Doctor of Philosophy - Public Affairs

The mission of the Ph.D. in Public Affairs is to be the nexus between the academic community and the world of service and practice in the private, non-profit, and public sector.

The degree will prepare individuals to study issues facing society in the context of public, private, and non-profit organizations and institutions. The program is interdisciplinary and draws upon faculty from across the college.

The degree program is designed to prepare students for one of two career paths: (1) to conduct research, consult, and serve as analysts within and to organizations; or (2) to enter the academic world at the college or university level.

For information regarding accreditation at UNLV, please head over to Academic Program Accreditations.


Learning Objectives

Students should be able to:

  • Apply theories from the social, political, and managerial sciences to explain government’s role in society.
  • Evaluate the literature from a topic relevant to public affairs and create a research question.
  • Identify and apply an appropriate research methods and data analysis to answer a research questions in public affairs.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of ethical principles in research.
  • Clearly communicate their knowledge in public affairs to different audiences such as other students, academicians, policymakers, and members of the general public.
  • Possess the skills to teach college courses.

Career Possibilities

The Ph.D. in Public Affairs program is designed to prepare students for several career options. First, students will be prepared for work in an academic career at the college or university level. Second, students will be prepared to work in a variety of organizations as a research analyst. Finally, students have found the degree helpful in furthering their career in areas where the knowledge, skills, and abilities developed over the course of the degree program prepares them to develop a level of expertise in managing organizations, lobbying governments, and consulting.


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Program Information

Plans of Study: Part II
Representative Syllabi
Degree Contacts
Graduate Coordinators
Related Links