Postgraduate Module Descriptor

POLM014M: MPA Applied Studies

This module descriptor refers to the 2021/2 academic year.

Module Aims

This module is designed to accommodate the needs of cohort students from international public sector authorities. It is part of the 21 month MPA with Applied Studies programme.

The module aims to deepen your understanding of how research and evidence can be used to inform public administration practice, whilst acknowledging the political, practical and professional challenges of doing so.  You will apply knowledge gained in term 1 seminars to assist you in completion of your report in term 2. Support and supervision is provided in preparing a 10,000 word report on a specific topic agreed with your employers. The intention is to support you in your ability to conduct independent research and policy analysis that will be of benefit to your professional practice. The module coordinator will assist in setting up/ supervising your policy analysis activity, where appropriate linked to work placements.  

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here - you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. Critically compare public administration systems and/or practices between different jurisdictions and demonstrate this by analysing real world examples using theoretical frameworks studied in previous MPA modules;
2. Identify examples of 'best practice' and evaluate their transferability to other jurisdictions;
3. Demonstrate critical awareness of the drivers for, and varieties of, policy transfer
4. Demonstrate an understanding of the range of sources and types of evidence available to public administrators in professional practice
5. Show awareness of the political and professional challenges of evidence-based policy
Discipline-Specific Skills6. Appraise and critically evaluate government reports, public policy and institutional frameworks;
7. Synthesise and comment critically on a corpus of academic literature;
8. Link public administration concepts and theories to real world examples;
9. Compare and contrast practices and institutions in different political systems
Personal and Key Skills10. Undertake independent/self-directed learning (with effective time management) to achieve consistent, proficient and sustained attainment;
11. Refine oral presentation skills and presentational effectiveness; and
12. Reflect on the process of learning and evaluate personal strengths and weaknesses.