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How to apply

The Master of Public Administration program admits new students for the fall, spring and summer semesters.

Admission requirements

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Application checklist

✓ Application submitted by April 1 for the fall and summer semesters or Oct. 15 for the spring semester 

✓ Transcripts

✓ Standardized graduate-level test scores (GRE, GMAT, or LSAT) 

✓ TOEFL scores (for international students only)

✓ Letter of intent (Indicate your interest in a career in public service, what you hope to gain from the MPA program and why WVU offers you the best opportunity for achieving your professional goals) 

✓ Resume

✓ Two letters of recommendation


Exceptions to the graduate exam test requirement

The requirement that applicants submit GRE, GMAT or LSAT scores can be waived under the following circumstances:

Expedited admission based on undergraduate GPA: Applicants who earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in West Virginia and achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.4 or higher are eligible to waive the graduate exam score requirement. Please note you are applying for an expedited admission in your letter of intent.

Evidence of graduate level competence: Applicants who already hold a graduate degree or have successfully completed at least 18 semester hours in another accredited graduate program may request a waiver of the graduate exam score requirement. Please state your request for a graduate level competence waiver in your letter of intent. 

Significant managerial administrative experience: Applicants with at least five years of managerial administrative experience after completing their undergraduate degree may request a waiver of the graduate exam score requirement by providing a letter of intent about their verbal, written, and quantitative competency. The letter of intent should include specific examples of your ability to write effectively, analyze complex situations and complete quantitative analysis.


Test score alternative

In some instances, applicants may substitute written statements for accepted standardized test scores, or lower test scores may need to be augmented with additional written statements. These include:

Statement of verbal and analytical competency

The ability to write effectively and to analyze complex situations is important in both the MPA degree program and in public service. Applicants should demonstrate verbal and analytical competency by providing:

  1. A list and description of education, training or preparation in writing, such as college courses, training workshops, research projects, publications and professional experience.
  2. A solely-authored writing sample, such as a college paper or a professional report that demonstrates writing and analytical abilities.

Statement of quantitative competency

Strong quantitative ability will be required in MPA coursework, including financial management, public budgeting, statistics and research methods. Applicants should demonstrate quantitative competency by providing a list and description of experience with quantitative methods, including classroom and/or professional experience. A description of classroom experience should include a list of courses. A description of professional experience may be supplemented with professional papers or projects with a significant quantitative element.