Accelerated BA to MPA – Public Administration Program Policy

Students who wish to work toward both a Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree in Public Administration may do so in our Accelerated BA to MPA program if the student meets all application requirements. This accelerated plan provides the opportunity for students to complete both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in an efficient and effective format, normally in five year.  Undergraduate students who meet all the application requirements and are selected for enrollment into the MA program earn Pre-Master’s status as an undergraduate until they are officially graduated with their Bachelor’s degree and earn Graduate Student Status.  Once having earned Pre-Master’s status, the undergraduate student is able to enroll in graduate courses and follow the program plan outlined in the attached Accelerated BA to MPA Program Plan.

Admissions Requirements

Students interested in pursuing the Accelerated BA to MPA program plan in Public Administration must complete the following application requirements:  
    1. By the start of Pre-Master’s status, they must have:
        - 90 credit hours earned and an overall BGSU GPA of at least 3.2[1]
    2. A completed Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s Program Application;
    3. Transcripts from the registration and records office at BGSU[2];
    4. At least one letter of recommendation from a full-time BGSU faculty member, preferably from graduate faculty within the student’s major or targeted graduate program;
    5. A 250-500 word personal statement about your career goals and interest in public administration;
    6. A writing sample – preferably a paper written in a University class.

Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s Graduate College Policies

Student Status Once accepted into an Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s program, the student remains coded as an undergraduate student with Pre-Master’s status and officially becomes coded as a graduate student once the student has earned the bachelor’s degree.  The student’s coding as an undergraduate or graduate student is associated with other BGSU policies pertaining to degree status.

Credit hour policies The following policies apply to students in all Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s programs.

  1. After being accepted into an Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s program, students may take up to 12 credit hours of graduate credit while maintaining undergraduate status.
  2. Subject to program approval, students may apply a maximum of 12 credit hours to both the bachelor’s and master’s programs.  However, the ability to apply credit hours to both the undergraduate and graduate degree is influenced by each program’s minimum credit hour requirements (see policy #3). Credit hours will only appear once on the Academic transcript. Please note that the MPA degree requires 36 credit hours.
  3. At the end of both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees, a student must have a minimum of 150 discrete semester credit hours (120 + 30 = 150 state of Ohio regulated minimum credits). However, it is also the case that if a graduate program is an approved program for more than 30 credit hours (e.g., 36), then students must have successfully taken at least that number of graduate credit hours (e.g., 36) somewhere on their transcripts.
  4. Pre-Master’s students may enroll in 5000 and 6000 level graduate classes (not 7000).
  5. All graduate policies pertaining to graduate credit hours, time to degree, and other regulations are also applicable to Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s program students.

Tuition Students enrolled in Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s programs with Pre-Master’s status will pay tuition at the undergraduate rate through the completion of the bachelor’s degree.  Thereafter, students will be coded as graduate students and pay the graduate rate for tuition and fees.  

Financial Aid Students will be eligible for financial aid based on their BGSU student status as either an undergraduate or graduate student.  During a student’s Pre-Master’s status, they remain coded as undergraduate students and may be eligible for financial aid but not graduate assistantships. Once students become regularly admitted graduate students with full graduate student status, they may be eligible for graduate-level financial assistance, including graduate assistantships with stipends and/or graduate tuition scholarships.

Program Withdrawal A student admitted to an Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s program with a Pre-Master’s status may withdraw from the program and continue as a traditional undergraduate student toward the completion of the bachelor’s degree.

Program Dismissal Students who fail to maintain minimum requirements for adequate academic graduate standing will lose Pre-Master’s status, and as a result will be unable to continue taking graduate level courses. Under these conditions, if adequate standing is maintained for their undergraduate program, the student may continue in the bachelor’s degree program.

                                            Accelerated BA to MPA – Public Administration Program Plan  

Students enrolled in the accelerated BA to MPA program should follow the following course schedule for planning graduate work that begins while still enrolled as an undergraduate student, followed by the courses taken when fully enrolled as a graduate student in the MPA program.  In order to complete this plan in an accelerated format (4 years undergraduate + 1 year graduate), it is strongly recommended that students choose the Plan II option (non-thesis) and complete the internship and capstone course. Students who choose the thesis option should expect the completion of their master’s degree program to take longer than an additional extra (5th) year.

Pre-Master’s Status (limited to 12 credits maximum)

Courses that may be taken while an undergraduate student with Pre-Master’s Status include any POLS class at the 6000 level.

Master’s Degree Graduate Student Status

Students will meet with the Graduate Coordinator to plan their program.  Courses taken as a Pre-Master’s student must fit into the following requirements:

Core Courses (15 hours)

Required of all students

The five required courses in the MPA “core,” each worth 3 credit hours, are:
    · POLS 6210 Public Administration Theory and Behavior
    · POLS 6260 Public Management I: Personnel Management and Leadership
    · POLS 6280 Public Management II: Budgeting, Fiscal Policy, and Decision-making
    · POLS 6200 Public Administration and Public Policy
    · POLS 6750 Research Methods
NOTE:  Students must receive at least a 'B' grade in all core classes.

Additional Public Administration Coursework (18 credit hours)

A minimum of 9 credit hours of 6000 level courses must be chosen from the Political Science Department.  Sample courses include:  Ethics, Program Evaluation, Economic Development and Seminar in American Government.  Students with specific interests should meet with the Graduate Coordinator to discuss an individualized plan of coursework.  The other 9 credit hours may be chosen from the Political Science Department (either 6000 or 5000 level courses) or from other departments on campus such as Business Administration, Communications, Public Health and other approved graduate programs.  These courses should be chosen taking into account the student’s particular interests and career goals.

Planned Program

Students interested in creating a specialization should meet with the Graduate Coordinator as soon as possible to identify a plan of work.  Possible specializations could include for example Public Health Administration or Gender and Administration.

Thesis or Internship/Capstone (3 hours)

Students can choose to do either 1) a thesis or 2) complete an internship and take the Capstone course offered every Fall and Spring.  However, Accelerated students should note the comment above regarding choosing the Plan II option.

[1] For the purposes of this policy, BGSU GPA is calculated based on BGSU credits only. However, credits transferred into BGSU may be counted as part of credit hours earned (not GPA).
[2] The graduate college will obtain these records.