Full-Time vs Part-Time Status

Does the Trachtenberg School offer part-time programs?

All of our programs (MPP, MPA, MA in ENRP, Ph.D., and Certificate) programs can be completed full-time or part-time, as the majority of our courses are in the evenings. We do not have a separate part-time program for each degree, rather, we offer degrees that can be pursued part-time or full-time. Many of our classes contain a mixture of full-time and part-time students. The application and admission requirements, courses, faculty, and program quality are the same; the only difference is the time to completion.

What is the difference between full-time and part-time? How are each defined?

Full-time students normally take three courses (9 or 10 credits) per semester and work at a part-time (up to 20 hours per week) policy- or public administration-related job or internship.

Part-time students normally take two courses (6 credits) per semester and work at a full-time job.

Full- and part-time students take the same classes, but progress through the program at different paces.

There are some cases in which full-time status is important including:

1.     International students must maintain full-time status to fulfill student visa requirements

2.     TSPPPA fellowships and assistantships are normally granted only to full-time students

Please note that the "repayment status" of student loans often is affected by whether a student is enrolled part-time or full-time, and it is the responsibility of individual students to be aware of this when they consider how many courses to take.

Official definitions and regulations are posted in the University Bulletin (Student Status).

Can I switch between full-time and part-time status?

Yes. As this status is determined by the number of credits undertaken in a given semester, it is simply a matter of registering for fewer (or more) credits and you do not need to get approval.   However, if you have received an assistantship, fellowship, or scholarship, you should review the terms of that award before switching status, since some awards are predicated on full-time or part-time status.