B.S. in Public Policy Curriculum


USC Price Core Curriculum (30 units)

Includes 2 units of internship and 4 units of capstone

  • PPD 225, Public Policy and Management
  • PPD 240, Citizenship and Public Ethics (GE class)
  • PPD 245, Urban Context for Policy and Planning (GE class)
  • PPD 303, Statistics for Policy, Planning and Development (pre-requisite, Math 117)
  • PPD 373 Public Policy and Planning Analysis (pre-requisite, PPD 225, PPD 303, and ECON 203)
  • PPD 300 Social Justice Issues in Public Policy and Planning

USC Price B.S. Public Policy Tracks

20 units of required track courses, 8 units of track electives

Select one of the following tracks:

Cross-cutting topics courses (required)

Students will be required to take 4 units of cross-cutting topics coursework (PPD 400), preferably in junior year after having completed the core curriculum.


PPD 301 PPD Practices Internship Seminar
2-unit internship course


Students must have 90 units to pursue the capstone options.

1. PPD 431 Undergraduate Policy, Planning and Development Studio (4 units) — Studio class, four-units, designed to be project based, experiential or service learning, and integrative across multiple tracks.

2. PPD 497 Senior Thesis (2 units) — Students engage in a track-spanning research project, with a professional or academic paper as the final deliverable.

Pre-Major Requirements (8 units)

  • Math 117 (Introduction to Mathematics for Business and Economics)
  • Econ 203 (Principles of Microeconomics)

Writing Courses (8 units)

General Education


Combining Academic Rigor with Practical Experience

Our philosophy of teaching and learning balances the study of theory from many disciplines with skills to help graduates address real-world problems.

  • Faculty: Classes are taught by full-time Price faculty as well as distinguished practitioners. Faculty regularly invite leaders and influencers in specific policy issues for classroom discussions.
  • Internship: You will participate in a semester-long internship intended to give you practical experience working in an organization that addresses social problems.
  • Capstone Project: In the last semester, you will work with a local, national, or international client on a current problem, exploring the issue from many points of view and producing recommendations that are frequently included in the client’s final policy.
  • The Living Laboratory of Los Angeles: Los Angeles is a city rich in ethnic and economic diversity and is home to people from more than 180 countries who speak 140 different languages. USC, located in the heart of Los Angeles, provides a vibrant, world-class location for you to explore the dynamics of policymaking and leadership, and to experience and analyze social problems. You will meet with nonprofit, government, and private-sector leaders to understand the history, economics, and politics of social issues on local, national, and international levels.