Contact Dr. Rick Althaus at 573.651.2700 for more information on the Program.

Admission Requirements

  • Student must hold a baccalaureate degree from any regionally accredited college or university (or international equivalent).
  • Student must have attained an undergraduate grade point average of 2.7 or higher on a 4.0 scale.
  • Resume
  • Student must submit a word processed two-to-five page statement outlining professional goals and two letters of evaluation that address the student’s potential for a career in public service.
  • The application materials must demonstrate the student’s commitment to a career in governmental or nonprofit organizations. [This language is from the existing MSA/PA requirements.]
  • GRE, LSAT or GMAT scores are not required but may be submitted to strengthen application.
  • A student may be admitted on a case-by-case provisional basis. A student admitted provisionally may apply for regular status after 9 hours with a grade of B or better.
  • An English language examination is required for applicants who have completed their undergraduate education outside of the U.S.A.; a minimum TOEFL score of 600 is necessary for admission.

Program Structure

Total credits required for graduation: 36 hours

All students take 21 hours of Master of Public Administration core courses, an additional 12 hours of electives, and complete an internship or thesis (3 hours). All required courses will be completed on campus at Southeast Missouri State University or via web-based instruction. Up to nine hours of transfer graduate credit will be accepted if approved by the student’s major advisor. The student’s advisor will determine application of the transfer credit hours to core courses or elective courses.

Master of Public Administration Required Core Courses

PS502 Fundamentals of Public Administration (3)

PS505 Organizational Theory and Behavior (3)

PS518 Public Policy Analysis (3)

PS545 Research Methods for Public Administrators (3)

PS603 Public Personnel Administration (3)

PS615 Government Budgeting Process (Public Budgeting) (3)

PS655 Federalism, State and Local Government (3)


In addition to the Master of Public Administration core, the degree requires completion of 12 hours of elective courses. The student and his/her academic advisor will select courses which best reflect the career goals and objectives of the student.

Public Administration Options

Select from the following list:

  • AC548 Government/Not-for-Profit Accounting (3)
  • EC525 Public Policy Economics (3)
  • PS625 Administrative Law (3)
  • PS689 Independent Study in Political Science (3)
  • PS691 * Topics in Political Science
  • PY571 Behavioral Statistics (3)
  • PY650 Organizations as Open Systems (3)
  • SC560 Organizational Communication (3)

Thesis or Internship (3)

PS697 Internship in Political Science (3)

Each student will obtain an approved internship in a public or not-for-profit agency. The student will write a scholarly internship paper, and present and defend it during an oral examination.

Thesis Option (3)

In place of the internship, and with the approval of the faculty advisor, a student may choose to do scholarly research on a specified topic. The student will write a master’s thesis, and present and defend it during an oral examination.


Carnahan Hall 211
Department of Political Science
One University Plaza, MS 2920
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701