Price School of Public Policy

Undergraduate Degrees

Bachelor of Science in Policy, Planning, and Development

The Bachelor of Science in Policy, Planning, and Development is an interdisciplinary major that prepares students for graduate study and/or professional careers by engaging them in the analysis of society’s political, social and economic issues in such areas as environment, health care and urban life. The major introduces students to theoretical foundations and practical applications through a set of cross-cutting introductory courses and specialized courses in one of five tracks: health policy and management, public policy and law, nonprofits and social innovation, real estate development, or sustainable planning. Students will be introduced to analytical and research tools, including economics, Geographic Information Systems, statistics, urban design, and applied field research. Throughout, the students’ education will be connected to professional practice, as exemplified by the mandatory internship. Finally, the major is structured to provide students with sufficient elective credits to explore minors or other programs at USC so they can broaden their education to better prepare themselves for the next stage of their lives.

General Education Requirements

The university’s general education program provides a coherent, integrated introduction to the breadth of knowledge you will need to consider yourself (and to be considered by other people) a generally well-educated person. This program requires six courses in different categories, plus writing and diversity requirements, which together comprise the USC Core. See The USC Core and the Requirements for Graduation page for more information.

Major Requirements

A minimum grade of C-, 1.7 (A = 4.0) must be earned in each PPD course specifically listed as a degree requirement. In addition, a minimum grade point average of C (2.0) or higher must be achieved to earn all Price degrees. The GPA for all upper division PPD courses applied toward the major must also be a C (2.0) or higher. No more than 16 units of PPD course work may be taken prior to the successful completion of pre-major requirements.

Pre-major Requirements

A minimum grade of C, 2.0 (A = 4.0), must be earned in each of the pre-major courses.

All pre-major requirements must be taken for a letter grade.

Math

MATH 117 (4)

Economics

ECON 203 Microeconomics (4)

General Electives (26 units)

ppd core Courses (30 units) Units
PPD 225 Public Policy and Management (gateway course) 4
PPD 227 Urban Planning and Development (gateway course) 4
PPD 240 Citizenship and Public Ethics 4
PPD 245 The Urban Context for Policy and Planning 4
PPD 357 Government and Business 4
PPD 301 PPD Practices: Internship Seminar 2
PPD 303 Statistics for Policy, Planning and Development 4
PPD 373 Public Policy and Planning Analysis 4

Tracks

Students select one track for degree emphasis; they take 28 units (seven courses) from the track selected. Each track includes four required courses and three elective courses. During advisement, students will be given a list of recommended elective courses particularly appropriate for the chosen track, but students have the flexibility to craft the electives out of Price School courses to meet their academic needs. The four requirement courses for each track are listed below.

Health policy and management Units
Required courses:
PPD 325 Fundamentals of Health Policy and Management 4
Health Policy Focus:

PPD 314 Public Policy and Law 4
PPD 315 Analytical Foundations for Public Policy 4
PPD 415 Health Policy 4
Health Management Focus:

PPD 320 Organizational Behavior in Public Administration 4
PPD 407 Financial Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations 4
PPD 413 Administration of Health Care Organizations 4

Electives (select 3):
Health Policy Focus:
GERO 416 Health Issues in Adulthood 4
HP 408 Environmental Health in the Community 4
HP 412 Health Promotion and Prevention Policy 4
PPD 330 Introduction to Health Care Systems 4
PPD 413 Administration of Health Care Organizations 4
PPD 414 Community Health Policy and Planning 4
(Study abroad if applicable to track)
Health Management Focus:

PPD 318 Financial Accounting in Public and Nonprofit Organizations 4
PPD 330 Introduction to Health Care Systems 4
PPD 403 Management Analysis I 4
PPD 414 Community Health Policy and Planning 4
PPD 478 Social Innovations 4
(Study abroad if applicable to track)

public policy and law Units
Required courses:
PPD 313 Finance of the Public Sector 4
PPD 314 Public Policy and Law 4
PPD 315 Analytical Foundations for Public Policy 4
POSC 340 Constitutional Law 4

Electives (select 3):
ECON 434 Economic Analysis of Law 4
LAW 200x Law and Society 4
POSC 444 Civil and Political Rights and Liberties 4
PPD 342 Crime and Public Policy 4
PPD 410 Comparative Urban Development 4
PPD 415 Health Policy 4
PPD 439 Housing and Community Development 4
PPD 461 Sustainable Communities, Policy and Planning 4
PPD 478 Social Innovations 4
PPD 485 U.S. Immigration Policy and Liberties 4
Washington, D.C. Semester
(Study abroad if applicable to track)

nonprofits and social innovation Units
Required courses:
PPD 371 The Nonprofit Sector and the Public Interest 4
PPD 402 Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations 4
PPD 407 Financial Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations 4
PPD 478 Social Innovations 4

Electives (select 3):
BUCO 485 Business Communication Management for Nonprofits 4
IR 371 Global Civil Society: Non-State Actors in World Politics 4
PPD 318 Financial Accounting in Public and Nonprofit Organizations 4
PPD 320 Organizational Behavior in Public Administration 4
PPD 353 Introduction to Philanthropy and Grant-Writing 4
PPD 372 Public Service in an Urban Setting 4
PPD 382 International Development 4
PPD 403 Management Analysis I 4
(Study abroad if applicable to track)

Real estate development units
Required courses:
FBE 400x Introduction to Real Estate Finance and Development 4
PPD 362 Real Estate Fundamentals for Planning and Development 4
PPD 417 History of Planning and Development 4
PPD 437 Advanced Finance and Investment for Planning and Development 4

Electives (select 3):
CE 460* Construction Engineering 3
FBE 427 Real Estate Law 4
PPD 410 Comparative Urban Development 4
PPD 420 Environmental Impact Assessment 4
PPD 425 Designing Livable Communities 4
PPD 435 Analyzing Real Estate Markets for Planning and Development 4
PPD 438 Local Economic Development 4
PPD 439 Housing and Community Development 4
(Study abroad if applicable to track)

*Students in the real estate track who select CE 460 as an elective will earn 27 units rather than 28 in the track and will require 27 units of general electives rather than 26 to reach 128 units total.

sustainable planning units
Required courses:
PPD 417 History of Planning and Development 4
PPD 420 Environmental Impact Assessment 4
PPD 427L Geographic Information Systems and Planning Applications 4
PPD 461 Sustainable Communities, Policy and Planning 4

Electives (select 3):
PPD 306 Visual Methods in Policy, Management, Planning and Development 4
PPD 358 Urban and Regional Economics 4
PPD 360 Urban Transportation Planning and Policy 4
PPD 362 Real Estate Fundamentals for Planning and Development 4
PPD 410 Comparative Urban Development 4
PPD 414 Community Health Policy and Planning 4
PPD 425 Designing Livable Communities 4
PPD 438 Local Economic Development 4
PPD 439 Housing and Community Development 4
(Study abroad if applicable to track)

The faculty director of the undergraduate program may approve students’ petitions to substitute or mix track classes if based on an appropriate academic/career rationale.

Capstone

All students will take four units of a capstone experience during their senior year. This may be fulfilled by taking PPD 431L Undergraduate Policy, Planning, and Development Studies (4) or PPD 497ab Senior Thesis (2-2). Students wishing to enroll in PPD 497ab must have a 3.7 GPA in PPD courses and an overall 3.5 GPA.

Internships

Policy, Planning and Development majors are required to complete 140 hours of internship by enrolling in PPD 301 PPD Practices: Internship Seminar or the Washington, D.C., Semester internship. Internships are matched as closely as possible to the student’s interests and skills.

PPD 301 and the internship in a position provide numerous opportunities to develop and formulate future career goals, as well as to gain personal and professional experience while completing the undergraduate degree.

Honors

Price School honors are available at graduation to qualified PPD majors and result in a special designation of departmental honors on a student’s transcript. Achievement of PPD honors requires a 3.7 GPA in PPD major courses and a 3.5 overall GPA as well as nomination by the professor in the capstone experience. In addition, students must earn an A in their capstone course (PPD 497ab or PPD 431).

Washington, D.C., Semester

The Washington, D.C., Semester program provides an intensive semester of confrontation with the political center of the nation and its complex components. The program offers opportunities for behind-the-scenes work in national government agencies and related organizations, combined with an academic environment and the chance to explore, share and learn with a group of fellow students.