Tuition costs are a reality of post-secondary education, but it’s important not to be discouraged. If your top school is financially out of reach, your second or third choice may serve your future just as well. To help you find the program — and school — that’s right for you, we’ve rounded up typical tuition costs for public administration degrees. Here’s the range:

average yearly tuition as per the most recent US census data
$ 8,235 per year
Average in-state tuition in 2017

2% below average compared to other degrees

$ 20,097 per year
Average out-of-state tuition in 2017

0% above average compared to other degrees

$ 27,185 per year
Average private tuition in 2017

16% below average compared to other degrees

What do public administration graduates earn?

Public administration students make an average of $69,540 per year after graduation. This is 4% above average compared to other undergraduate degrees.

19% of public administration graduates are underpaid (those who make less than $40,000 per year.) This rate is low compared to other degrees across the country.

$ 69,540 per year
Average graduate salary in 2017

Top 66% of degrees

% of people underpaid in 2019

4% below average compared to other degrees

Tuition costs for popular public administration schools in the US

There are 484 schools in the US that offer a public administration degree. The public administration schools in the nation with the highest enrollment are New York University, California State University-Long Beach and San Diego State University. Here's a breakdown of tuition costs for the schools that award the most degrees in public administration per year:

School NameIn-State Tuition
New York University$50,464
California State University-Long Beach$6,730
San Diego State University$7,460
Boston University$52,082
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor$14,826
University of Southern California$54,259
Pennsylvania State University-Main Campus$18,436
Northeastern University$49,497
California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo$9,432
Ohio State University-Main Campus$10,592

Top US schools for a public administration degree

The following chart lists the most prestigious schools offering public administration degrees, along with their average acceptance rate and tuition costs:

School NameAcceptance RateIn-State Tuition
Harvard University5%$48,949
Columbia University in the City of New York7%$57,208
Northwestern University9%$52,678
University of Pennsylvania9%$53,534
Johns Hopkins University13%$52,170
Cornell University13%$52,853
Georgetown University16%$52,300
University of Southern California16%$54,259
University of Notre Dame19%$51,505
Carnegie Mellon University22%$53,910

Cheapest US schools for a public administration degree

Of the schools in the US that offer a public administration degree, the following have the lowest tuition costs:

School NameTuition
Palomar College$1,338
Southwestern College - California$1,338
Northland Pioneer College$1,808
Forsyth Technical Community College$2,143
Fayetteville Technical Community College$2,528
Central Arizona College$2,580
Indian River State College$2,764
Florida State College at Jacksonville$2,878
Mountain View College$3,330
St Petersburg College$3,352


Find out how happy the average public administration student is.

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