law, labor studies and gender and politics. In addition to formal course work, internships provide students with the opportunity to apply classroom learning and gain practical field experience.

Outcomes and Career Outlook

Upon completion of the program, graduates will be able to explain the characteristics and impact of policy-making institutions and systems, including national, state and local governments; demonstrate an understanding of administrative systems and processes; apply methods, tools and sources to answer important management and policy questions; analyze policies, programs and relevant issues, formulate evidence-based recommendations and communicate them with clarity and coherence; apply public policy administration knowledge and engage in real-world problem solving through an internship; and plan, execute, and defend a major research project.

Employment of Political Scientists is projected to grow over 7% through 2032, with a median annual salary of $128,020, according to wage and employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and


Median annual salary


Employment growth by 2032

Career Opportunities

  • Advocate
  • Market Research Analyst
  • Public Policy Director
  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Social Services Manager
  • Veteran’s Affairs Manager

Plan of study

All majors must meet the general education requirements of the university in addition to completing degree-specific curriculum requirements.

Review Full Degree Requirements Review Sample Four-Year Plan Download 4-Year Academic Map

Non-Missouri Residents: Prospective students are responsible for reviewing the  NC-SARA state authorizations page to see if this program is offered in their state throughout their program and to review the licensure or certification requirements for the state in which they reside.

Student organizations

Make new friends and learn new skills by joining one of our Recognized Student Organizations. Here are several opportunities you may be interested in as a public policy and administration major:

Honors College

The UMSL Honors College is a certificate program that can be paired with any major without adding extra classes or extending time to graduate. Classes in the Honors College are seminar-style, meaning that they are based in reading, writing, discussion, and critical thinking. This unique class format fosters an intellectual climate centered around democracy, diversity, civility and academic excellence.

Undergraduate research

We encourage and support students as they engage in exciting activities in and outside of the classroom that enrich their academic and professional understanding of their chosen area of study. All majors are encouraged to participate in Undergraduate Research and Scholarship to produce discipline-specific intellectual or creative innovations to their field.