Graduate Programs

Urban Affairs and Public Policy students in a group shot as they smile during an event.

Urban Affairs and Public Policy: Ph.D., M.A., B.A./M.A., 4+1

The M.A. in urban affairs and public policy program emphasizes a multidisciplinary approach to understanding communities and the policies that affect them. The 36-credit-hour program can be pursued full or part time. Students may choose one of these initial pre-defined areas of focus:

  • urban and regional planning
  • housing and community development
  • health services policy
  • nonprofits and philanthropy
  • historic preservation,
  • media and public policy
  • Or, with the assistance of a faculty advisor, students may design a special area of focus.

The core integration of academics, public service and research makes our program a leader in the field as well as a model for the combination of theory and practice. Students take courses and simultaneously engage in service and research for public, private and nonprofit organizations.

Traditional master’s degree students can complete the program in two years of full-time study. Current UD undergraduate students can be considered for admission to the 4+1 B.A. in public policy/M.A. in urban affairs and public policy. The length of study in the doctoral program varies.

The Ph.D. in urban affairs and public policy is an interdisciplinary, research-oriented degree that focuses on analysis of the critical policy challenges of our times. Our program prepares scholars to create useable knowledge to inform decision making, and to positively impact the quality of life in communities at all scales, from cities to nations. Our doctoral students work alongside our faculty to create new knowledge that expands the possibilities for community enhancement and policy improvement across our nation and our world.

The challenges of our times are not neatly bundled in disciplinary packages as political, economic or sociological problems. Our doctoral program prepares scholars to approach these multifaceted challenges from creative vantage points, reflecting diverse perspectives that transcend disciplinary views and reflect the highest standards of research and a truly global outlook.

Application Deadlines



January 15: To be considered for departmental funding
August 15: Final deadline to apply

UD Tuition

The 2021-2022 UD graduate student tuition rate per credit hour is $950.