Master of Public Administration Online

Earning an online Master of Public Administration from Lamar University is one of the best ways to advance your career and announce you’re ready for greater professional responsibilities. Our MPA leads to a wide variety of opportunities in policy development and implementation; disaster management; local, state and national government sectors; research; and nonprofit organizations.

Start Date:


Program Overview

Get to know our 100% MPA online program

Lamar Online Degree Tuition Cost
Total Program Cost
Lamar Program Duration
16 months
Program Duration
Degree Credit Hours Required
Credit Hours

Lamar University’s Master of Public Administration (MPA) online program provides you with the comprehensive education you need for advanced management positions. A valuable addition to your existing career—or a great start for a career change—this degree shows employers you’re serious about public service and committed to improving society.

The MPA program is designed for working professionals and allows you to decide when and where to attend online courses. This 100% online MPA program gives you the critical-thinking and decision-making skills you need to serve as a confident, competent leader for the public.

This online Master of Public Administration degree has 36 credit hours of coursework that emphasize state policy, constitutional law, ethics and morality in public administration, as well as the leadership methods, strategy and administrative politics necessary to bring about change in high-performance organizations. Major theoretical and practical approaches central to managing public sector organizations and problem-solving government issues are also examined.

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Learn more about Lamar University’s affordable tuition

The following is the tuition breakdown for students pursuing a Master of Public Administration. Our tuition is affordable, and can be paid by the course.

$11,682 Total program cost

Tuition and fees are subject to change without notice due to action by the Board of Regents or the Texas State Legislature.

Total program cost depends upon transfer hours and program advisement relevant to program requirements. For more information, contact a Lamar University enrollment specialist.

Financial Aid

Ready to get started on your degree program online but need help finding ways to fund your education? We can help you discover student financing sources that include grants, loans and other payment options. Learn more about financial aid here.

In addition to the textbook, some courses may require ancillary course materials that may range up to $150 each. Use of additional resources are at the discretion of each professor.


See the milestones to guide your student journey

Our Master of Public Administration online program features multiple start dates to accommodate your busy schedule. Find the start date that works best for you and apply before the application deadline associated with it.

Upcoming Start Dates:

Apply by:9/28/22
Start Class:10/19/22

8 week courses Program Start Date Application Deadline Document Deadline Payment Due Last Class Day
Fall 1 08/22/2022 08/01/2022 08/08/2022 08/15/2022 10/14/2022
Fall 2 10/19/2022 09/28/2022 10/05/2022 10/10/2022 12/06/2022
Spring I 01/17/2023 12/21/2022 01/03/2023 01/09/2023 03/07/2023
Spring II 03/08/2023 02/15/2023 02/22/2023 02/27/2023 05/02/2023

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View the steps to being admitted into our online program

The Master of Public Administration online program has specific requirements that applicants must meet to enroll. Please read the admission guidelines to ensure you qualify. All students seeking admission to the public administration degree program must first meet the required standards of the College of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also have the approval of the Department of Political Science.

Online Application

Submit your application and one-time $25 application fee online.

Bachelor's Degree

Undergraduate degree from an accredited university.

Minimum 2.6 undergraduate GPA

Students with an overall GPA of 3.25 and higher may be eligible for a GRE waiver.

MPA Admission Requirements

  • Completed online application form (U.S. or international) and pay a one-time application fee of $25
  • Submit official transcripts from all high schools, colleges, and universities you have attended.
  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited university in political science, public administration, emergency management, or the equivalent. Applicants with degrees in other fields are required to have taken an American Government course.
    • Applicants with a conferred Master’s Degree may be granted a GRE waiver and unconditional admittance to the program and must meet all other prerequisite requirements.

Conditional Requirements

  • Overall GPA of 2.6 to 3.24 may be granted conditional admittance to the program and the student must maintain a GPA of 3.0 for each course in the first 9 hours of graduate coursework to continue in the program
  • Overall GPA below a 2.6 must meet the GRE / GPA standards assigned for the College of Graduate Studies for Admittance according to the formula (GPA x 50) + (GRE Verbal + Quantitative) > or = 428

Send all required documents to:

Lamar University Online Admissions
PO Box 10017
Beaumont, TX 77710


Submit electronically to [email protected]

Check to see if the program is offered to residents in your state before applying by clicking here.

* All applicants must submit official, sealed transcripts from each institution attended to the Admissions Office. All degrees must be from a regionally accredited institution. Lamar University Office of Admissions will no longer require or college community college transcripts for graduate applicants. Official transcripts from all other institutions will be required. However, if a department or program wishes to review a community college transcript for decision purposes, the department or program may directly request the applicant to submit the official community college transcript(s) to the Office of Admissions for processing. Send transcripts to: Lamar University, P.O. Box 10017, Beaumont, Texas 77710


Take a look at the online MPA curriculum

Coursework for this online MPA consists of 12 courses that total 36 hours and features public-private partnerships, leadership, policy formulation, state law and disaster policy. A thesis and non-thesis track are available.

Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course is designed to introduce graduate students to the study of public policy. The course will provide a general introduction to that subfield of political science. It will also acquaint students with contemporary debates regarding collective action, paternalism, policy competition, policy learning, and other issues of interest to policy scholars.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course is a survey of disaster policy in the United States for policy and planning decision-makers who must focus on the impact that human settlement patterns, land use decisions, and risky technology can have on vulnerable populations. This course focuses on the social and political aspects associated with disaster policy and planning.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course focuses on defining and tracing the evolution of Public administration; examines the individual fields of study in public administration as well as the changes that have occurred over time; analyzes the concepts, theories, and practices integral to understanding the American bureaucracy and the political environment in which it operates. The course introduces the literature review process and establishes the base of public administration for successful completion of the Master of Public Administration program.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course introduces students to the major theoretical and practical approaches central to managing public sector organizations by reviewing the major topics, issues, and contributions in the literature on organizations and management with an emphasis on government organizations. It will consider problems in government but also emphasizes the many examples of successful management in these organizations, including some of the past and most recent reforms and improvements.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course is a survey of the ethical nature and dilemmas of public administration in American society. It focuses on ethical dilemmas and concerns arising from the daily exercise of legitimate discretionary power as well as the conflicts that can emerge with personal moral beliefs. The overall goal is that students will be able to assess and analyze the extent to which ethical and moral values are deeply and widely embedded in our democratic system.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course is a survey of the theories and skills for managing in public and nonprofit organizations. Focus is placed upon leadership and management approaches, strategy, decision making, power, and organizational politics to bring about change in high performance public organizations.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course provides in-depth analysis of the U.S. Constitution and focuses on specific constitutional amendments, doctrines, and landmark Supreme Court cases as they relate to public administration and administrative professionals. Particular emphasis is given to separation of powers; federalism; individual rights in administrative actions and adjudication; the delegation and non-delegation of administrative power by Congress to administrative agencies; judicial deference to administrative interpretations of statutes; and, the constitutional rights and liabilities in public administrative workplace environments.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course provides a general overview of the political systems of the American states, including state constitutions and the branches of state government. It will also focus on the relationship between states and the national government. Local governments, and their role in governance, and their relationship to states will be important components of the course as well.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course focuses on management theories in the public and nonprofit sector. It includes theoretical questions surrounding decision-making processes and the competing values of managerial practices. The course also examines the concepts of bureaucracy in democratic governance and the complexity of tasks confronting public managers, i.e. the need to include private business and nongovernmental agencies in public management.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
This course is a survey of the theories and skills for public Administrators to better understand the factors that can impact the effectiveness of hazard and disaster management in the public interest. Focus is placed upon the theoretical paradigms and research conducted in the areas of risk perception, communication, and decision-making as it relates to hazards and disasters. This course will examine how risk perception, communication, and decision-making vary throughout the disaster management process to give the public administrator a solid foundation of how the decisions they make in everyday government operations can impact their effectiveness in keeping a hazard from turning into a disaster.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
A general overview of the origin and organization of law and lawmaking in the states provides a foundation to examining the stages of the policy process and the implications of public policy for both politics and society. Next, to delve more closely into the way state government and political organizations affect public policy, we’ll spend time investigating how Texas’s political culture shapes its policy choices. Finally, the intergovernmental response to social problems such as immigration, Medicaid, and recreational marijuana also warrants attention to the principle of American federalism and the interconnectivity federal, state, and local governments to responding to them.
Duration: 8 weeks
Credit Hours: 3
Application of knowledge of public policy and social science methodology to the planning, execution, and reporting of public policy research.

Comprehensive Exam

Following completion of core courses, each student is required to take a competency exam that will demonstrate your ability to synthesize and apply material from the program. The exam is pass/fail and offered twice yearly.

To successfully earn the MPA degree, students must complete 36 hours of graduate work. These hours include 15 hours of core coursework. The non-thesis track includes 21 hours of supporting coursework. The thesis track includes 15 hours of supporting coursework and 6 hours of thesis coursework.

*Distance learning fee is included in the tuition listed.

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