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Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Institute for Public Policy Studies


Institute for Public Policy Studies

Undergraduate Programs

Since 1981, graduates of the undergraduate program in public policy have enrolled in some of the best graduate and law schools in the United States; worked as legislative aides for the U.S. Congress—or as staff assistants for various branches of government; or have found their studies immediately applicable to the public, private, and nonprofit sectors.

The undergraduate program in public policy offers three options for ambitious students:

  1. major in public policy
  2. minor in public policy
  3. 4+1 program (BA + master of public policy [MPP] in just five years)


The public policy major requires the completion of at least 50 hours of IPPS-approved courses (including five core courses) and the completion of a second undergraduate BA major.

Public policy majors may choose their required second major from among those they deem the most relevant, useful and interesting. Popular choices include political science, economics, history, sociology, international studies, and communications/journalism studies, but students may combine their public policy major with any other BA major at DU.

There is no cross-credit between the second major and the public policy program; a course carrying public policy credit does not count simultaneously for credit in public policy and the second major department.

See an example of a 4-year course schedule (PDF).


The public policy minor requires the completion of at least 25 hours of IPPS-approved courses (five core courses and one elective course).

4+1 Program

Dual-degree programs offer undergraduate students the opportunity to complete both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in five years. Students normally complete the majority of their undergraduate work by the end of their junior year and begin working on the graduate degree during their senior year.

Dual-degree programs require that students apply for admission to the graduate program durnig their junior year; students must meet all admission criteria for the respective graduate program. Several options are available to public policy students interested in pursuing a dual degree. Interested students should contact the IPPS office for additional information.

See the 4+1 course requirements (PDF).

Ariel Bravo of DU's 4+1 program in public policy

Hear 4+1-program student Ariel Bravo talk about why she chose this degree.

For more information on the undergraduate program in public policy, please contact Debbie Gaylinn.

AHSS Liberal Arts Advantage Program

The new AHSS Liberal Arts Advantage (LAA) program helps welcome students into our academic community through intellectual experiences outside the classroom. The program comprises special events, discussion groups, stipends for summer internships, a new alumni mentoring program, and the AHSS Student Advisory Council.