Public Policy

Our Curriculum

The public policy undergraduate major curriculum combines an interdisciplinary set of core courses with context and concentration courses capped by a senior seminar.  Students majoring in public policy automatically fulfill the foundation requirements for the 4+1 BA/MPP.  For a complete explanation of the degree requirements, visit the Requirements page.


A unique feature of the public policy degree is the interdisciplinary nature of its study. The core course requirements provide the undergraduate major and minor the necessary foundations in government, economics, ethics, law and public policy analysis.


Majors also take context courses selected from government, history, sociology, social science and anthropology. Context courses ensure the development of the following perspectives on social issues and problems:

  • Organizational:  an understanding of the characteristics of behavior in human organizations and organizational settings;
  • Historical:  an awareness of the historical evolution of major public problems and social practices;
  • Comparative/international:  a recognition of international variation in governmental institutions and social structures;
  • Economic:  an understanding of economic systems, complex resource interdependencies and trade relationships; and
  • Social:  a sensitivity to the relevance of gender, race and ethnicity and the role of the individual in relation to larger social, economic, and historical forces.

Concentration Areas

Linking policy substance to analytics, students also take  courses in a concentration area such as: environmental policy; urban policy; health policy; international policy; institutions and public policy; ethnicity, race and public policy; science, technology and public policy; education and public policy; journalism and public policy.  With approval and support of program advisers, undergraduates are able to tailor concentrations to their own interests and skills.

Senior Seminar

Majors and minors conclude their program with a senior seminar, which entails an internship of the student's choice, and a senior thesis project in the student's area of  concentration.

Program Information

Faculty and Staff


Full Course List

Public Policy Course List

Schedule of Courses for
the Current Semester

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Contact Information

P: 510.430.2147

Last Updated: 6/22/17