Online Masters in Public Administration

Now is the time. Activate your future.

The University of Birmingham’s online Masters in Public Administration is the most flexible programme of its kind in the UK. You’ll engage in hands-on modules led by expert lecturers and apply what you learn right away in your current role. Graduate empowered to help shape the future of public services.

Flexible, 100% online modules

£1,115 cost per module

No hidden fees

INLOGOV-led programme

Retention rate of 91%

Make Birmingham yours

Complete the form below for detailed programme and pricing information and to be contacted by phone and email.

Multiple pathways to completion

Our Masters of Public Administration features a career-centred curriculum that empowers students to make a more meaningful impact in their communities. In this flexible programme, you can take breaks when you need them and choose the exit pathway that best suits you: Complete a full masters (180 credits), Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits), Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits) or individual modules.

Module highlights

  • Realising International Agendas in the Public Sector
  • Democracy, Governance and Participation
  • Managing in a Political Environment

Excellence in distance learning

The University of Birmingham’s online courses encourage students to elevate their ideas and reshape the world. You’ll have the freedom to study whenever and wherever it works best for you while benefitting from world-class instruction delivered by the same lecturers and faculty experts who teach on campus. Enjoy the flexibility of online learning with convenient modules that prioritize immersive activities and lively discussions. Graduate poised to step into your desired role with new knowledge and skills gained from a research-informed, career-centred programme.

Flexible entry criteria

Birmingham values your experience as a dedicated public servant, and our commitment to student success sets the stage for life-changing educational experiences. The online Masters of Public Administration offers multiple entrance pathways to accommodate your individual background and level of experience.

Offer in principle for qualifying students

Students who have obtained an upper second-class degree or postgraduate diploma from a UK university are eligible for standard academic entry and must submit a completed application and a copy of their CV. Anyone who meets standard entry criteria will receive an offer in principle within 48 hours.

Requirements for academic entry:

Certificate/transcriptsStudent must have obtained (or be predicted to obtain) an upper second-class degree or postgraduate diploma from a UK university OR an equivalent qualification from a recognised institution.
Additional Documentation
  • Complete the online application.
  • Supply an up-to-date curriculum vitae (CV) demonstrating your academic and work experience, plus any other skills that may support your application.
  • Optional: Submit a personal statement uploaded in PDF format.
Evidence of language (if applicable)If English is not your first language, you will also need to supply an up-to-date English language certificate. Please see the detailed language criteria listed below.

Alternative paths to entry

Students seeking non-standard academic entry may pursue the following routes.

  • The degree or equivalent qualification must be from a UK university or recognised institution.
  • You must provide evidence of at least 1-5 years of relevant work experience in the public sector.
  • You must also submit one reference. Your reference can be either be uploaded to your application by your referee or email directly to your Student Recruitment Coordinator.
  • Optional: Submit a personal statement uploaded in PDF format.
  • The degree or equivalent qualification must be from a UK university or recognised institution.
  • The student must provide evidence of at least 5-7 years of relevant senior experience in the public sector.
  • You must also submit one reference. Your reference can be either be uploaded to your application by your referee or email directly to your Student Recruitment Coordinator.
  • Optional: Submit a personal statement uploaded in PDF format.
  • Without a degree, the student must provide evidence of 8+ years of senior work experience in the public sector.
  • You must also submit one reference. Your reference can be either be uploaded to your application by your referee or email directly to your Student Recruitment Coordinator.
  • Optional: Submit a personal statement uploaded in PDF format.

Earn an internationally recognised masters

At Birmingham University, we’re shaping the future of industries through pioneering research and world-class degree programmes that prepare graduates to better serve the global community. We pride ourselves in welcoming and supporting international students – as of 2023, 62% of students in the online masters programme are international and reside in 70 different nations outside the UK.

If English is not your first language, you will need to supply an up-to-date English language certificate. See the details below.

  • Academic IELTS certificates with a score of 6.5, and no less than 5.5 in any band
  • TOEFL with a score of 88, and no less than 21 in ‘Reading’, 20 in ‘Listening’, 22 in ‘Speaking’, and 21 in ‘Writing’
  • Pearson PTE with a score of 67 and no less than 64 in all four skills
  • Cambridge Advanced English with a minimum overall score of 176 and no less than 169 in any component
  • Language Cert ESOL SELT B2 ‘Communicator’ test certificate with a minimum score of 33 in each skill
  • Trinity ISE III with a ‘Pass’ in each skill
  • HKDSE with a minimum score of 4 overall, to include three bands at grade 4 and one band at grade 3
  • India Standard XII with a minimum pass of 80% in ISC, CBSE, Maharashtra or 75% in West Bengal, or 85% in other state boards

You may not need to provide evidence of your English language abilities if:

  • You’re from a specified majority English-speaking country
  • You’ve completed a degree in English in a specified country within two years of your intended start date

If nationals from the following countries have a degree or GCSE English grade 4/C equivalent taken, then they do not need to provide a test and there is no validity period for their degree or GCSE equivalent.

Nationals of other countries can be exempt if they hold a degree from one of the below countries within the last two academic years:

  • Australia
  • Belize
  • Botswana
  • British Overseas Territories
    • Anguilla
    • Bermuda
    • British Antarctic Territory
    • British Indian Ocean Territory
    • British Virgin Islands
    • Cayman Islands
    • Falkland Islands (and Dependencies)
      • South Georgia
      • South Sandwich Islands
    • Gibraltar
    • Montserrat
    • Pitcairn
    • Henderson
    • Ducie and Oeno Islands
    • Saint Helena (and Dependencies)
      • Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
    • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Brunei
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Guyana
  • Republic of Ireland
  • Kenya
  • Malta
  • Mauritius
  • Namibia
  • Nigeria
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • West Indies
    • Antigua and Barbuda
    • Bahamas
    • Barbados
    • Dominica
    • Grenada
    • Jamaica
    • Saint Kitts and Nevis
    • Saint Lucia
    • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
    • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Transparent tuition costs

The estimated total cost of this programme is £14,495 GBP. You can pay in full or in instalments of £1,115 per module. All costs are listed to help you make an informed decision.

Programme fees are reviewed annually and are subject to change each academic year. The fees listed above are for academic year 2023-24.

Flexible payment options

At Birmingham, we strive to be accessible to students of all backgrounds. We provide a range of payment options to meet students where they are and lower the barrier to higher education. The fee can either be paid in full or spread over manageable instalments by Direct Debit. Learn more.

No hidden fees

Studying for your Masters of Public Administration at Birmingham means knowing the cost of tuition before you enroll. Our tuition includes all fees required by your programme, so you won’t encounter any hidden costs on your path to graduation.

Early bird discount

We are excited to be offering a 10% early bird discount from the first module for the October 2024 intake to those who have accepted an unconditional offer and are registered on the programme by 27th September 2024.

Rewarding careers in public administration

An online Masters of Public Administration from Birmingham prepares graduates for a range of rewarding careers in public service. Pursue roles such as public sector leadership, public service manager, finance secretary, strategic change manager, performance analyst, public procurement, project officer, political risk analyst and more. Graduates of this program are employed in a range of environments, including local council, local government, geo-political and socio-economic organizations, emergency services and civil service.

“This course has helped me to identify gaps through process mapping, defining and resolving problems faster and more effectively. It has given me the scope to view local government through wider lenses and a future towards e-governments, greater public involvement and co-production of services and delivery.”
– Ana Soochit, Online Master Of Public Administration Graduate, Trinidad

We do more than educate. We inspire. We activate.

The University of Birmingham’s 100% online degree programmes are designed to the same standards as our on-campus courses, with research-informed content and the latest in digital learning techniques. Study whenever and wherever it suits you in flexible, career-centred modules with instruction from the foremost experts in your field. Take the first step in transforming your career today by learning more about our programmes and finding out why we’re regularly recognized as a top research and learning university.

Top 100 university4

#4 in
the UK
for online learning5

Russell
Group
university

#1 in UK for teaching local governance

11th in
the UK
for Social Policy6

Bronze
Athena
SWAN
awarded in 2020

Learn more today!

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References

  1. Payscale. “Master of Public Administration (MPA) Degree.” Retrieved 18 Dec. 2023 from https://payscale.com/
  2. Payscale. “Average Manager, Change Management Salary in the United Kingdom.” Retrieved 18 Dec. 2023 from https://payscale.com/
  3. Payscale. “Average Senior Policy Advisor Salary in United Kingdom.” Retrieved 18 Dec. 2023 from https://payscale.com/
  4. QS Top Universities. “QS World University Rankings 2025.” Retrieved 10 Jun. 2024 from https://topuniversities.com/
  5. Beckett, Max. “Online Learning Index.” Uswitch. 2 Nov. 2022. Retrieved 18 Dec. 2023 from https://uswitch.com/
  6. QS Top Universities. “QS World University Rankings by Subject 2023: Social Policy & Administration.” Retrieved 18 Dec. 2023 from https://topuniversities.com/