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Academic Policies and Requirements
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Course Enrollment Students are required to register for a minimum of 12 credit hours per semester for full-time student status. The maximum course load of 17 credit hours may only be exceeded upon approval of the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar.
For students enrolled in the Accelerated Master of Public Policy Program, the credit hours for all Batten coursework taken during the first year counts toward the undergraduate degree. In the second year, students must complete a minimum of 30 credits of graduate-level work in-residence.
Course Registration Students should register during pre-registration to avoid problems with tuition bills and financial aid. Registration is not complete until all fees have been paid or satisfactory arrangements have been made with Student Financial Services.
Academic Advising The Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar is responsible for the academic advising of Batten School students. The Director meets with students regularly to monitor curricular progress, and administers school policies with regard to student retention, progression, suspension, and graduation status.
Attendance Given the intensive nature of Batten curricula, students are expected to attend all scheduled class meetings. When necessary, excuses for absence from class are arranged between the student and the instructor of the course. It is the responsibility of the student to discuss numerous absences with the instructor and the Assistant Dean of Student Services. If necessary, the Assistant Dean may ask the Department of Student Health to evaluate the effect of any illness on a student’s attendance and academic performance.
Poor attendance may be taken into account by the instructor in any manner for grading purposes. The instructor will bring cases of excessive absence to the attention of the Assistant Dean of Student Services.
In the event that the student falls behind in course work for any reason, it is the responsibility of the student to make up the work in a manner that is approved by the instructor.
Original Work Students are required to submit their own work in all courses, properly citing the words and ideas belonging to others in all assignments, in accordance with instructor guidelines and the University of Virginia Honor System. Failure to do so may result in disciplinary action.
Work that has been submitted as an assignment for one course may not be submitted as an assignment for another course without the explicit approval of the instructor.
Final Examinations Final examinations are to be given only at the time announced by the University Registrar. Under no circumstances should class time be used for the administration of final examinations. An instructor may, however, give the examination on a “take home” basis during the examination period.
A student who wishes to request the postponement of an examination under rare, extenuating circumstances beyond his or her control must contact the instructor no later than one week before classes end. Absence from a final examination for any course offered in the Batten School may be excused only by the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar, and then only when accompanied by evidence of arrangement with the instructor for a deferred examination, to be taken within ten days after the regular examination. An emergency that justifies extension of this period will be considered only when supported by satisfactory documentation submitted immediately after the period of emergency. After the ten-day period, or its extension if granted by the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs, the temporary grade of IN (incomplete) will officially become a grade of F unless the deferred examination has been completed. Absences are excused only for sickness on the day of the examination or for other providential cause acceptable to the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs. An excused absence may be absolved by taking a special examination at a time mutually acceptable to the instructor and the student. Special examinations are not granted for reasons other than those stated above.
Unexcused absence from an examination incurs an automatic failure in the course with a grade of F.
Grades The academic performance of a student in each course taken for a grade is recorded as one of the following grades: A+, A, A-; B+, B, B-; C+, C, C-; D+, D, D-; F. All courses intended to fulfill degree requirements must be taken for a grade.
Incomplete and Missing Grades The symbol IN (incomplete) is used when additional course work or examination is required to fulfill the obligations of a given course. A student may not request an incomplete in an attempt to raise his or her grade. An IN is not a valid final grade and becomes an F 30 days after the grading deadline (200 days for graduate students), unless the student requests an extension from the course instructor prior to the end of the course, and secures approval. The time allowed to complete course requirements is determined between the student and the instructor, but may not exceed one semester beyond the term in which the student took the course. Students must enter into a written agreement with the instructor, specifying the remaining requirements and timeline. If the student fails to fulfill the agreement, the grade automatically becomes an F unless changed by the instructor. Grade changes from IN to a final grade cannot be made more than one semester following the end of the course.
Grade Changes Error in calculation or transcription is the only acceptable reason for a grade change. Grades cannot be changed after a degree is conferred, or more than one semester following the end of the course, whichever comes first. Instructors may change grades electronically for winter term and spring semester through December 31 of that year, and for summer sessions and fall semester through May 31 of the following year. After this point, instructors must submit a grade change form to the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar, who will seek approval from the Dean.
Grade Appeals A student who wishes to appeal a grade must first attempt to resolve the issue with the instructor of the course. The appeal must be submitted to the instructor in writing within 30 days of grade posting. If no resolution is reached, the student may submit a written appeal to Associate Dean Eric Patashnik.
Academic Standing At the end of each semester the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar checks the overall records of all Batten students to see if they are in Good Standing and making satisfactory progress toward their degree. This review ensures that students are informed of academic problems in a timely way. The Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar then counsel the student and applies any academic sanctions imposed at the discretion of the Dean.
Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership
- Batten BA candidates are considered to be in Good Standing at the end of a semester if, in that semester, they have:
- Completed at least 12 credits of course work;
- Earned a minimum GPA of 2.000;
- Have no more than one grade below C minus.
- To enroll for a seventh semester, students must have earned at least 84 semester hours (includes approved summer, transfer, AP, IB and dual enrollment credits).
- Academic Warning
- Students who fail to earn Good Standing will be placed on Academic Warning. Students on Academic Warning will be required to meet regularly with the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar beginning no later than the add period of the ensuing semester. They are also strongly urged to devote more time to their academic work and are referred to academic support services.
- Students on Academic Warning who withdraw or take a leave of absence are eligible to apply for readmission. They return on Academic Warning and must attain Good Standing by the end of the next semester or face Suspension by virtue of two consecutive semesters on Academic Warning.
- Students are subject to Suspension after two consecutive semesters on Academic Warning, or if they fail to earn at least nine grade points in a semester.
- If this is a first Suspension, then one full fall term and one full spring term must elapse before a student may return to the Batten School. The Dean will consider a student’s application for readmission when s/he can document overcoming the difficulties that led to the Suspension. Students under Suspension forfeit commitments of financial aid. Suspended students may not apply hours from other institutions toward their U.Va. degree.
- A second Suspension is regarded as permanent, and the student may not return to the University of Virginia.
- When warranted, the Dean is authorized to hold a Suspension in abeyance and permit the student who would otherwise be suspended to continue under specific conditions. After the semester has concluded, the student’s academic standing will be evaluated and the appropriate academic discipline, if required, will be imposed.
- To remain in good academic standing in the MPP degree program of the Batten School, students must 1) earn a final grade of B minus or higher in all core courses of the degree program, 2) earn no more than two final grades lower than a B minus in elective courses, and 3) must maintain a cumulative grade point average of B (3.00) or higher in all courses required for the degree, including elective courses taken in other schools at the University of Virginia.
- MPP students who fail to meet these conditions will be placed on academic probation, pending dean’s review. The Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar will notify the student of this status and explain his or her options. The student has until the end of the next semester’s exam period to restore good standing by fulfilling the terms attached to his or her unique case. In most cases, failure to do so will result in enforced withdrawal from the program in which they are enrolled pending dean’s review.
- Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership
All work for the Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership must be completed within eight semesters of matriculation and with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.000. In serious medical or extenuating personal circumstances and upon approval of a petition to the Dean of the Batten School, a student may be permitted to enroll as a full-time student in a ninth semester.
The student must be registered in the Batten School during the semester in which he or she is an applicant for a degree.
- Accelerated Bachelor/MPP
All work for the Master of Public Policy degree must be completed within five years of matriculation.
The student must be registered in the Batten School during the semester in which he or she is an applicant for a degree.
Degree Application To receive a degree, students must comply with the procedures administered by the Batten School Registrar. The application process for May graduation begins in October, with the final deadline to file a May BA degree application falling in December, before the winter break (in early February for MPP degree candidates). The application deadline for August graduation falls in June, and for January graduation the deadline falls in September. Students who miss a deadline may apply for the subsequent graduation and must register for the semester in which it occurs.
Academic Rules and Regulations
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Application of Batten School Policies
Policies and procedures apply to all students enrolled in the Batten School, as stipulated below, and are subject to change.
Petitions for exception should be addressed to Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.
Policies and procedures governing enrollment in a degree program or course at the Batten School also apply to students from other schools who are enrolled in Batten programs and courses.
Application of Other School and University Policies
Students enrolled in the first year of the Accelerated Master of Public Policy Program are still candidates for their undergraduate degrees. They are therefore governed by the regulations of the school in the University in which they are completing those degrees, as well as with the general policies of the University of Virginia, presented in the Undergraduate Record and available on-line at records.ureg.virginia.edu/. Upon successful completion of the undergraduate degree and the first year of the Batten curriculum, these students will be officially admitted to the Batten School graduate program. Students may not be admitted to the graduate program without an undergraduate degree.
All students enrolled in the Batten School’s undergraduate program are responsible for complying with the policies of the University of Virginia, presented in the Undergraduate Record and available on-line at records.ureg.virginia.edu/.
All students enrolled in the Batten School’s graduate programs are responsible for complying with the policies of the University of Virginia, presented in the Graduate Record and available on-line at records.ureg.virginia.edu/.
The Graduate Record and the Undergraduate Record contain information on policies that apply to all University students, regulations governing undergraduate, graduate and dual-degree programs, the Honor System, tuition, fees, and financial aid.
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Following matriculation, all competency and area requirements must be completed at the University of Virginia and must be taken on a graded basis. AP credits from secondary school and transfer credits awarded before U.Va. matriculation may count as area requirements, with the exception of the second writing requirement. Dual-enrollment credit may not be used to meet first writing or foreign language requirements. Test scores cited in this section are from the SAT II Subject Tests re-centered in April 1995.
First Writing Requirement Students may meet the first writing requirement in one of five ways:
- By successfully completing the two-semester Introduction to Academic Argument (ENWR 1505 + 1506).
- By successfully completing the two-semester ESL version of Introduction to Academic Argument (ENWR 1559 in the fall, followed by spring ENWR 1508).Note that this path is for students who are still developing their skills in English as a second language; students required to fulfill the first writing requirement in the ESL path will be identified by the Admissions Office, the Summer Transition Program, or the Professional and Academic Writing Program.
- By successfully completing Accelerated Introduction to Academic Argument (ENWR 110).
- By successfully completing the two-semester Pavilion Writers sequence (ENWR 2150 followed by 2160).
- By exemption.
Although instructors (especially in ENWR 1505/1506 and 1559/1508) will offer guidance on questions of mechanical correctness where needed, students are assumed to be competent in the basics of English grammar before entering U.Va. Instead of offering grammar drills, these courses help students identify and frame academic questions, support and extend conceptual arguments, and develop a range of prose styles.
Students must meet the first writing requirement during their first year at U.Va.
A note for transfer students: The goals of first-year writing courses at other universities vary widely. Therefore, although transfer course credit may be granted, exemption from U.Va.’s first writing requirement is *not* automatically given to students who have completed a writing or composition course elsewhere.
Transfer students whose test scores do not exempt them from U.Va.’s first writing requirement may submit a portfolio to the writing program for review. The deadline for review of fall placement portfolios is usually August 1, with students missing this deadline being eligible to submit portfolios for the spring semester by the middle of October. Questions should be directed to Professor Jon D’errico in the Department of English (924-7072).
Students may earn exemption in two ways:
Automatic exemption. Students are automatically exempt from the first writing requirement if at least one of the following statements is true:
- The student is an Echols Scholar.
- The student scored 700 or above on the writing portion of the SAT exam.
- The student scored a 5 on the AP English language subject test.
- The student scored a 5 or above on the IB (higher A 1) exam.
Portfolio exemption. Students who are not automatically exempt, may be able to earn an exemption from the first writing requirement through portfolio review. A good candidate for portfolio review will have:
- Experience writing argument papers at the college level.
- A score of 660 or above on the writing portion of the SAT exam.
- A score of 4 or better on the AP English literature subject test.
- A score of 4 or better on the AP English language subject test.
Second Writing Requirement All students, except Echols Scholars, must complete a second writing requirement (typically a 3-credit course that is writing intensive) with a grade of C- or better by the end of their sixth semester.
- The Batten BA curriculum satisfies the second writing requirement for Batten BA candidates.
Foreign Language Requirement Students can meet the Foreign Language Requirement by successfully completing one of the following courses of action:
- Earn exemption by placing beyond the 2020 level by examination
- Take 14 credits, or four semesters of a language in the proper sequence
- After placement, complete the remaining courses in the sequence up to the fourth semester (usually 2020)
Placement in a language sequence is by SAT II Subject Test score and departmental recommendation. Students who achieve the following SAT II Subject Test scores are exempt from this requirement: 660 or above in French; 650 or above in German, Italian, Latin, or Spanish; 640 or above in Chinese or Japanese; or 560 or above in Hebrew. Students must follow the department’s recommendations in the completion of the foreign language requirement. Once placement occurs, the foreign language requirement is fulfilled by the completion of each course in sequence (no skipping). Credit for introductory language courses is disallowed if it duplicates foreign language credits offered for admission to the College of Arts and Sciences.
Students may be exempted from foreign languages not taught in the College of Arts and Sciences upon certification by a faculty member or outside examiner designated by the dean of the College. Students may also meet the foreign language requirement by completing, or gaining exemption from, the fourth semester of American Sign Language.
All undergraduate students except Echols Scholars are required to fulfill Area Requirements by earning the proper number of credits from courses taken in each of five different academic subject areas. The courses must be taken on the graded basis.
Humanities: (6 credits) Student must pass at least one course worth 3 credits or more from two of the following groups of departments and programs:
- Classics (CLAS)
- Comparative Literature (CPLT)
- East Asian Language and Cultures (EALC)
- East Asian Studies (EAST)
- English (except ENWR 1505/1506, 1510, 2510, 2520, 2700, 2820, 3700, 3710, 3720, 3800, and ENSP 1600 and 1700) and Foreign Literature [East Asian Languages, Literatures and Cultures (except CHIN 1010/1020, 2060, JAPN 1010-2020, KOR 1010-2020, and TBTN 1010-2020), French, German, Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures (except ARAB 2250, 2260, 3230/5230, and 3240/5240), Slavic Languages and Literatures, and Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese courses in translation, and all foreign language courses above the 2020 level (except PORT 2120, which satisfies the foreign language requirement)].
- Middle Eastern Studies (MESA)
- Media Studies (MDST) 3000
- South Asian Studies (SAST – EXCEPT SAST 2700)
- South Asian Literature in Translation (SATR)
- Anthropology (ANTH) 2370
- Art History (ARTH)
- Studio Art (ARTS; not ARTS 2070)
- Drama (DRAM)
- Music (MUSI ONLY)
- (MUBN, MUEN AND MUPF courses do NOT fill this requirement)
- Media Studies (MDST) 2000, 3050, 3100
- Architectural History (AR H) 1000, 1010, 1020, 1700, 2400, 3102, 3701, 3201 and 3203
- Architecture (ARCH) 1010 (only 3-6 credit courses are accepted)
- Moral, Philosophical, and Religious Perspectives:
- The Batten BA core course Ethical Dimensions of Civic Life satisfies the moral, philosophical, and religious perspective area requirement for Batten BA candidates.
Social Sciences: (6 credits) Students must pass at least one course worth 3 credits or more from two social science fields.
- The Batten BA curriculum satisfies the social sciences area requirement for Batten BA candidates.
Natural Science and Mathematics: (12 credits) Students must pass 12 hours of natural science and/or mathematics courses from at least two departments. Courses that count toward this requirement may be chosen from:
- The Departments of Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Sciences Mathematics, Physics and Statistics
- Economics (ECON) 3710, 3720 and 4720
- Psychology (PSYC) 2220 3210 and 4200 (as of fall 2008)
Students are strongly encouraged to include courses in mathematics, the physical sciences and the biological sciences. For this requirement, statistics, mathematics and the above three economics courses are considered to come from one department. This means a student cannot satisfy this requirement with just these courses.
- Astronomy (ASTR) 1000T
- Biology (BIOL) 1000T
- Chemistry (CHEM) 1000T
- Environmental Science (EVSC) 1000T and 2030
- Mathematics (MATH) 1000T and 1030
- Physics (PHYS) 1000T
Courses designated as 1000T are equivalencies as determined by the College of Arts & Sciences. These courses are considered elective credit and do not satisfy this requirement.
Historical Studies: (3 credits) Students must pass at least one course worth 3 credits or more in historical studies.
- The Batten BA core course Comparative Policy History satisfies the Historical Studies area requirement for Batten BA candidates.
Non-Western Perspectives (3 Credits) Students must pass at least one course worth 3 or more credits which the faculty recognizes as dealing substantially with a culture other than Western culture. Classes that meet this requirement change each semester. Classes that meet this requirement change each semester. Qualifying courses can be found in the SIS Course Catalog.
Courses taken to fulfill the Non-Western Perspectives Area Requirement may count also toward fulfilling one other Area Requirement.
Major/Minor in the College of Arts and Sciences
Batten BA candidates may earn one major and/or one minor in the College of Arts and Sciences. The student must obtain prior admission from the chair or director of undergraduate programs of the College program or department in which the student seeks the major or minor. Courses may not be double-counted toward the fulfillment of major/minor requirements.
In pursuing the above, the student will not receive two degrees from the University. The student receives a BA in Public Policy and Leadership from the Batten School. The College major and/or minor designation appears as degree information on the official transcript. This information does not appear on the diploma.
Students are responsible for completing the major or minor form (available in the College departments) and for obtaining the signature of the chair or director of the undergraduate programs. Students must submit completed forms to the Batten School Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar, who verifies the satisfactory completion of requirements after the student applies to graduate.
Batten undergraduates majoring and/or minoring in the College are required only to satisfy the area requirements of the Batten School.
Degree Information (Degree Offered)
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Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership
Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership – Open to current second-year U.Va. undergraduates and to transfer students, the public policy and leadership major is a multidisciplinary, liberal arts program focused on understanding how public policy decisions are made, how civic leaders in government, non-profit organizations, and the private sector contribute to collective problem solving. The curriculum provides an opportunity to learn about the political, economic, historical, and social context of public policy. The program also gives students the ability to understand debates about the full range of policy issues facing the contemporary world and provides an introduction to the basic concepts of policy analysis.
Although not a pre-professional degree, the Batten undergraduate program gives students an opportunity to develop their critical and analytical thinking, and their communication, leadership, and research skills.
It is an excellent choice for students who are still exploring their career options, or who seek a broad introduction to the identification and management of contemporary societal problems and to the challenges and opportunities of civic leadership. Recipients of the BA in Public Policy and Leadership are prepared for a wide range of graduate programs, including both professional degrees and doctoral programs, as well as for jobs related to public policy in the for-profit and public sectors.
Students already committed to a career in public policy, and who are interested in a professional master’s degree in that field, are advised to consider applying to the Accelerated Bachelor/MPP Program.
Admission to the Batten School is competitive to ensure a well-rounded class and to limit class size. Typically current U.Va. undergraduates apply for admission during the second year and will be admitted to the Batten School for their final two years. The program is also open to students transferring to the University in the third year.
In special circumstances, a student may apply for admission to the Batten School undergraduate degree program during their first year and complete the program over the course of their second and third year of study, thus graduating early. In such cases, the student must still fulfill the requirement of having completed 60 credits prior to entry to the Batten School.
Students must first be admitted to the University of Virginia, either as first-year students or through a transfer process. The Batten School will only consider applications for the fall semester of a student’s third-year, regardless of when they transfer into the University. A student is not eligible to transfer into the Batten School for the undergraduate degree program during the spring of their third year or at any point in their fourth year.
The BA application process requires components of the following supporting documents:
- Completed application form
- All college transcripts
- 1-2 letters of recommendation
- Personal essay
- CV/Resume of activities
- Standardized test scores
Applicants must present strong academic credentials and show that they will have earned at least 60 undergraduate credits before the start of their third year. They must also demonstrate that they are on track to finish their College of Arts and Sciences competency and area requirements, which the Batten School also requires.
Full-time candidates for the Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership who demonstrate academic excellence while taking a minimum of 15 credits of graded coursework are eligible for the Dean’s List of Distinguished Students at the end of each semester. Courses taken on a CR/NC basis are not counted toward the 15-credit minimum. A current minimum grade point average of 3.700 is necessary to be eligible for the dean’s list. Any student receiving an F, NC, or NG during the semester is not eligible for the dean’s list. The notation “Dean’s List” is posted normally within several weeks after the conclusion of the semester.
Undergraduate students who have demonstrated high academic achievement in pursuit of the BA are eligible for commencement honors.
Diplomas inscribed “with distinction” are awarded to graduates who have earned a cumulative grade point average of 3.400 to 3.599.
Diplomas inscribed “with high distinction” are awarded to graduates who have earned a cumulative grade point average of 3.600 to 3.799.
Diplomas inscribed “with highest distinction” are awarded to graduates who have earned a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.800.
Phi Beta Kappa
Candidates for the Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership are eligible for consideration for membership in the Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious undergraduate academic honors organization. Students are elected to Phi Beta Kappa for their stellar academic performance in the liberal arts. Undergraduate members of Phi Beta Kappa are chosen from the top 12 percent of the fourth-year class and the top 4 percent of the third-year class. Students must have earned at least 60 hours at the University of Virginia to be eligible. Students chosen for Phi Beta Kappa not only have earned a high grade point average but have also consistently demonstrated scholarship in the liberal arts. As a rule, students elected will have: (1) carried a full load of 15 credit hours per semester, (2) demonstrated proficiency in challenging advanced-level courses, and (3) chosen courses that reflect a scholarly commitment to the liberal arts in general (including a balance of courses in sciences and/or mathematics and the humanities and/or social sciences). In sum, the students who are elected choose programs that have breadth, depth, and rigor. Extracurricular activities are not taken into account. The Batten School Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar coordinates selection annually with the Phi Beta Kappa local chapter.
A note for Echols Scholars: The Batten School honors the College of Arts and Sciences policy of waiving competency/area requirements for Echols Scholars. Please be aware, however, that Phi Beta Kappa requires them. Interested students are advised to consult the website of the local Phi Beta Kappa chapter for information, http://college.artsandsciences.virginia.edu/phi_beta_kappa, and to contact the Batten School Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar with questions.
Accelerated Bachelor/MPP - Open to current U.Va. undergraduates from all majors, the Accelerated Bachelor/MPP Program allows admitted students to complete both a bachelor’s degree and a Master of Public Policy degree in five years, rather than the normal six. While pursuing the core MPP curriculum students are encouraged to identify specific issues that interest them and to explore these issues through elective coursework, the experiential components of the curriculum (policy projects and internships), discussion groups, and the rich array of events on public policy organized by the Batten School.
Admission to the Batten School is competitive to ensure a well-rounded class and to limit class size. U.Va. undergraduate students typically apply for admission to the Accelerated Bachelor/MPP Program during their third year. Applicants must demonstrate that they will have earned at least 90 undergraduate credits before the start of their fourth year. In addition, prior to enrollment in the accelerated MPP program, students are required to have passed ECON 2010 and any one of the following math courses: MATH 1210 - Applied Calculus I; MATH 1212 - Applied Calculus I with Algebra; MATH 1310 - Calculus I; APMA 1090 - Single Variable Calculus I; or any more advanced calculus course. The economics and math prerequisites can be fulfilled through either coursework or AP credit. Summer coursework before the fall semester in which the student begins the program is also an option.
Once admitted to and enrolled in the Accelerated Bachelor/MPP Program, students begin their professional studies at the Batten School while completing their remaining undergraduate coursework to receive their bachelor’s degree. They will take three Batten core courses per semester of their first year with Batten, for a total of six Batten courses during the first year of the program. The remaining two courses per semester of their final undergraduate year are available for students to complete their major, minor, other undergraduate requirements, or electives relevant to the MPP program.
Students must complete all of the academic requirements for and receive their undergraduate degree by the end of their fourth year in order to be eligible to advance to graduate standing and receive the MPP degree.
During the summer in between their fourth and fifth years, Batten students participate in a required internship in a public policy field of the students’ interest. At the conclusion of the summer internship, Batten students return for their fifth year as graduate students completing their MPP coursework.
The Master of Public Policy Curriculum instills four distinctive elements into the traditional study of policy analysis:
- A focus on leadership skills.
- A multidisciplinary perspective on the evolving context of public policy.
- Attention to the role of psychological and non-rational factors in decision-making and group behavior.
- A fully realized commitment to experiential learning through hands–on projects, policy simulations, and field experiences.
The core curriculum consists of twelve required Batten School courses:
- Four courses on the concepts and tools of problem solving and policy analysis
- PPOL 6100: Economics of Public Policy I
- PPOL 7110: Economics of Public Policy II
- PPOL 6150: Research Methods and Data Analysis I
- PPOL 7160: Research Meghods and Data Analysis II
- Two courses on leadership
- PPOL 6050: Leadership in the Public Arena
- PPOL 7410: Psychology for Leadership
- Three courses on the context of public policy
- PPOL 6000: Political Institutions and Processes
- PPOL 7010: The Changing Context of Public Policy
- PPOL 7400: Legal and Moral Dimensions of Policymaking
- Three courses centered on applied, experiential learning
- PPOL 6250: Policy Analysis
- PPOL 7600: Thesis Project
- PPOL 7610: Applied Policy Project
The core curriculum provides students with a solid foundation in the concepts, methods and strategies of policy analysis and effective leadership. The program emphasizes teamwork and close interaction among students and faculty.
In addition to core courses, students are required to take four electives. Electives give students an opportunity to gain substantive expertise in their areas of policy interest. Students may enroll in electives offered by the Batten School and by other graduate and professional schools across the University. Batten students regularly enroll in courses at the Law School, the Darden Graduate School of Business, the Curry School of Education, the School of Architecture, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.
Students are required to complete an internship in the summer between the first and second years. Students may intern in international, federal, state, or local government agencies; non-profit organizations; or private sector corporations and consulting firms; in the United States or abroad. Students select their internships based on their interests and in consultation with program faculty.
The capstone of the program is an Applied Policy Project in which students perform a professional-quality study for a real-world client under faculty supervision. For some students, the project is an outgrowth of the summer internship, and in some cases, it may lead to a post-graduation position with the client organization. Upon graduation, students are prepared for public service careers in government, non-profit organizations, and private firms engaged in public-private partnerships.
Other Important Considerations
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Students with disabilities may contact the Learning Needs and Evaluation Center (LNEC) to arrange accommodations. The LNEC coordinates disability accommodations, which may include alternate text formats for course material, peer note-taking, extended time for tests, sign language and other interpreting, and housing arrangements. Initial evaluation of academic difficulties is also available as needed to students who pay Student Health fees. Students with disabilities must submit appropriate documentation to the LNEC in support of a request for accommodations. All accommodation requests must be submitted in a timely manner, usually at or before the beginning of each semester. For requests involving on-Grounds housing, appropriate deadlines within the Housing Office should also be met.
Email is a mechanism for official communication within the University of Virginia. The University has the right to expect that such communications will be received and read by students in a timely fashion. Official email communications are intended only to meet the academic and administrative needs of the campus community. Official University email accounts are available for all enrolled students. The email address for a student is: computingID@virginia.edu. This account must be activated by the student before the University can correspond via the official email account. When students use non Virginia.edu email accounts, it is their responsibility to make sure their U.Va. mail is forwarded to that account.
Withdrawal, Leave, and Readmission
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Voluntary Withdrawal MPP students enrolled in two degree programs at the University (e.g. Accelerated MPP, MPP dual degree program) who wish to withdraw from the MPP Program must do so in writing to the Assistant Dean of Student Services. The withdrawal will go into effect upon acknowledgment by the Batten School and following the student’s most recent semester of enrollment.
A student enrolled in any Batten degree program may withdraw from the University before the conclusion of a semester for personal reasons (e.g. financial, medical, family) under the following conditions:
- Students under the age of 18 must give notice to their parents or legal guardians of their intention to withdraw. Evidence of this notice must be provided at the time of withdrawal.
- Applications for withdrawal must be made in writing to the Assistant Dean of Student Services and must be approved by the Dean.
- Failure to comply with the above regulations will subject a student to suspension from the University by the Vice President for Student Affairs. Any student who withdraws without having obtained permission is recorded as having been suspended with a grade of F recorded for each course.
- Students who withdraw from the University voluntarily will have the notation “Withdrawal Date: MM/DD/YYYY” recorded on their permanent academic record. Students who withdraw will receive grade of W (withdrawal) in their courses.
Involuntary Medical Withdrawal Students who are withdrawn from the University by the Department of Student Health for reasons of health will receive a grade of W (withdrawal) for each course in which the student was registered.
Leave of Absence Requests for a leave of absence must be submitted in writing to the Assistant Dean for Academic Programs and Registrar, and the time requested may not exceed one calendar year. Due to the sequencing and progression of the Batten School curricula, permission to take a leave of absence is subject to dean’s review and is granted only in rare circumstances.
Readmission Students who do not enroll at the Batten School for a semester or longer must be formally readmitted, regardless of whether they withdrew from the School or were granted an approved leave of absence.
Applications for readmission must be submitted to the Assistant Dean of Student Services by August 1 for the fall semester and by November 1 for the spring semester, and will be subject to dean’s review. Applications must consist of a letter addressing the student’s readiness to return to full-time study, particularly if he or she faced serious difficulties (e.g. financial, medical, personal) during the most recent enrollment. Approval from the Department of Student Health and the Office of the Dean of Students is required in all cases involving health.