Public Administration at York
Presentation by Ian Greene
Professor teaching public
administration at York University since
• York University Founded: 1959
• Faculty of Administrative Studies (now the
Schulich School of Business) founded in 1966
with a Master of Business Administration (MBA)
and Master of Public Administration (MPA)
program. The MBA grew much faster than the
MPA. The MPA is the only masters combination
of business and public administration in Canada.
It accepts 5-10 students a year. In 1966, there
were only 4 other MPA programs in Canada.
• Glendon College, located on the east side of
Toronto, was founded in 1966 as a bilingual
faculty of arts focusing on public affairs. It has
always offered excellent undergraduate public
policy and administration courses as part of its
political science degree. As well, it offers a
bilingual “certificate” in public administration,
and add-on to a political science degree.
Undergraduate Programs
• A 4-year undergraduate program in Public Policy and
Administration was started in the Department of
Political Science in 1982 for day students in the Faculty
of Arts. It accepted 50 students a year. It was one of
only 5 undergraduate programs across Canada. Many
graduates now have senior positions in government.
• Until 2009, York had a separate faculty – the Atkinson
Faculty -- specializing in programs for part-time and
mature students. In 1999, the Atkinson Faculty created
an evening public administration program for part-time
and mature students similar to the Faculty of Arts
Recent Developments
• 2005: York Council on Public Administration formed to
coordinate public policy and administration offerings across
campus, and promote new offerings. Faculties were
encouraged to develop new programs distinct from other
programs on campus, and attracting distinctly different
student bodies. One result is three distinct graduate
• 2006: Arts and Atkinson undergraduate programs merged
into the School of Public Policy and Administration (SPPA).
In 2009, the SPPA has about 800 undergraduate students.
• 2007: The SPPA began accepting graduate students into its
new Masters program in Public Policy, Administration and
Law program (MPPAL). The first 42 students graduated in
October, 2009, and there are currently 90 students in the
More recent developments
• 2006: the School of Public and International Affairs (SPIA)
was created at Glendon College.
• 2008: The Master of Public and International Affairs
program (MPIA) in the SPIA accepted its first 20 students.
The program currently has about 45 students in first- and
• There has been an explosion of interest in public policy &
administration programs across Canada, and in particular at
York University, since 2005. York now has more graduate
and undergraduate students in public policy and
administration than any other Canadian university.
• There are now 24 Masters programs in public policy &
administration in Canada, and 25 undergraduate programs.
Reasons for recent student interest
• At graduate level, many people in the public sector
realize that they need further education to be
successful in their careers. Governments encourage
more education in order to offer better quality
• At undergraduate level, students have become more
interested in programs with practical applications so
they can more easily find employment. As well,
careers in business are not as attractive to many
students as they previously were, and a career in the
public sector offers the opportunity to tackle the
serious problems faced by the world.
Programs of Study
• The following slides will present an overview of the
curriculum at the undergraduate level and then the
graduate level.
• Three-year undergraduate degrees require students to take
90 credits of coursework, which means fifteen full-course
equivalents over three years. A full-course equivalent is 6
credits. Four-year undergraduate degrees require 120
credits, or 20 full-course equivalents.
• Of these 15 (3 year degree) or 20 (4 year degree) courses,
between 5 and 12 are specific required courses for
particular programs. The remaining courses are general
education courses, elective courses, or courses for other
majors or minors. Only the required courses for public
administration programs will be listed in the following
MISSION of SPPA: Educate for Good Governance
Balanced emphasis
on policy &
of liberal arts
& professional
approach to theory &
practice, & empirical &
normative analysis
Prepare current and
future professionals in
public, private and parapublic sectors for
effective, efficient, &
accountable democratic
governance in complex
and multicultural world
emphasis on
social justice,
ethics &
human rights,
consistent with
York traditions
Bachelor of Public Administration
School of Public Policy and Administration
This program, beginning in 2010, replaces the three programs that SPPA
inherited from the Faculty of Arts and the Atkinson Faculty
Core Curriculum (42 credits, or 7 full-course equivalents)
• Introduction to Administrative Studies (3 credits)
• Introduction to Micro and Macro Economics (6)
• Analysis and Use of Financial Information or Intro to Fin. Accounting (3)
• Canadian Government (6)
• Introduction to Empirical Theory (6)
• Public Law II (The Charter of Rights) (3)
• Federalism & Public Policy, or Public Law I (Courts & Constitution) (3)
• Public Administration (6)
• Statistics for Social Sciences (6)
For students taking the Specialized Honours in Public Administration, in
addition to the above courses, they must take 5 more full-course
equivalents in one of three streams shown on the next slide, for a total of
12 full-course equivalents for the Specialized Honours Degree:
BPA Streams
1. Law, Justice and Public Policy Stream :
Communities & Public Law (3)
Community Policing (3)
Sociology of the Law (6)
Politics, Law and the Courts (6)
Sociology of Crime and Social Regulation (6)
6 additional 3rd or 4th year elective credits in the School of PPA or Political Science.
2. Management Stream:
Introduction to Organizational Behaviour (3)
Human Resources Management (3)
Project Management (3)
Public Sector Budget Process (3)
Advanced Public Policy Analysis or Comparative Theories of Policy Analysis (6)
Program Evaluation (3)
9 additional elective credits in Administrative Studies and/or Human Resources Management at 3rd
or 4th year level
3. Policy Analysis Stream:
Human Resources Management (3)
Public Sector Budget Process (3)
Advanced Public Policy Analysis or Comparative Policy Analysis (6)
Program Evaluation (3)
15 additional elective credits at 3rd or 4th year level in the School of PPA or Political Science.
Other options in BPA
• Honours major in public administration: 10 full-course
equivalents instead of 12. No streams. Core
curriculum plus three 3rd or 4th year PPA courses.
• Minor in public administration: students taking a
major in another subject can do a minor in public
administration by taking the courses in the core
curriculum except for the statistics and economics
courses, plus 6 credits in 4th year in the SPPA (42
• Three year degree: students can do a three-year BPA
by taking the core curriculum, plus 3 credits in human
resources management, and 3 credits in budgeting.
Professional Certificate in Public Sector
• At York, an undergraduate “Certificate” is a value-added
component to a degree, taken at the same time as a
degree. At present, students from any program can earn
the Certificate in Public Sector Management by completing
42 credits (7 full-course equivalents) from specified BPA
courses. Eighteen credits (3 full-course equivalents) must
be over and above their degree requirements. However,
given that a Minor in Public Administration will exist
starting in 2010 – likely more attractive than this Certificate
-- there are discussions about the possibility of reducing the
Certificate to 24 or 30 credits (4 or 5 full course
equivalents) so that the Certificate is accessible to students
from many disciplines who want to earn a basic proficiency
in public policy and administration.
Glendon bilingual certificate in public
administration & public policy
Students must complete 30 credits (5 full-course equivalents) as
• Macro and micro economics (6)
• Introduction to Political Studies or Intro. to Canadian Politics (6)
• Introduction to Public Administration (6)
• Introduction to Quantitative Methods (6)
• An upper-year course in public administration (6)
• An elective course from a list of courses relevant to public policy
and administration (6)
• At least one of these courses must be taken in French and one in
Master of Public Policy,
Administration and Law (MPPAL)
School of Public Policy & Administration
The MPPAL is an interdisciplinary program designed primarily
to provide people working in the public sector with the skills
needed for effective public administration and public policy
analysis, with an emphasis on the themes of constitutional
and administrative law, social justice, and public sector
ethics. The curriculum was developed in close consultation
with senior government officials in all orders of government.
Most students take the program part-time over 2 years – one
evening a week and one Saturday a month.
25 students are admitted each year for courses at our
downtown campus (near gov’t offices), and 25 are admitted
each year for courses here on the Keele campus.
MPPAL Courses
• Module 1: Public Management and Finance
– PPAL 6000 3.0 - Public management
– PPAL 6010 3.0 - Leadership and human resources management
– PPAL 6020 3.0 - Public finance and accounting
• Module 2: Law and Ethics
– PPAL 6100 3.0 - Canadian constitutional and administrative law
– PPAL 6120 3.0 - Ethics, privacy, and access to information
– PPAL 6130 3.0 - Equity, policy, law and planning
• Module 3: Public Policy and Analysis
– PPAL 6200 3.0 - Program evaluation and public policy analysis
– PPAL 6210 3.0 - Research methods and information systems
– PPAL 6230 3.0 - Topics in public policy or PPAL 6250 3.0 – Major
research paper
Master of Public and International
Glendon School of Public and International Affairs
• The MPIA program offers a unique, high-quality bilingual education
that prepares students for leadership roles in public life. Through
this two-year, full-time degree, students become well-versed not
only in public policy and administration, but in public affairs — a
broader examination of Canadian public institutions and the
domestic and international settings in which they function.
The program equips students to analyze the key challenges in
Canadian public life, place Canada’s public institutions in their
global setting, apply the core knowledge and tools of public
management and policy, and work effectively in both official
languages. Students are required to be proficient in at least one
language (English or French) with at least working knowledge of the
other language. Courses are taught in English or French, or both.
Most students are recent graduates from undergraduate programs
with little public sector experience.
Courses in the MPIA
Students must complete 45 credits (7.5 full-course equivalents) as follows:
Required Courses
PAIA 6000 3.0: Public Management
PAIA 6001 3.0: The Policy Process
PAIA 6002 3.0: Economics and Public Policy
PAIA 6003 3.0: Research Methods
PAIA 6004 3.0: Canadian Political and Social Structures
PAIA 6005 3.0: International Context of Policy-making
PAIA 6100 3.0: Capstone Seminar
PAIA 6200 1.5: Colloquium: Canada and its Place in the World
PAIA 6400 6.0: Internship
Elective Courses: 15 credits from the following:
PAIA 6300 3.0: State and Society
PAIA 6301 3.0: Government-Business Relations
PAIA 6302 3.0: Political Philosophy
PAIA 6303 3.0: Global Immigration and Canadian Law and Policy
PAIA 6304 3.0: Science and Technology Policy
PAIA 6305 3.0: Politics of Sustainability
PAIA 6306 3.0: The Global Economy
PAIA 6307 3.0: Canada and the World
PAIA 6308 3.0: International Law and International Organizations
Master in Public Administration
Schulich School of Business
• The Schulich MPA degree is the only one in
Canada that combines both public and business
administration. Students can choose to graduate
with and MBA or an MPA. Students can take the
program full-time during a minimum of 16
months, or part-time over a maximum of six
years. Most students have had some experience
in the public or private sector. The program
consists of twenty 3 credit courses (10 full-course
equivalents) as follows:
First-year MPA required courses
Financial Accounting for Managers (3)
Management Accounting (1.5)
The Economic Environment of Business (3)
Managerial Finance (3)
Skills for Leadership (3)
Managing for Value Creation (3)
Information Systems (1.5)
Quantitative Methods (1.5)
Operations Management (1.5)
Marketing Management (3)
Organizational Behaviour (3)
Public Policy and Public Management (3)
Second-year MPA courses
• Strategic Management in the Public Sector (3)
• Strategy Field Study (3)
• Canadian Public Law (3)
• Program Evaluation (3)
Business and Government (3)
Judicial Administration in Canada (3)
Ethical Politics (3)
The Provincial and Municipal System of Government in Ontario (3)
Democratic Administration (3)
International Business and National Governments (3)
Public Administration and the Law (3)
Plus 12 credits of Optional Recommended Electives, such as Accounting and
Control of Nonprofit Organizations, Cultural Policy, Economic Forecasting and
Analysis, Macroeconomics and the Supply Side, Applied International Economics,
Not-for-Profit Marketing, Labour Relations, Cross-Cultural Management, The
Management of Change, Systems of Justice, and Creating Modern Capitalism:
Comparative Perspectives.
MBA Concentration in Public
• MBA students can specialize in public
administration by completing four 3-credit
courses, as follows:
Public Policy and Public Management
Canadian Public Law
Program Evaluation
One other course from the list of MPA
required, optional or recommended courses.
--20 to 30 MBA students complete the
Concentration in Public Management each year.
Graduate Diplomas
• A graduate diploma is an additional
qualification students can earn while
completing a degree
• Graduate Diplomas available:
• Justice System Administration (one extra course & 12 week
• Democratic Administration (one extra course)
• Major Research Paper must be relevant to diploma
Continuing Education
Schulich Masters Certificate in Public
• 15 days over 5 months (not for academic credit)
• MODULE 1 (1 day) Globalization and Trends in Public Management
(Wed. Jan 13, 2010)
• MODULE 2 (1 day) Critical Thinking (Thurs. Jan 14, 2010)
• MODULE 3 (2 day) Leadership and Stewardship Jan 27-28 (Wed, Thurs)
• MODULE 4 (2 day) Enterprise Risk Management Feb 10-11 (Wed, Thurs)
• MODULE 5 (2 day) Strategic Performance Mar 3-4, 2010 (Wed, Thurs)
• MODULE 6 (1 day) Policy Execution and Implementation Mar 24 (Wed)
• MODULE 7 (2 day) Managing Partnerships and Strategic Alliances Apr 7-8
(Wed, Thurs)
• MODULE 8 (2 day) Appreciative Leadership Apr 21-22, 2010 (Wed, Thurs)
• MODULE 9 (1 day) Group Projects Presentation May 12, 2010 (Wed)
• MODULE 10 (1 day) Case Presentations and Graduation May 13 (Thurs)
• York University has developed an array of undergraduate and
graduate programs in public policy and administration
– To provide analytical and practical skills to
• Students with little work experience
• Students with significant public sector experience
• This is possible because of the contributions and cooperation of
several Faculties: Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, the Schulich
School of Business, Glendon College, and the Faculty of Law. As
well, the Faculty of Environmental Studies offers a good many
policy-related courses.
• York has a Research Centre for Public Policy and Law, and a
Research Centre in Practical Ethics, to facilitate continuing research
for faculty members teaching public policy & administration, and to
facilitate links with all orders of government.
• Credibility of our programs in the public service is key. Many of our
faculty have experience working in government.

Public Administration at York University