Public Policy and Evaluation

Society's pressing social and political problems demand public policies, programs, and practices that work. Many programs teach graduate students about what public policy is and has been. Claremont Graduate University’s M.A. program in Public Policy and Evaluation trains you to help decide what public policy should be. No other program in public policy in the United States gives so much emphasis to evaluation, and none includes as much psychology. Students will also have the chance to take courses in management and courses in information systems and technology.

Our Master’s program in Public Policy and Evaluation seeks students devoted to becoming the change agents dealing with today’s social problems. Rigorous training in Evaluation Science gives future policy-makers the investigative, ethical, and psychological tools needed to make a difference. Our graduates will be highly qualified to become leaders—leaders in government, business, research, consulting, and wherever public policy is formed.


The Program

Everyone knows the need for effective policies in the world, but how should we create them? Effective policy-making means testing new ideas for smooth process and well-designed organization. It also means testing outcomes with trustworthy methods, not “best guesses”. This program is designed to address how to make policy, how to assess if policy is working, and how to fix the flaws in existing policy.

Courses from both Public Policy and Evaluation also passionately address the political issues in evaluation. Stakeholders and constituents must play a heavy role. Evaluation can be used to empower stakeholders to affect change. And, of course, the ethics of how a policy analyst or evaluator deals with public policy always plays a crucial role.

The coursework for the M.A. in Public Policy and Evaluation is designed to be completed within two years. During this time, students have extensive personal interaction with teachers and mentors from both Policy Analysis and Evaluation Science. The goal: to equip students with the skills they need to shape policy decisions and evaluate results.

The Master of Arts in Public Policy and Evaluation is a joint program between the Division of Behavioral and Organizational Sciences (DBOS) and Division of Politics and Economics (DPE). Added to CGU’s strengths in Public Policy and Evaluation are solid research methodology offerings. The end result is a firm, scientific foundation from which to launch an impressive career in public policy.

We realize that many domains intersect in the creation of public policy, and support students whose study breaks traditional barriers. Students may take courses from the Drucker-Ito School of Business to focus on the managerial and financial aspects of public policy. They may take courses from our School of Information Systems and Technology to understand the complex information systems that make policy today wildly different from the policy of yesterday. Broadening your program is as simple as getting approval for new ideas from an advisor—an advisor already dedicated to the transdisciplinary vision of CGU.

The Faculty

Claremont Graduate University has an extensive faculty body. There are 14 core faculty members in the areas of Policy and Evaluation Science alone (see pictures and links below). For a full list of faculty who supervise our students in this and other programs, follow this link.


Yi Feng
International Political Economy, World Politics, Research Methods

Stewart I. Donaldson
Evaluation Science, Organizational Development

Jean Schroedel
Congressional/Executive Relations, Gender Politics

Jennifer Merolla
Campaigns & Elections, Public Opinion, Political Psychology, and Congress 

Heather Campbell
 Policy Analysis, Regulation, Econometrics, Environmental Policy, Environmental Justice, Research on Teaching
Dale E. Berger
Evaluation & Applied Research Methods, Statistics

Paul J. Zak
Neuroeconomics, Macroeconomics, Finance & General Equilibrium Theory

William D. Crano
Evaluation & Applied Research Methods

Michelle C. Bligh
Qualitative Research Methods, Political Leadership  

Allen M. Omoto
Applied Research Methods, Volunteerism 

Michael Hogg
Social Psychology, Leadership, Group Identity
Eusebio Alvaro
Health Behavior Evaluation

Kathy Pezdek
Tiffany Berry
Educational Evaluation & Applied Research Methods

Robert Klitgaard
University Professor


Application to the Program

Students may apply to the Master of Arts in Evaluation and Public Policy program through either the Division of Behavioral and Organizational Sciences (DBOS) or the Division of Politics and Economics (DPE).  Admission will be determined by a joint-school committee.  Click here to apply.

Click here for a full listing of program requirements.