All Master of Public Affairs students are required to select an area of concentration. There are two concentrations to choose from—Public and Nonprofit Management or Public Policy. Students complete at least 9 s.h. of coursework taken in the Public and Nonprofit Management or Public Policy concentration area.

Public and Nonprofit Management concentration

Nonprofit Management Courses

  • Nonprofit Organizations: Structure, Governance and Strategy
  • Nonprofit Organizations: Advocacy, Collaboration and Fundraising
  • Nonprofit Organizational Effectiveness I
  • Nonprofit Organizational Effectiveness II
  • Nonprofit Ethics and Governance

Public Management Courses

  • Public Human Resource Management
  • Organizational Dynamics and Leadership
  • Strategic Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations
  • Grant Writing

Strategic Communication

  • Topics in Strategic Communication
  • Digital Strategic Communication
  • Leadership Communication
  • Foundations of Strategic Communication
  • Public Policy and Persuasion

Public Policy concentration

Students in the Public Policy concentration are required to take either PBAF:6340 Public Policy Analysis or PBAF:6201 Analytic Methods II as well as six additional s.h. within the Public Policy concentration.

Courses are organized by topic but do not indicate sub areas of concentrations. Select from any topic or combination of topics of interest.

Criminal Justice

  • Policies and Procedures of Policing
  • Crime and Public Policy
  • Environmental Criminology
  • Communities and Crime

Economic Development Policy

  • Economic Development Policy
  • Economic Development Finance

Educational Policy

  • Introduction to Educational Policy
  • Higher Education Policy
  • K-12 Education Finance and Policy

Environmental Policy

  • Environmental Economics and Policy
  • Environmental Policy
  • Environmental Management
  • Modeling Dynamic Systems
  • Resilient Infrastructure and Emergency Response
  • Politics and Economics of the Food, Energy, Water Nexus
  • Environmental Law
  • International Environmental Law
  • Water Wars: Conflict and Cooperation

Health Policy

  • Designing Sustainable and Healthy Cities
  • Health Policy
  • Health Policy Analysis
  • Federalism and Health Policy

Housing and Community Development Policy

  • Housing Policy
  • Community Development in the Upper Midwest


  • Analytic Methods II
  • Public Policy Analysis

The Politics of Public Policy Making

  • Strategic Political Communication
  • The U.S. Congress
  • Immigration Politics
  • Interest Groups
  • State Politics in Iowa
  • Campaigns, Elections, and Voting Behavior
  • Public Opinion
  • Politics of Aging
  • Public Policy and Persuasion

Sustainable Development

  • Environmental Economics and Policy
  • Sustainable Systems
  • Politics and Economics of the Food, Energy, Water Nexus
  • Sustainable and Green Building Concepts
  • Environmental Impact Analysis
  • Environmental Justice

Transportation Policy

  • Transportation Policy and Planning
  • Planning Sustainable Transportation
  • Transportation and Land Use Planning