Why an MA in Policy Studies?

There are many reasons why you should consider applying to be part of our program. 

The University of Alberta is a Top 5 Canadian University and one of the best in the world. Housed in the Department of Political Science, which has a long-standing reputation for studying and advancing the common good, the MA in Policy Studies is a degree that people recognize as a mark of excellence and provide students with the opportunity to network and make connections throughout the public sector in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and beyond.

  • Tuition rates are some of the lowest in the country for a graduate program in policy studies program, offering increased value and accessibility.
  • Every student in our practicum stream has successfully secured full-time employment as part of their program. We have a 100% placement rate.
  • The program normally takes 16 months to complete, but that includes time for the completion of a practicum which is a paid, for-credit work opportunity. Students can potentially complete the program in 12 months. The practicum is optional, so if you have significant work experience, you can choose the course-based stream which allows you to delve more deeply into a greater number of policy areas.
  • Candidates with graduate degrees in public policy are highly sought after. In many cases, graduate degrees are required for promotion within the public sector, even amongst those with significant professional experience.
  • MAPS welcomes professional applicants as well as students with little to no formal policy experience. Our admissions standards will guarantee we have a qualified and diverse cohort, giving you the opportunity to learn from not only our Faculty and Instructors, but also your peers.
  • The program has a transgovernmental understanding of public policy.  Through course-based activities, professional development workshops, mentorships, and paid internships, MAPS helps students expand their networks and build meaningful connections with policy experts from all levels of government, as well as Indigenous organizations and the non-profit and private sectors.
  • The program includes three core classes which are directed specifically at the program cohort, as well as the opportunity to take courses in policy, political science, and policy-related courses from other programs at the university. 
  • You will have the chance to practice various practical skills such as writing briefing notes, conducting policy research, and evaluating policy decisions.
  • The program’s unique 360 degree feedback assessment process helps to prepare you for the professional world; giving you regular assessments helps you to build your competencies as you become more self-aware and receive guidance on how to take charge of your own professional development.
  • We will work to support our students in securing practicum and internship positions that fit with their interests and goals.