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Public Policy - Doctor's Degree

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2023 Best Public Policy Doctor's Degree Schools

34 Colleges in the United States
241 Doctor's Degrees
Public Policy is above average in terms of popularity with it being the #77 most popular doctor's degree program in the country. As a result, there are many college that offer the degree, making your choice of school a hard one.

For its 2023 ranking, College Factual looked at 34 schools in the United States to determine which ones were the best for public policy students pursuing a doctor's degree. Combined, these schools handed out 241 doctor's degrees in public policy to qualified students.

Jump to one of the following sections: * Our Methodology

Choosing a Great Public Policy School for Your Doctor's Degree

Best Public Policy Doctor's Degree Schools The public policy doctor's degree program you select can have a big impact on your future. Important measures of a quality public policy program can vary widely even among the top schools. To make it into this list, a school must excel in the following areas.

A Great Overall School

The overall quality of a doctor's degree school is important to ensure a good education, not just how well they do in a particular major. To make it into this list a school must rank well in our overall Best Colleges for a Doctor's Degree ranking. This ranking considered factors such as graduation rates, overall graduate earnings and other educational resources to identify great colleges and universities.

Early-Career Earnings

One measure we use to determine the quality of a school is to look at the average salary of doctorate graduates during the early years of their career. This is because one of the main reasons people pursue their doctor's degree is to enable themselves to find better-paying positions.

Other Factors We Consider

In addition to the above, you should consider some of the following factors:

  • Major Focus - How many resources a school devotes to public policy students as compared to other majors.
  • Major Demand - The number of public policy students who choose to seek a doctor's degree at the school.
  • Educational Resources - The amount of money and other resources allocated to students while they are pursuing their degree. These resources include such things as number of students per instructor and education expenditures per student.
  • Student Debt - How easy is it for public policy to pay back their student loans after receiving their doctor's degree.
  • Accreditation - Whether a school is regionally accredited and/or accredited by a recognized public policy related body.

Our full ranking methodology documents in more detail how we consider these factors to identify the best schools for public policy students working on their doctor's degree.

More Ways to Rank Public Policy Schools

Since picking the right college can be one of the most important decisions of your life, we've developed the Best Public Policy Doctor's Degree Schools ranking, along with many other major-related rankings, to help you make that decision.

Featured Public Policy Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

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Best Schools for Doctorate Students to Study Public Policy in the United States

The following list ranks the best colleges and universities for pursuing a doctor's degree in public policy.

10 Top Schools for a Doctorate in Public Policy

#1

Harvard University

Cambridge, MA
21 Annual Graduates

Any student pursuing a degree in a doctor's degree in public policy has to check out Harvard University. Harvard is a very large private not-for-profit university located in the midsize city of Cambridge.More information about a doctorate in public policy from Harvard University

#2

Duke University

Durham, NC
3 Annual Graduates

Duke University is a good option for individuals interested in a doctor's degree in public policy. Located in the city of Durham, Duke is a private not-for-profit university with a large student population.More information about a doctorate in public policy from Duke University

6 Annual Graduates

University of California - Berkeley is one of the finest schools in the United States for getting a doctor's degree in public policy. UC Berkeley is a very large public university located in the medium-sized city of Berkeley.More information about a doctorate in public policy from University of California - Berkeley

7 Annual Graduates

George Washington University is one of the best schools in the United States for getting a doctor's degree in public policy. GWU is a very large private not-for-profit university located in the large city of Washington.More information about a doctorate in public policy from George Washington University

#5

Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA
2 Annual Graduates

Located in the large city of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon is a private not-for-profit university with a fairly large student population.More information about a doctorate in public policy from Carnegie Mellon University

#6

Princeton University

Princeton, NJ
1 Annual Graduates

Princeton is a medium-sized private not-for-profit university located in the city of Princeton.More information about a doctorate in public policy from Princeton University

5 Annual Graduates

USC is a fairly large private not-for-profit university located in the large city of Los Angeles.More information about a doctorate in public policy from University of Southern California

5 Annual Graduates

U-M is a very large public university located in the midsize city of Ann Arbor.More information about a doctorate in public policy from University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

#9

Brandeis University

Waltham, MA
14 Annual Graduates

Located in the small city of Waltham, Brandeis is a private not-for-profit university with a medium-sized student population.More information about a doctorate in public policy from Brandeis University

8 Annual Graduates

UMCP is a very large public university located in the suburb of College Park.More information about a doctorate in public policy from University of Maryland - College Park

Public Policy by Region

View the Best Public Policy Doctor's Degree Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

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Public Policy is one of 5 different types of Public Administration & Social Service programs to choose from.

Public Policy Focus Areas

Major Annual Graduates
General Public Policy Analysis 178
Health Policy Analysis 33
Education Policy Analysis 19
Other Public Policy Analysis 10
International Policy Analysis 1

Related Major Annual Graduates
Social Work 680
Public Administration 377
Human Services 82
Other Public Administration 37
Community Organization & Advocacy 23

Notes and References

  • The bars on the spread charts above show the distribution of the schools on this list +/- one standard deviation from the mean.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to The Official CTBTO Photostream. More about our data sources and methodologies.

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