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Exeter Politics

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MPP and MPA Programs

University of Exeter, Department of Politics

Program Comparison Highlights

Institutional Structure: TO COME

Curriculum Design: TO COME

Professional Program Features: TO COME

Program Summary


University: University of Exeter

Location: Exeter, Cornwall, United Kingdom

Degree: MPA

Marketing Approach: "The Master of Public Administration at Exeter is designed to help you meet the challenge of shaping and delivering effective public services. The Exeter MPA takes an international perspective to equip you with the skills and understanding you need to operate effectively in an increasingly global and constantly changing environment." (At, accessed 29 May 2014.)

Degrees Awarded per Year: TBD [Information will be requested from the School]

Academic Unit within University: The Department of Politics is a department within the College of Social Sciences and International Studies.

Related Academic Units and Degrees: The Department of Politics' graduate programs are listed, by graduate unit, at The MA degrees most closely related to the MPA include: Conflict, Security and Development; European Politics; International Relations; Political Thought.

Posted Tuition: £15,000 tuition and fees per year for all students entering in 2014 (at accessed 29 May 2014).

Concentration/Curriculum Overview

MAP Degree Requirements

Summary: The programme is studied over 12 months (full time) or 24 months (part time) or 36 months (modular) and is University-based throughout the period, with the option of doing work-based research projects in the student's workplace after the taught modules have been completed. The programme comprises 180 credits in total: taught modules worth at least 120 credits in total, and either a supervised dissertation worth 60 credits, or at least one work-based research project worth 30 credits. Teaching takes place over eight months (full-time; October to May), followed by completion of the dissertation or research project(s) over the summer (June to September).

The course will be delivered in intensive teaching blocks, consisting of:
- Preparation period of one week (guided readings and preparatory research)
- 3-4 days of intensive seminars, lectures/talks, experiments/simulations and workshops
- Post-teaching period (reflection, task completion, preparation of assessed work)
- Fast marking turn-around with individual feedback.

The content and delivery of the MPA will include not only more traditional teaching methods, such as lectures, seminars and workshops, but depending on choice of modules may involve:
- Task-oriented work including case-study work
- The use of computer networked experiments, simulations or models
- Blended learning (combining Exeter Learning Environment (ELE) support, face-to-face seminar/workshop activities with peers, academics and practitioners, and independent study time)
- The use of reflective learning logs
- Presentations from practitioners

The Exeter MPA consists of a mixture of three core modules which provide the theoretical foundation for the degree; five directed modules enabling the student to specialise in areas of interest; and either a dissertation or at least one work-based research project, involving a piece of original research on a subject of the student's choice, and subject to approval by the Programme Director. There is the flexibility to take 30 credits outside of the programme in a relevant subject.*

Core modules (45 credits)
POLM200 Management and Governance: Comparing Public Administration around the World (15 credits)
POLM201 Policy and Politics: the Theory and Strategy of Delivering Public Services (15 credits)
POLM206 Public Sector Finance for Managers (15 credits)

Directed modules (75 credits)
A choice of five modules from a list which may include the following:
POLM207 The Politics, Policy and Practice of Sustainable Development (15 credits)
POLM208 Global Governance and Administration (15 credits)
POLM209 The New Public Management: Principles, Practice and Prospects (15 credits)
POLM210 Policy Analysis and Evaluation (15 credits)
POLM211 Regulation and Reform: Analysis and Policy (15 credits)
POLM054 Risk, Responsibility and Regulation: Whose Policy is it Anyway? (15 credits)

And either:
POLM202 MPA Dissertation (60 credits)
POLM203 Work-based research project (1) Change Management (30 credits)
POLM204 Work-based research project (1) Quality, Diversity and Delivery in the Public Sector (30 credits)

Free Option(s) (up to 30 credits )
If only one work-based research project is chosen, modules worth 30 credits in total may be chosen from the portfolio offered by the Politics Department or School, subject to availability and approval by the Programme Director. If the student decides (with approval of the Programme Director) to take 30 credits outside of the MPA programme e.g. in the Department of Politics, those modules will be delivered to a traditional timetable.

Part-time and Modular students must take the following modules in their first year:
Either POLM201 or POLM206
Any remaining core module must be taken in the second year.

In addition to registration for the full MPA (180 credits) it is possible to register on this programme on a modular basis. If a student passes the three core modules plus one of the directed modules (60 credits), the award of Postgraduate Certificate of Public Administration may be awarded. If a student passes the three core modules plus five of the directed modules (120 credits), a Postgraduate Diploma of Public Administration may be awarded. (See

Duration: 12 months (full time) or 24 months (part time) or 36 months (modular)

Academic Prerequisite: Applicants should have a good honours degree (2:1 or above, or equivalent) and experience of working in a public sector environment. Exceptions may be made for candidates with exceptional experience or relevant professional qualifications. Individuals who do not meet the criteria may be required to submit examples of work or to participate in an interview.

Number of One-Semester-Equivalent Courses Required for Completion: 180 CATS credits (12 one-semester-course equivalents) including:

Note 1: As noted in Credit Requirements and Course Equivalents, any Master's course in England requires a minimum of 180 CATS credits, and 15 CATS credits are equivalent to 1 one-semester course.

Number of Required Courses: 11.75 See Note 2.

Note 2: The Exeter MPA has a very high proportion of required and "required elective" course work. Although there are only 3 core modules (3.75 one-semester course equivalents) that are 100% required, the 6 directed modules, the optional dissertation and optional work based research project fall into the category of "required elective" for the purposes of the course distribution calculations (see PEACO Algorithm). For these purposes, each of the directed modules are considered to be 5/6 required and 1/6 elective; the dissertation (60 credits) is considered to be 1/2 required and 1/2 elective; the first work based research project is considered to be 1/2 required and 1/2 elective, while the second is considered to be 1/4 required and 3/4 elective. Only the two "Free Option" modules are considered as 100% elective. Calculated in this probabilistic fashion, the total "required" modules total to 11.5 and the electives total 0.5. From the perspective of the typical student, only 0.5/12 of the course time would be devoted to 100% electives.

Number of Electives Typically Taken See Note 2.

Number of Electives Offered within Program: There are 6 directed modules listed at The list of all modules offered by the Department of Politics is found at:

Comprehensive Examination: No

Thesis Required: Optional

Internship Required: No, although work-based research projects are available.

International Study Required: No

Co-curricular Activities Supportive to Degree

Professional Development and Career Support: No

Student-run Journal: No

Applied Projects: Not mentioned on website.

Pro Bono Consulting: No

Courses Offered: The full list of 2014-2015 courses is found at:  

Course Material Online: Lengthy course descriptions, although not full syllabi are available to the public online.

Instructional Distribution (PEACO Profile): The table below indicates the distribution of instruction offered, based on the course assignments to subjects in the Course Map below, weighted by estimated enrolment determined by the PEACO Algorithm.   




I. Courses Required and Offered

Number of one-semester courses required for degree


Number of required courses


Number of elective courses taken


Number of elective courses offered


Enrolment weight of elective courses


Number of courses provided from within the program

II. Distribution of Courses (Enrolment-Adjusted) among Atlas

     Domains and Subjects

Tools and Skills


  - Policy and Management Analysis


  - Economic Analysis



  - Quantitative  and Analytic Methods


  - Leadership, Communication, Professional Practice


Institutions and Context


  - Democratic Institutions and Policy Process


  - Ethics, Rights and Accountability


  - Socioeconomic, Political, and Global Contexts


Management Functions


  - Public Financial Management


  - Evaluation and Performance Measurement


  - Other Management Functions


Policy Sectors


  - Macroeconomic Policy


  - International Development


  - Health


  - Other Policy Sectors




III. Distribution of Courses (Enrolment-Adjusted) among

      Curricular Type Groupings of Subjects

Policy-Oriented Subjects


Management-Oriented Subjects


Math-Economics Subjects (EA, QM, Macro, Fin Markets)


Archetypal Public Affairs Subjects (P&MA, EA, QM, DI&PP)


Archetypal International Affairs Subjects (I&GC, ID, DS&FR)


IV. Number of Courses in "NASPAA-required Subjects" taken by

      Typical Student in NASPAA Required Competency Domains

Lead and Manage in Public Governance


Participate and Contribute to the Policy Process


Analyze, Synthesize, Solve Problems and Make Decisions


Articulate and Apply Public Service Perspectives


Communicate and Interact with Workforce and Citizenry


Total Courses in "NASPAA-Required Subjects"


V. Ratio of Courses in "NASPAA-required Subjects" taken by

      Typical Student to Estimated Requirement for Competency

Lead and Manage in Public Governance


Participate and Contribute to the Policy Process


Analyze, Synthesize, Solve Problems and Make Decisions


Articulate and Apply Public Service Perspectives


Communicate and Interact with Workforce and Citizenry


Ratio of Total Instruction in Competencies to Amount Needed




Source: At and related sites (accessed 29 May 2014).

Page Created By: Ian Clark on 30 May 2014 and updated by Dave Marshall on 3 April 2015. Updating and editing may consist of substantive and/or formatting changes. Unless otherwise noted, however, information regarding a program's structure, curricular offerings and PEACO score is based on the program as it was on the date of page creation. The content presented on this page, except for the assignments of courses to Atlas subjects, the Instructional Distribution analysis, and the Commentary is drawn directly from the source(s) cited above, and consists of direct quotations or close paraphrases.

Exeter Course Map
 C o u r s e s  O f f e r e d,  l i s t e d  b y  P u b l i c  P o l i c y  a n d  M a n a g e m e n t  S u b j e c t

Note: Courses listed have 15 CATS credits except those marked (x2) and the dissertation and project items under Professional Practice

Analysis and Skills

 Policy and Management Analysis

  POLM201: Policy and Politics - The Theory and Strategy of Delivering Public Services (R)
  POLM209: New Public Management: Principles, Practice and Prospects (5R/6)

 Economic Analysis

 Quantitative Methods

  POLM068: Elements of Research Design in Politics
  POLM139: Quantitative Data Analysis in Political Science (x2)
  POLM141: Elements of Research Design in Politics (x2)
  POLM809: Applied Quantitative Data Analysis

 Analytic Methods

  POLM054: Risk, Responsibility, Regulation - Whose Policy Is It Anyway? (5R/6)
  POLM063: Qualitative Methods in Social Research
  POLM140: Qualitative Methods in Social Research (x2)

 Leadership Skills

 Communication Skills

 Professional Practice

  POLM202: MPA Dissertation (4R/2)
  POLM203: Work based Project 1 (2R/2)
  POLM204: Work based Project 2 (2R/4)

Institutions and Context

 Democratic Institutions and Policy Process

  POLM200: Management and Governance: Comparing Public Administration around the World (R)
  POLM037: Logics of Explanation in Politics
  POLM065: Theories of Interpretation
  POLM067: Foundation Study in Politics (x2)
  POLM802: Critical Global Studies 2 the Politics of Governance and Resistance (x2)

 Social and Political Context

  POLM651: State and Society in the Middle East (x2)
  POLM803: Sources in Modernity and Post-Modernity (x2)
  POLM86: Problems and Texts in Social and Political Thought

 Ethics, Rights and Accountability

  POLM080: Global Justice (x2)
  POLM077: The Politics of Human Rights (x2)

 Intergovernmental and Global Context

  POLM208: Global Governance and Administration (5R/6)
  POLM060: Global Security (x2)
  POLM079: Europeanization and Federalism in Europe (x2)
  POLM083: The Middle East Since 1945 (x2)
  POLM606: European Political Integration (x2)

Management Functions

 Public Financial Management

  POLM206: Public Sector Finance for Managers (R)

 Evaluation and Performance Measurement

  POLM210: Policy Analysis and Evaluation (5R/6)

 Human Resource Management

 Information Management and Technology

 Program and Service Delivery

 Regulatory Policy and Management

  POLM211: Regulation and Reform - Analysis and Policy (5R/6)

 Nonprofit Management and Advocacy

Policy Sectors

 Macroeconomic Policy

 International Development

 Social Policy and Welfare



 Employment, Labour and Immigration

 Cities, Urban and Regional Development

 Environment and Sustainability

  POLM207: The Politics, Policy and Practice of Sustainable Development (5R/6)

 Agriculture and Resources

 Science, Technology and Innovation

 Industry, Trade and Investment

 Energy, Transport and Infrastructure

 Defence, Security and Foreign Relations

  POLM082: International Relations of the Middle East (x2)
  POLM104: US Foreign Policy

 Policing and Justice Administration

 Arts and Culture

  POLM142: Europe in the Digital Age (x2)

 Financial Markets

 Other Policy Sectors

Important Notices
© University of Toronto 2008
School of Public Policy and Governance