Department of Public Policy and Administration

Department of Public Policy and Administration

PPA Admissions and Eligibility

Priority application period for fall 2017 is October 1 - December 1, 2016.

We continue to accept applications through March 1, 2017.

PPA Student standing in front of their group projectStudents may pursue the MPPA degree on a full time or part time basis. While either option is suitable depending on students’ needs, courses are generally scheduled to accommodate the employed or part time student given their time constraints. The program requires a minimum of 36-39 units regardless of whether students are enrolled full or part time. Full time students can expect to complete all degree requirements in about two years; part time students can normally expect to complete degree requirements in about three years. While most of our classes are offered on campus, several of our classes are offered in downtown Sacramento (about six blocks from the State Capitol).



The application process consists of two components which you complete simultaneously: 1) the University application and 2) the supplemental program application.

1) University Application

California State University on-line graduate application

❏ Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended
(send transcripts directly to the Office of Graduate Studies)

❏ International applicants complete the International on-line graduate application and TOEFL scores for students whose primary language is not English.

(additional TOEFL information)

TEST OF ENGLISH AS A FOREIGN LANGUAGE (TOEFL) Our program requires that students whose primary language is not English have a minimum TOEFL score of: 560 (paper based test), 220 (computer based test), or 83 (internet based test).

The Office of International Programs can assist you.

2) Supplemental Program Application

All these materials should be submitted to the PPA department unless otherwise noted.

Supplemental program application

Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores -- off site link

One to two page statement of purpose

Please attach a one to two page statement of purpose to your supplemental program application (no longer than that please). In the single spaced type written statement, you should address your purpose in pursuing the MPPA. This statement also serves as a writing sample. Tell us your story.

Three letters of recommendation

Please use the Public Policy and Administration recommendation form. At least three letters of recommendation are required from individuals with knowledge of your academic and professional potential. Letters can be mailed (or emailed) directly to the department byr the recommender or submitted with your application by you.

Letters should be addressed to the department chair. Recommendations may be from academic or professional sources, and should be on office stationary if possible.

Click here for the supplemental program application and recommendation form in PDF.

Optional -- resume or curriculum vitae

Optional -- unofficial transcripts or grade report (not a substitute for the official transcripts you send to Graduate Studies).

Graduate Assistantships

Applicants to our graduate programs may now apply for graduate assistantships at the same time that they submit their supplemental program applications. See our graduate assistantship page for more information.



Undergraduate work ~ Applicants must possess a bachelor's degree with a GPA of 3.0 or better.
Prerequisites ~ A grade of B or better is required in all prerequisite courses. Prerequisites are: microeconomics, statistics (recommended), and government/political science. Applicants with prerequisite deficiencies may be required to complete additional course work.

Average GRE Scores and GPA

Here is a year to year chart with average GRE scores and the average GPA of students admitted to our program. Prospective students may find this information both interesting and useful. You can compare your scores and grade point average to previous entering classes.

Submit your application

You may fax (916-278-6544) or email ( any documents to the Department you would like included in your Supplemental Program Application, including letters of recommendation. You may also submit them the old fashioned way, in person or by mail.

Department of Public Policy and Administration
Sacramento State
6000 J Street, TAH 3038
Sacramento, CA 95819-6081

Supplemental Program Application materials will be accepted through the following Monday if the deadline falls on a Saturday or a Sunday.

We continue to accept applications through March 1.

Check on your Application

You may log into your account to check on the completeness of your CSU Mentor Graduate Application.

You may also call the Office of Graduate Studies with questions about your CSU Mentor Graduate Application. 916-278-6470

You may contact the Department to check on receipt of your letters of recommentation and whether an admission decision has been made. 916-278-6557


The priority application period opens October 1. The priority deadline is December 1 for the following fall. We continue to accept applications through March 1. (These are application completion deadlines.) 

We do not have Spring admissions.

We begin to unofficially notifying applicants of admisions decisions in February for those meeting the December 1 deadline and April for those meeting the March 1 deadline.

The application period begins October 1 and ends March 1.