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Application and Admission

Taking MPA classes prior to formal admission to the program

Students who have not yet been admitted to the program but who have been accepted into the Graduate College at Boise State may take up to 9-credit hours for one semester prior to admission (PUBADM 500 or PUBADM 501 are recommended). Pending approval by the student’s advisor and the Program Director, these credits may be used toward the student’s total required credit hours for the MPA program once admitted. These classes may be any combination of 500-level credits when space is available on the roster and with instructor permission.

Graduate, full-time enrollment at Boise State is 9 credits per semester.  Thus, a pre-service student, required to complete the 36 credits and 3-credit internship, could complete the program in 5 semesters.  Per graduate college policy, students have up to 7 years to complete the MPA.

Transfer of Graduate Courses: Because of a cooperative agreement made with Idaho State University and the University of Idaho, the MPA credits earned at those institutions can, with approval, be accepted into the Boise State University program. Transfer of credit from all other institutions is limited to 9 semester credits.

Most classes are offered in the evenings from 6 to 8:45p. Some classes may be offered in a mix of traditional, face-to-face sessions with alternating online assignments. Students can expect a combination of seminar discussions, case study analyses, exercises/quizzes/tests, projects, papers, guest speakers or lectures in a small class setting (between 10 and 20 students).

Interested students should apply through the Boise State University Graduate College.  Admission requires three letters of recommendation, transcripts from all previous academic institutions, a personal statement, a resume and GRE scores (unless waived due to a 3.20 undergraduate aggregate GPA or a previous graduate degree). Women and minorities are especially encouraged to apply to our program.  Boise State University and Public Policy and Administration are strong advocates of equal opportunity and diversity.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must satisfy the minimum admission requirements for the Boise State Graduate College. Admission is competitive and the achievement of minimum Graduate College and PPA requirements does not guarantee admission into the program. Applicants are required to have a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution and must comply with the following application procedures.

Application Procedures

Interested students should contact the MPA Director to discuss the admission process, career interests, and reasons for entering the Graduate Program. To be considered for acceptance in the Summer/Fall term, applicants must submit all application materials, including program-specific application material, to the Graduate College. This can be done via the right-hand navigation links within the Hobson’s ApplyYourself online application system. Applications received by the final deadline of April 30 will be considered after complete applications received by the priority deadline. For the following Spring term, the deadline to submit all application materials to the Graduate College is October 1. Admission decisions are made shortly after these deadlines, but applications are accepted at any time per Graduate College guidelines. Admission to the Masters in Public Administration program is competitive and requires:

  • Apply to the Graduate College, with the requisite transcripts and test scores as applicable, and satisfy the minimum admissions requirements of the Graduate College. International applicants must satisfy the international admissions requirements.
  • Three letters of reference
  • A personal statement of at least 500 words explaining the applicant’s career goals and reasons for pursuing the MPA
  • Applicant resume
  • GRE scores are required of all applicants, however, the GRE or equivalent test requirement may be waived for applicants who have an overall grade point average of at least 3.20 in undergraduate course work OR who have at least a masters-level degree from a regional accredited university.

GRE Scores or Equivalents

Applicants who earned less than an aggregate 3.20 in undergraduate coursework must submit Graduate Record Exam scores (or a comparable admission-relevant test such as the GMAT or LSAT). Generally, for applicants who must submit GRE scores, the admission committee looks for a minimum combined verbal and quantitative score of 300 (1,000 for older scoring system) on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). International students must submit a TOEFL score of 587 or higher for the written exam and 240 or higher for the computer-based examination or an IELTS score of at least 6.5. Please contact the International Admissions Office for further information on English Proficiency test requirements.

Admission Process

After the admission deadline for a given term, the program’s admission committee will evaluate all complete applications. That committee will forward its recommendation to the Dean of the Graduate College. The graduate dean will make the final admission decision and notify the applicant and the program Director.

The priority deadline for submitting all application and admission material for Summer/Fall admission is March 15. After the priority deadline, the admissions committee will consider complete applications received by the final deadline of April 30.