Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy & Leadership

Pursue Your Policy Passion

The Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership is a unique, multidisciplinary liberal arts program focused on understanding how public policy decisions are made and how to translate that knowledge into action. Students will develop a firm grasp of how civic leaders in government, non-profit organizations and the private sector contribute to collective problem solving in preparation for their future roles as enlightened and ethical leaders in their professional, personal and civic lives. 

This program pairs a liberal arts degree with practical experience to prepare graduates for a variety of jobs in the government, education, nonprofit and private sectors. It also allows for easy progression to advanced degree programs in law, business, journalism and the social sciences.

Students typically apply for admission in their second undergraduate year and will have earned at least 60 credits prior to matriculation in the fall of entry to Batten. In order to graduate with the Batten BA, a student must complete 120 credits. 


In addition to the 60-credit pre-matriculation requirement, students must complete and earn a C or higher in three (3) prerequisite courses: ECON 2010 (or equivalent), social psychology (either LPPL 2600 OR PSYC 2600 or equivalent) and LPPP 2200: Introduction to Public Policy.


The Batten School General Education Requirements are the same as the UVA College of Arts and Sciences. The Batten School will accept students from Echols or any of the general education curricula (College curriculum or the Forums), and Batten coursework fulfills some curricular requirements.

*Note: The Batten program automatically fulfills the following Literacy Requirements from the New College Curriculum for Batten majors: 

  • Rhetoric/Second Writing Requirement (3 credits) 
  • Quantification, Computation and Data Analysis (3 credits) 

*Note: The Batten program automatically fulfills the following Competency and Area Requirements from the Traditional curriculum for Batten majors [applies only to transfer students from outside UVA]: 

  • Second Writing Requirement (3 credits) 
  • Social Sciences (6 credits) 
  • Humanities (3 credits: Moral, Philosophical, and Religious Perspectives) 
  • Historical Studies (3 credits) 


Major Requirements (42 credits)

Civic and Political Contexts of Public Policy and Leadership (9 credits)

  • LPPP 3620: Engaging Policy Communities
  • LPPP 3230: Public Policy Challenges of the 21st Century
  • LPPP 4200: Institutional and Political Context of Public Policy

Leadership (9 credits)

  • LPPP 4660: Value and Bias in Public Policy
  • LPPL 3210: Behavioral Sciences for Civic Leadership (previously Introduction to Civic Leadership)
  • LPPL 4680: Lead From Anywhere

Economic Analysis of Public Policy (6 credits)

  • LPPA 3650: Choice and Consequences: The Economics of Public Policy
  • LPPA 3640: Research Methods and Data Analysis of Public Policy

Capstone Seminar (3 credits)

  • LPPP 4991: Capstone Seminar

Special Topics (15 credits)

  • Must be at the 3000-5000 level and must be related to public policy and/or leadership.
  •  At least 9 credits (three special topics courses) must have the Batten School mnemonic, such as:
    • LPPS 3240: Anti-Terrorism and the Role of Intelligence
    • LPPP 3250: International Development Policy
    • LPPS 3295: Global Humanitarian Crisis: Dilemmas, Leadership and Action
    • LPPS 3050: Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship
    • LPPL 3450: Resilient Leadership for Teams and Teammates
    • LPPP 4210: Integrating Ethics in Public Policy 
  • Up to 6 credits (two special topics courses) may come from other schools/departments or institutions in the U.S. or abroad, pending approval by the Office of Academic Affairs.
BA Public Policy and Leadership

* The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements.