Public Policy (Graduate Certificate)

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From a public affairs program consistently ranking among the top 20 in the country, this public policy certificate provides a deeper understanding of policy development and evaluation. The five courses are completed in downtown Phoenix, the heart government in Arizona.

This certificate program in public policy prepares students for professional careers as policy analysts and leaders in public service who are involved in the formulation, approval, implementation and evaluation of public policy at all levels of government and in the private and nonprofit sectors.

The program is designed to give students analytical techniques and conceptual frameworks for understanding policy issues as well as for identifying potential solutions and applying these skills to real-world issues.

At A Glance

Public Policy (Graduate Certificate)

Plan of study

The Plan of study is the required curriculum to complete this graduate level program.

View Plan of Study

Degree requirements

Required Core (9 credit hours)
PAF 505 Public Policy Analysis (3)
PAF 540 Advanced Policy Analysis (3)
PAF 541 Program Evaluation (3)

Electives (6 credit hours)

Additional Curriculum Information
The electives are chosen from a list of preapproved courses and are selected with the faculty advisor. The faculty advisor directs the selection of the electives to ensure that they focus on a common theme and to see that the students' experiences in the courses align with the learning goals outlined for the certificate. For the electives, students select any two three-credit PAF courses that are 500-level. Students should note that PAF 504 is a prerequisite for PAF 505.

Students are required to maintain a minimum GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") and to have no more than one grade below a "B-" in courses taken to complete the certificate program.

Admission requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's or master's degree, in any field, from a regionally accredited institution.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts
  3. statement of career and educational goals
  4. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency.

Students from related fields (e.g., public administration, political science, planning, urban and metropolitan studies, sociology, and other social science fields) might be interested in this program. However, all eligible students are considered.

Students should see the program website for application deadlines and admission terms.