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Course Details

Course Details

Course Code: PADM520 Course ID: 2727 Credit Hours: 3 Level: Graduate

The study and practice of public administration is explored in its political context. The student is introduced to the environment within which public administration functions and the dynamics of behavior within large organizations. How choices are made among competing policies, factors affecting the implementation of policy, and the role of policy evaluation in shaping policy choices are examined. Managing large-scale bureaucratic organizations is analyzed including the role of leadership, the management of personnel and finances, and the role of communication in inter- and intra-organizational relations.

Course Schedule

Registration Dates Course Dates Session Weeks
01/25/21 - 07/02/21 07/05/21 - 08/29/21 Summer 2021 Session B 8 Week session
02/22/21 - 07/30/21 08/02/21 - 09/26/21 Summer 2021 Session I 8 Week session
03/29/21 - 09/03/21 09/06/21 - 10/31/21 Summer 2021 Session D 8 Week session
04/26/21 - 10/01/21 10/04/21 - 11/28/21 Fall 2021 Session B 8 Week session
05/21/21 - 10/29/21 11/01/21 - 12/26/21 Fall 2021 Session I 8 Week session

Current Syllabi

The successful student will fulfill the following learning objectives:

  1. Analyze the evolution of public administration in America
  2. Assess the validity of the politics-administration dichotomy
  3. Assess the structure of public agencies and their administration to include finance and personnel management
  4. Evaluate the role of the Bureaucracy in implementing, interpreting, establishing, evaluating, and enforcing public policy at the various levels of state and local government
  5. Assess the impact of public opinion and political socialization on public administration at the federal level
  6. Assess the impact of interest groups, political parties, campaigns, and the media on public administration
  7. Evaluate the importance of communicating with these different constituencies.
  8. Assess the role the citizen and community play in public administration at the local level

Forum Assignments:

Each week, readings are located in the "reading and resources" tab in your lessons. Students must critically review these readings each week, find other sources and substantively reply to the contributions of their peers. The postings should be analytic in nature and include comparisons/contrasts, and examples to bolster your argument. All postings should be free of any spelling or grammar errors. Sources should be given attribution.

The forum grading rubric can be found in the gradebook by the forum entry. Specific forum instructions are in the Week 1 substantive forum.

Written Assignments:

There are three different types of products that you may be required to use as a public administrator: daily briefing memo, background reading memo, and a Powerpoint presentation. You will prepare each of these during the class.

The assignment grading rubric can be found in the assignment.

Final Project:

Each student will prepare a research paper on a topic related to the role of public administration in society of his or her choice. Topics need to be approved by the instructor before Week 3. The research paper should be at least 10 pages double spaced in length (the page total does not include Title Page, Abstract, or Reference Page).

Provide a minimum of five (5) scholarly references using APA 6th edition citations, form, and style. Use of the APUS online library is strongly encouraged. Include links to your APUS Library articles in your reference list.

The criteria for evaluating the final paper is based on MPA Graduate Assignment Rubric, which can be found in the assignment section of classroom.

NameGrade %
Forums 40.00 %
Week 1 Forum 5.00 %
Week 2 Forum 5.00 %
Week 3 Forum 5.00 %
Week 4 Forum 5.00 %
Week 5 Forum 5.00 %
Week 6 Forum 5.00 %
Week 7 Forum 5.00 %
Week 8 Forum 5.00 %
Written Exercises 30.00 %
Daily Briefing Memo - Week 2 10.00 %
Background Reading - Week 4 10.00 %
Presentation Exercise - Week 6 10.00 %
Final Project 30.00 %
Research Paper - Week 8 30.00 %

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Required Readings:

All of the assigned articles can be found either in the Intellus link in lessons under Reading and Resources or by searching the APUS library. Please see the list below for the readings each week.

Web Sites

In addition to the required course readings, the following public domain web sites are useful. Please abide by the university’s academic honesty policy when using Internet sources as well. Note web site addresses are subject to change.

Site Name

Web Site URL/Address





Week 1 Articles:

Wright, Bradley E. (2015). The Science of Public Administration: Problems, Presumptions, Progress, and Possibilities, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 6, 96-101.

Constantin, Eugen. (2014). Deontology in public administration, Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice, Volume 6, Issue 1, 77-86.

Pečarič, Mirko. (2016). Public Administration as Representative Bureaucracy, IALS Student Law Review, Volume 4, Issue 1, 1-27.

Lampert, Joseph. (2015). Democratic inclusion and the governance of immigration, Social Theory and Practice, Volume 41, Issue 1, 51-76.

Sorina-Cristina Marin. (2016). Strategic Management Public Administration, Risk in Contemporary Economy, Volume 3, 187-191.

Tholen, Berry. (2016). Machiavelli's Lessons for Public Administration, Administrative Theory & Praxis, Volume 38, Issue 2, 101-114.

McCandless, Sean A; Guy, Mary E. (2013). One More Time, Administrative Theory & Praxis, Volume 35, Issue 3, 356-377.

McGreggor Cawley, R. (2015). Inserting Frontier into Dichotomies: Politics, Administration, and Agonistic Pluralism, Administrative Theory & Praxis, Volume 37, Issue 4, 227-241.

Heidelberg, Roy L. (2015). Public Administration, Popular Sovereignty, and la Police, Administrative Theory & Praxis, Volume 37, Issue 3, 162-173.

Week 2 Articles:

Alexandru, Roman. (2015). The Roles Assumed by Public Administrators: The Link Between Administrative Discretion and Reputation, Public Administration Quarterly, Volume 39, Issue 4, 87-96.

Leavitt, William M. (2015). General Douglas MacArthur: Supreme Public Administrator of Post–World War II Japan, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 2, 315-324.

Wang, Xiaohu; Van Wart, Montgomery; Lebredo, Nick. (2014). Sustainability Leadership in a Local Government Context: The Administrator's Role in the Process, Public Performance & Management Review, Volume 37, Issue 3, 339-364.

Parris, Adam. (2014). How Hurricane Sandy Tamed the Bureaucracy, Issues in Science and Technology, Volume 30, Issue 4, 83-90.

Arnold, Gwen. (2014). Policy learning and science policy innovation adoption by street-level bureaucrats, Journal of Public Policy, Volume 34, Issue 3, 1-26.

Week 3 Articles:

O'Connell, Anne Joseph. (2014). Bureaucracy at the boundary, University of Pennsylvania Law Review, Volume 162, Issue 4, 841-927.

Krause, Rachel M; Feiock, Richard C; Hawkins, Christopher V. (2015). The Administrative Organization of Sustainability Within Local Government, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Volume 26, Issue 1, 113-127.

Walker, R. M; Andrews, R. (2015). Local Government Management and Performance: A Review of Evidence, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Volume 25, Issue 1, 101-133.

Sidorsky, Kaitlin. (2015). Moving on Up? The Gendered Ambitions of State-Level Appointed Officials, Political Research Quarterly, Volume 68, Issue 4, 802-815.

Buffat, Aurélien. (2015). Street-Level Bureaucracy and E-Government, Public Management Review, 01/2015, Volume 17, Issue 1, 149-161.

Week 4 Articles:

Marsonet, Michele. (2015). Pragmatism and Political Pluralism - Consensus and Pluralism, Academicus : International Scientific Journal, Issue 12, 47-58.

Durant, Robert F. (2015). Whither Power in Public Administration? Attainment, Dissipation, and Loss, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 2, 206-218.

West, William F. (2015). The Administrative Presidency as Reactive Oversight: Implications for Positive and Normative Theory, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 4, 523-533.

Reed, Adolph. (2016). The Post-1965 Trajectory of Race, Class, and Urban Politics in the United States Reconsidered, Labor Studies Journal, Volume 41, Issue 3, 260-291.

Whipps, Judy. (2014). A Pragmatist Reading of Mary Parker Follett's Integrative Process, Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society: A Quarterly Journal in American Philosophy, Volume 50, Issue 3, 405-424.

Zepeda-Millán, Chris. (2014). Perceptions of Threat, Demographic Diversity, and the Framing of Illegality: Explaining (Non) Participation in New York's 2006 Immigrant Protests, Political Research Quarterly, Volume 67, Issue 4, 880-888.

Week 5 Articles:

Carpenter, D; Krause, G. A. (2015). Transactional Authority and Bureaucratic Politics, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, 01/2015, Volume 25, Issue 1, 5-25.

Willliam C Rivenbark, Roberta Fasiello, Stefano Adamo. (2016). Moving Beyond Innovation Diffusion in Smaller Local Governments: Does Performance Exist? Public Administration Quarterly, Volume 40, Issue 4, 763-788.

Carr, Jered B. (2015). What Have We Learned about the Performance of Council‐Manager Government? A Review and Synthesis of the Research, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 5, 673-689.

Lamothe, Meeyoung; Lamothe, Scott. (2015). Exploring the Determinants of Local Service Termination, Social Science Quarterly, Volume 96, Issue 5, 1453-1474.

Nicholson-Crotty, Sean C., Woods, Neal D., Bowman, Ann, Karch, Andrew. (2014). Policy Innovativeness and Interstate Compacts. Policy Journal Studies, Volume 42, Issue 2, 305-324.

Week 6 Articles:

Aligica, Paul Dragos. (2015). Public Administration, Public Choice and the Ostroms: the achievements, the failure, the promise, Public Choice, Volume 163, Issue 1, 111-127.

Melton, Erin K. (2014). The Consequences of Conflict: An Evaluation of Racial Disparity and Organizational Performance, Public Organization Review, Volume 14, Issue 3, 267-284.

Spicer, Michael W. (2014). Justice, Conflict and Adversary Argument: An Examination of Stuart Hampshire’s Ideas and Their Implications for American Public Administration, Public Administration Quarterly, Volume 38, Issue 4, 445-465.

Meier, Kenneth J. (2015). Proverbs and the Evolution of Public Administration, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 1, 15-24.

Jordan, Sara R; Gray, Phillip W. (2014). Reporting Ethics Committee Approval in Public Administration Research, Science and Engineering Ethics, Volume 20, Issue 1, 77-97.

Okulicz-Kozaryn, Adam. (2016). Happiness research for public policy and administration, Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, Volume 10, Issue 2, 196-211.

Week 7 Articles:

Greve, Carsten. (2015). Ideas in Public Management Reform for the 2010s. Digitalization, Value Creation and Involvement, Public Organization Review, Volume 15, Issue 1, 49-65.

Schachter, Hindy Lauer. (2014). New Public Management and Principals’ Roles in Organizational Governance: What Can a Corporate Issue Tell us About Public Sector Management? Public Organization Review, Volume 14, Issue 4, 517-531.

Liu, Shuhua Monica; Yuan, Qianli. (2015). The Evolution of Information and Communication Technology in Public Administration, Public Administration and Development, Volume 35, Issue 2, 140-151.

Eckerd, Adam; Heidelberg, Roy L. (2015). Public Incentives, Market Motivations, and Contaminated Properties: New Public Management and Brownfield Liability Reform, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 2, 252-261.

Walther, Falko. (2015). New public management: the right way to modernize and improve public services? International Journal of Business and Public Administration (IJBPA), Volume 12, Issue 2, 132-143.

Kellis, Dana S; Ran, Bing. (2015). Effective leadership in managing NPM-based change in the public sector, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Volume 28, Issue 4, 614-626.

Week 8 Articles:

Denhardt, Janet V; Denhardt, Robert B. (2015). The New Public Service Revisited, Public Administration Review, Volume 75, Issue 5, 664-672.

Schwalbe, Stephen R., Why Aren't Citizens More Interested in Local Government? found at:

Bryson, John M; Crosby, Barbara C; Bloomberg, Laura. (2014). Public Value Governance: Moving beyond Traditional Public Administration and the New Public Management, Public Administration Review, Volume 74, Issue 4, 445-456.

Jacobs, Lawrence R. (2014). The Contested Politics of Public Value, Public Administration Review, Volume 74, Issue 4, 480-494.

Dahl, Adam; Soss, Joe. (2014). Neoliberalism for the Common Good? Public Value Governance and the Downsizing of Democracy, Public Administration Review, Volume 74, Issue 4, 496-504.

Harrison, Teresa M.; Santiago Guerrero; G Brian Burke. (2012). Open government and e-government: Democratic challenges from a public value perspective, Information Polity, Volume 17, Issue 2, 83-97.

Williamson, Aimee L; Snow, Douglas. (2013). Bridging Theory and Practice, Public Performance & Management Review, Volume 37, Issue 1, 154-187.

Book Title:Various resources from the APUS Library & the Open Web are used. Please visit to locate the course eReserve.*

Previous Syllabi

Not current for future courses.