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University of Pittsburgh    
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
  Jun 12, 2024
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog

Public and International Affairs Program

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Master of Public and International Affairs (MPIA)

From the halls of the United Nations to the streets of war-torn conflict zones, the modern international system is in a state of rapid flux that demands versatile, well-educated professionals. The MPIA degree is a multidisciplinary program designed to prepare students for careers of influence in the international arena - as government policymakers, diplomats, intelligence officials, global business leaders, nonprofit managers, and policy researchers. The program emphasizes practical skills and knowledge necessary to participate in the world policy process and shape its future.

The MPIA curriculum includes traditional courses on world history, economics, and international relations theory, along with practical courses on intelligence collection and analysis, diplomacy, and international finance. It also includes one of the country’s only graduate specializations in Human Security - a unique field that focuses on the security of civilian populations and human rights. Students will gain professional skills in human security and rights, intelligence collection and analysis, international relations, diplomacy and international trade and finance.

Degree Requirements

All MPIA students are required to complete the GSPIA core & MPIA Degree Core courses along with the required Concentration courses and Electives.

Degree Core required courses (12 credits):

PIA 2022 Quantitative Methods

PIA 2025 Microeconomics

PIA 2028 Public Policy Analysis

PIA 2096 Capstone Seminar OR PIA 2099 Thesis

All students must complete an approved internship of at least 300 hours while enrolled at GSPIA.   The internship must be approved by teh student’s career advisors in advance.   Students with at least three years of relevant full-time work experience may peitition their career advisor for a waiver of this requirement during their first semester. 

MPIA Degree Core required courses (6 credits):

PIA 2023  International Affairs

Based on Concentration, students must take one of the following:

PIA 2303 Security & Intelligence Studies  or

PIA 2307 Human Security or

PIA 2301 International Political Economy

MPIA Concentrations (12 credits):

Applicants will select from one of the following concentrations. Please click on this link for concentration details, Public and International Affairs, MPIA  

Human Security

International Political Economy

Security & Intelligence Studies

Free Electives/Minor Courses (18 credits)

Total MPIA degree credits = 48


MPIA students may also pursue a minor. Please click on the following link: GSPIA Minors  

Joint Degree Options

MPIA students are eligible to pursue one of several joint degrees at the University of Pittsburgh, including a joint MPIA/law degree (JD), MPIA/Master of Public Health (MPH), MPIA/Master of Science in Information Science (MSIS), MPIA/Master of Social Work (MSW) and MPIA/Master of Business Administration (MBA).

Master of Public and International Affairs/JD  

Master of Public and International Affairs/MPH  

Master of Public and International Affairs/MIS  

Master of Public and International Affairs/MSW  

Master of Public and International Affairs/MBA  





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