Florida State University

Askew School of Public Administration

College of Social Sciences & Public Policy

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MPA Admissions

The Graduate Application is available online here

To schedule an advising appointment, visit:
https://fsu-public-admin.youcanbook.me

Questions?
Contact Public Administration staff.

NOTE: FSU is waiving the GRE as a requirement for admission to certain master’s and specialist degree programs for the Spring 2021, Summer 2021, and Fall 2021 terms. The GRE waiver will be automatically applied to all applications for those terms.

General Deadlines

The application deadlines for regular graduate admission are listed below, however, in order to be considered for university-wide awards and assistantships, please read the information pertaining to the program you are applying to carefully.

Fall: July 1
Spring: November 1
Summer: March 1

*If the University deadline falls on a weekend, applicants have until the following Monday to submit their applications and all supporting documents.

Please note that all applications are reviewed holistically to determine the applicant’s eligibility. Applicants who do not meet one of these criteria are still eligible to apply and encouraged to address these issues in their statement of purpose.

For more information, please contact the Academic Program Specialist, (850) 644-3060

Master of Public Administration (MPA)

Our MPA program is fully accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) and regularly receives commendations from its accreditation reviews. While there are no official rankings of the over 250 graduate public administration programs in the United States, the Askew School is consistently highly rated by the magazine U.S. News and World Report. In its 2018 rankings, U.S. News cited the Askew School as the top ranked program in the state of Florida and in top 5 in the Southeast. Recent studies from other organizations and academic researchers have ranked the Askew School as third in the world in both faculty and student research publication productivity.

Application Requirements:

The Askew School seeks to admit a diverse group of students with strong academic ability and career potential who are committed to public service. Persons seeking regular admission to the MPA program must meet the University’s quantitative standards (a grade point average of at least 3.0 on all upper division work, required scores on the Graduate Record Examination or other approved test such as the GMAT), furnish three letters of recommendation (including two from professors for recent students), and a statement of purpose.

The School may grant provisional, and in some cases conditional, admission to students who meet the minimum university admission requirements, but whose records indicate some weakness in preparation. During their first semester, such students may be required to participate in programs such as the FSU Center for Intensive English Studies to enhance their chances of success and/or meet specific particular performance requirements.

Students who do not meet minimum qualifications may attempt to prove their ability to do graduate work by enrolling as a non-degree seeking student (consult the University Bulletin under Non-Degree Seeking Student Regulations). Those who seek this route to admission should enroll in a maximum of 12 hours (including PAD 5050, 5700, and two other core courses over two terms) and earn a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 for all graduate work. Such applicants are forewarned, however, that successful performance as a non-degree seeking student does not guarantee admission. A limit of twelve credit hours taken as a non-degree seeking student can be transferred into the MPA program if the individual is admitted. If a candidate does not gain admission, he or she may pursue one of the graduate certificate programs offered by the School, however, you must apply to the certificate program prior to completing the sixth credit hour towards that certificate.

Credit Hours Transfer

Students wishing to transfer course credits from a graduate program are normally limited to nine semester hours of recent courses. Students seeking to transfer credits must submit specified information, including course syllabi, to the MPA director for approval. Askew School students must seek prior approval if they plan to take a class elsewhere and apply it to their MPA degree.

Financial Aid Opportunities & Costs

The School offers a limited number of graduate assistantships and scholarships to MPA students on a merit basis. This assistance is generally awarded beginning in the Fall semester of each academic year. Some awards are made to incoming students, while others may be made to students already in the program. To be assured of consideration for such awards, students should submit applications by the beginning of February for the next fall term. Selected students will receive an in-state tuition waiver and a financial stipend for approximately 1/2 time service (20 hours per week). Students may be assigned as research or administrative assistants and/or online course mentors. Assistantships are generally only given out for fall term entry. Applicants interested in these awards must have the ability to work locally in the Tallahassee area.

In addition, students with strong undergraduate grades and GRE scores may apply through the School for Florida State’s very competitive University Fellowships. Applications must be submitted by January 10th for the following fall semester. These fellowships include an out-of-state tuition waiver. Other fellowship opportunities are announced throughout the year. The Graduate School maintains current information about sources of financial aid on their website. Application forms for loans and financial assistance may be obtained from the Office of Financial Aid. In addition, the Division of Student Affairs has information on assistantships available elsewhere in the university. Information on tuition and other costs for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 can be found here.

Florida State also offers a number of financial aid programs for economically disadvantaged students. The deadlines are typically early January, and require separate applications. Qualified students are encouraged to apply for the following scholarships:

  • The Auzenne/Wilson Assistantship program for Black graduate students offers stipend which may be supplemented by the Askew School (application due in early January).
  • The FAMU Feeder Fellowship for Black graduate students provides support which may be supplemented by the School (application due in early February).

GRE Waiver Now Available for the MPA Program

Criteria: The GRE requirement will be waived for outstanding applicants meeting at least one of the following criteria:

  • Five years of professional experience in a government agency, nonprofit entity, or private sector organization.
  • An undergraduate degree with at least a 3.5 GPA from a North American accredited institution.
  • A minimum of 12 hours of completed graduate coursework with at least a 3.0 GPA from a North American accredited post-secondary institution.

Applicants must provide evidence to satisfy the criteria being applied. Note: Applicants with a competitive GRE score will continue to be able to apply to the program and will not be held to these additional criteria.

To apply for the GRE waiver, please visit the following link:

https://connect.fsu.edu/register/mpagrewaiver

Application Materials Needed:

  • Statement of Purpose explaining career and educational goals
  • Resume/CV
  • Official and verified GRE Scores, or GRE Waiver Form (Florida State University’s test code is 5219)
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • International applicants whose native language is not English will need to submit an English proficiency exam such as the TOEFL or IELTS directly to Admissions
  • Official Transcript from each institution college credit was earned or attempted

Transcripts should be mailed directly (or sent electronically via your school) to FSU Admissions at:

Florida State University
Office of Graduate Admissions
314 Westcott Bldg.
Tallahassee, FL 32306-1410
USA

OR

Send electronic version to: graduateadmissions@fsu.edu

Please do not send official transcripts to any address other than what’s stated directly above. Transcripts sent to another email or mailing address will not be accepted and must be re-ordered by the applicant.

Statement of Purpose

For applicants applying for the Spring 2021 semester, there is no specific prompt for the statement of purpose and no required length. Applicants may choose to write on topics such as why they want to pursue and MPA degree, what they hope to get out of the program, what their career and personal goals are and how they can contribute to the field. They may also state whether they have any relevant experience or skills, and/or clarify any information that they think would be important to the evaluation of their application including any concerns the Admissions Committee may have.

For applicants applying for the Summer 2021 semester and onwards, there will be a series of short answer questions (each 250 words max) as part of the application. These questions may be accessed in the online portal.