Public Policy (DPP)

Hybrid Program

Insight that makes an impact.

The Doctor of Public Policy (DPP) program is designed to meet the rising demand for skilled professionals in evidence-based policymaking, a need highlighted by the Federal Government’s Evidence Act. Created to bridge the gap between theory and application, this program equips you with advanced analytical skills essential for impactful roles in government, non-profits, or the private sector. Incorporating disciplines such as Public Policy, Political Science, Statistics, and Economics, the DPP offers a transdisciplinary approach to navigating and influencing today’s complex policy landscapes, preparing you to utilize practice-focused analysis in professional settings.

Program Benefits

Our DPP program prepares you to become a leader in the field of public policy through a unique blend of analytics and hands-on experience. The focus on high-level research tools and methodologies will enable you to navigate and influence complex policy environments. Direct access to Southern California’s dynamic urban, environmental, and governmental landscapes offers unparalleled opportunities for real-world analysis and problem-solving. As a graduate of the DPP program, you will be primed to excel in your career with a practice-based doctoral education that sets you apart in the professional world.


Program Highlights

  • Fast-Track Career Advancement: Complete your doctoral degree faster without qualifying exams or a dissertation, starting your research career sooner.
  • Expert-Led Instruction: Learn from faculty with extensive governmental experience that bring real-world insights into the classroom.
  • Practical Skills: Gain a comprehensive skill set in quantitative and qualitative research, and cross-boundary communication and leadership.
  • Flexible Learning Options: Balance your studies with your professional life through our mix of in-person and online coursework.
  • Personalized Learning Experience: Benefit from small class sizes, ensuring individual attention and tailored mentorship to meet your career goals.

Career Paths

Graduates of this program will be ready to excel in public administration, non-profit management, consultancy, and governmental research, shaping policies that address society’s most pressing challenges. Common job titles may include Research Analyst, Policy Analyst, Policy Researcher, Evaluator, Data Scientist, and Team Lead.

Ideal Candidates

Our DPP program is designed for:

  • Aspiring high-level public policy research analysts and leaders seeking advanced skills and deeper insights into critical policy issues.
  • Motivated learners eager to join multidisciplinary teams to address and solve society’s pressing problems using evidence-based approaches.
  • Individuals with a master’s degree in public policy, economics, politics, or related fields, with at least 3 years of professional experience.
  • Working professionals who want to elevate their expertise without interrupting their career progress.

Program At-a-glance

  • 64 units

    required units

  • Doctor of Public Policy

    degree awarded

  • Hybrid


  • Spring, Summer, Fall

    program start

  • 3-4 years | full time*

    estimated completion time

    5-6 years | part time

    estimated completion time

Request info Apply now

Frank Frias

Director of Admissions & Recruitment



  • Robert Klitgaard

    Robert Klitgaard

    University Professor

    Research Interests

    Public Policy, Economic Strategy, Institutional Reform, Corruption

  • Heather Campbell

    Heather E. Campbell

    Thornton F. Bradshaw Professor of Public Policy
    Director, Division of Politics & Economics

    Research Interests

    Public Policy, Urban Environmental Policy, Environmental Justice

  • Javier Rodríguez

    Associate Professor
    Field Chair for Policy

    Research Interests

    Public & Health Policy, Social Inequality, Quantitative Methods for Social Science Research

  • Tyler Reny

    Tyler Reny

    Assistant Professor

    Research Interests

    American Politics, Racial and Ethnic Politics, Political Behavior, Public Opinion, Political Psychology, Data Visualization

  • Monica Capra

    C. Mónica Capra

    Professor of Economic Sciences

    Research Interests

    Experimental Economics, Behavioral Economics, Neuroeconomics

  • Portrait of Melissa Rogers

    Melissa Rogers

    Associate Professor, Politics & Policy
    Co-Director, Inequality and Policy Research Center
    Field Chair, Comparative Politics
    Field Chair, American Politics

    Research Interests

    Comparative Politics, Political Economy, Economic Inequality

  • Jason Siegel

    Jason T. Siegel

    Professor of Psychology

    Research Interests

    Social Psychology, Health Psychology, Persuasion, Survey Research

  • Kendall Bronk

    Kendall Cotton Bronk

    Professor of Psychology

    Research Interests

    Purpose in Life, Adolescent Moral Development, Positive Youth Development, Qualitative Methods


The DPP curriculum is designed to position you at the forefront of policy analysis, ensuring your success in leadership roles within government and non-government organizations. By blending Transdisciplinary courses and practicum experiences exclusive to Claremont Graduate University, you’ll gain a deep understanding of the practical and theoretical aspects of policy evaluation. Our small class sizes and high-touch environment foster an immersive learning experience, while flexible scheduling accommodates working professionals. You’ll work closely with highly accomplished faculty, selecting courses and a Capstone project that align with your career goals, ensuring a personalized educational journey.

Degree Requirements


  • Core policy analysis: 12 units
  • Research methods and tools 28-30 units
  • Unrestricted electives: 2-4 units
  • Practicum: 6 units
  • Capstone: 8 units
  • Transdisciplinary: 6 units


Workshops offered through The Evaluators Institute (TEI) which may be completed online. Topics may include Utilization-Focused Evaluation; Culture, Equity, and Evaluation; Introduction to ChatGPT4 for Evaluation; Sampling; Applied Measurement for Evaluation; Introduction to Machine Learning, etc.

Field Training

Not required, but preferred for students without work experience.


Option 1:
All Federal agencies must create a learning agenda, capacity plan, and an evaluation plan based on the Evidence Act. Students may select capstone project research questions from this vast set of federal projects, making the capstones truly grounded in the policy world, even without a specific client in mind. The US federal government addresses almost every policy topic of importance; students should be able to follow their policy passions within this structure.

Option 2:
Students may analyze a policy or program for a specific client, including their employer.

Competencies & Learning Outcomes

  • Demonstrate ability to perform high-quality policy and/or evaluation research.
  • Synthesize and communicate research outcomes in several policy-relevant formats focused on different audiences.
  • Interpret and apply theoretical concepts to the realities of policy-politics.
  • Apply the principle of unintended consequences to forecast outcomes and revise policy design/implementation.
  • Demonstrate ability to collect and clean data, and to use computer software to analyze data.
  • Apply, with professional-level proficiency, different research tools used in policy analysis.
  • Demonstrate specific skill in at least one policy analysis research tool applied to a specific policy area and presented in a high-quality research report.

Additional Details

CGU is an Institutional Member of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM). This gives us high-quality links to this policy community, including free student memberships. In addition, other Institutional Members include policy-analysis organizations such as Mathematica, Abt Associates, MDRC, Westat, and more organizations of the type that are potential employers of DPP graduates.

Application Guidelines

Requirements Summary

Item Description
Application Fee $80
Official Transcripts Yes
Letters of Recommendation 2
Statement of Purpose Yes
Resume Yes
Academic Prerequisites Master’s degree preferred, especially in Public Policy, Economics, Political Science, or Law.
Other Requirements (3) years of work experience is preferred.

Please see the application checklist for more details.

Spring 2024
Priority Deadline – November 1, 2023
Final Deadline (International) – November 15, 2023
Final Deadline (Domestic) – December 1, 2023
Classes begin – January 16, 2024

Summer 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – March 1, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – April 1, 2024
Classes begin – May 13, 2024

Fall 2024
Priority Deadline – February 1, 2024
Final Deadline (International) – July 5, 2024
Final Deadline (Domestic) – August 1, 2024
Classes begin – August 26, 2024

Application Checklist

Cost & Aid

Program 64 units
Tuition per unit* $2,020

*Based on 2023-2024 tuition rates.

$245 Student Fee
$150 Technology Fee
International Student Services Fee*: $661 fall semester, $776 spring semester
**Applies to all international students (F-1 visa only) who are registered in coursework, doctoral study, or continuous registration. The fee is assessed each fall and spring semester for annual ISO accident and sickness plans and administrative fees. Subject to change.

For estimates of room & board, books, etc., please download CGU’s Cost of Attendance 2022-2023 .

Review General Costs

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