Public Administration

Doctor of Philosophy in Business Administration
  • Overview
  • Course Information
  • Tuition
  • Benefits

The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 21% growth in public administration through 2022. During the PhD in public administration program, you will explore research related to government and public agency budgeting, government relations, public personnel policy management, political systems and urban planning. Under the guidance of your doctoral mentoring professors, you will examine laws and regulations, as well as issues and trends affecting public organizations. You will also analyze field-specific topics, including crisis awareness, municipal planning and development, personnel management, fiscal administration, taxation, health care and education. As a graduate, you will have the knowledge and skills needed to meet the challenges in government management at the local, state, federal and international levels.

General Degree Requirements

Admission to a doctoral program at NCU requires a master's degree from an accredited institution.

The PhD program may be completed in 60 credits. Up to an additional 15 credit hours will be allowed as needed to complete dissertation research. The University may accept a maximum of 12 semester credit hours in transfer toward the doctoral degree for graduate coursework completed at an accredited college or university with a grade of "B" or better.

Completion Period for Doctoral Degrees

Northcentral University allows 7 years to complete all doctoral programs of 60 credits or less. Normal time to complete varies depending upon course take rate and credits transferred.

Foundational Competencies for DBA Programs

  • Graduate-Level Research Methods Competency - PhD students are required to complete BTM8102, BTM8103, BTM8104, BTM8106, BTM8107, BTM8108 and BTM8109 at Northcentral.
  • Graduate-Level Statistics Competency - PhD students are required to complete BTM8107 Statistics II at Northcentral.
  • Computer Competency - Doctoral students are required to have computer skills necessary for completing a dissertation. Students must be able to prepare documents using advanced word processing skills (e.g., creation of tables and figures, headers and footers, page breaks, tables of contents, hanging indents). Students must use computer programs for the statistical analysis of data (e.g., SAS). Students must produce a computer-based presentation (e.g., PowerPoint) for their dissertation oral defense.

See below for specialization courses specific to this program. To learn more, fill out the request information form below or view the course catalog.

Course Code


Course Description


Human Resources Management

This Doctoral level course focuses on the development of the human resource function in organizations. While understanding and management of human behavior within organizations is necessary for optimal organizational effectiveness and individual performance, strategic planning to achieve organizational goals through the human resource function is recognized.


Public Administration

This doctoral course provides the student an opportunity to examine major ideas, developments, and figures in the field of American public administration. The course utilizes a historical approach to understanding the contextual influences of thinkers and movements related to public administration. Doctoral students will compare and contrast historical and current trends, and analyze the development of modern public administration and conditions affecting social, political, and applied management theories.


Administrative Law

This doctoral course is a survey in administrative law, with the principal focus being on state and federal laws. Course objectives include the synthesis and evaluation of administrative due process, adjudication, judicial review actions, and the Freedom of Information Act. Students will be assessed on demonstrated proficiency shown through PowerPoint presentations and research papers.


Urban Politics

This doctoral course examines key issues in urban politics. Student will address problems, issues and solutions regarding governance, urban expansion, race, ethnicity, and culture. Students will examine reform measures to address current and future urban political issues.


Urban and Regional Planning

This is a doctoral course in urban planning with an integrated overview of the theory, processes, and practices of modern strategic planning in the public and nonprofit sectors. Students will explore contemporary strategies, techniques, and tactics with a focus on the application of theory and public orientation of policy formulation process at the local level. This course is designed to provide a conceptual framework and develop conceptual skills that will help students understand the role of public officials and public opinion within the broader scope of institutional planning and decision-making.


Public Budgeting and Finance

Budgets and financial resources are integral components of management decisions, especially within governmental entities. This Doctoral level course will examine budget formulation, implementation and execution systems, including governmental financial statements, use of modern financial management technology, and analysis and recommendation for improvements in governmental financial management. Budgeting and finance at the federal level differ from processes at the state, county, and local levels. Students will evaluate both managerial practices and politics that form budgeting and finance at the federal, state, and local levels of government.


Technology in Public Administration

This doctoral course explores the impact of information technology on public administration. The role of technology and the Internet in improving government operations and service delivery are the focus of the course. Students will analyze and examine key benefits, including access to government information and transactions, citizen participation, homeland and national security missions, inter and intra-agency communications, and intergovernmental communications. Students will also examine technology compliance issues regarding federal laws.


The U.S. Federal Government

In this Doctoral level course, students will explore the organization, function, operation, and politics of the United States Federal government. Students will examine the foundations and historical events of federalism by assessing each of the three major branches of the federal system. Students will examine the issues of liberty and civil rights as they relate to the political process. Finally, students will evaluate the role of campaigns, media, and interest groups which impact the government.

At Northcentral University, we pride ourselves in being completely transparent when it comes to tuition and fees. If a cost is not included in our Cost Per Course Tuition Rate, we let you know up front. Currently, the only additional cost above your program rate* is books. Learn more about the NCU’s PhD in Business Administration costs below:

  • Per credit cost: $1,129
  • Per 3 credit course cost: $3,387
  • Program cost: $68,090 - $71,477
  • Average book cost per course: $110
  • Application Fee: $0
  • Learning Management Fee (one-time per program): $350
  • Registration Fee: $0

Click here to learn more about payment and financing options.

*Program rates are subject to change and generally increase at the start of each calendar year.

Total program costs reflected are calculated based on standard degree program credits exclusive of the program’s potential evaluation track. The actual cost of a program is determined based upon the program and track the student enters, transfer credits if any, and other unique student factors. For more information: please contact Admissions or refer to the catalog.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about our students, it’s that they are motivated and ambitious—but they are also busy! At Northcentral University, we’ve designed our education experience to work with you, not against you, so you can achieve your academic goals without sacrificing the quality, flexibility and support you need to be successful.

To learn more, request information or call 1-866-776-0331 to speak with an enrollment advisor today. We offer new courses every Monday of the year so you can get started when it’s best for you.