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Department of Public Administration

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Principal Course Distribution Requirement

Principal courses offer introductions to the breadth of disciplines in the College. They acquaint students with the subject matter in an area, with the types of questions that are asked about that subject matter, with the knowledge that has been developed and is now basic to the area, and with the methods and standards by which claims to truth are judged.

Students must complete courses in topical groups in three major divisions (humanities, natural sciences and mathematics, and social sciences). For the B.A., three courses are required from each division, with no more than one course from any topical group. The B.G.S. requires two courses from each division, with no more than one from any topical group. To fulfill the requirement, a course must be designated as a principal course according to the codes listed below.

These are the major divisions, their topical subgroups, and the codes that identify them:

Humanities

  • HT: Historical studies
  • HL: Literature and the arts
  • HR: Philosophy and religion

Natural Sciences and Mathematics

  • NB: Biological sciences
  • NE: Earth sciences
  • NM: Mathematical sciences
  • NP: Physical science

Social Sciences

  • SC: Culture and society
  • SI: Individual behavior
  • SF: Public affairs

No course may fulfill both a principal course distribution requirement and a non-Western culture or second-level mathematics course requirement. Laboratory science courses designated as principal courses may fulfill both the laboratory science requirement and one of the distribution requirements. No free-standing laboratory course may by itself fulfill either the laboratory science requirement or a principal course requirement. Students should begin taking principal courses early in their academic careers. An honors equivalent of a principal course may fulfill a principal course requirement.

View all approved principal course distribution courses »

Non-Western Culture Requirement

A non-Western culture course acquaints students with the culture, society, and values of a non-Western people, for example, from Asia, the Pacific Islands, the Middle East, or Africa. Students must complete one approved non-Western culture course.

One approved non-Western culture course is required. Occasionally courses with varying topics fulfill the non-Western culture course requirement. See the Schedule of Classes for details. These courses are coded NW.

View all approved non-Western culture courses »

Transfer and Earned Credit Course Codes

These codes are used to evaluate transfer credit and to determine which academic requirements a course meets.

  • H: Humanities
  • N: Natural Sciences and Mathematics
  • S: Social Sciences
  • W: World Civilization and Culture
  • U: Undesignated Elective Credit (course does not satisfy distribution requirement)

All Public Administration courses

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Introduction to administration, public policy and policy makings is the study of government workers, the organizations in which they work, how they are financed, and how government engages citizens to help form and maintain community. In various ways, the class sessions explore the three important issues of public administration: discretion, authority, and accountability. (Same as POLS 330.) Prerequisite: POLS 110. LEC
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Introduction to administration, public policy, and policy making, for honors students is the study of government workers, the organizations in which they work, how they are financed, and how government engages citizens to help form and maintain community. In various ways, the class sessions explore the three important issues of public administration: discretion, authority, and accountability. (Same as POLS 331.) Prerequisite: POLS 110. LEC
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Focuses on building the quantitative analysis skills of students in public administration. Students learn basic and intermediate statistics, and methods of data analysis and interpretation. Students gain exposure to the uses of data in public organizational settings. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331; and Math 101 or equivalent placement. LEC
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Focuses on some of America's most vexing public policy challenges and emphasizes the political context of difficult choices. Course examines models of decision-making and the process of policy analysis. Students learn how to apply the tools of policy analysis to make policy judgments. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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Examines the problems posed by behaviors within and by bureaucracies. Provides students with a set of conceptual tools for understanding the organizational environment in which policy analysts ply their profession and the role of a manager within such organizations. Offers strategies for the policy professional seeking to navigate large bureaucracies. Readings and class discussions integrate theoretical analyses of organizations with detailed case studies. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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Addresses the moral challenges facing leaders in the public and nonprofit sectors. Examines the values and virtues important to sustained ethical leadership, as well as strategies to build strong institutional cultures and support ethical practices in institutions. Considers moral and political theory by focusing on contemporary cases and issues. Students learn how to identify moral issues in public life and public management. There is a special focus on the integration of moral concerns into public discussion in a manner that contributes to good policy and does not polarize issues. This course considers moral and political theory by focusing on contemporary cases and issues. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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An interdisciplinary study of American cities, focusing on the rapidly changing demographic, physical, political, social, and economic changes. Sunbelt cities, edge cities, the rustbelt cities, planned and unplanned suburban communities, as well as declining center cities and newly revitalized downtowns are considered. The role of immigration and migration in reshaping the urban environment, and the effects of globalization are also examined. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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This course is devoted to topics in public budgeting, finance and financial management. These activities play a central role in public management. The intent of this course is to understand the role these activities play in local, state, and federal governments and to see how policy and management are shaped and influenced by budgets, financial reports, and tax policy. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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Effective human resources management is one of the key goals of organizations in both the public and private sectors. This course focuses on human resources management in a public sector context with particular emphasis placed upon past, current, and future challenges in the field. The course covers topics such as the recruitment, selection, and compensation of public sector employees, as well as more contemporary issues such as diversity management and public sector personnel reform. Prerequisite: PUAD 330, or PUAD 331. LEC
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Examines the administration of justice and focuses on differential and discriminatory treatment in policing, criminal prosecutions, trials, sentencing, or imprisonment. Also considered are the basis and impact of racial profiling, harassment, arbitrary detention, and abusive treatment of members of racial and ethnic groups, immigrants, and/or other vulnerable groups by law enforcement, and disparate treatment by prosecutors and the courts. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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Analyzes diversity and leadership in public and private institutions along ethnic, racial, and gender lines and the challenges of the facilitation of open dialogue on diversity. Examines the political, historical, social, and economic reasons why Americans of different ethnic, racial, and gender groups hold divergent views about major public policy areas, as well as fundamental views about democratic participation. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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This course focuses on the economic, social, and legal foundations of the nonprofit sector. Nonprofits are examined in the context of a three-sector economy, with emphasis on the ways in which nonprofits relate to the public and private sectors. The course examines the diversity and scope of the nonprofit sector, with primary focus on the health, education and welfare functions performed by nonprofits and on various patterns of community action for attaining social welfare objectives. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331, and PUAD 332. LEC
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Concepts of community, social capital, and civil capacity building, and their relations to effective community functioning, democratic politics, and administrative expertise. LEC
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Concepts of leadership in community, political, and administrative settings. These settings include government and all non-business organizations (e.g. certain for-profit organizations). LEC
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An exploration of management in the context of public organizations. Management is explored at the individual, group and organizational level including conflict resolution, problem-solving, planning and legal aspects of organizations. Prerequisite: Permission of instructor. LEC
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A continuation of PUAD 660. The context for leading public organizations is explored through knowledge management, collaboration, innovation, process improvement and leadership succession. Prerequisite: PUAD 660, and permission of instructor. LEC
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Designed to provide public administration students an applied learning experience in either a public or nonprofit organization. Open to majors in Public Administration only. Prerequisite: One of the following: PUAD 330, 331, PUAD 332, PUAD 333, and consent of instructor required. FLD
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Designed for advanced public administration students. Students learn research skills by working one-on-one with a faculty member to assist in his/her program of research. Open to majors in Public Administration only. Students are required to complete a final project or presentation, through advising and consultation with the designated faculty member. Prerequisite: One of the following: PUAD 330, 331, PUAD 332, PUAD 333 and consent of instructor required. LEC
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For advanced undergraduate students who wish to study a specific topic of interest that is not covered in the curriculum. Each student must complete a proposal outlining his or her topic request and submit to the Undergraduate adviser. Intended for students majoring in Public Administration. Prerequisite: One of the following: PUAD 330, 331, PUAD 332, PUAD 333, and consent of instructor. IND
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Study of selected topics in public administration. Course may be repeated for credit if content varies. Course may be offered in lecture or online format. Prerequisite: PUAD 330 or PUAD 331. LEC
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An exploration of the ways in which public policy is made in the United States, focusing on the role of the administrator at each stage of the policy process: formulation, implementation, and evaluation. Various theories of policy-making with application to specific areas of public policy will be examined. LEC
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An exploration of policy development, implementation, and evaluation in the local government context. Various theories of the policy process and their application to municipal government are examined. (Same as POLS 825.) LEC
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An examination of political and administrative aspects of state government focusing on legislative and executive branches of government. LEC
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A seminar designed to explore the development of public health policy in the United States. Particular attention will be given to (1) the development of public institutions and policy goals; (2) current policy problems such as expenditure-cost controls, prospective reimbursement, utilization review, access, and public and private investment planning; and (3) administrative problems in the current health care system. (Same as HP&M 837.) LEC
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This course focuses on the economic, social, and legal foundations of the nonprofit sector. Nonprofits are examined in the context of a three-sector economy, with emphasis on the ways in which nonprofits compensate for market failures and government failures. The course examines government-nonprofit relations in the modern welfare and offers an in-depth examination of the health, education, and welfare functions as performed by nonprofits. This course also provides exposure to selected topics in nonprofit management such as grant writing, board relations, advocacy, fundraising and volunteer management. LEC
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A survey of ethical issues faced by public administrators. Special attention will be given to ethical problems arising within hierarchical organizations and to the ethical implications of particular public policies. LEC
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Exposes students to day-to-day operational facets of public management through workshops, speakers, exercises. LEC
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An introductory theory course designed to develop an understanding about organizations, their environments, and the political subsystems in which they exist. LEC
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An examination of individual and group behavior within organizations, focusing on motivation, leadership, conflict and conflict resolution, group dynamics and communication. LEC
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Explores the way public sector organizations procure, allocate, and develop labor and how the employee-employer relationship is established and maintained. Also emphasizes the relationship between civil service personnel systems and larger political systems. LEC
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This course examines the theories of taxation and non-tax revenues. Basic microeconomic theory is introduced. LEC
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Introduces quantitative approaches to examine public management and public policy decisions. Concepts of research design, probability, and inferential statistics are covered. LEC
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Examines the theory, processes, and administration of public budgeting. Emphasizes how political and economic factors shape budgetary processes and outcomes; how budget formats, systems, and management tools affect resource allocation and organization performance; and technical and analytical tools needed to successfully navigate budget processes. LEC
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Focuses on organizational arrangements for the provision of basic urban services and the character of service delivery politics. Methods for evaluating the efficiency and responsiveness of alternative organizational arrangements are treated. LEC
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Study of selected topics in public administration. LEC
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Survey of the development of ideas about public administration among public officials and research investigators. Emphasis on basic concepts, research reports, and theoretical treatises on the nature of public administration. LEC
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Provides students with an overview of the social context of public administration with an emphasis on political issues, political history, and ethics. LEC
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Course investigates major concepts that make up the legal environment of public administration. The accepted uses and procedures of the field, relationships among courts, agencies, the legislature, and basic legal research are examined. LEC
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This course provides a grounding in the constitutional premises of public administration including executive, legislative, and judicial powers, and federalism, and those issues associated with the development of economic institutions and processes such as taxation, employment regulation, and commerce controls. LEC
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This course studies the theories behind selected topics in public budgeting and compares the theories with the actual practice of budgeting in the State of Kansas and its communities. LEC
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Explores knowledge of organization theory and behavior to understand and explore organizational dynamics in the public sector. Topics include change, innovation, and organizational culture. LEC
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This course is designed to offer students the opportunity to obtain a comprehensive overview of the culture, history, economy, and geography of Kansas along with the review of state and local government infrastructure. The review of governments will include the financing of governments in Kansas. LEC
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This course is designed to acquaint students with the workings of the policy process at the level of state government. Its focus will give students an understanding of the political process to enable them to function more effectively in state policy development and implementation. Prerequisite: PUAD 824, PUAD 825, PUAD 826 or PUAD 827. LEC
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This course offers the student an opportunity to enhance skills developed in PUAD 826 in an experiential learning environment that simulates actual management practice. Complex cases will be rank ordered and resolved on a work schedule developed by each work group. Groups will work simultaneously on two or more cases at all times. Prerequisite: PUAD 826. LEC
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This course provides an overview of the role of law, litigation, and courts in the public policy process, with an emphasis on bureaucratic institutions. The course covers the main theories and empirical research on the policy effects of litigation and intervention, with a particular focus on civil rights in the areas of employment, policing, welfare, prisons, and environmental policy. (Same as POLS 849.) Prerequisite: Graduate standing or consent of instructor. LEC
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This course focuses on the fiscal and administrative relationships among the three levels of government - federal, state, and local - in the United States. A number of topics will be examined, including a history of intergovernmental relations, the political, constitutional, and legal foundations of the intergovernmental system, and intergovernmental fiscal policy. The impact of the intergovernmental system will be assessed from the perspective of specific areas and intergovernmental programs. LEC
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A survey of land-use, infra-structure, and technology issues in municipalities. LEC
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This seminar examines the application of theories in public administration, public management, and public policy in international and comparative contexts. Particular attention is given to how governments and publics are connected by way of intergovernmental strategies, governance, and differing political and administrative arrangements. LEC
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This course will examine the fundamental research techniques associated with analyzing alternative solutions to policy problems, as well as evaluating the effectiveness of public programs. Such techniques include cost-benefit, risk-benefit and cost-effectiveness analysis, and quasi-experimental and experimental designs. LEC
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This course will examine theories of innovation and organizational change as applied to public organizations. Particular emphasis will be placed on the concepts of innovation in bureaucratic organizations, on the process of successful change in organizations, and on leadership and employees' roles. LEC
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Financial management focuses on the use of financial information for decision making and evaluation. This course will rely on fundamental accounting concepts as they relate to the basic financial statements of government and not-for-profit organizations. Time will also be spent on financial management practices (e.g. cash management, debt management, etc.) and financial condition analysis. Material presented in this course expands on the foundational material covered in PUAD 837. Prerequisite: PUAD 837 or permission from the instructor. LEC
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An introduction to the concepts of information policy and management of technology within governmental organizations. The course covers the effects of technology on government and society as well as information policy (privacy, security and access) and their importance to democracy. The course also includes a leadership perspective on planning, funding, and implementation of technology systems in governmental organizations as well as the role of Chief Information Officer. LEC
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Designed to meet the needs of advanced students whose study in public administration cannot be met with current course work. RSH
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Open only to precareer students with internships, this intensive seminar is designed around issues interns confront in their working relationships. Emphasis is placed on the transition of the student from an academic environment to a professional work relationship. Class sessions deal with issues like employee socialization, power and trust, and administrative change. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. FLD
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Continuation of PUAD 894. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. FLD
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A major independent research project in lieu of a thesis for the MPA degree. Prerequisite: Completion of all other course requirements for the degree. THE
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This course focuses on the democratic context of public administration. Topics could include how democracy shapes the practice of public administration; the functioning of public administration in a constitutional democracy; issues relating to control and discretion of public administrators; citizenship and representative bureaucracy; theories of bureaucratic values such as equity, justice and efficiency, ethics and accountability; theories of institutions. SEM
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This course, on the topic which increasingly is approached as an interdisciplinary field, focuses on the management of public and non-profit agencies. Topics could include: the nature of public agencies and the roles of public executives, managers, and professionals; distinctions between public, private, and non-profit agencies in America and internationally; creating and managing organizational networks; leadership; work motivation; and the ethics of decision-making. SEM
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This course will analyze the intellectual currents that undergird the theories and concepts in public administration. There are three primary perspectives crosscutting the topics. They are historical, cultural and analytical. SEM
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The course examines issues of research and epistemology with an emphasis on connecting theory and research and doing research in field settings. RSH
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This seminar will assist students to develop a thorough competence in both theory and application of multivariate statistical models of the types that are commonly used to study questions of organization and policy in the public sector. These will include inference for the general linear regression model under a wide variety of specifications, as well as a consideration of path models and systems of simultaneous equations. The principal goal of this course is to strengthen the ability of doctoral students in public administration to work methodologically as independent scholars using relatively advanced designs and technique in their work. SEM
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This course examines the theoretical foundations and analytical components of policy analysis and program evaluation, common tools for assessing alternative courses of public action and program effectiveness. This examination will include a review and critique of common quantitative and qualitative approaches, including cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis, and quasi-experimental design. LEC
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This course examines the concepts and practices of qualitative research. The focus will be on field research and the collection of "textual data" through observation, interviewing, and documents. The course will also examine the interpretation and analysis of qualitative data and how to present qualitative findings. RSH
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A study of selective topics in public administration. Course may be taken more than once. LEC
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This course provides grounding in the constitutional premises of public administration including executive, legislative, and judicial powers, and federalism, and those issues associated with the development of economic institutions and processes such as taxation, employment regulation, and commerce controls. LEC
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This course provides an in-depth analysis of the role of law, litigation, and courts in the public policy process, with an emphasis on bureaucratic institutions. The course covers the main theories and empirical research on the policy effects of litigation and intervention, with a particular focus on civil rights in the areas of employment, policing, welfare, prisons, and environmental policy. As part of the course requirements, students will conduct original empirical research. LEC
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This course will provide students with an opportunity to conduct applied research in a field setting with faculty guidance. May be pursued as an independent study or as a regularly scheduled class with a group of students. Prerequisite: PUAD 934 and PUAD 935. RSH
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Designed to meet the needs of graduate students whose study in public administration cannot be met with present course. Prerequisite: consent of instructor. RSH
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Enrollment for writing doctoral dissertations. Graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. THE
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