The student must complete 45 credit hours beyond the MPA in the following areas:

I. The Ph.D. Core (18 hours). These 18 core course hours encapsulate the Written Preliminary Exams.

A. Substantive (12 hours)

1. PAD 6102 - Administrative Behavior (3)
2. PAD 6109 - Institutions and Society (3)
3. PAD 6054 - Intellectual History and Future of Public Administration (3)
4. PAD 6025 - Theoretical Perspectives in Public Policy (3)

B. Methods (6 hours)

1. PAD 6705 - Analytic Techniques for Administrators (3)
2. PAD 6707 - Logics of Inquiry (3)

II. Methods electives (6)

III. Political Process (3 Hours)

IV. Specializations (18 hours minimum)

V. Professional topics (0 hours)

VI. Dissertation (variable hours)


The Ph.D. program prepares individuals for roles in academic and applied settings where research competencies will be regularly employed. The Ph.D. methods sequence is designed to develop competencies appropriate to the career objectives of each student.

There are a variety of approaches to the conduct of research in public administration and policy. The faculty believes that students should be exposed to a common body of knowledge in methods, allowing for considerable individual choice. Students are encouraged to develop competency in a wide range of methodological approaches, including qualitative as well as quantitative tools. The methods requirement described below is intended to provide students with wide exposure to a variety of techniques and to allow them suitable opportunities to engage in research under the supervision of faculty.


Exemption of PAD 5700-5701

Doctoral students must have completed Master degree requirement of PAD 5700 and 5701. Doctoral students may apply for exemption from PAD 5700 and/or PAD 5701 by submitting a request to the Ph.D. Director. The request must list those courses from other universities which are proposed as substitutes for PAD 5700 and 5701. Those courses should include coverage of the following topics:

A. Basic descriptive statistics (mean, median, mode, variance, standard deviation, frequency distribution, cross-tabulations).

B. Basic research concepts and methods: the nature and process of research, of theory, of data collection and handling, of measurement in the social sciences (validity, reliability, levels of measurement), of sampling (types of samples and random sampling), of formulating research questions and planning research.

C. Basic probability theory: definition of probability and related concepts, independent and dependent events, multiplication and addition rules, permutations and combinations, contingent probabilities, probability distributions.

D. Hypothesis testing concepts: normal curve, binomial distribution, areas under curves as representations of probabilities, critical regions and significance levels, type 1 and type 2 errors, statement and testing of null and alternative hypothesis.

E. Introduction to survey research: planning and conduct of surveys, questionnaire design.

F. Basic research design concepts: control groups, random assignment, experimental and quasi-experimental designs and their validity, as covered in Cook and Campbell , Quasi-Experimentation.

G. Introductory inferential statistical procedures in analysis of variance, correlation and regression, multiple regression, nonparametric statistics (chi-square).

H. Students are required to be able to use a statistical package available at FSU.

I. Students are expected to be proficient in basic mathematics and algebra.

If the Ph.D. Director in consultation with the methods faculty unanimously approves the request, the student is exempted. Any member of that group may require that the student take an examination prepared by this group to verify the student's mastery of the required topics. The intent of this provision is that students, who clearly can verify their knowledge of the material by demonstrating completion of suitable courses or through other means, can be exempted without an examination. To support their requests students may submit course syllabi, test papers, project papers, and other appropriate materials.


Methods Requirement (6 Core hours and 6 Elective hours

Students must complete PAD 6705 - Analytic Techniques for Administrators, PAD 6707 - Logics of Inquiry, and two additional methods courses (6 hours). Students are encouraged to take applied regression analysis as one of their electives. Students are also encouraged to take additional methods courses of all types.


Political Process Requirement (3 hours)

Students not having prior work in political processes and institutions must take six credit hours of work. At least three hours must be political process or institutions course work in political science. The Ph.D. Director will work with students to select courses that develop competencies appropriate to the career objectives of each student. Students may exempt credit hours to the extent they have appropriate graduate work in political processes and institutions. For example, a student having three hours of advanced graduate work in political institutions and processes but no work in the specific discipline of political science would exempt three hours and be required to take one course in political science.

Professional Topics in Public Administration (0 hours)

All doctoral students, before admitted to candidacy, are required to enroll in PAD 6930 for zero (0) credit hours each semester. . To successfully complete the course, the student must attend a minimum of four approved research oriented events each semester. Approved events include any colloquia sponsored by the School including the Askew School Colloquium Series, dissertation defenses, research presentations by candidates for faculty positions, and annual meetings of professional societies such as the American Society for Public Administration and the American Political Science Association. Travel to professional conferences is encouraged. The School will not take attendance at such events; instead, students must notify the Ph.D. Director at least one week before the end of the semester of the date and nature of the events attended. The notification must be in writing or via e-mail. The course is graded pass or fail (S/U). Students are not permitted to progress to the dissertation defense until the PAD 6930 requirement has been met.

Dissertation (variable hours)

Ph.D. Candidates must complete a dissertation which makes an original contribution to knowledge. During the period that students undertake the dissertation, ordinarily at least two semesters, they must regularly enroll for dissertation credit for a minimum of 12 semester hours per term if they are in residence and serve as graduate assistants, 12 semester hours per term if they are in residence and not in residence, 12 semester hours per term if they are on fellowships, or 3 semester hours if they are not in residence. Dissertations are expected to be of publishable quality, either in whole or in part, according to the standards of the journals in the study field.