Public Policy and American Institutions

Public Policy and American Institutions is housed in the A. Alfred Taubman Center, which is dedicated to teaching, research, and service in the areas of health care and social welfare policy, education policy, urban policy, law and criminal justice, and media and technology. Public policy refers to societal initiatives to remedy social problems. Because social problems typically emerge from complex, multi-faceted social conditions, the study of public policy requires students to become familiar with the insights of diverse academic disciplines into how institutions facilitate or inhibit societal problem-solving. The study of public policy is an excellent framework for integrating ideas drawn from several disciplines around issues of real world significance. Concentrators emerge with a sound understanding of institutional change and are well-equipped to contribute to processes of social change.  

Required Courses: 

Core courses:
PPAI 0100Introduction to Public Policy1
Ethics and Public Policy1
Ethics and Public Policy
Good Government
Intermediate Microeconomics
Intermediate Microeconomics (Mathematical)
Economics of Education I
Research Methods1
Political Research Methods
Introductory Statistics for Education Research and Policy Analysis
Introduction to Econometrics
Econometrics I
SOC 1100Introductory Statistics for Social Research1
Policy Analysis and Program Evaluation
PPAI 1200Policy Analysis and Program Evaluation1
or EDUC 1160 Evaluating the Impact of Social Programs
Elective Courses: 1
Two courses in American Institutions2
One course in global policy 1
Two courses in policy problems2
Total Credits11

Two of the five elective courses must have a primary listing in Public Policy.  One of the five elective courses must be designated as a writing course.


Candidates for honors should apply in the Spring term of their third year. Successful candidates will enroll in the Public Policy Colloquium and prepare a senior honors paper.