The Graduate Diploma in Public Administration is a 36-unit program which is part of the Graduate Program in Public Administration offered by the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences.

It is available on campus, by flexible delivery or in mixed mode, on campus/flexible delivery mode which may be completed in one year of full-time study (or the equivalent part-time).

The course is also available in a fully online study mode and is provided in an accelerated format which may be completed in a minimum of 8 months full-time. See Graduate Diploma in Public Administration.

The Graduate Diploma in Public Administration articulates with:

Students who have completed one of the Graduate Certificates or an approved equivalent normally receive credit for 18 units of topics towards the Graduate Diploma. In turn, those who complete the Graduate Diploma normally receive 36 units of credit should they wish to proceed with a Masters degree. Alternatively, students who enrol directly in the Graduate Diploma may choose to complete only the requirements for the Graduate Certificates in Public Policy or Public Sector Management and exit with one of those awards.

Admission requirements

Applicants must normally hold either the Graduate Certificate in Development Administration, Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Management, Graduate Certificate in Public Policy* (or an approved equivalent); or an approved degree or equivalent qualification from an approved tertiary institution. However, the Faculty Board may, under certain circumstances and subject to specific conditions, admit others who can show evidence of fitness for candidature.

* Those who were admitted to the Graduate Certificate without completing an undergraduate degree must have attained an acceptable GPA in The Graduate Certificate to be eligible to proceed to the Graduate Diploma.


Credit may be granted, on application, for relevant work already completed in other approved

Course aims

The Graduate Diploma in Public Administration aims to provide a broad overview of issues in public policy, management and administration and to provide a foundation for those wishing to pursue studies at the Masters level.

Learning outcomes 

Graduates with a Graduate Diploma in Public Administration will be able to:

  • Understand contemporary trends and developments in public policy, public sector administration and management in both developed and developing countries
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply relevant theories in explaining and analysing real world public policy, public sector administration and management problems.

Program of study

To qualify for the Graduate Diploma in Public Administration (online pathway), students must complete 36 units with a grade of P or NGP or better in each topic, according to the program of study below.

Core - Year 1 topics

9 units comprising:

POAD8014 Public Policy (4.5 units)*
POAD8022 Public Management (4.5 units)*

Plus 4.5 units selected from:

POAD8007 Policy Analysis: Frameworks, Approaches and Values (4.5 units)
POAD8017 Contemporary Public Policy: Theoretical Perspectives (4.5 units)
POAD8138 Governance and Public Policy (4.5 units)

Plus 4.5 units selected from:

POAD8130 Toolkit for Public Management (4.5 units)
POAD8137 Ethics in Public Administration (4.5 units)
POAD8139 Organisational Politics, Culture and Management (4.5 units)
POAD8142 Leading and Managing Change (4.5 units)

Option - Year 1 topics

At least 18 units selected from the list below or from the list of core topics above:

POAD9015 Economics and Public Policy (4.5 units)
POAD9028 Evaluation Methods (4.5 units)
POAD9034 Risk Management - Principles and Practice (4.5 units)
POAD9037 Financial Management (4.5 units)
POAD9058 Approaches to Applied Research (4.5 units)
POAD9118 Managing Human Resources in the Public Sector (4.5 units)
POAD9119 Regionalism, Decentralisation and Governance (4.5 units)
POAD9129 Environmental Policy and Governance (4.5 units)
POAD9135 Project Management (4.5 units)

*It is expected that POAD8014 Public Policy and POAD8022 Public Management will normally be completed before other topics are undertaken.