Do you believe in the power of public policy to transform lives?

Use your vision, compassion and insight to make a positive impact. Combining a Bachelor of Arts in Economics with a Master of Arts in Public Policy, this highly interdisciplinary program is built on the belief that the political process can bring about social change. The 3+1 Public Policy Program will uniquely position you to make a difference at local, national and global levels.

Coursework in the first three years draws on our vigorous liberal arts curriculum to provide an strong foundation in economics. Master's level coursework in public policy begins by the end of the third year and culminates in an intense and practical Capstone Project in Public Policy. Drawing on Boston's vibrant legislative, nonprofit and advocacy resources, the Capstone blends your internship experience with the opportunity to address real policy issues in a substantial written work. 

You'll graduate with a command of public policy analysis and a deep understanding of the different contexts in which public policy is developed and implemented — ready to lead and implement real change. 

Program Requirements

You will complete the 128 credits required for a BA, including the courses required for your elected major, in your first three years. The Master in Public Policy degree requires 36 credits (12 courses).

Here's an example of how it will flow from start to finish:

Note: this chart represents a sample 3+1 curriculum including the majority of the all-college graduation requirements. Course scheduling is subject to change, and the summer course load can be flexible based on AP credits, courses taken elsewhere, etc. We will work with you individually to determine the best course sequence for your needs.

Year 1
Fall Term Spring Term
FYS 101 First-Year Seminar: "Simmons 101" Mode 1, 2, or 4
FYS 102 College Writing I FYS 103 College Writing II
ECON 100 Priniciples of Microeconomics POLS 217 American Public Policy
Mode 1, 2, or 4 ECON 101 Principles of Macroeconomics
Foreign Language Foreign Language
UG Course  
Year 2
Fall Term Spring Term
ECON 200 Intermediate Microeconomics ECON 201 Intermediate Macroeconomics
ECON 241 Business Competition and Antitrust Policy or MATH 120 Calculus I MATH 118 Statistics
Foreign Language ECON 236 Public Economics or ECON 247 Environmental Economics
POLS 101 Introduction to American Politics UG Course
Mode 1, 2, or 4 POLS 210N - National Politics Unplugged
UG Course
Year 3
Fall Term Spring Term
ECON 390 Econometrics ECON 236 Public Economics or ECON 247 Environmental Economics
ECON 241 Business Competition and Anti Trust Policy or MATH 120 Calculus ECON Elective
POLS 103 Nature of Politics UG Course
POLS 213 Pols in the Republic: Congress and the Presidency or POLS 218 Parties and Elections *POLS 370/570 Internship (8 Credits) (UG, BLEE, MPP)
UG Course
UG Course
Year 4
Fall Term Spring Term
*MPP 501 - Policy Analysis and Process *MPP 502 - Social Policy
*MPP 504 - Quantitative Analysis *MPP 503 - Economic Policy
MPP Elective MPP Elective
MPP Elective MPP Elective
MPP Elective *MPP 505 - Capstone

*Indicates a required core course in the MPP Program

    Leanne Doherty
    • Leanne Doherty
    • Associate Professor, Political Science
    • Phone: 617-521-2581
    • Office: C313
    Masato Aoki
    • Masato Aoki
    • Associate Professor of Economics
    • Phone: 617-521-2580
    • Office: E203H
    Carole Biewener
    Zinnia Mukherjie
    • Zinnia Mukherjee
    • Assistant Professor of Economics
    • Phone: 617-521-2582
    • Office: E203J
    Niloufer Sohrabji
    • Niloufer Sohrabji
    • Associate Professor of Economics and Chair of the Departme
    • Phone: 617-521-2587
    • Office: E203G
Is the 3+1 Right for You?

The 3+1 Public Policy Program is designed for highly motivated students who are interested in running for public office, working in legislative offices on legislative policy, becoming involved in advocacy or nonprofit work, or pursuing a PhD or law degree. You should enjoy analyzing complex problems and have strong interest in economics.

Learn more about our economics and public policy programs.

Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Leanne Doherty, PhD, oversees the 3+1 Public Policy Program. Zinnia Mukherjee is the major advisor for students interested in the BA in Economics to MA in Public Policy track.

Close mentorship is vital to 3+1 success. You'll work one on one with your advisor throughout the program to ensure your progress and to meet your personal and professional goals.

To find out more about the program, contact Leanne Doherty at or Zinnia Mukherjee at


The career outlook for graduates with advanced degrees in public policy is bright. The MPP degree qualifies you to work in many different capacities within government, as well as the nonprofit and private sectors.

Careers that Change the World

There are many rewarding routes you can take with this degree combination. Some possibilities include:

  • Policy analyst for government or the private sector
  • Legislative aide
  • National, state, or local policymaker
  • Budget analyst
  • Research associate at a think tank, policy institute, or other organizations that conduct research and engage in advocacy
  • Policy specialist at an advocacy organization, direct services agency, or other community resource that offers support and services
How to Apply
So you know that Simmons is a great place to be, you've learned about our programs, maybe even come for a you're ready to apply! Let's get started.


Marcela Jimenez

Our Students

Find out what being an economics and public policy student is like