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Joint MA/MPP

The Joint Degree with the Public Policy Program is intended for POLS MA students who are interested in education policy and working in educational agencies to develop both their analytic skills and perspectives of policy analysis and their substantive knowledge base regarding education policy, organizations, and practice.

The joint degree requires approximately two years (six quarter) to complete. Students in the joint degree program will spend most of their first year taking both GSE and Public Policy courses and completing their POLS Project. The second year is typically devoted to the MPP practicum and remaining GSE and Public Policy requirements.

Program Requirements

Students must complete at least 95 units at Stanford to receive the MA/MPP Joint Degree. The following constraints are placed on those 95 units:

  • All courses must be at or above the 100 level – courses numbered below 100 do not count toward the MA.
  • At least 48 units must be at or above the 200 level, of which, 23+ units must count toward POLS (EDUC 180 and 190 count toward this requirement).
  • At least 27 units must be from courses offered by the Graduate School of Education (EDUC units).
  • At least 65 units must be taken for a letter grade (as opposed to Credit/No Credit);of which, 15+ units must count toward POLS
  • A 3.0 GPA must be maintained for all courses applied to the joint degree.
  • Students must enroll in a minimum of 8 units during Autumn, Winter, and Spring Quarters, and cannot exceed 18 units in any quarter.
  • No more than 40 units may be counted towards both degrees.
  • ​English for Foreign Students (EFSLANG 600 level) and Athletics, Physical Education and Recreation (ATHLETIC) courses cannot be applied towards the master's degree.
  • See the "Coterminal Degree" section for unit requirements applying to students admitted through the coterminal degree program.

Application Requirements

The application to the MA Education/MPP program originates at the Graduate School of Education through the Policy, Organization and Leadership Studies (POLS) Program.

  • To indicate interest in the joint degree program, complete the POLS application requirements and check “Yes” to MA/MPP program consideration under the supplemental information section of the application.
  • Complete the MA/MPP joint degree statement in the supplemental information section of the application.
  • If you are admitted into the POLS Program, we will forward your application to the Public Policy Program for consideration.
  • We will make every effort to provide you with a decision to both POLS and MPP at the same time, but due to the timing of our applications cycles we cannot guarantee this. All decisions will be finalized prior to the April 15 decision deadline.
  • If you are not admitted to the POLS Program, it is not possible to enroll solely in the Graduate Public Policy Program. However, you may be admitted to the POLS program and not the MPP program.
  • Please note that students must have completed Microeconomics (Stanford equivalent: Econ 50) and Multivariable Calculus (Stanford equivalent: Math 51) by their date of matriculation into the program.

Because the MA Education/MPP program is part of the GSE's Policy, Organization and Leadership Studies (POLS) program, applicants will also need to fulfill the POLS application requirements.

Advising and Plan of Study

Beginning in their first year, students are expected to discuss a coherent program of study with David Brazer, Faculty Director, to guide their selection of GSE courses. He and Emi Kuboyama, Associate Director of Leadership Degree Programs, are always available for academic advising.

In consultation with the Faculty Director, students must complete their Preliminary Program Proposal during Autumn quarter of their second year of study. The Proposal is to be submitted to Emi Kuboyama no later than Friday of the second week of Autumn quarter. Students may deviate from their Preliminary Program Proposal during the academic year, but must be careful to fulfill all requirements. The Final Program Proposal, indicating courses actually taken, is due to Caroline Stasulat, MA Programs Officer, in the Spring quarter of the second year.

For further information on course requirements, please visit the POLS page of the MA Handbook.

POLS Contacts