This career-oriented, practitioner-directed doctoral program helps to prepare you for key roles in government, public, and nonprofit organizations.

In this professional doctorate program, you will:

  • Apply your research to create tangible solutions and become an effective manager.
  • Learn from real-world problems and in-person residencies.
  • Collaborate with faculty, professional clients, and following students.

Fast Facts

Next Start Date: April 10, 2017

Duration: 55 months

Transfer Credits: Up to 44 credits

Choose from 12 different specializations:

  • Criminal Justice
  • Emergency Management
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Global Leadership
  • Health Policy
  • Homeland Security Policy and Coordination
  • International Nongovernmental Organizations
  • Law and Public Policy
  • Local Government Management for Sustainable Communities
  • Nonprofit Management and Leadership
  • Policy Analysis
  • Terrorism, Mediation, and Peace

Learning Outcomes

The DPA program can help you develop and refine the leadership skills that will empower you to create lasting change. This online doctoral program can enable you to:

  • Evaluate effective leadership/management principles (including theory, concepts, and practices) utilized in the public sector.
  • Evaluate solutions to practical problems in public administration using evidence-based practices and research.
  • Apply ethical concepts of public administration within organizations.
  • Apply culturally sensitive public administration research to meet the needs of diverse populations at local, state, national, and international levels of government.
  • Utilize analytic methods in making decisions related to public administration that contributes to positive social change.
  • Engage in scientific inquiry to advance practice in the field of public administration.

More about our DPA program

  • Career Options

    Whether you’re interested in working in a governmental, nonprofit, or private organization, a DPA can position you for a range of careers in which you can make a difference. Career options include:*

    • Senior-level public executive
    • Legislative aide
    • Government affairs officer
    • Senior-level nonprofit manager
    • Policy analyst
    • Research director
    • Private consultant

    *Career options may require additional experience, training, or other factors beyond the successful completion of this degree program.

  • Entry Requirements

    A master's degree or higher is required for entrance into the DPA program. You will also be required to submit a completed online application, employment history, and official transcripts.

    Your enrollment advisor will help you gather all of the required materials starting with your application all the way through your first day of classes.

  • Tuition and Financial Aid

    Because tuition costs will vary depending on your previous education, you can get in touch with an enrollment advisor today by calling 855.203.3398, to learn more about tuition costs for the DPA program and financial aid options.

    Walden's enrollment advisors are committed to helping identify and leverage opportunities for you to save money on your education. 

  • How to Apply

    To speak with an enrollment advisor about applying for our program today, fill out the form on this page to be contacted, or call 855.203.3398.

Why earn your DPA at Walden?

  • Charrette Model Residency

    This team-based, hands-on experience directly connects you with clients in local government and nonprofit organizations.

  • Exceptional Student Support

    Benefit from our 24/7 tech support, Writing Center, Career Services Center, and more.

  • Applied Doctorate

    In this professional program, you apply your skills to solve real problems of practice in government or the workplace.



Having an advanced degree allowed me to gain new job duties and responsibilities,which will in turn help me in all areas of my life.

Meleny Thomas | PhD in Public Policy and Administration Student