Admission Requirements


Application Deadlines

Application Deadlines 

Spring Semester: October 1 Priority consideration will be given to applicants who submit all materials by October 1. We will continue accepting and considering applications on a rolling basis through December 1st. However, if classes are full, applicants may have to wait to start the MPA program in the following fall semester if admitted. Please check with Dr. Ford ( if there are still seats available in on-campus and online MPA classes if you missed the deadline but you still want to apply for spring semester.

Accepting Applications for Fall 2023 Priority consideration will be given to applicants who submit all materials by March 1. However, we will continue accepting and considering applications for our online program on a rolling basis through the start of the Fall 2023 Semester. Please apply by August 1st to ensure a spot. If classes are full, applicants may have to wait to start the MPA program in the following spring semester if admitted. Please check with Dr. Ford ( to see if there are still seats available in on-campus and online MPA classes.





Graduate Studies Admission Requirements

  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • GPA Requirement: An undergraduate GPA of at least 2.75 (4.00 scale) or at least 2.90 during the last half (approximately 60 credits) of undergraduate work. (Probationary admission will be considered on an individual basis if an applicant has a 2.25 overall undergraduate grade point average AND a 2.50 undergraduate grade point average for the last half of a baccalaureate program.). The bachelor’s degree must be from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Official transcripts. Official, degree conferral transcripts for your undergraduate degree must be sent directly to the Office of Graduate Studies from the issuing institution.
    • Official means the transcript is sent directly from the institution to UW Oshkosh Graduate Studies. Electronic transcripts are processed most quickly.
    • While we prefer official transcripts for admission decision-making, we can use unofficial transcripts. If you are admitted, we require official transcripts before you begin taking classes. Email unofficial transcripts to
    • Degree-conferral means the transcript shows the name of the degree earned and the date it was awarded.
    • If your degree conferral transcript contains 80 or more graded credits earned at that institution (this excludes transfer credits), we usually do not need to see transcripts from other institutions. If you earned fewer than 80 credits, send additional transcripts from the most recent institutions you attended until you reach at least 80 credits.
    • You may send transcripts from all institutions.
    • If you attended UW Oshkosh, you do not need to send UWO transcripts.
    • If you attended UW Fond du Lac or UW Fox Valley before Fall 2019, you need to request transcripts.
    • If you are currently finishing your undergraduate degree, send a current transcript now and an official degree conferral transcript when you complete your degree.
    • If you have more than one undergraduate degree, send transcripts for the degree most relevant to Public Administration.
  • A $56 non-refundable application fee is required and cannot be waived. It is recommended that the fee is paid at the time you submit the online application. Processing will not proceed if the fee is not paid.
  • Admission Test for International Applicants:
  • No GRE and GMAT admission tests are required for MPA program.

MPA Application Documents

  • A statement of professional goals and objectives. The statement should consist of a minimum of two paragraphs, single-spaced on one sheet of paper, communicating how a candidate’s career aspirations fit with the MPA program.   Please email it to us separately.
  • A current resume.
  • A two-page, double-spaced paper that has the following topic: “The National Academy of Public Administration has identified four pillars of public  administration-economy, efficiency, effectiveness, and social equity. Please explain why they are all equally critical to the successful practice of public administration today.” If you use sources for the essay, please cite them accurately in text and references (APA style). The committee considers the organization/logical flow of the essay, whether it addresses specifically the topic, and spelling/grammar/mechanics/citations (if any).
  • Letters of reference from three professional and/or academic individuals who are able to assess the likelihood of success in graduate school.
    • Provide the name and email address for at least three references starting on the fourth line of your Essay response box.  Graduate Studies will contact your references and request their recommendations within two business days.  In addition, to providing the three contacts, you can also submit the three letters, if you have those, directly to the Office of Graduate Studies.  You have the option to retain or waive your right to inspect these letters upon request.
      • If your uploaded resume contains your references, copy and paste this sentence in your Essay response box:  My uploaded resume contains at least three reference names and email addresses.
      • You may submit your application without reference names and emails but your references will be contacted more quickly if you include information in your application.  If you want to submit references separate from my application, copy and paste this sentence:  I will email at least three reference names and email addresses to
    • After one week, follow-up with references who have not sent a recommendation.
      • To see who has not yet responded, check your To Do List on TitanWeb.  If your list contains Reference Letter 1, Reference Letter 2, or Reference Letter 3, click on the item to see the reference’s name.
      • If your reference sent their letter to you and your To Do List lists that reference’s name, forward the recommendation letter to
      • Ask your reference to confirm they received the reference request email.  If they didn’t receive it, make sure the email address you provided to us is the email address being checked, and ask them to look in the spam folder.
      • If your reference did not receive the reference request, email to resend the request.

Note: Professional or volunteer experience in the public or non-profit sectors, or health care industry is preferred, but not required.


Graduate Healthcare Management Certificate Application Documents

In addition to the Graduate Studies Admission Requirements, the following application documents need to be submitted:

  • Essay: A brief essay of 200-500 words stating why the applicant is seeking admission to the graduate HCM Certificate program.


If you wish to apply to both the MPA program and the graduate HCM Certificate program, you must submit two separate applications, indicating which program you are applying to. Both types of programs use the same application form. You do not need to pay the application fee of $56 if you are already admitted in the MPA or another graduate program.


Application Submission & Review Procedures

  • Online application. The first step in the application process is to complete an online UW System application for admission to UW Oshkosh. 
  • Application Documents Submission:  The admission review will not begin until all materials have been submitted.
  • Checking Application Status. The Office of Graduate Studies has added a checklist to the students’ TitanWeb.  This will list all of the items that a student would need in order to have their admission application complete.  On the student’s TitanWeb Student Service Center home page it will list the items under their To Do list.  Under details it will state if the items were received or still pending (initiated).  This will allow the students to be able to check on the status of the application process. Once the admission decision has been made the checklist will be removed from the student’s TitanWeb.
  • Application Documents Review Procedures. Once the Public Administration Department receives the candidate’s complete application package from the Graduate Studies Office, all faculty in the department review the documents and make a decision about the candidate’s admittance. The Graduate Studies Office is informed of the department’s admission decision. Decisions are emailed to your campus email address.
  • MPA Admissions Rubric

Applying as a Special Student

If you want “to test the waters” about the MPA program before you make a decision to apply for it, or if you simply want to take some MPA courses without pursuing a graduate degree, or if you are MPA alumni and want to take some additional courses, you can do so as a special student.

Read the special student registration procedures below:

  1. Print the two-page special student registration form (PDF format).
  2. On TitanWeb log in as a guest and find current semester class offerings of courses.
  3. Place the required course information at the bottom of the registration form (first page, boxed area).
  4. Mail, fax or email the completed registration form to the Graduate Studies Office. Make sure both pages of the registration form are completed and signed.
  5. You will receive an email from the Graduate Studies office once a record is built for you including information on e-mail and CANVAS.
  • No more than 12 credits earned as a Graduate Special student may later apply to degree requirements.
  • See the Graduate Studies Policy about Special Students and non-degree student classifications.
  • Special students must receive grades of at least a B in all coursework.
  • Special students are not eligible to receive financial aid.


Public Administration

Sage Hall 4610
Oshkosh, WI 54901



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