Political Science and Public Administration

Five Year Combined BA/MPA Program



This program is designed to allow students to complete both their Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and the Master of Public Administration with a general concentration in Public Management within five years.1 The program is open to all students majoring in political science.  Students who are pursuing a concentration other than public administration at the undergraduate level will be required to take the course work in public administration in addition to their concentration courses to be eligible for the five year program.


To be eligible for this program, students are required to apply for the program during the junior year.   Students must meet the following eligibility requirements in order to be considered for admission to the Five Year Combined Track B.A./ M.P.A. program:

  • Students must have a minimum GPA of 3.4
  • Students should have completed at least 12 hours of political science courses at UNCP to be eligible to apply. 
  • Students must have taken the following courses before applying for the program at either UNCP or another institution:
  • PAD 3100- Introduction to Public Administration
  • PAD 3190- Introduction to Public Policy and Analysis

Students must have received a minimum grade of B in each of these courses, even if they were transferred from a different institution.

  • Students must complete an application through the Graduate School.  Students should apply for the program as a junior.
  • Students should include three letters of recommendation with their application materials.  Two of those letters must be from faculty in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration.
  • Students must attend a program orientation after acceptance.  Failure to attend orientation will result in students being disqualified from the program.


Continuing qualifications to maintain program eligibility include the following provisions.

  • Students must maintain a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.4 and a graduate GPA of 3.0.
  • Students must take all graduate course work on campus when available.
  • While officially, students are eligible to pursue any political science concentration for their undergraduate degree, they are required to take the public administration required courses to maintain program eligibility.
  • Students must follow the Plan of Graduate Study as a senior (see below).
  • Students must follow all Graduate School policies during their fifth year.
  • Students must agree to not work during their senior and fifth years.
  • Student recognize that tuition during their fifth year will be charged at the graduate school rate and not at the undergraduate rate.
  • Students who choose to take fewer credits each semester acknowledge that they will not be able to complete the program in five years.


Course Requirements—

Five year combined track BA/MPA program:                                                      Sem. Hrs.

Freshman Seminar-                                                                                                         1

General Education-                                                                                                         44

Major Requirements2-                                                                                                   36-49

Electives-                                                                                                                             27-39

Graduate Requirements-                                                                                              36

Total:                                                                                                                                     150*


Introductory Requirement (6 Hours): PLS 1000, 1010

3 Core Courses (9 Hours): PLS 2000 or 25103, 2170, 3520

Undergraduate Public Administration Courses (12 Hours): PAD/ PLS 2010 or PLS 2020 or PLS 2150, PAD 3100, PAD 3190, ECN 2020 or 2030

Graduate Crossover Courses4 (9 Hours): PAD 5000, PAD 5010, PAD 5050

Graduate Course Requirements (12 Hours): PAD 5080, PAD 5060, PAD 5500, PAD 5520

Graduate Course Electives (12 Hours): Students choose across any 5000 level Public Administration (PAD), Emergency Management (EMG), or Health Administration (HAD) courses.

Graduate Internship (3 Hours): PAD 5340


1 Students wishing to pursue a different concentration in their MPA work such as Health Administration, Criminal Justice, or Emergency Management must apply and proceed through the program post-baccalaureate and will be responsible for the complete coursework.

2 Students may complete any concentration as part of their bachelor of arts degree, but they are required to take these courses in addition. 

3 Students pursuing a concentration in International Studies are required to take both PLS 2000 and 2510.

4 These courses will count for both the graduate and undergraduate curriculum.  These courses will be taken during the second semester of the junior year and during the senior year.