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Mission Statement

The mission of the AU Masters of Public Policy (MPP) program is to prepare students to advance the quality of policy making in a variety of institutional settings in the U.S. and abroad by instilling a blend of analytical, contextual, ethical, and substantive skills and knowledge.

We will achieve our mission by preparing students to:

  1. Formulate and evaluate public policy, and communicate analysis effectively to relevant stakeholders;
  2. Address societal problems with policy analysis in the context of political/policy processes in the U.S. and abroad;
  3. Improve the allocation of resources using sound, evidence-based evaluation of the costs and benefits of policy alternatives; and
  4. Incorporate a range of values into policy analysis, including democratic/constitutional values, respect for the diversity of people and perspectives in the policy process, and ethical principles including commitment to upholding the public trust.

For the foreseeable future, the United States and other governments worldwide face the challenge of discerning how best to harness the energy and expertise of public servants, the passion and commitment of nonprofit organizations, and the dynamism and creativity of markets in the pursuit of democratic and constitutionally informed public purposes.

Through our teaching and unique location in Washington, D.C., we seek to help meet this challenge by enhancing the knowledge, professional skills, and leadership potential of our students in their public service careers.

We educate students entering, engaged in, and interacting with government agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

We treat administration and policy as interrelated subjects strongly influenced by the values of public service and democratic constitutionalism.

Through our research and civic involvement, we also seek to enhance what is practiced and taught in our field.

We seek to attract a diverse group of talented students. We encourage their active involvement in learning, research, and professional activity and strive to enhance their appreciation of the responsibilities of public service.

We Know Success Facts

Employers, Recent MPP Graduates

  • Agricultural Retailers Association
  • American Association of Colleges of Nursing
  • American Councils for International Education
  • American Institutes for Research
  • APCO Worldwide
  • Atlantic Council
  • Child Trends
  • Children's Dental Health Project
  • DC Department of Human Services
  • DDC Advocacy
  • Deloitte
  • DeVito for Senate
  • Federal Bureau of Prisons
  • Federal Financial Analytics, Inc.
  • Haddad Media
  • Impaq International
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Maryland Office of the Public Defender
  • National Association of Social Workers
  • National Community Reinvestment Coalition
  • National Governors Association
  • Nuclear Energies Institute
  • Office of Management and Budget - Health Division
  • Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute
  • Postsecondary National Policy Institute
  • State of Maryland Office of Legislative Services
  • Turner Consulting Group
  • U.S. Departments of Health & Human Services, Homeland Security, State, Transportation, Food and Drug Administration, Government Accountability Office, and Navy

Recent MPP Practicum Projects

Client: Southwest Business Improvement District
Project: Southwest Business Improvement District Policy Memo

Client: International Justice Mission
Project: Shifts Towards Justice: Recommendations On Crafting A Theory Of Change To Eradicate Modern-Day Slavery

Client: Office of Policy Development and Research
Project: Recommendations for the Implementation and Enforcement Issues of the Smoke-Free Housing Rule

Client: National Juvenile Justice Network on the Youth Justice Leadership Institute.
Project: 2018 National Juvenile Justice Network Evaluation Report

Client: The USAID Office of Land and Urban
Project: USAID Indonesia Data Visualization

Client: ICF
Project: First Generation College Student Success: Theory and Practice

Client: Just Detention International-South Africa
Project: Prison Policy and Strategic Analysis

Client: National League of Cities
Project: Identify minute trends contributing to city manager uncertainty regarding the fiscal health of their cities in the post-recession era (2010-2017).

Concentration Booklet

Concentration Featured: Advanced Policy Analysis

Social Policy Sample Courses
Semester Courses Level
Fall (1) PUAD 601: Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis I
PUAD 606: Foundations of Policy Analysis 
PUAD 670: Economics for Policy Analysis
All courses are core requirements, should be taken in the first semester.
Spring (2) PUAD 602: Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis II 
PUAD 616: Legal Basis of Public Administration 
PUAD 631: Financing Government Services
Core Requirement 
Core Requirement for Legal, Org, Ethical Context 
Core Requirement
Summer (3) PUAD 684: Organizational Analysis Core Requirement
Fall (4) PUAD 603: Policy Process 
PUAD 604: Public Program Evaluation 
PUAD 672: Advanced Quantitative Methods
Core Requirement 
Concentration Option* 
Concentration Option*
Spring (5) PUAD 671: Cost Benefit Analysis 
PUAD 688: Policy Practicum 
[Any elective of your choosing, e.g. PUAD 685: Social Policy]
Concentration Option* 
Core Requirement 
Elective

* Any of these courses will also count towards the Applied Policy Analysis requirement for the MPP program as a whole.

Concentration Featured: Social Policy

Social Policy Sample Courses
Semester Courses Level
Fall (1) PUAD 601: Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis I
PUAD 606: Foundations of Policy Analysis
PUAD 670: Economics for Policy Analysis
All courses are core requirements, should be taken in first semester
Spring (2) PUAD 602: Quantitative Methods for Policy Analysis II
PUAD 685: Social Welfare Policy and Programs
PUAD 685: Education and the American Policy System

Core Requirement
Concentration Option
Concentration Option

Summer (3) PUAD 617: Project Management Core Requirement for Legal, Org, Ethical Context
Fall (4) PUAD 603: Policy Process
PUAD 604: Public Program Evaluation
PUAD 631: Financing Government Services
Core Requirement
Core Requirement for Applied Policy Analysis
Core Requirement
Spring (5) PUAD 685: Healthcare Policy
PUAD 684: Organizational Analysis
PUAD 688: Policy Practicum
Concentration Option
Core Requirement
Core Requirement

*These are sample course plans. Actual course work may vary.

MPP Graduation Rates

Social Policy Sample Courses
Student Entering Academic Term Student Entering Cohort Count at Census Graduated within 1years Graduated within 2years Graduated within 3 years Graduated within 4 years
2015-2016 38 5 26 34 35
2016 35 0 22 31 32

Math & Statistics Boot Camp

The objective of Boot Camp is to improve your math skills while you get to know your peers.

Boot Camp is tailored exclusively for incoming MPP students wishing to prepare for the advanced economic and mathematical requirements of that degree, as well as for those MPA students committed to pursuing a policy analysis concentration (i.e., taking PUAD 601 and/or 670 in their first semester at AU).

Math & Statistics Boot Camp is held in August, the weekend before Fall Orientation for one full day (Friday). Email invitations will be sent in summer to all new eligible MPA and MPP students for this year’s Boot Camp, to be held on Friday, August 20th, 2021, location TBA.

Contact Marquise McGraw, mcgrawm@american.edu, with questions.

Please refer to the 2022 Syllabus for anticipated course content.

Basic Mathematics Review

  • Greek notation
  • Operators
  • Order of operations
  • Basics of probability
  • Logs
  • Exponents
  • Properties of expected values
  • Equation of a line
  • Tangencies

Algebra

  • Manipulating mathematical equations
  • Solving equation(s) with one or two unknowns, including equations with logs & exponents