MPA Admission Process

The Master's in Public Administration (MPA) program is offered through the University of Alaska Anchorage College of Business and Public Policy. Students interested in the Master of Public Administration program may accumulate up to nine credits in the program as a non-degree seeking student before applying for admission to the program. 
To apply for admission, applicants must meet both the UAA Admission Requirements for Master's Degrees and the Department of Public Administration requirement (below).  Once the graduate school has approved the  applicate then they automatically send the application to the department. To qualify for admission to UAA graduate programs, a student must have earned a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or a foreign  equivalent. Students who expect to receive their baccalaureate degree within two semesters may also apply for graduate admission. Students may complete an online or paper Graduate Application for Admission and mail additional material to: UAA Enrollment Services, PO Box 141629, Anchorage AK 99514-1629.

Department of Public Administration Requirements:

MPA applications must meet one of the following:

  • Have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 and have taken an introductory course in government (or demonstrate knowledge by taking an approved, UAA college-level achievement exam.

  • Complete two (2) PADM core courses as a non-degree seeking student with a grade of 'B' or better and complete all PADM core course prerequisites (BA 273, ECON 201 and 202 or ECON 602, and PS101) or their equivalents.

  • Have a combined undergraduate GPA, plus GRE Analytic score, totaling 7.0 or higher. The GRE exam is not required for students who have already earned a Master's degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or foreign equivalent, provided they have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0.

Students applying for admission to the MPA program must submit the following items to the Office of Enrollment Services:

  • 300-500 word statement on your career goals and how the MPA degree relates to those goals.

  • Professional resume or vita

  • Completed Graduate Application for Admission

  • Application fee – $75 (no cash please)

  • Official transcripts

  • Official GRE scores (if applicable)


Deadlines for admission applications are:

  • June 15th for Fall semester

  • May 1st for Summer semester

  • November 1st for Spring semester

The University has a rolling admissions policy. Applications are accepted at any time, however, applications received after application deadlines may not be processed in time to qualify a student for Clear Admit status or financial aid for the next semester. In these cases, an applicant may take classes, but complete a non-degree seeking student application.

Once the Public Administration Department receives all materials from Enrollment Services, the faculty admission committee reviews applications and may:

  • Admit a student unconditionally

  • Admit a student conditional

  • Suggest options students might follow before reapplying to the program.

The intent of the admissions process is to select students who have a strong probability of doing well in the program. MPA Program faculty do not want to turn down students.  They do, however, want to be sure students come into the program without serious obstacles to success. If any of the following are present, the review committee will be concerned, and may seek additional information before admitting a student:

  • GRE scores are below the 20th Percentile

  • Problems with the essay content or writing ability

  • Inconsistencies in the materials submitted for application

  • Evidence of dishonesty or other unethical behavior

  • Anything that raises questions about the student's ability to succeed in the MPA program in the minds of the reviewers

The Dean (or designee) of the College of Business and Public Policy makes the final decision regarding formal acceptance to master's degree programs in the College, and informs UAA Enrollment Services. Enrollment Services sends the official Certificate of Admission directly to the applicant.