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Public Policy and Administration (MA)

Part of the Faculty of Arts

Three graduate students

Program Overview

Format: Full-time, Part-time

Degree Earned: Master of Arts

Launched in 2005, this program offers students the unparalleled advantage of engaging with public, non-profit and private sector organizations in Canada’s largest metropolis. Our downtown Toronto location is a significant asset in supporting student research, networking and elective placement/internship opportunities. In 2007-08, the program received the highest possible evaluation from an Ontario Council of Graduate Schools (OCGS) review, and in 2008 was the first program in Canada to earn accreditation from the Canadian Association of Programs in Public Administration (CAPPA). The program is offered in full- and part-time options.

PDF fileDownload the program brochure

Queen's Park Provincial Government building

At a Glance

  • Completion of a 4-year bachelor’s degree
  • Minimum grade point average (GPA) or equivalent of 3.33/4.33 (B+) in the last two years of study
  • Statement of interest
  • Two letters of recommendation (part-time applicants may substitute one professional recommendation)
  • Resumé 

For detailed fees information visit Fees by Program.

  • Global policy and development
  • Governance and citizenship
  • Public administration
  • Public policy

In addition to core faculty from the Department of Politics and Public Administration, the program includes adjunct faculty from a variety of graduate programs who contribute to a richer graduate education.

Affiliated faculty with practitioner backgrounds from different sectors add an experiential dimension to the curriculum. Currently, the MA program benefits from an Ontario Public Service Fellow and a Public Servant-inResidence. The program also has access to deputy minister champions from the Ontario and federal governments.

  • Citizen-Oriented Governance in Canada
  • Indigenous Law and Policy in Canada
  • International Development Policy and Politics
  • Policy Analysis and Challenges
  • Public Administration and Governance
  • Public Sector: Diversity and Equity
  • Research Methods
  • Urban Governance
  • Competitive entrance scholarships, teaching and research assistantships for eligible full-time students
  • Downtown Toronto location enables students to network with leaders in the public, non-profit and private sectors

Admissions Contact

Graduate Studies Admissions Office
11th Floor, 1 Dundas Street West
Toronto, ON
Telephone: 416-979-5150
Fax: 416-979-5153

Program Contacts

Dr. Carolyn Johns
Graduate Program Director
PhD, (Comparative Public Policy): McMaster University 
Research areas: environmental policy, water policy, intergovernmental administrative relations, public administration, network analysis, and policy capacity issues in the public sector
Telephone: 416-979-5000 ext. 6146

Julia Macan
Program Administrator
Telephone: 416-979-5000 ext. 7855
Fax: 416-979-5153

“Ryerson’s MPPA program helped cultivate a skill set that opened the door to many opportunities I otherwise would not have had. The program combines theoretical content and practical application of public sector issues while learning from leading scholars and senior public servants. I could not have made a better decision to launch my career in the public service.”

Sara O’Sullivan, MA alumna
Tara Muzumdar , external link

Student Profile, external link

Tara Muzumdar (master of public policy and administration alumna) reflects on how the program gave her an excellent understanding of policy development and decision-making processes within government, resulting in her securing a policy advisor role with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.

student working at a desk

How to Apply

Once you’ve made an informed choice about which program(s) you are going to apply to, preparing your application requires careful research and planning.


At Ryerson, we understand that pursuing graduate studies is a significant financial investment. Funding comes from a combination of employment contracts (as a teaching assistant), scholarships, awards and stipends. There are a number of additional funding sources – internal and external – available to graduate students that can increase these funding levels.

Finding a Supervisor

Students should apply to the program first. Applications that meet the minimum requirements of the program will be forwarded to faculty members in the program for review. Successful applicants will be invited to visit the program and meet with faculty members that are interested in supervising them as a graduate student in their research group. A matching system is used to find the best students/supervisor match (using input from both applicants and faculty members). After a suitable match is determined, an official offer of admission will be sent with the supervisor named in the offer.