Jun 14, 2024  
Undergraduate Record 2017-2018 
Undergraduate Record 2017-2018 [ARCHIVED RECORD]

Public Policy and Leadership

Return to: Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy: Programs/Courses  

Bachelor of Arts

Open to current second-year UVA undergraduate students and to transfer students, bachelor of arts in public policy and leadership 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 Batten BA 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. See the Academic Rules  page for complete Batten BA application information.

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.

Curricular Requirements

To earn a BA from the Batten School, a student must present 120 credits of approved course work, which completes the competency requirements, area requirements, major requirements, and elective requirements [See Academic Rules page  for complete details]. No fewer than 96 of the 120 required credits must be passed on a graded (A-B-C-D) basis. All courses taken to fulfill competency requirements, area requirements, and major/minor requirements must be taken on a graded (A-B-C-D) basis. A candidate must earn a minimum grade of C in all courses taken to fulfill the core program requirements below (i.e. all program courses except the special topics courses). A candidate must have earned a grade point average of at least 2.000 on all graded courses taken in the Batten School or elsewhere in the University and offered for the degree.

No fewer than 60 credit hours must be taken at the University of Virginia.

The Batten BA curriculum consists of fourteen required Batten School courses, thirteen 3-credit courses and a 1-credit research and writing lab:

  • Two core professional skills courses: a research and writing lab and a capstone experience

In sum, students take 40 credit hours at the Batten School: 30 credits of core coursework (10 courses), 9 credits of special topics courses (3 courses), and a 1-credit research and writing lab.