This page includes the following program requirements:

MPA Graduation Requirements

  1. Completion of a minimum of 33 semester units of approved graduate courses;
  2. Completion of at least 24 of these units in residence;
  3. Completion of all course work with a GPA of at least 3.0;
  4. Completion of a graduate project equivalent to 3 semester units (in addition to the above 33 units of course work);
  5. Students must be fully classified at the time of graduation (in order to be fully classified, students must have the following: Bachelor's degree from an accredited university and 3.0 GPA in their cumulative post-graduate course work).

Steps Required to Complete Your MPA Degree

Conditionally Classified Graduate (GRAD) Status

It is important to achieve full classified standing prior to completing more than 12 units of graduate coursework on the program of study. No more than 12 units of work taken prior to attaining fully classified status will be applied to a master’s degree program.

Classified Graduate Status

Students who meet all University and departmental requirements as outlined in the current catalog.

Graduation with Honors

Students who satisfy all program requirements and maintain a grade point average of 3.885 or higher on their coursework will receive their MPA degrees with distinction. The notation "with distinction" is posted on the transcript and will appear on the diploma.

Applying for the Degree

Students eligible to apply for graduation will receive an email from the Office of Graduate Studies with information regarding how to complete the online graduation application. To be eligible, students must be classified and completed 18 units OR be classified and be in progress of completing 18 units. This application will initiate a graduation evaluation—which advises students of existing requirements for their degree. Graduate students are required to be enrolled the semester in which their degree is to be awarded.

Graduation Application Deadlines

How to Apply for Graduation Online

CSUN’s Application for Graduation is now available online. To be eligible to apply, graduates will need to have completed/be in progress of completing 18 units. Students should apply one year in advance of their intended graduation date. Students that are eligible to apply will receive an email from Graduate Studies. A $47 fee is required.

Online Graduation How to Guide (.pdf)

Reinstatement to the MPA Program

If a student withdraws from a cohort, s(he) may be admitted to another cohort at a later date. The reinstated student will be assessed the same tuition and nonrefundable fees as apply to all other students in the new cohort.

Note: All cohorts, once begun, will be taught out through to completion. However, there is no guarantee that new cohorts will follow in a specific area or within a specific amount of time.

Graduate Project Requirements

The only culminating experience for the Master of Public Administration program is the graduate project. Students take graduate project course as the last class in their program. In the graduate project course, it requires students to demonstrate their mastery of their specialization in Public Administration.

In addition to being fully classified, students must seek approval from the program’s academic lead in order to enroll in the graduate project. This implies having passed the requisite units of coursework, while also maintaining a GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Textbook Requirements

For information on how to look up your MPA textbooks, go to the Campus Store website at

MPA Withdrawal and Refund Policies for On-Campus Non-Cohort Students

Prior to the first day of class, your withdrawal notification can be made online or by phone. The amount of your refund is based on time of withdrawal. The time of withdrawal is determined by the date on which The Tseng College receives written or electronic notification of your withdrawal. Retroactive withdrawal is not permitted.

If once the class has started, you find it impossible to complete a course for which you have registered, you must withdraw officially by completing and submitting a Self Support Change of Schedule Petition (PDF) to The Tseng College. Non-attendance, notifying the instructor or stopping payment on your check or payment voucher does not constitute an official withdrawal. Not dropping a course that you fail to complete may have a negative impact on your grade point average.

Refund amounts for withdrawals submitted up to the day before the first class meeting: The course fee will be refunded if you withdraw at least one working day prior to the first class session (up to 11:59 p.m.)

Refund amounts for withdrawals submitted after 12:01 a.m. the day of the first class meeting: A refund of 65 percent of fees paid will be made if official withdrawal occurs before 25 percent of the course time has elapsed. Beyond that point, no refunds will be made. Your refund is based on the date you are actually dropped in SOLAR, not the date you stopped attending class.


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