Public Policy, PhD Degree Requirements
The degree requires a minimum of 82 credit hours of course work and supervised research beyond the bachelor’s degree. A minimum of 52 hours of course work must be taken in degree status with the Schar School of Policy and Government, excluding any required prerequisites.
Stage One – Core Skills
Prerequisites: Methodological and Substantive Foundations (if deemed necessary)
- PUBP 511 – Statistical Methods in Policy Analysis
- PUBP 720 – Managerial Economics and Policy Analysis
- PUBP 730 – US National Policy Systems and Theory
Core Courses: Completion of all core courses with a grade of B or better is required unless exempted.
- PUBP 800 – Culture and Public Policy
- PUBP 801 – Research Design for Public Policy
- PUBP 804 – Multivariate Statistical Analysis in Public Policy
- PUBP 805 – Foundations of Social Science for Public Policy
Qualifying Exam taken upon completion of all core courses.
*Students whose final paper in PUBP 801 is not deemed acceptable must schedule PUBP 709 in the next semester.
Stage Two – Policy Fields and Skills
- Elective courses (3 courses)
- Advanced Methods (1 course)
Stage Three – Research Foundations
- Concentration/Field of Study (3 courses)
- Advanced Methods (1 course)
- Field Statement
- Field Exam
- By end of their third semester, full time students (fourth semester for part-time) must choose a chair for their Field Committee.
- By the start of their fourth semester, full time students (fifth semester for part-time) must submit to the chair of their Field Committee a plan for their Field of Study. The Field of Study Plan (max. 1000 words) will describe a Concentration or a proposed research area, including citations relevant to current research in that Field. The Plan must identify three substantive courses and at least one advanced methods course that the student intends to take that will serve as a foundation for the Field. The Plan must be approved by both the student’s Field Committee Chair and the Director of the PhD program.
- The three substantive courses must include at least one 800 level course offered in the Schar School (excluding core and advanced methods courses). The other two courses may include any courses from the Schar School at the 700 level or above (excluding those 700 level courses listed as not eligible for PhD field credit), and no more than one substantive graduate course from outside the Schar School.
- The advanced methods course must be chosen from the approved list for the Schar School PhD program, or approved in writing by the Field Committee Chair and Director of the PhD program.
- Where appropriate courses are not available from the Schar School, students may petition the Director of the PhD program for substitute courses to count for their Field of Study Plan.
- Courses in the Field of Study Plan are intended to be taken concurrently with work on the Field Statement and Field Exam. Students may not present a dissertation proposal for approval until they have passed the Field Exam.
Stage Four – Dissertation
- Dissertation Proposal (PUBP 998 – Research/Proposal for Dissertation)
- Proposal Oral Defense
- Dissertation (PUBP 999 – Dissertation, 12 credits 998+999)
- Dissertation Oral Defense
Official program requirements are published in the annual PhD Student/Faculty Handbook issued to new students during orientation.
Advanced Quantitative Methods Classes
PhD in Public Policy Program Description and Admissions Information
University Catalog Course Descriptions (PUBP)