Masters in Public Administration

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1 Masters in Public Administration Programme Specification Primary Purpose: Course management, monitoring and quality assurance. Secondary Purpose: Detailed information for students, staff and employers. Current students should refer to the related Course Handbook for further detail. Disclaimer: The University of Portsmouth has checked the information given in this Programme Specification and believes it to be correct. We will endeavour to deliver the course in keeping with this Programme Specification but reserve the right to change the content, timetabling and administration of the course whilst maintaining equivalent academic standards and quality. Copyright The contents of this document are the copyright of the University of Portsmouth and all rights are reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior consent of the University of Portsmouth.

2 Contents Programme Specification 1. Named Awards Course Code (and UCAS Code if applicable) Awarding Body Teaching Institution Accrediting Body QAA Benchmark Groups Document Control Information Effective Session Author Faculty Department Educational Aims Reference Points Learning Outcomes... 2 A. Knowledge and Understanding of:...2 B. Cognitive (Intellectual or Thinking) Skills, able to:...2 C. Practical (Professional or Subject) Skills, able to:...3 D. Transferable (Graduate and Employability) Skills, able to: Course Structure, Progression and Award Requirements Employability Statement Support for Student Learning Admissions Criteria... 4 A. Academic Admissions Criteria...4 B. Disability Evaluation and Enhancement of Standards and Quality in Learning and Teaching... 5 A. Mechanisms for Review and Evaluation...5 B. Responsibilities for Monitoring and Evaluation...5 C. Mechanisms for Gaining Student Feedback...5 D. Staff Development Priorities Assessment Strategy Assessment Regulations Role of Externals Indicators of Standards and Quality... 6 A. Professional Accreditation/Recognition...6 B. Periodic Programme Review (or equivalent)...6 C. Quality Assurance Agency...6 D. Others Other Sources of Information... 7

3 Programme Specification 1. Named Awards Masters in Public Administration 2. Course Code (and UCAS Code if applicable) C1882F/P 3. Awarding Body University of Portsmouth 4. Teaching Institution University of Portsmouth 5. Accrediting Body NA 6. QAA Benchmark Groups NA at postgraduate level 7. Document Control Information Version: August Effective Session Author Mrs Sue Roberts 10. Faculty Humanities and Social Sciences 11. Department Social Historical and Literary Studies 12. Educational Aims To develop students advanced understanding of public sector organisations, their management and the changing external context, including the political context, in which they operate; Preparation for and / or development of a career in public administration/ public sector management by developing skills at a professional level or as preparation for research or further study in the area; Develop the ability to apply knowledge and understanding of the theories of public administration and public sector management to complex issues, both systematically and creatively, to improve practice; Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 1

4 Enhancement of lifelong learning skills and personal development so as to be able to work with self-direction and originality and to contribute to the field of public administration and to society at large. 13. Reference Points University of Portsmouth Curriculum Framework Document The scholarship and research expertise of academic members of staff QAA Code of Practice for the Assurance of Academic Quality and Standards in Higher Education Framework for Higher Education Qualifications Local employers and organisations within the public sector 14. Learning Outcomes Successful graduates will gain knowledge and develop understanding in the following areas: A) The impact of contextual forces on public sector organisations including legal systems, ethical, economic, environmental, social and technological change issues; international developments; corporate governance. B) Marketisation and citizenship issues in public organisations and the delivery of public services; the development and operation of markets for resources, goods and service; expectations of citizens and equivalent stakeholders; services and orientation. C) The concepts, processes and institutions in the public administration of resources and operations. D) The financing of the public sector; sources, uses and management of finance; accountability for managerial and financial reporting E) The management and development of people within organisations; organisational theory, behaviour, industrial/employee relations, HRM, change management. F) The use and limitations of a range or research methods/techniques. Both qualitative and quantitative, and an understanding of their strengths and weaknesses for providing information and evaluating options in an uncertain organisational environment. A. Knowledge and Understanding of: A1. The comparative political, historical and financial context of public administration and public sector organisations. A2. The processes by which public policies are formulated, implemented and evaluated in the public sector. A3. The options available to deliver public services and the most efficient, effective and economic way of doing so. A4. The structures and organisations available to construct public administrators. A5. The accountability, ethical and democratic issues inherent to the field of study. A6. Specialist subject knowledge of research in specific fields of relevance to their career choices. Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods Lectures, seminars, tutorial groups, group work, debating groups, group presentations, individual presentations, mini projects, IT based tutorials and dissertation supervision will provide course members with skills, knowledge and understanding of the literature, perspectives and approaches in all the identified learning outcomes in section 14. Assessment A mix of assessments will include essays, reports, set examinations, individual presentations and dissertations to achieve assessment of section 14. B. Cognitive (Intellectual or Thinking) Skills, able to: B1. Apply a range of theoretical models to a broad spectrum of areas of public administration issues and areas of operation. B2. Analyse and critique different theoretical models. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 2

5 B3. Analyse and critique different methods of delivering public services and organising public sector institutions. B4. Analyse and critique different policy making processes. B5. Collate, synthesise and analyse data from a variety of sources using a range of methodologies. B6. Demonstrate general and subject specific research and information retrieval skills, including the ability to gather, integrate and organise material critically and evaluate its significance within appropriate intellectual frameworks. Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods A variety of strategies including group discussions and tutorials will be utilised to encourage ongoing analysis and reflection on the course content, competing interpretations and experiences enabling B1 B6 to be achieved. Assessment B1 B6 will be assessed through essays, examinations, preparation of reports, presentations and dissertation designed to integrate theory with practice. C. Practical (Professional or Subject) Skills, able to: C1. Understand and contribute to current debates in comparative administration. C2. Be prepared for a professional career in public sector management using a range of skills developed by the course. C3. Use appropriate methodologies to investigate problems and issues relevant to public sector managers in order to develop policies and strategies for delivering public services to consumers and to advise policy makers. Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods Cognitive skills will be developed through a range of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, discussion groups, debating forums and guided reading. Lectures, tutorials and guided reading will provide course members with basic knowledge of theory and practice in public administration and understanding thereof. Critical engagement with the literature is encouraged. All students will be encouraged to network with each other to develop informal student study groups. This will provide opportunities for direct exchange of information and experience from a diverse range of agencies and countries. Assessment C1 C3 will be assessed through essays, examinations, preparation of reports, presentations and dissertation designed to integrate theory with practice. D. Transferable (Graduate and Employability) Skills, able to: D1. Demonstrate advanced literacy and oral and written communication skill, including the ability to present a rhetorically effective, coherent, well supported and sustained argument. D2. Structure and communicate complex ideas effectively. D3. Use information technology to collect and analyse information. D4. Apply appropriate numerical skills. D5. Demonstrate an ability to work independently but seek support when necessary. D6. Work within a group and recognise the value of other contributions. D7. Develop interpersonal skills. D8. Identify and provide credible solutions to complex problems. D9. Demonstrate reticulist skills and political sensitivity. Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods Coursework assignments will expect students to locate appropriate materials from a range of sources to evaluate their utility, accuracy and currency and to use them to communicate effectively in a wide range of written and discursive formats. All assignments must be word processed and students are expected to seek academic and technical sources of help and advice from a number of sources at different stages of the programme. All students are required to take personal responsibility for their learning throughout and to plan and deliver assignments within a framework of paced-study and appropriate deadlines. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 3

6 Assessment Assessment will be through the course work requirements for each unit. The system of deadlines and associated penalties for late submission ensures student planning of time and academic tasks and encourages personal responsibility for own learning. 15. Course Structure, Progression and Award Requirements The programme is offered in two modes full time over one calendar year or part time over two calendar years.the degree is based on the University s Masters calibration of 180 M level credits with units consisting of combinations of 30 and 60 credits. Each credits is equivalent to 10 hours of student learning. Awards will follow the university regulations (which must be consulted for a full description of exit awards): Master in Public Administration (MPA) requires the accumulation of 180 credits Postgraduate Diploma in Public Administration requires 120 credits Postgraduate Certificate in Public Administration requires 60 credits All units are 30 credits, with the exception of the dissertation which is 60 credits. 16. Employability Statement Opportunities exist via Purple Door for development of career opportunities and work placements. The programme can also provide opportunities to apply for internships with local government organisations for students attending the course. This has already been extremely successful with interns gaining fulltime employment in local councils after attending internship in that council. Personal development and career planning is provided within the teaching team of the programme. 17. Support for Student Learning The Course is managed by a Course Leader. Extensive induction programme introduces the students to the University and their course Each student if provided with a personal tutor, responsible for pastoral support and guidance. Extensive induction programme introduces the student to the University and their course. University support services include careers, financial advice, housing, counselling etc. The Academic Skills Unit (ASK). The Additional Support and Disability Advice Centre (ASDAC). Excellent library facilities. The University of Portsmouth has consistently been awarded an excellent rating for student support and guidance in a number of Quality Assurance Agency inspections. Student course and unit handbooks provide information about the course structure and University regulations etc. Feedback is provided for all assessments. Personal Development Planning (PDP) for all awards. 18. Admissions Criteria A. Academic Admissions Criteria Normally a first degree (2:2) in a relevant subject or, exceptionally, a strong profile of relevant professional experience and/or training and demonstration of academic ability to achieve at post graduate level. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 4

7 For those applicants where English is not their first language, IELTS 6.5,in all bands for campusbased students. A formal exemption process is i place at Admissions stage for relevant cases. B. Disability The University makes no distinction in its admissions policy with regard to disability and will endeavour to make all reasonable adjustments in order to make it possible for students to study at Portsmouth on a course of their choice. 19. Evaluation and Enhancement of Standards and Quality in Learning and Teaching A. Mechanisms for Review and Evaluation Course Leader s Annual Standards and Quality Evaluative Review. Head of Department s Annual Standards and Quality Evaluative Review. Unit and Course Level student feedback considered at Board of Studies. Unit Assessment Board consideration of student performance for each programme. Annual Standards and Quality Reports to Board of Studies, including consideration of Subject and Award External Examiner Reports. Periodic Programme Review. Student Representatives and Student/Staff Consultative Committees. National Student Survey. Staff Performance and Development Review. Peer Review and Development Framework. Faculty Learning and Teaching Committee. B. Responsibilities for Monitoring and Evaluation Unit Co-ordinators for unit content and delivery. Course Leader for day-to-day running of course. Board of Studies with overall responsibilities for operation and content of course. Head of Department. Associate Dean (Academic). Associate Dean (Students). Quality Assurance Committee. Unit, Award and Progression Board of Examiners. C. Mechanisms for Gaining Student Feedback Student Representation on Board of Studies. Student Staff Consultative Committees. Unit and Course level student feedback questionnaires. University participates in external student surveys, e.g, National Student Survey (NSS), PostgraduateResearchExperienceSurvey (PRES) and International Student Barometer (ISB). D. Staff Development Priorities Academic staff undertake activities related to research, scholarship, teaching and learning and student support and guidance. Annual staff performance and development reviews match development to needs. Managers undertake a variety of management development programmes. New academic staff required to undertake PgCert Learning and Teaching in Higher Education. All academic staff encouraged to seek Higher Education Academy membership. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 5

8 Academic staff new to teaching required to undertake Initial Professional Development Programme (iprof). Support Staff are encouraged to attend short courses in areas such as minute taking, and specific IT packages. 20. Assessment Strategy Assessment of learning outcomes is progressively achieved through a range of formal assessment artefacts including academic essays, reports, case studies, literature reviews, research proposals and final dissertation. Further, the use of open learning materials and/or structured readings and other learning media, including the use of Virtual Learning Environment tool, will encourage ongoing analysis and reflection on course content, competing interpretations and experiences. Assessment seeks to encourage and prompt critical engagement with course materials, completing interpretations and experiences, and prompt the development of a broad range of intellectual, cognitive and practice skills. 21. Assessment Regulations Standard university rules apply (see Assessment and Regulations). 22. Role of Externals Subject External Examiners who will: oversee unit assessment and usually attend Unit Assessment Boards; approve unit assessment strategy; sample assessment artefacts; present report to Unit Assessment Boards. Award External Examiners (usually also a Subject External Examiner) who will: oversee and attend Award/Progression Boards; scrutinise and endorse the outcomes of assessment; ensure that the standard of the award is maintained at a level comparable with that of similar awards elsewhere in the United Kingdom. 23. Indicators of Standards and Quality A. Professional Accreditation/Recognition None. B. Periodic Programme Review (or equivalent) PDSQR May 2013 The programme was reviewed within the university s programme of regular review including ASQR and PDSQR. The Masters provision underwent an External Periodic Review in May The review confirmed the fitness of purpose of the Masters curriculum and the effectiveness of its annual monitoring and review processes. C. Quality Assurance Agency QAA Institutional Audit, December 2008, broad confidence (for full report see QAA Institutional Audit: University of Portsmouth 2008). D. Others None. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 6

9 24. Other Sources of Information Other sources of information may be found in Course Approval Document. Student Handbook. University of Portsmouth Curricula Framework. University of Portsmouth Postgraduate Prospectus. Assessment Regulations. University of Portsmouth (http://www.port.ac.uk/) and School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies website. Programme Specification for Masters in Public Administration Page 7

10 Unit Assessment Map UNITS COURSEWORK EXAMINATION Level Name Code Credit Delivery Core/ Option 7 Comparative Public Policy and Administration U Sep - Dec Core 50% Total % Type of Artefact Essay Duration/ Length 3,000 Weighting % Total % Open/ Closed Duration (hrs) 40% Open One hour Weighting % 10% Presentation 7 Public Management U Sep - Dec Core 100% Essay 6, % 7 Public Sector Strategic Management and Leading Effective Change U Jan - Mar Core 50% 50% Strategic Report Implementation Essay 15 min 3,000 3,000 50% 50% 7 Practice Based Knowledge of British Public Administration U Jan - Mar Option 30% 70% Visit Log Essay 7 Work Related Learning/Independent Learning U Jan - Mar Option 100% Presentation Project Report 2,000 4, minutes 4,000 30% 70% Unit Assessment Map for Masters in Public Administration Page 1

11 Unit Learning Outcomes Map 1 UNITS Level Name Code Credit Delivery LEARNING OUTCOMES Core/ Option A1 A2 A3 A4 A5 A6 B1 B2 B3 B4 B5 B6 C1 C2 C3 D1 D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7 D8 D9 7 Comparative Public Policy and Administration U Sep-Dec Core x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 7 Public Management U Sep-Dec Core x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 7 Public Sector Strategic Management and Leading Effective Change 7 Practice Based Knowledge of British Public Administration U Jan-Mar Core x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x U Jan-Mar Option x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 7 Work Related Learning/Independent Learning U Jan-Mar Option x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x 1 A = Knowledge and Understanding; B = Cognitive (Intellectual) Skills; C = Practical (Subject Specific) Skills; D = Transferable Skills Unit Learning Outcomes Map for Masters in Public Administration Page 1

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