Twin Cities campus
Twin Cities Campus

Public Policy Minor

HHH Administration
Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Student Services, Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-3800; fax: 612-626-0002)
  • Program Type: Graduate minor related to major
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2023
  • Length of program in credits (master's): 9
  • Length of program in credits (doctoral): 12
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
The public policy curriculum is built upon a core of required theoretical and methodological courses. In coursework, students study policy analysis or management or focus on a substantive area of public policy. Substantive areas include advanced policy analysis methods; economic and community development; global public policy; human rights; politics and governance; public and nonprofit leadership and management; public finance and budgeting; science, technology, and environmental policy; social policy; and gender and public policy. Students have multiple opportunities to apply the concepts learned to real-life policy problems.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
Special Application Requirements:
Students interested in the minor are strongly encouraged to confer with their major field advisor and director of graduate studies, and the Public Policy director of graduate studies regarding feasibility and requirements.
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
Specific coursework for the minor is chosen in consultation with the student's minor advisor or the Public Policy director of graduate studies. A minimum grade of B must be earned for courses taken on the A-F grading basis. Up to 3 credits may be taken S/N. The minimum cumulative GPA for minor field coursework is 2.8.
Required Coursework (9 to 12 credits)
Masterís students select 9 credits, and doctoral students select 12 credits from the following. Approval of the Public Policy director of graduate studies is required. Other courses can be selected with approval of the Public Policy director of graduate studies.
PA 5002 - Introduction to Policy Analysis (1.5 cr)
PA 5003 - Introduction to Financial Analysis and Management (1.5 cr)
PA 5011 - Management of Organizations (3.0 cr)
PA 5012 - The Politics of Public Affairs (3.0 cr)
PA 5021 - Microeconomics for Policy Analysis (3.0 cr)
PA 5405 - Public Policy Implementation (3.0 cr)
PA 5413 - Early Childhood and Public Policy (1.5-3.0 cr)
PA 5601 - Global Survey of Gender and Public Policy (3.0 cr)
PA 5801 - Global Public Policy (3.0 cr)
PA 5813 - US Foreign Policy: Issues and Institutions (3.0 cr)
PA 5826 - National Security Policy (3.0 cr)
PA 8302 - Applied Policy Analysis (4.0 cr)
PA 8312 - Analysis of Discrimination (4.0 cr)
Program Sub-plans
Students are required to complete one of the following sub-plans.
Students may not complete the program with more than one sub-plan.
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· Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs

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PA 5002 - Introduction to Policy Analysis
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Process of public policy analysis from problem structuring to communication of findings. Commonly used analytical methods. Alternative models of analytical problem resolution.
PA 5003 - Introduction to Financial Analysis and Management
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Finance/accounting concepts/tools in public/nonprofit organizations. Fund accounting. Balance sheet/income statement analysis. Cash flow analysis. Public/nonprofit sector budgeting processes. Lectures, discussions. Cases. prereq: Public policy major/minor or major in development practice, public affairs or liberal studies or grad nonprofit mgmt cert or instr consent
PA 5011 - Management of Organizations
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Challenges facing higher-level managers in public and nonprofit organizations in mixed economy and democratic republic. Distinctive features of public and nonprofit management, skills necessary for effective management, manager's role as creator of public value. Lectures, case discussions.
PA 5012 - The Politics of Public Affairs
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Politics is how we make collective decisions about matters of shared consequence. This course examines politics and introduces students to key concepts and skills needed for effective political analysis. The central themes of the course focus on power; institutions and organizations; discourse; and citizenship.
PA 5021 - Microeconomics for Policy Analysis
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to tools useful for public policy. Intermediate microeconomics.
PA 5405 - Public Policy Implementation
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Theory, tools, and practice of the implementation of public policy, particularly in areas involving public, private, and nonprofit organizations. Analytical approach focuses on multiple levels in policy fields to pinpoint and assess implementation challenges and levers for improvement.
PA 5413 - Early Childhood and Public Policy
Credits: 1.5 -3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: CPsy 5413/PA 5413
Typically offered: Every Fall
State/federal/int'l policies/legislation touching first 5 years of child's life. Family, community, institutional roles in promoting children's social/cognitive/emotional development. Health, mental health, poverty, special needs, economic/social justice. Part of Early Childhood Pol cert. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5601 - Global Survey of Gender and Public Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Introduction to the key concepts and tools necessary for gender policy analysis. Survey of the major findings in the field of gender and public policy in policy areas such as poverty alleviation, health, international security, environment and work-family reconciliation. Scope includes local, national, and global policy arenas as well as exploration of gender and the politics of policy formulation.
PA 5801 - Global Public Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Creation of rules, norms, institutions to regulate global activities. Policy making. How global policy making regulates interstate, national, transnational activities. Creation/enforcement of global rules. Applications to international security, political economy. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5813 - US Foreign Policy: Issues and Institutions
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Taught by the Humphrey School diplomat in residence, this course helps students develop a deep understanding of how US foreign policy institutions function, how that is being challenged, and the broader global implications of those changes. Through readings, class discussions, and guest lectures, we look at the institutions and processes involved in developing and managing US foreign policy, and use case studies to advance students? knowledge, including of how the Department of State works, and the expanding role of the Department of Defense, the National Security Council, and intelligence agencies. We examine how economic instruments like sanctions are used to advance policy; and how American citizens, lobbyists, and foreign governments influence policy. We incorporate discussions of current events into each class. Students develop writing and presentation skills critical to foreign policy careers.
PA 5826 - National Security Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: PA 5826/PA 8821
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course will analyze U.S. national security policy and process from the viewpoint of the National Security Council staff. Students will examine the organization and structure of the U.S. national security apparatus and the national security decision-making process, including individual and political factors; assess central threats to U.S. and international security and develop and discuss policy options to deal with those threats; undertake a major policy review on a specific national security challenge facing the United States, including analysis and recommendations; produce products, both written and oral, crucial to national security policy making (e.g., concise information and action memorandum), and put themselves in the position of national security leaders as part of a policy simulation. Grades will be based on oral participation, papers, and class reports.
PA 8302 - Applied Policy Analysis
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Design/evaluation of public policies. Emphasizes market/non-market contexts. Microeconomics and welfare economics of policy analysis. Econometric tools for measurement of policy outcomes. Applications to policy problems. prereq: Intermediate microeconomics, introduction to econometrics
PA 8312 - Analysis of Discrimination
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Policy analysis/other applied social sciences as tools for measuring/detecting discrimination in market/nonmarket contexts. Application of modern tools of labor econometrics/race relations research to specific problems of market/nonmarket discrimination.