Economics + Public Policy (3+1)

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.

Student sitting in a classroom

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

The 3+1 Public Policy Program will uniquely position you to make a difference at local, national and global levels. You'll use your vision, compassion and insight to make a positive impact.

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. 

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).

Course Requirements by Year

*Indicates a required course in the MPP Program
See "Simmons PLAN & Graduation Requirements" worksheet for all-college requirements.

Year One

Fall Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
BOS 101The Boston Course4
SIM 101Simmons Explore2
ECON 100Principles of Microeconomics4
UG course 4
Language 4
Spring Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
LDR 102The Leadership Course4
POLS 217American Public Policy4
ECON 101Principles of Macroeconomics4
UG POLS Course 4
Language 4
Summer Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
UG course or AP credits 4

Year Two

Fall Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
ECON 200Intermediate Microeconomics4
ECON 241 OR MATH 120Business Competition and Antitrust Policy OR Calculus I4
POLS 101Intro to American Politics4
UG course/ 3D 4
UG course/ 3D 4
Spring Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
SIM 201Simmons Experience1
MATH 118Introductory Statistics4
ECON 201Intermediate Macroeconomics4
UG POLS Course 4
ECON 236 OR ECON 247Public Economics OR Environmental Economics4
UG course/ 3D 4
Summer Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
UG course or AP credits 4

Year Three

Fall Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
SIM 301Simmons Excel1
ECON 393Econometrics4
ECON 241 OR MATH 120Business Competition and Antitrust Policy OR Calculus I4
POLS 103Nature of Politics4
POLS 213 OR POLS 218Politics in the Republic-Congress and the Presidency OR Parties and Elections4
UG POLS Course 4
Spring Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
ECON 236 OR ECON 247Public Economics OR Environmental Economics4
*ECON 370/570Internship8
UG course 4
UG POLS Course 4
Summer Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
UG course or AP credits 4

Year Four

Fall Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
*MPP 501Policy Analysis & Process3
*MPP 504Quantitative Analysis3
MPP Elective 3
MPP Elective 3
MPP Elective 3
Spring Term  
Course #Course TitleCredits
*MPP 502Social Policy3
*MPP 503Economic Policy3
MPP Elective 3
MPP Elective 3
*MPP 505Capstone3

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 or Zinnia Mukherjee.

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

So you know that Simmons is a great place to be, you've learned about our programs, maybe even come for a visit...now you're ready to apply! Let's get started.

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