Education for Public Administration: Graduate Preparation in the Social Sciences at American Universities

By George A. Graham | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 9 APPRAISAL

UNIVERSITIES training men for public administration fall roughly into three classes. These are, first, the institutions with no special program and no interdepartmental organization to facilitate public service training. Among them are Chicago, Columbia, Wisconsin, California, and probably Cincinnati.1 This group is by far the largest. In a second easily recognizable class are institutions definitely interested in public service training, organized and providing courses of instruction for the purpose, but interested primarily in teaching people who are already government employees. The University of Southern California has been a leader, and American University, Wayne, and New York University are other examples. A third category includes institutions avowedly interested in training for public administration, organized and providing instruction definitely for that purpose, and emphasizing pre-entry preparation or full-time study on leave of absence for experienced public employees. All these institutions have attempted to organize new courses that would be especially effective, but there are three different plans of study. At the extremes are Syracuse with its almost2 completely required course and Harvard with its entirely elective system; in between are institutions with a combination of required and elective courses. Minnesota is a leader in this group, and Michigan and Pennsylvania are also examples.

There is no single yardstick with which to measure all schemes of education for public administration. But any faculty can cut benchmarks to judge their own efforts, and there are also signs to guide students in deciding where to go for professional training.


CONSTRUCTING A STANDARD

Objectives

The first point for university authorities to note is the extent to which they have defined their position on public service training. An established institution with a graduate school of arts and sciences or with

____________________
1
California and Cincinnati might also be included in the third group, below, except that they have no interdepartmental organization for public service training. See below, chaps. 4 and 5, Part II.
2
Deviation from the required program has been infrequent and is still experimental.

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