Loyola University Chicago

Masters of Urban Affairs and Public Policy


Master of Arts in Urban Affairs

MAUA Picture

‌The Master of Arts (MA) in Urban Affairs is an interdisciplinary degree program focusing on how cities work and the challenges they face, such as economic growth or decline, globalization and immigration, and the impact of the housing market on neighborhood stability. The curriculum brings together viewpoints and analytical tools from multiple fields to provide different perspectives on the causes of urban problems and their possible solutions.

The Urban Affairs program at Loyola is a two-year professional degree focused on training students to assume leadership roles in government, nonprofit organizations, or business. Part-time students typically finish in three years. Students apply the skills developed in the program and gain work-related experience during internships or capstone policy clinics.

Along with the Master of Public Policy (MPP), the Urban Affairs program is one of two degrees offered within the MUAPP Program of Loyola. For additional information explore the full program descriptions or general information. 

Required Coursework:

The MA in Urban Affairs requires 37 hours of coursework—11 three-credit courses, plus a three-credit internship or capstone experience.

Core Courses: perspectives on urban areas (6 credits).

Students take at least two of the following four courses:

  • MPP 407 Local Economic Development (urban economics)
  • MPP 413 Urban Politics and Policy (urban politics)
  • SOCL 462 The Urban Metropolis (urban sociology)
  • HIST 460 Urban America (urban history)

Analytical Tools (9 credits).

A one-semester course in statistical analysis is required (MPP 405). In consultation with their advisor, students select at least two additional courses that would provide a foundation for their specific career goals. Several common choices include

  • MPP 405 Statistics Methods for Policy Analysis (required)
  • MPP 406 Statistical Methods for Policy Analysis II
  • MPP 501 Program Evaluation
  • MPP 400 Policy Design and Analysis
  • MPP 403 Public Budgeting and Finance
  • SOCL 412 Qualitative Methods in Social Research
  • UNIV 410 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
  • RMTD 403 Survey Research

Professional Development (1 credit)

All students attend a series of lectures given by practitioners in the field.

Policy Internship or Practicum (3 credits).

All students complete an internship or participate in a group policy practicum project.

Electives (18 credits).

Students are encouraged to select related courses in consultation with their advisor to develop expertise in a specific urban affairs area (e.g. community development or education policy.

Learning Objectives for MAUA Program

  1. Knowledge of urban issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives- such as politics, economics, sociology, and history.
  2. Knowledge of local government structures and intergovernmental relationships.
  3. Ability to analyze urban problems and determine possible government, non-profit, or business sector solutions.
  4. Development of technical skills appropriate to the student's specific career goals- such as statistics, GIS mapping and analysis, finance, surveys, and community impact analysis.
  5. Experience working in the public policy arena in a government agency, non-profit, research, or private sector organization.