Online Master of Public Administration

Choose from 4 concentrations.

No GRE or GMAT icon

No GRE or GMAT required.

Complete your degree 100% online, in as few as 2 years

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Benefit from the only public service school in the U.S. that partners with a college of business on a Center for Entrepreneurship

The difference between public service and public solutions? The skills to lead.

We know you’re driven to serve — otherwise you wouldn’t be here. But in a world where passion is equal, preparation wins out. It’s our job to make sure you’re not only prepared to serve the public through leadership, but serve it well.

Our online Master of Public Administration can help you build the skills to address public needs in effective, efficient, and imaginative ways. We want you to take the big ideas in your head and put them into action by helping you develop as a project manager, communicator, policy analyst, and financial mind. When you have an expert understanding of public administration and the professional tools to back it up, you can lead a career of consequence for your constituents.

Person icon

Choose from 4 concentrations.

No GRE or GMAT icon

No GRE or GMAT required.

Laptop with 2 years on the screen icon

Complete your degree 100% online, in as few as 2 years.

Shaking hands icon

Benefit from the only public service school in the U.S. that partners with a college of business on a Center for Entrepreneurship.

25 Percent

The growth of the non-profit sector since 2001
The New York Times

22 Million

The number of people employed in government across the U.S.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

$2 Trillion

The amount invested in clean energy plants in the past decade

Why choose the Master of Public Administration online program?

We’re not looking to build ideologues, we want to help you influence action and explore your interests in public service. At the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, our faculty and staff have dedicated decades to finding research-based solutions to challenges in the world, and that trickles down into the foundations of your learning.

We’re uniquely prepared to help you learn the intricacies of public administration through a pragmatic approach. Study the management of financial and human resources. Learn how to take policy from planning to financing to execution and evaluation. Connect the public and private sector as partners, not adversaries. Help cut through red tape with organizational excellence, the kind that can translate just as effectively in a town hall or the halls of Congress.

Our faculty members know the field’s obstacles and how to navigate them from firsthand experience. Our faculty members are professionals actively engaged in promoting public efforts that spark their interest. We want you to do the same, which is why we offer four distinct concentrations for the Master of Public Administration.

Well-Ranked MPA

Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs has tied for 58th on the U.S. News and World Report’s list of the top public affairs graduate schools for 2020. This puts OHIO’s MPA in the top 20% of public affairs schools nationwide.

SR Education 2019 Best Online Program - MPA badge The Voinovich School’s MPA degree was also named as the 18th Best Online Master’s Public Administration Degrees by Guide to Online Schools.

The Online MPA in Nonprofit Management at Ohio University is also ranked #7 by Best College Reviews.

Our Concentrations Explained

In managing emergency and crisis situations today, an integral factor in handling these situations is how you lead before, during and after critical events. Ohio University’s Online Master of Public Administration program with a concentration in Crisis and Emergency Management blends academic knowledge, practical skills, and strategies for best handling various situations you may face while working in emergent settings. Our highly-seasoned faculty members have been in pivotal roles in the preparation of high profile emergency events.

The Crisis and Emergency Management concentration will prepare you to work with federal agencies, state and local governments, and community organizations to create, implement and manage responses during emergency situations.

What can I do with an online Master of Public Administration?

Bar graph of MPA-related job titles


From 2001 to 2011

The nonprofit sector now employs nearly 10% of the U.S. workforce. This grew by 25% from 2001 to 2011. – The New York Times

The nonprofit sector now employs nearly 10% of the U.S. workforce. This grew by 25% from 2001 to 2011. – The New York Times

Just because you have a Master of Public Administration doesn’t mean you can’t look at your career with a private eye. Your skills can easily transfer to private sector positions, especially in industries that work closely with public organizations such as healthcare, pharmaceuticals, law, and education.

With an online MPA degree, you can put your strategic planning, communication, project management, and budgeting skills to work in leadership positions normally reserved for MBA grads. What’s the online MPA advantage? Your knowledge of how organizations function. Your ability to translate technical talk and dense data for ease in public consumption. Your sense of social responsibility. Your determination to see a project through to completion.

Bar graph of private sector roles you may consider

What’s the OHIO MPA experience like?

“This year, working with senior administrators at Ohio University, it’s made me more confident when I’m going into meetings, speaking up and not being just a shy note-taker in the background. I’m voicing my opinions and getting out of my comfort zone.”

– Thomas Raabe, Ohio University Online MPA Student

Hear More from Thomas

“It gave me the experience of grant writing, policy briefs, basically doing all of the leg work of a non-profit.”

– Crescent Gallagher, Ohio University Online MPA Student

Hear More from Crescent

Our online MPA degree curriculum

Designed for action.

Unlike other Master’s in Public Administration online programs, we offer a curriculum built for the real challenges of public administration. You won’t find us teaching hypotheticals. Instead, we focus on topics like data analysis, public-private partnerships, and measuring outcomes. We also offer four concentrations that reflect the current landscape of public affairs, such as real-life crisis and emergency management skills, innovation in the burgeoning non-profit sector, and leadership in the public sector.

Integrative Core Courses (27 Credits)

MPA 6200 Foundations of Public Administration3 Credits
MPA 6010Research Methods in Leadership and Public Affairs3 Credits
MPA 5140Organizational Leadership3 Credits
MPA 5580Public Sector Program Evaluation3 Credits
MPA 5860Public Budgeting3 Credits
MPA 5850Policy Analysis for Public Affairs and Leadership3 Credits
MPA 5810Public Private Partnerships3 Credits
MPA 5590Measuring Outcomes in Public and Non-Profit Organizations3 Credits
MPA 6800Strategic Leadership and Public Value3 Credits

Public Leadership and Management Concentration (9 Credits)

MPA 5120Public Human Resource Management3 Credits
MPA 5830Data Analytics for Public and Non-Profit Managers3 Credits
MPA 5870Financial Management in Government3 Credits

Non-Profit Management Concentration (9 Credits)

MPA 5680Nonprofit Financial Management and Resource Development3 Credits
MPA 5890Nonprofit Leadership and Governance3 Credits
MPA 5660Strategic Communication and Outreach for Nonprofit Management3 Credits

State and Local Government Management

MPA 5870Financial Management in Government3 Credits
MPA 5900Special Topics: Civic Innovation and Citizen Engagement3 Credits
MPA 5900Special Topics: Public Sector Innovation in State and Local Government (Summer 2020)3 Credits

Crisis and Emergency Management

MPACrisis Collaboration3 Credits
MPACrisis Leadership3 Credits
MPACrisis and Emergency Planning3 Credits

Students in the Online MPA program are eligible for the following tuition scholarships:

MPA Partner

Certain state agencies, municipalities, professional associations, and private corporations have formalized an agreement with us to be considered MPA Partners. Employees of our MPA Partners will receive a $1,000 scholarship for one term.


Veterans and active duty military from any branch are eligible to receive a $1,000 scholarship for one term in appreciation for their public service.

Ohio University Alumni

Ohio University graduates can receive a $1,000 scholarship for their second or subsequent term of the program.

Meet the faculty

Our online MPA is led by a faculty of industry experts with a wide range of interests and experiences. Committed to sharing their skills with the next generation of public administration professionals, our faculty fuels the dynamic online MPA program.

Read more about their research and work below, starting with our online MPA Program Director, Dr. Jason Jolley: