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The Bachelor of Arts in Public Administration

Total Course Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree: 120 units

See Bachelor's Degree Requirements in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements. A minimum of 40 units, including those required for the major, must be upper division.

A suggested Major Academic Plan (MAP) has been prepared to help students meet all graduation requirements within four years. You can view MAPs on the Degree MAPs page in the University Catalog or you can request a plan from your major advisor.

General Education Pathway Requirements: 48 units

See General Education in the University Catalog and the Class Schedule for the most current information on General Education Pathway Requirements and course offerings.

  • POLS 331 is an approved GE Writing Intensive substitution.
  • POLS 471B is an approved GE Capstone substitution.

Diversity Course Requirements: 6 units

See Diversity Requirements in the University Catalog. Most courses taken to satisfy these requirements may also apply to General Education .

Literacy Requirement:

See Mathematics and Writing Requirements in the University Catalog. Writing proficiency in the major is a graduation requirement and may be demonstrated through satisfactory completion of a course in your major which has been designated as the Writing Proficiency (WP) course for the semester in which you take the course. Students who earn below a C- are required to repeat the course and earn a C- or higher to receive WP credit. See the Class Schedule for the designated WP courses for each semester. You must complete the GE Written Communication (A2) requirement before you may register for a WP course.

Course Requirements for the Major: 43 units

Completion of the following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, is required of all candidates for this degree.

Public Administration Core

10 courses required:

SUBJ NUM Title Sustainable Units Semester Offered Course Flags
Prerequisite: Completion of GE Written Communication (A2) requirement.
An introduction to research methods that includes framing research questions, evaluating and using scholarly resources, and developing an appreciation for multi-disciplinary and ethics in research. Emphasizes the critique of theory and paradigms of conducting research. 3 hours lecture. This is an approved Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement course; a grade of C- or higher certifies writing proficiency for majors. (007495)
This course covers use of computers and the Internet in political science research. 3 hours independent study. Credit/no credit grading. (007496)
Analysis of the history and development of the American federal system and the role of state and local governments, with special emphasis directed to the government and politics of California. Among the major topics considered: the state and local political systems; the political environment; party, interest group, citizen, and media inputs; and current problems and changing functions affecting state and local governments. 3 hours lecture. (007524)
Prerequisites: POLS 331 or permission of instructor.
Investigation of methodology and the techniques used in the study of political phenomena, with emphasis on the construction of appropriate research designs, data collection, and analysis. 3 hours discussion. (007542)
Executive function in government; survey of the principles of administrative organization, personnel management, financial administration, administrative law, administrative policies. Problems and trends in government as a career. 3 hours lecture. (007592)
Prerequisites: POLS 460A or concurrent enrollment.
A survey of the processes of recruiting and managing personnel in the public service. The philosophy of public personnel administration, organization for personnel administration, history and evolution of the career system, comparative modern structures, and general processes of personnel. Both traditional and behavioral literature. 3 hours lecture. (007593)
Prerequisites: POLS 460A or concurrent enrollment.
A comprehensive survey of the theory and practice of public financial administration in the United States. The budget as an instrument of fiscal policy; budget preparation and classification, with special emphasis on program and performance budgeting. Problems in budget authorization, execution, and control. 3 hours lecture. (007594)
Prerequisites: POLS 460A or concurrent enrollment.
An intensive examination of the theory and research on organizational design, with an emphasis on applications of the theories. Focus is on how organizations develop structures to meet various internal (e.g., size, technology) and external (e.g., stakeholders, uncertainty) demands. 3 hours lecture. (007597)
Critical examination of the process of policy formation in American governments. Relationship of executive, legislative, and judicial branches in policy formation. A significant policy area will be examined, with emphasis on both statutory and constitutional bases and the social/political factors influencing policy development. 3 hours lecture. (007607)
Prerequisites: POLS 421, POLS 471A.
An examination of the approaches, models, methods, and concepts of public policy analysis, with special emphasis on program evaluation, research methodologies, implementation problems, and policy evaluation models. Recommended for political science and public administration majors and minors. 3 hours lecture. (007608)

Theoretical Foundations

1 course selected from:

SUBJ NUM Title Sustainable Units Semester Offered Course Flags
Considers competing democratic and republican claims in the context of social Darwinism, Populism, Progressivism, New Deal, and Post-World War II. Uses primary sources and novels. 3 hours lecture. (007554)
The classical roots of western political philosophy and their relationship to contemporary political theory. 3 hours seminar. (007279)
An extended discussion of the nature of anarchy, corporatism, oligarchy, classical liberalism, radical liberalism, democratic socialism, communism, and fascism, with a continued focus on these political cultures and their ideological expressions in contemporary politics. 3 hours seminar. (007281)


12 units selected from:

SUBJ NUM Title Sustainable Units Semester Offered Course Flags
Knowledge and skill development in writing grant proposals for health and community services. Skills in researching government, foundation, and corporate funding opportunities. Diversifying nonprofit income through other fundraising strategies. 3 hours seminar. (001618)
Course analyzes post-World War II American foreign policy. It examines the origins and development of the cold war, with attention to nuclear capabilities, the growth of national security bureaucracy, and the impact on American society. Special attention is given to the decision-making process as well as to theories of personality, organizational behavior, and the political process as these affect the cold war basis of American foreign policy. 3 hours lecture. (007503)
This course introduces students to the theories and practices of justice, as well as the administration of justice. As a writing intensive course, students examine pertinent justice issues of local, national, or international significance, identify the theory (or theories) of justice relevant to the situation, and investigate how justice was (or was not) administered. 3 hours lecture.This is an approved Writing Intensive course. This is an approved General Education Capstone course. This is an approved US Diversity course. (007600)
Prerequisite: HCSV 331.
This course is also offered as HCSV 435.
An analysis of the political forces, both private and public, which have an impact upon the health industry in the United States. Focusing on problems related to the delivery of health care, the course will cover such issues as availability, accessibility, appropriateness, acceptance, accounting, and alternatives. 3 hours seminar. (001587)
Analysis of the development and activities of various types of international organizations, including the United Nations, multinational corporations, OPEC, the Common Market, the IMF, the World Bank, and such non-governmental organizations as Amnesty International and Greenpeace. 3 hours lecture. (007561)
Focus on the various methods of negotiation and dispute resolution including mediation and arbitration with primary emphasis on the legal rights and principles involved in alternative dispute resolution especially in the process of arbitration. Major social and scientific theories of conflict will be explored as well as conventional disciplines and new approaches of conflict avoidance and resolution. Ethical issues involved in negotiation, mediation, and arbitration will be covered. 3 hours lecture. (007579)
This course introduces students to the organization of police departments and explores the history of policing and organizational theory. It further examines the role of the police executive as a public manager and as a leadership position. Topics for the course include departmental management, police operations, budgeting, discipline, promotion, external political factors, and public planning and research. By the end of the course, students should have a general knowledge of public organizations and specific knowledge about the operation and management of police departments. 3 hours lecture. (007595)
Investigation and analysis of the political nature of the environmental crisis in the United States and the development of legal and administrative mechanisms for handling environmental problems. 3 hours lecture. (007596)
Study of the role of administrative law in American government. Scope and implications of discretionary decision-making. 3 hours lecture. (007599)
Review and analysis of the present and changing nature of planning and land-use control law, particularly as the law is applied in California. 3 hours seminar. (007605)
A comparative analysis of the executive component of government. Emphasis on the national executive, selected state executives, and selected executives in other nations. 3 hours lecture. (007609)
Analysis of the structure, processes, and behavior in legislative bodies. Emphasis on a comparison of selected legislative bodies. 3 hours lecture. (007610)
Prerequisites: 3.0 cumulative GPA and faculty permission.
Work experience in selected governmental agencies supervised by faculty members and the staff of the cooperating agencies. You may take this course more than once for a maximum of 15.0 units. Credit/no credit grading. (007614)
Prerequisites: Senior standing, faculty permission.
Credit for previously acquired work or community experience. Such credit determined by the Internship Coordinator, dependent upon length of service and experience. You may take this course more than once for a maximum of 15.0 units. Credit/no credit grading. (007623)
Prerequisites: Approval of the Department of Political Science.
This course is a special topic offered for 1.0-15.0 units. You must register directly with a supervising faculty member. Organized research and development of a problem in community administration. Students may enroll for 1 to 15 units, and will engage for a part or the whole of their time in the community. A seminar focusing on analysis of the project and the experience will be held weekly or at other appropriate times. Only a total of 6 units of POLS 489 and POLS 493 may be counted toward the requirements of the major or the Paralegal Certificate. 9 hours supervision. You may take this course more than once for a maximum of 15.0 units. (007655)

Electives Requirement:

To complete the total units required for the bachelor's degree, select additional elective courses from the total University offerings. You should consult with an advisor regarding the selection of courses which will provide breadth to your University experience and possibly apply to a supportive second major or minor.

Grading Requirement:

All courses taken to fulfill major course requirements must be taken for a letter grade except those courses specified by the department as Credit/No Credit grading only.

Advising Requirement:

Advising is mandatory for all majors in this degree program. Consult your undergraduate advisor for specific information.

Catalog Cycle:17