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Apply to the MPA Program
Those who wish to be considered for the MPA program are required to submit an application and supporting materials to the UND School of Graduate Studies. The School of Graduate Studies serves as the clearinghouse for applications. The program does not see or have access to files until the School of Graduate Studies certifies them as complete.
All applicants are required to submit the following materials:
- Application form. Applicants are required to use the online application.
- Application fee; required for each application submitted. The application fee is waived for McNair Scholars.
- Three letters of recommendation. The MPA program prefers that at least one recommendation be from a college instructor.
- One official copy of all academic transcripts.
- Applicants must have a four-year bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or university to be considered for the MPA program.
- To be considered, applicants must have a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.75 for all undergraduate work or a GPA of at least 3.0 for the junior and senior years of undergraduate work (based on A=4.00).
- Students not meeting the minimum GPA requirement are not considered further, unless meeting one of the below exceptions*. If a student not meeting the cutoff is ultimately admitted, it will only be under Provisional Status.
- Statement of Goals and Objectives. Applicants should explain their background and career objectives and how the MPA would help them succeed. Also, they should highlight experiences that are relevant, or that will help us become more familiar with them. Applicants also have the ability to upload a resume into the application system.
- Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General test or, the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or the Law School Admission Test (LSAT).
- The program does not waive the standardized test requirement.
- The LSAT will be accepted only for students applying to the joint JD/MPA program.
- The School of Graduate Studies policy is that GRE and GMAT scores must not be older than 5 years, because the testing service will not send them to the graduate school.
- The School of Graduate Studies must receive an official copy from the testing service.
- For any category, we set a minimum GRE score (verbal + quantitative) of 960, which is equivalent to a 480 on the GMAT. Students not meeting the minimum GRE or GMAT are not considered further, unless meeting one of the below exceptions*.
For applicants meeting the minimum GRE and GPA requirements, we use the following formula, which factors in both undergraduate GPA and GRE (verbal and quantitative) or GMAT score. A relatively lower GPA could be compensated for by a high GRE score and vice versa.
((Verbal GRE + Quant. GRE)/2) + (200 * UGGPA)
- We look for a MINIMUM formula score of 1100 to be considered for Approved or Qualified admission. Formula scores greater than 950, but less than 1100, are considered for Provisional admission.
- A minimum TOEFL Score of 550 on the paper-based test or 213 on the computer-based test, or for the Internet-based TOEFL, a composite score of 79, with minimum scores of 21/30 (Speaking*); 19/30 (Listening); 19/30 (Reading); and 17/30 (Writing) for applicants whose native language is not English. Applicants may also meet language requirements by presenting IETLS scores of 6.5.
- Applicants being considered for Graduate Teaching Assistantships must achieve these minimum TOEFL scores, and have a minimum score of 26/30 on the Speaking subtest.
- Students who have received a bachelor’s degree or higher from the United States or English-speaking Canada are not required to submit the TOEFL.
- Minimum competence in public administration, administrative sciences, and methodology. This competence is normally demonstrated by at least one course in each of four fields (Political Science, Accounting, Economics, and Statistics), by special exams in the fields, or by practical experience. The program has four competency areas that need to be met by taking at least one undergraduate course: statistics, political science, economics, and accounting. Any course from these areas will suffice. If students apply and we note that one or more has not been taken, they can still be accepted into the program and would be given a period of time after starting the program to complete the missing requirement(s) (usually before earning 18 credits in the program). UND offers all of these, some possibly online, but they can be taken anywhere. The credits do not count toward the credits needed for the MPA degree. If the courses are not taken from UND all transcripts need to be forwarded to the Graduate School. Another option is to take a challenge exam in the subject area. In this case, students generally study independently and take a multiple-choice exam, on which they must score at least 70%.
- Twenty hours in the social sciences, business administration, and related field
Students who do not meet the requirements under 8 and 9 will be given the opportunity to fulfill them.
UND School of Graduate Studies
Manage your online application
Priority Application Deadlines
- Fall: May 15
- Spring: October 15
- Summer: March 15