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Course List

Course Descriptions

Instructor: Carl W. Stenberg III

This foundation course introduces students to the historical and contemporary social, economic, political, and ethical context of public administration and governance in the United States. Students gain an understanding of public institutions and values and develop skills for interpreting and critically evaluating American public service issues. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Willow S. Jacobson

Provides a conceptual and experiential grounding in theories of management and organizational operation. Students learn how to analyze organizations and their environments from multiple perspectives. Students systematically examine important dimensions of organizational life—what motivates people, how decisions are made, challenges of diversity, conflict, and power dynamics.

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Ricardo S. Morse

Students learn about their leadership style and values, as well as strengths and weaknesses, with regard to public leadership at the personal, interpersonal, organizational, and community levels. Readings, assignments, and class activities focus on developing knowledge and skills necessary to successfully lead in public service settings. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Maureen M. Berner

First course in a two course sequence introducing students to applied research design, data collection, data management, data analysis, and analytical reporting to allow them to conduct original research, be informed consumers of other research, and ultimately improve public program planning and evaluation decisions.  To be taken with PUBA 720. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Maureen M. Berner

Second course in a two course sequence introducing students to applied research design, data collection, data management, data analysis, and analytical reporting to allow them to conduct original research, be informed consumers of other research, and ultimately improve public program planning and evaluation decisions. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Kelley T. O'Brien

Prepares students to communicate clearly and effectively as public service leaders, which includes reading, listening, and thinking critically; writing and speaking clearly, concisely, and unambiguously; giving organized and convincing oral presentations; and using appropriate tools and tone in preparing oral and written communications for diverse audiences. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Michele M. Hoyman

The motivations of public agency officials, interactions between bureaucracies and other political actors, and alternative strategies to control bureaucratic power and discretion in making, implementing, and evaluating public policies.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Leisha DeHart-Davis

Students gain knowledge of the behaviors and practices of human resource management, as well as an overview of diversity and inclusion in public sector workforces. Class learning is both theoretical and experiential.

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Gregory S. Allison

Teaches the principles of accounting and financial reporting in governmental and not-for-profit environment. Provides skills for analyzing the financial condition of governments and the efficiency and effectiveness of governmental programs.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)

Introduces students to the basic principles of public finance and covers the fundamental areas of public financial management, including the operating and capital budgeting processes used to obtain and allocate public resources, the role of public debt, and the issuance of annual financial statements. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Shannon H. Tufts

This course provides public managers with the basic knowledge to successfully invest in and manage strategic information technology projects.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: C. Tyler Mulligan

Graduate and professional students from varied backgrounds will learn key revitalization techniques and put them into practice by working directly on community economic development projects in NC.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: C. Tyler Mulligan

Interdisciplinary teams of students in this workshop-style course will engage in intensive experiential learning while assisting NC communities to achieve their community and economic development goals.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Michele M. Hoyman Semester: TBD

This course explores the dynamics of labor relations in the public sector (local, state, and federal government). Includes an overview of current labor issues and both an arbitration and bargaining scenario. The course is designed for any student who might work in the public sector at any level. 

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Kimberly L. Nelson Semester: Spring

Course addresses current trends affecting the management of service delivery in local governments of all sizes. Case examples and guest practitioners will offer glimpses into real world challenges and solutions. 

Electives (On Campus)

Examines conflict and cooperation among governmental officials representing national, state, and local government in the United States; changing roles of governments; and new mechanisms for intergovernmental collaboration.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Dale J. Roenigk

Course will provide introduction to a process for systematically thinking about decisions and valuable techniques for analyzing decisions. Students will learn how to construct models for decision making and how to use these models to analyze decisions.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Norma R. Houston

This course examines the legal, administrative, and organizational framework of state government with emphasis on how state government impacts local governments and nonprofits. Class assignments and final projects focus on practical skills development.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Leisha DeHart-Davis Semester: TBD

The U.S. public sector workforce is increasingly diverse in race, ethnicity, gender, religion, socioeconomic status, sexual preference, physical and mental abilities, and gender identity. Increased workplace diversity requires a new knowledge base, which this course seeks to impart through thought-provoking readings, in-class exercises, and lively and respectful discussions.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Staff

How do concepts learned in the classroom translate into real-world practice? The Carolina MPA Immersion Experience offers both online and on-campus students the opportunity to make this connection and learn from MPA faculty with expertise in government and non-profit administration. Held at the UNC School of Government, the course allows students and faculty to come together for three days to focus on a relevant topic in the field of public administration.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Staff

The MPA professional work experience practicum consists of 10-weeks of full-time employment or 15-weeks of part-time employment in a public agency or nonprofit organization. This course which is taken after completion of or waiver of the practicum requires students to demonstrate and expand on this learning experience within the context of public service leadership and management. Staff.

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Staff

The purpose of the portfolio is for students to demonstrate and further develop their public service leadership potential through a collection of academic and professional products. Students take this course during their final semester, allowing them to integrate and build upon core competencies of the program. Staff. 

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Kimberly L. Nelson

Nature of city or county manager's job: expectations of elected body, staff, public and professional peers. Examines contemporary issues in departmental operations that have significant effect on how manager's performance is perceived.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: William C. Rivenbark

The purpose of Performance Management in Local Government is to introduce students to how local officials measure the inputs, outputs, and outcomes of service delivery and how they use these performance data for making management and policy decisions. The course also includes how local officials use other types of data to information decision-making, including content analysis, benchmarking, financial condition analysis, and benefit-cost analysis.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Margaret F. Henderson

Examination of the managerial challenges posed by nonprofit organizations and of techniques and practices used by managers of nonprofit organizations.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Staff

This course provides basic financial skills for leaders of nonprofits, including bookkeeping fundamentals, interpreting financial statements, budgeting, cash management and investment, and legal compliance.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Margaret F. Henderson

This course is designed for graduate students who are seeking professional positions in local government or nonprofits. The overall objectives are to exchange information about issues of mutual concern to both nonprofits and governments.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Charles A. Szypszak

This course provides basic financial skills for leaders of nonprofits, including bookkeeping fundamentals, interpreting financial statements, budgeting, cash management and investment, and legal compliance.

Core Courses (On Campus and Online)
Instructor: Amy Wade

Nonprofit leaders and public officials rely on grants to help fund their grand plans. In this course you will learn the process of finding grants, how to prepare a grant proposal, and how to plan for and manage grant funds. This course will address some of the similarities and differences between the funding process from federal/state agencies and private foundations.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Staff

(Online Students Only) Students will hone their grant writing skills as they critique grant proposals, draft their own grant proposal, and learn about the role of program evaluation in grant writing and grant reporting.

Electives (Online)

Analysis of alternative approaches to planning and administering the budgets and financial operations of public agencies. Extensive use of case materials.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: John B. Stephens

Theory and practice of dispute resolution and consensus building processes for public policy and program implementation. Utilizes exercises to develop skills in multi-party conflict analysis, negotiation, and intervention for inter-governmental, nonprofit, and community disputes. Workshop-style course focuses on workplace and service provision conflicts to develop mediation skills; is comprised of short lectures, demonstration, and student practice of a mediation model/specific skill sets.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: John B. Stephens

Course is workshop-style that requires preparation via conference call or webinar; separate session on skills; and final requirement is a reflection paper. Course focuses on inter-organization and community settings to develop facilitation skills and is comprised of short lectures, demonstration, and student practice of facilitation strategies.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Michele M. Hoyman

This course covers economic development from the community as perspective. The class develops criteria that a community should use in making economic development choices. The course presents a wide range of strategies.

Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Jonathan Q. Morgan

Emphasizes the practical application and implementation of various approaches to economic development. Students will apply tools/strategies by doing case studies and small group projects based on real-world scenarios faced by local practitioners.

Electives (Online)
Electives (On Campus)
Instructor: Shannon H. Tufts

This course provides public managers with the basic knowledge to successfully manage technology projects and government information. The use of information technology has become an indispensable part of the public sector. Governments now use technology to communicate with citizens, disseminate information, and engage in digital democracy.

Electives (Online)
Instructor: Jeffrey A. Hughes, Glenn Barnes

This applied course looks at the diverse tools and strategies environmental service providers use to pay for their programs. It also examines the policy implications of deciding how to pay for these services.

Electives (On Campus)