Florida State University

Askew School of Public Administration

College of Social Sciences & Public Policy

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Master of Public Administration Degree Requirements

Find our handbook here here.

Requirements

Requirements include completion of eight (8) required courses, six (6) elective courses, and one (1) internship course for a standard of 45 semester hours (24 hours of required credits, 18 hours of elective credits, and 3 internship credits). The required courses include a substantive core of five courses, a two-course methodology sequence and an applied research project called the Action Report. Successful completion of the required courses (the core courses, methodology courses, and the Action Report) is defined as a grade of B- or better. Students who receive grades of C+ or less in any of the seven required courses must repeat them (see Forgiveness Policy below). If grades of C are received in elective courses, the courses need not be repeated if the overall grade point average remains at or above a 3.0.

Internship Waiver

Students who lack one year of full-time professional experience must take the internship class (PAD 5946) for an additional three (3) credit hours (see below). All students who have more than a year of full-time professional work experience, defined as a job requiring a BA degree (and totaling some 2,000 work hours), shall provide an official job description and a letter from one’s supervisor confirming that the position requires a bachelor’s degree and indicating how long the student has been on the job. The jobs that students hold during their master’s program can count towards the internship waiver, and more than one job can be used to compile the year’s work experience. For more on the internship, see the internship section.

Coursework Outline

The program enables students to choose from the university’s resources in a way that best fits their career needs and aspirations. As noted, the School has designed professional career paths oriented toward certain career paths.

Core Courses (15 credit hours)

  • PAD 5035 Policy Development and Administration
  • PAD 5050 The Profession of Public Administration
  • PAD 5106 Public Organizations
  • PAD 5227 Public Financial Management
  • PAD 5417 Human Resource Management

Methodology Sequence (6 credit hours)

  • PAD 5700 Research Design in Public Administration
  • PAD 5701 Quantitative Analysis in Public Administration

Internship (3 credit hours) [If you have less than one-year full-time professional work experience.]

  • PAD 5946 Internship

Applied Research Project (3 credit hours)

  • PAD 6908 Action Report
  • Electives (18 credit hours)

Electives (18 credit hours)

  • Career paths are available to review in the MPA Handbook, but any combination of 18 hours of PAD courses count for the elective requirement. Courses outside of the department may count as an elective with the MPA Director’s approval prior to taking the course.

Student Policies

The Student Conduct Code

The Askew School exists to prepare students for careers in public service. We strive to produce public servants who will conduct themselves according to high ethical standards. Public servants must act with a sense of responsibility toward others. Such conduct begins with a strong sense of personal responsibility. We, therefore, endorse the essential concept upon which Florida State’s Student Academic Honor Code is based — personal responsibility. The FSU Student Handbook delineates the Honor Code, identifies student rights and responsibilities, the procedures to provide due process, and penalties. The code states that students are responsible for their own academic honesty and that of others. Academic dishonesty as well as student and faculty responsibility is also defined. Breaches of the code are taken very seriously in the School.

Academic dishonesty include

  1. Cheating on tests;
  2. Plagiarism and unlawful “help” on written assignments;
  3. Stealing, buying, or referring to an unauthorized copy of an examination before it has been administered; and,
  4. Assisting in any of the above.

Student responsibility covers

  1. Abiding by the honor code, to include signing a pledge that you have not violated it;
  2. Turning themselves in if they have violated it; and
  3. Reporting or persuading violators to turn themselves in within 24 hours.

Equal Opportunity and Disabilities

Students with disabilities are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students with disabilities needing academic accommodations should register with the Student Disability Resource Center and bring a letter to class from the center indicating that the student needs accommodations. This should be done within the first week of class.

Sexual Harassment

In a diverse nation and globe such as ours, the future of our children depends upon how well we learn to live together as fellow citizens and human beings. The public servants of a diverse democracy must respect the diversity of those whom we serve. Consequently, we seek to conform to both the spirit and the letter of all laws against discrimination. Nearly all of our students will go on to exercise some form of organizational authority over others. Nearly all will become supervisors themselves. Consequently, we strive to represent and perpetuate high standards with respect to the use of power and authority.

Sexual harassment, for example, is not tolerated in any form; it is a violation of an individual’s human rights and a form of discrimination based upon sex. Male and female employees and students who engage in sexual harassment are subject to applicable disciplinary processes, and acts of sexual harassment which also constitute sexual battery will be referred to the appropriate authorities for prosecution.

The School’s policy on sexual harassment illustrates, through one of our own operating policies, how the School seeks to encourage responsible use of organizational authority while protecting the rights of all concerned.

The central principles that underlie appropriate faculty-student relationships are professionalism, respect, fairness, and concern. Faculty must avoid manipulation, coercion, or exploitation of students (especially acts directed at securing monetary, ego, or sexual gratification) and should demonstrate a sensitivity of cultural and personal diversity by avoiding racial, sexual, religious, and ethnic discrimination.

A particularly egregious form of exploitation is sexual harassment. Sexual harassment refers to unwanted sexual attention. The key elements of sexual harassment are that (a) there is a power imbalance between the faculty member and the student, with the faculty member taking advantage of this institutional authority and (b) there is emphasis in one way or another on the sexual identify of the harassed. What is violated is not only a relationship of authority but also one of trust. Sexual harassment has consequences for its victims that range from being psychologically upsetting to causing the victim to change disciplines or drop out of school.

Every student has the right to enjoy an academic environment free of unwanted sexual attention. Students’ academic prospects suffer when they are sexually harassed. We should not force the injured students to carry the burden of stopping sexual harassment. Preventing sexual harassment, and stopping it when it occurs, is a collective responsibility of the faculty. Trivializing it and not taking it seriously makes us an arm of the people who do it because the authority relations make the faculty member dominant and the student subordinate. Romantic alliances that seem consensual to a faculty member may be construed as coercive by a student. Students may fear that they will suffer retaliation if they confront a faculty member who makes sexual overtures to them. They may fear that they will not be believed if they complain to other authorities within the institution.

Because of the power imbalance, a student’s consent may mean consent to a condition of submission, and this power imbalance never goes away as long as one is faculty and the other is student. In addition, being labeled the “professor’s girlfriend or boyfriend” may be corrosive of the student’s professional development. The student may become isolated from the student community, have less support from cohorts, and be looked upon with suspicion.

Society and this institution have placed faculty in a position of trust and we in turn owe students the exercise of good faith in performing our professional duties. Faculty-student relationships that are other than professional represent a conflict of interest. Men and women in an educational community may interact in many appropriate ways (as teachers and students, advisers and advisees, and scholars and practitioners)–not, however, as romantic or sexual partners. Sexual relationships and dating between a faculty member and a student currently enrolled in the faculty member’s course, or under the supervision or direction of the faculty member, are prohibited. Because other students may believe that a student currently involved with a faculty member or romantically involved in the past may benefit from favoritism in obtaining academic rewards, the school strongly discourages sexual relationships and dating between a faculty member and any student in the school.

The faculty fully supports the University and College policies related to sexual harassment. Students are encouraged to notify the respondent (alleged perpetrator) in writing in an attempt to end the harassment, but this is not required before filing a complaint. Under the University’s policy a student should report incidents to the Office of Audit Services. In addition to the processes and procedures provided in the University’s policy on sexual harassment, additional channels of reporting violations of this policy are to report to the Director of the School or to the Dean of the College.

The faculty fully supports the University and College policies related to sexual harassment. Students are encouraged to notify the respondent (alleged perpetrator) in writing in an attempt to end the harassment, but this is not required before filing a complaint. Under the University’s policy a student should report incidents to the Office of Audit Services. In addition to the processes and procedures provided in the University’s policy on sexual harassment, additional channels of reporting violations of this policy are to report to the Director of the School or to the Dean of the College.

The complainant should provide the following information to facilitate a prompt and thorough investigation:

  1. The names, addresses, telephone numbers, administrative unit, and position or status of the complainant and the respondent, if known;
  2. Specific acts alleged, including dates, times, and locations;
  3. Names, addresses, and phone numbers of potential witnesses;
  4. The effect the alleged acts have had on the complainant;
  5. Actions the complainant may have taken to attempt to stop the harassment;
  6. Complainant’s suggestion of proposed action to address or resolve the harassment; and,
  7. Other information the complainant believes is relevant.

The full range of sanctions available to the School, the College, and the University will be considered available when a faculty member violates this policy. Complete information about the University’s policy can be found online at:

University Sexual Harassment Policy