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Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ


How do I know who my advisor is?

Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice Student Advisor:  Nora Scanlon
Bachelor of Arts in Public Service Student Advisor:  Ashley Ecklund
MPA, MCJ, and PhD Students Last Name A-L Advisor:  Dawn Savage 
MPA, MCJ, and PhD Students Last Name M-Z:  Antoinette Sandoval 
International Student Advisor:  Scott Steinbrecher

This information is also available in your UCDAccess portal. 

Faculty Advisors are available and highly encouraged for graduate students. Email your advisor listed above for more information.

 What if I only want to take a couple of classes?

You may apply as a non-degree seeking student. A $50 non-refundable application fee is required. Students in a non-degree status who have a previous degree pay graduate tuition rates. No additional credentials are required. Non-degree students are not eligible for Financial Aid, SPA scholarships, or tuition assistance.

You may take up to nine credit hours under the non-degree status, and these courses may be applied toward the Master of Public Administration (MPA) or the Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ). It is important that non-degree students move forward in a timely manner to complete their applications for admission as degree seeking students. Non-degree status allows admission to our courses while awaiting entrance examination scores, official transcripts, and letters of recommendation. Good planning to complete the application for graduate admission by the deadlines for each semester is necessary to avoid exceeding the hour limit for credit as a non-degree student. The non-degree application is available here.

Can I get a certificate without getting a degree?

Yes, you must fill out a non-degree application: a certificate is 15 hours of graduate coursework. Currently we offer graduate certificates in each of our concentrations:

  • Nonprofit Management
  • Gender-Based Violence
  • Environmental Policy, Management & Law
  • Local Government
  • Emergency Management & Homeland Security
  • Crime Analyst 

Can I take a semester off?

Yes, you can take a semester off. Please keep in mind that students who miss 3 consecutive semesters (including summers) must apply for re-admission which includes a $50 readmission fee. 

How do I register for classes?

UCD Access is used by enrolled students for the following types of activities: registration (registration, drop/add) , financial aid (view and accept awards, notify us of external scholarships), and billing (pay your bill, set up a payment plan). 

Where can I find a schedule of courses?

You can find a schedule of courses on the SPA homepage.  Click on the green "Class Search" button.  The information is also available in UCDAccess. 

What is the difference between the MPA, the MPA-Executive Option, and the MPA-Accelerated Option?

The MPA program allows the students to pursue a broad-based course of study in public affairs, management, administration and policy, or select a concentration in nonprofit organizations, local government, gender based violence, or environmental policy management and law, and emergency management and homeland security. Students can choose to complete the MPA degree either on campus or online.

The Executive option within the M.P.A. is an intensive program for senior-level managers of federal, state, and local public agencies and nonprofit organizations, offered in partnership with the federal Office of Personnel Management. The coursework is customized to meet individual students' needs and career objectives, and the format of the classes also is unique and accommodates busy schedules. Students may take courses online, traditional evening courses, or in weekend format. The classes offered by OPM are held in week-long intensives sessions.

The Accelerated option of the M.P.A. program is a fast-paced full-time program. All of the classes meet on the Auraria Campus in downtown Denver. The program is a cohort program in which students proceed through the program in tandem: This enables students to earn a nationally accredited 36-hour M.P.A. in less than a year, and there is a set tuition price of $24,000 for the entire program regardless of in-state or out-of-state status.

Where can I find the course descriptions?

You can find the course descriptions on the Academic Catalogs website.

How do I find my classroom?

You can find a map for the Downtown Campus here.

How do I get my email address?

Visit the Email Support​ web page. | Physical Address: 1380 Lawrence St., Ste. 500  Denver, CO  80204 | Mailing Address: University of Colorado Denver, SPA, Campus Box 142, P.O. Box 173364, Denver, CO 80217-3364 | ph: 303.315.2228 | fax: 303.315.2229 | SPA Website Feedback

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