This interdisciplinary programme unites the expertise of three schools - the School of Sociology and Social Policy, the Business School and the School of Politics and International Studies, allowing you to study a broad range of modules which will enhance your knowledge of public administration and policy analysis in varying contexts of global and local challenges.
The programme will equip you with the necessary skills to take up a senior position in public administration. You will acquire a mastery of the diverse range of problems that public administration professionals face in the contemporary socio-economic climate and an in-depth understanding of the contested nature of debates in social and public policy.
Throughout the course you will be introduced to and debate the challenges, opportunities, understandings and approaches to managing such issues as ageing populations, social inclusion, migration, unemployment, health, inequality, sustainability and resilience, drawing on the insights and experiences of public and third sector leaders from across the globe.
A key part of the programme is its vocational element which enables you to apply your acquired knowledge to real life situations through project work linked to partner organisations. Throughout the course you will be exposed to a wide variety of the challenges, issues and problems that individuals engaged in public administration face and you will be supported to develop a portfolio of project work tailored to your own interests and career aspirations.
Throughout the course you will take a range of modules from across the three schools. One of the compulsory modules is the MPA Project Labs module which represents the vocational element of the course, designed to replace the traditional dissertation.
The MPA Project Labs will run across all three semesters, giving you the unique opportunity to conduct independently designed project work anchored in collaboration with a partner organisation, enabling you to apply the advanced skills and attributes developed across the programme. The module will be supported by workshops on public administration scenarios and challenges by academic leaders and guest speakers, including professionals and officials with different roles in the public and third sector; workshops on research and impact; problem-focused group work; and one-to-one project supervisions. You will be equipped with a depth and breadth of expertise and specialist skills valued by employers and commissioning bodies working in the public sector.
We use various teaching methods including lectures; seminar, guest lectures and workshops from external speakers; problem focused group work and student-led debates.
Assessment methods are likely to vary, depending on the optional modules you choose. Most of our taught modules are assessed through written work such as essays and reporting.
The MPA is recognised as the key professional qualification for those who wish to pursue or further a career in senior public service. The global perspectives and opportunities to apply your knowledge during this course will equip you with the critical thinking and professional skills needed for a successful and impactful career.
Graduates of this programme are likely to work in government departments, the third sector, and multi-national NGOs. Additionally graduates may progress into private sector and consulting firms that work closely with these areas.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
- Innovative ‘leadership exchange’ will enable students to gain valuable experience of working in another public service organisation.
- Variety of expert guest speakers and research-active academics.
- Diverse learning activities and assessment methods across all modules.
The Master of Public Administration (MPA) is an internationally recognised professional postgraduate degree, which is a public sector equivalent to the Master of Business Administration (MBA). The course is targeted primarily at public service and third sector professionals. The content is relevant to both international students and those based in the UK.
The aim of the MPA is to enable learners to build on their professional experience by engaging critically with, and reflecting on, key developments in public administration in order to more effectively deliver public service outcomes in a rapidly changing environment.
The course is based on a philosophy of transformational learning and transformational change. Central to this is the role of public services in promoting social justice and equality. International examples will be used to provide thought provoking challenges to the way our public services are designed and delivered. Rather than reflect today’s public services, the state and society, this MPA aims to shape the public service landscape of tomorrow.
This MPA offers an excellent student experience and includes an innovative ‘leadership exchange’ element, working with the Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations (ACOSVO), to enable all students to participate in an appropriate exchange within another public service organisation.
The MPA offers options for both full-time and part-time study which will fit with busy working lives. This is a multidisciplinary course, with the purpose of preparing students for professional roles in the public sector. As such the delivery draws on academic expertise from a range of backgrounds such as administrative justice, public management and social policy. The input of research active academics will be complemented with expert guest speakers and visits to key public administration sites such as the Holyrood Parliament in Edinburgh, Houses of Parliament in London, Parlament de Catalunya in Barcelona and the European Parliament in Brussels. A series of academic development workshops are run alongside the taught modules to support stuents with academic writing and research methods.
The amount of contact time will vary depending on whether you are studying on a part-time or full-time basis.
The ‘leadership exchange’ element of the course is delivered in association with the Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations (ACOSVO). We are also an institutional member of the Joint University Council’'s Public Administration Committee.
There is a range of core and optional modules from which you will need to complete 120 credits, plus the 60 credit dissertation module in order to complete the MPA. Module options include: Core modules: International Trends in Public Administration/ Gender and Equalities/ Leading Change in Public Services/ Workplace Learning/ Dissertation Optional modules: Law and Public Administration/ Social Justice and Critical Perspectives on the State/ Information Governance and Data Protection/ Multi-level Governance in Europe/ Strategic Internal Communications in a Digitalised World
In Scotland 21% of the workforce is employed in the public sector. This does not include the many private and third sector organisations that help deliver vital public services. At a time of increasing pressure on public finances, it is increasingly important that all those who support the delivery of our public services continue to develop their professional skills and knowledge. This course supports those seeking to develop these skills.
Innovative ‘leadership exchange’ will enable students to gain valuable experience of working in another public service organisation.
Variety of expert guest speakers and research-active academics.
Diverse learning activities and assessment methods
This course is co-designed by leading academics and senior administrators who are currently involved in the study and practice of 21st century governance. That means you’ll be gathering a fairly impressive list of core professional skills in the areas of public management, policy analysis and leadership.
You’ll be able to boost your ethical research skills by undertaking a dissertation project and enhance your career opportunities at both the national and sub-national levels of the public services sector. Now that’s good policy.
A range of career opportunities exist for Master of Public Administration graduates in a range of sectors, including in: