SKIP navigation
Ph.D. in Public Administration
Ph.D. in Public Administration

admission to the PhD program.

Admission to the PhD Program is the decision of the Dean of Graduate Studies based on the recommendations of the School of Public Administration Doctoral Program Committee. There are two application deadlines, one on February 1 for applicants seeking financial assistance and the second on May 25for all other students seeking admission. There are 10 elements in the application portfolio (listed below), and all application materials must be received by the applicable deadline in order for the application to be reviewed by the Doctoral Program Committee. Those applicants who enter the program with a masters degree field other than PA will need to complete up to four pre-requisites: Introduction to Public Administration, The Public Economy, Organization Theory and Behavior and Research Methods in Public Administration. The letter of admission will specify which pre-requisites are necessary before enrolling in the core curriculum.

Application Checklist

Applicants apply online at

  1. All official transcripts from post-secondary educational institutions are sent to: Office of Graduate Studies and Research, Eppley Administration Building 204, University of Nebraska at Omaha, Omaha, NE 68182
  2. A $45.00 application fee
  3. Completed graduate application
  4. A minimum TOEFL score of 550 (or 213 on computer-based test or 79-80 on internet based test)*; or minimum IELTS score of 6.5, or minimum Pearson score of 53
  5. A minimum Graduate Record Exam combined verbal and quantitative score of 305
  6. A five page statement of intent describing what career the applicant wishes to pursue after completion of the Ph.D., desired area of concentration and an explanation of academic and professional backgrounds
  7. A resume of professional work experience
  8. Three email addresses for your writers of letters of recommendation; two recommendations must be academic; the Graduate Studies Office will contact each of them via email to obtain the letters
  9. A request for financial aid**
  10. An e-mail address to which the Doctoral Program Committee can send updates on the status of your application

* Required if applicant's language of nurture is not English and master’s degree is not from a university in a country where the official language is English.

** A letter to the chair of the Doctoral Program Committee indicting the desire to enroll as a full-time doctoral student and requesting financial aid as a graduate assistant.

FAQ on Admission Procedure

International Graduate Application

A separate application process is necessary for international students. The International Studies Program is responsible for all international applications. Please direct requests for application and related materials to the following address:

Graduate Record Exam

The general exam is available on-line at multiple testing centers throughout the country. Please consult the following web site directly for information. See Application Checklist for information about minimum scores that are necessary in order for the Doctoral Program Committee to consider other elements of your application portfolio.

Opportunities for Financial Assistance

The program offers funded graduate assistant positions to full-time doctoral students. Graduate assistants work 20 hours per week assisting with faculty research, coordinating outreach projects and teaching in the program under the supervision of a faculty mentor. The minimum number of credit hours per semester that a GA must take is six and the maximum is nine. The number of positions varies each year depending on available resources. Each position covers tuition and an $18,000 stipend which is split into ten monthly payments. Each position also covers summer session tuition, but not a summer stipend. The application deadline is February 1 for fall admission with a GA award. Please see the Applicant Checklist for more details.