Woman working on her online MPA coursework on a laptop at a coffee shop

Online Master of Public Administration

Total Credit Hours


Cost Per Credit Hour


Application Deadline: August 12, 2024

Fall 1 2024 classes start on August 26, 2024

Become a Leader in Public Service

The online Master of Public Administration is offered through the LSU E. J. Ourso College of Business Department of Public Administration and LSU Online. This graduate-level degree targets both pre-service and in-service candidates with an interest in public service careers. Students will master the skills to participate in and contribute to the policy and administrative process. Students will also learn how to lead and manage in public organizations; analyze, synthesize, critically evaluate, and solve problems; and make and justify decisions. Graduates will leave the program with the ability to articulate and apply a public service perspective and interact productively with the workforce and citizenry. An online MPA is a versatile, non-thesis degree that prepares students for employment in the non-profit, public, and private sectors.

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NASPAA Accreditation
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Top 25 Ranking

The online MPA has earned a spot in the top 25 on all six editions of Eduniversal’s list of best master’s programs.

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Top Ranked by US News

U.S. News & World Report ranked the MPA in the top 30 percent of its 2019 Best Graduate Public Affairs Programs.

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Career Advancement

Among employed MPA graduates, 85 percent credit their promotion or salary increase to earning an MPA.

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Students can join the Public Administration Student Association (PASA), a professional organization for students in the MPA program.

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The program builds upon the strengths established by LSU’s long-standing MPA program while offering students the flexibility to complete their degree online. What you’ll find in the program are highly qualified faculty and staff who are dedicated to student success, a curriculum that provides a solid foundation for understanding public administration and public policy, and a strong and supportive alumni network.

Suzette Caleo
Associate Professor of Public Administration

Explore This Program

Cost Online MPA

Total credit hours per program: 36 credit hours

Cost per credit hour: $697

Total cost with fees: $25,092

LSU Online offers several ways to help you pay for your degree including credit for prior learning (PLA), financial aid, and veteran education benefits. Learn More.

The total cost above does not include transfer credit or financial aid. Cost per credit hour and fees are subject to change. Fee schedules may vary by program depending on course-specific fees for proctoring and/or books. Please contact a Student Success Coach for more information.

Course Listings Online MPA

The Master of Public Administration requires the completion of 36 credits distributed as follows:

Core Requirements Credit Hours
PADM 5600 Microeconomic Theory for Public Administration 3
PADM 7009 Data Analytics for Public Administration l 3
PADM 7010 Data Analytics for Public Administration ll 3
PADM 7852 Practicum 1
PADM 7901 MPA Capstone 2
PADM 7902 Seminar in Public Policy 3
PADM 7910 Public Administration Theory and Practice 3
PADM 7911 Organizational Analysis for Public and Nonprofit Organizations 3
PADM 7912 Public Human Resource Management 3
PADM 7914 Budgeting & Financial Management 3
Total Required Credit Hours 27


Elective Requirements Credit Hours
Elective* 9
Total Required Credit Hours 9


*Students can take 4000-level and higher courses as electives from any other College/department with approval. The course must be taught by a member of the LSU Graduate Faculty.

Admission Requirements Online MPA

Admission to graduate study is a two-fold evaluation process. The Office of Graduate Admissions determines eligibility and the Department of Public Administration determines admissibility to the degree program. Final admission to the university is subject to approval by the Office of Graduate Admissions. Students are eligible for admission to the Department of Public Administration once they have successfully submitted the following requirements. Each student and their portfolio will be evaluated on an individual basis.

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally-accredited college or university or the equivalent from a foreign institution
  • GPA – 3.0 on all undergraduate work (or last 60 hours) and a 3.0 on any graduate work already complete
  • Official transcripts of all previous college or university work
  • Statement of purpose – motivation to pursue an MPA degree, personal and career goals, your commitment to excellence, etc.
  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • Resume

Additional Admission Considerations:

  • Work experience
  • Activities indicating an interest in public management/public policy
  • Other experiences that indicate the ability to complete a professional program

*A GRE/GMAT score is not required for admission to the Master of Public Administration program. 

Additional information about LSU Graduate admission requirements are located here.

Career Opportunities Online MPA

  • Public Manager
  • Management Analyst
  • Public Policy Analyst
  • Budget Analyst
  • Lobbyist
  • Development Officer
  • Non-profit Manager
  • Chief Operating Officer
  • Special Projects Coordinator
  • Labor Relation Specialists
  • Social and Community Service Managers
  • Public Affairs Specialists
  • Urban and Regional Planner

Accreditation Online MPA

The online Master of Public Administration program is accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA), the membership association of graduate programs in public administration, policy, and affairs.

What Will I Learn? Online MPA

Online MPA students will learn:

  • The contents and boundaries of public administration as a discipline
  • Human resource policy, including procedures and principles of personnel administration
  • Statistics and data analysis for public administration and public policy
  • The study of budget techniques, the importance of budgeting in policymaking, and understanding the budget process
  • Concepts and analytical tools of microeconomics, and their relevance for decision and policy making in public and nonprofit sectors
  • To analyze elements of effective organizational functioning in the public and nonprofit sectors

Why Choose This Program? Online MPA

LSU's MPA program was first created in 1972. This long-standing program is now available as an online MPA! The online Master of Public Administration is accredited by the NASPAA and offers a flexible path to completion. According to graduates, this degree provides intellectually challenging coursework and many relevant learning experiences outside of the classroom. While enrolled, students can join the Public Administration Student Association (PASA). 

The MPA program is highly awarded. It ranks in the top 25 on all six editions of Eduniversal’s list of best master’s programs. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report ranked the MPA in the top 30 percent of its 2019 Best Graduate Public Affairs Programs.

Of LSU’s already employed MPA graduates, 85 percent credit their promotion or salary increase to earning an MPA. Alumni work at a variety of prominent institutions around the country, including the US Congress, the White House, the US Chamber of Commerce, American Cancer Society, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Johnson & Johnson, Louisiana Department of Education, and the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

You May Be Wondering...FAQ Online MPA

Question: Will my degree say LSU Online?

Answer: No, upon program completion you will receive the same diploma as your on-campus peers.

Question: Do I ever need to appear at the LSU campus for LSU Online programs?

Answer: No, you do not. LSU Online programs are 100% online and require no on-campus appearance. Check with your program for any activities or events that may be available to you should you be in the Baton Rouge area.

Question: How do I find out who my advisor and/or class instructor is?

Answer: Your advisor will be assigned by your department. Feel free to contact your department for specifics as to who your instructor will be for a class. Generally, Moodle (the class delivery system) displays class information at least 10 to 14 days before the class begins. Instructions for Moodle are covered in the LSU Online Orientation.

Question: Is financial aid available for online students?

Answer: Yes, students in an LSU Online graduate program may be eligible for financial aid. For more information email your questions to lsuonlinefinaid@lsu.edu.

Question: Is the Master of Public Administration from LSU fully accredited?

Answer: Yes, the Master of Public Administration from LSU is accredited by the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA).

Question: Do I have to pay the full tuition upfront?

Answer: No, you pay as you go for each course you’re registered in for the term.

Testimonials Online MPA

"Receiving my MPA, and specifically from LSU Public Administration, opened the door wit Los Angeles County Government and their prestigious management trainee program. I competed for one of 12 positions with other MPAs from schools such as Harvard, USC, NYU, and UC-Berkeley. After joining the program, I soon realized that my LSU education could compete with, and in some regards, exceed, the experiences of my peers. That experience has continued through years, including my new position."

Mark Cooper

Chief of Staff — Office of the Louisiana Governor

"The combination of business courses with a focus on public policy - alongside fantastic networking opportunities - provided me with not only the knowledge and skills key to working on complex policy issues but also a deeper appreciation for building strong relationships and coalitions to help achieve results."

Megan Bel Miller

Chief of Staff — U.S. House of Representatives (Congressman Steve Scalise)

"Earning the MPA helped my understand the public sector holistically. Politics, laws and rules, research, the public, the civil service, and budgeting are interconnected and influence one another. An MPA challenged me to understand these relationships. It enabled me to think more critically and to approach governmental opportunities and problems more realistically."

Mason Hess

Budget Analyst — New York City Economic Development Corporation

"I always look back fondly at my time spent at LSU. I entered the MPA program expecting to expand my current skill set and continue along in the field I was presently in. What I didn’t expect but was lucky enough to find was a supportive, motivating, and enriching environment where I was able to connect with my professors and fellow students to enhance my learning experience. By graduation I found myself in a new career field with a large network of peers I could rely on for guidance and support. I continue to utilize these connections and the tools I gained during my time in the program and I am always excited to meet a new LSU MPA grad."

Kaitlin Sylvester

Directore of Programs and Partnerships — National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable

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Ready to reach your goals?

Take the first step forward by completing the form and our enrollment team will contact you soon to discuss:

  • Additional information on the Master of Public Administration online program
  • Financial aid options (employer funding, military benefits)
  • Receiving credit for past education (transfer, professional development)
  • The admissions process and timeline

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