BSPP: A Multidisciplinary Approach
The Bachelor of Science in Public Policy (BSPP) is comprised of core and elective classes that provide a mixture of substantive policy knowledge with reflective and practitioners' skills. As Georgia Tech graduates, our alumni have a unique perspective on problem-solving, combining ethics, technical competence, critical thinking, communications, research techniques, and analytical and leadership abilities.
The curriculum consists of (1) the Georgia Tech core, (2) the Public Policy core, (3) two three-course clusters in particular specializations, and (4) free electives.
Public Policy Core
All Georgia Tech students fulfill standard core curriculum requirements, including English, math, science, computing, humanities, and social sciences. The core curriculum for the BSPP major provides an additional multidisciplinary set of tools and perspectives, including logic and ethics, organizational behavior, research techniques, political processes, and integrative and analytical skills. The full curriculum can be found here, with core public policy classes listed below:
- POL 1101 Government of the U.S.
- PUBP 2010 Political Processes
- PHIL 2025 Philosophical Analysis of Policy Choices
- PUBP 2030 Organizations and Policy
- ECON 2106 Microeconomics
- PUBP 3020 Applied Political Economy
- PUBP 3030 Policy Analysis
- PUBP 3120 Statistical Analysis for Public Policy
- PUBP 3130 Research Methods and Problem Solving
- PUBP 2651 or 4651 Policy Internship
- PUBP 4010/4020 Policy Task Force (6 hours)
The Policy Task Force Experience
The two-semester capstone Policy Task Force sequence is a Georgia Tech innovation for undergraduate policy programs. To integrate their learning in an experiential project, student teams formulate, analyze, and recommend policy options. Projects are provided by a public agency, not-for-profit organization, or private company, and an outside evaluator from the client provides oversight and feedback to project teams and evaluates the final reports. Faculty provide guidance, feedback, and assessments of student and team performance. Students work in subgroups, with each member responsible for a substantive project paper that to be presented and defended before the group, the instructor, and the outside evaluator, then integrated into a team report. Recent clients include the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Georgia, and the Enterprise Innovation Institute.
Students also select two policy clusters. These consist of three courses in a particular policy area or relevant discipline, chosen from a wide menu of available courses. Currently students may choose clusters in:
- Environmental & Energy Policy
- Science & Technology Policy
- Social & Urban Policy
- Politics & Policy
- Prerequisites for PUBP 3020: Applied Political Economy, and PUBP 3030: Policy Analysis
- PUBP 2010: Political Processes
- PUBP 2025: Philosophy and Policy
- PUBP 2030: Organizations and Policy
- ECON 2106: Microeconomics
- Prerequisites for PUBP 4010: Policy Task Force I, and PUBP 4020: Policy Task Force II
- PUBP 3020: Applied Political Economy
- PUBP 3030: Policy Analysis
- PUBP 3120: Statistics
- PUBP 3130: Research Methods
Additional Courses and Electives
BSPP majors also take an additional six hours of science, computing, or engineering courses, selected in consultation with advisor. Most students have at least 17 hours of unrestricted electives. The course load for a suggested 4-year schedule can be found here.
Minors and Certificates
Many students select minors (fifteen hours) or certificates (twelve hours) in an area of particular interest. The Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts offers more than 40 certificate and minor programs in areas such as language, area studies, humanities, or disciplines such as Economics, History, International Affairs, or Sociology. They also may choose minors or certificates in management, the sciences, and other programs at Georgia Tech. The School of Public Policy offers minors and certificates in Political Science, Public Policy, Pre-Law, and Philosophy.