College of Education > Department of Education Policy Studies > Undergraduate Major - Education & Public Policy

Undergraduate Major - Education and Public Policy

Welcome to Education and Public Policy (EPP). We offer an interdisciplinary major for students interested in the design, implementation and improvement of policy aimed at the betterment of a diverse and democratic society. 

Through the investigation of current policy challenges, EPP students develop skills in research and analysis. The major blends core courses in educational policy with foundations courses in sociology, political science, economics, business, and research methods. Elective courses within the major include policy problems, public systems, leadership, ethics, diversity, equality, and equity. In addition to academic studies, the EPP major includes a semester field experience culminating in a real-world, meaningful research project.

Graduates of the EPP program are ready to enter professional careers in the U.S. or around the world in educational organizations, government, community development, public service, and non-profits. They also enter a variety of graduate programs including educational policy, public policy, public administration, sociology and law.

Find out more at our Bulletin page! The Education Policy Studies Department also offers an Undergraduate Minor in EPS; find out more here.

Student Features

Christopher Carver, walking past a wall mural while studying abroad in Chile. "This is more of an 'education' picture at the el Centro Cultural Gabriela Mistral (GAM). The art is advocating for excellent education for all Chileans. Also an education that is free and inclusive." Christopher Carver
Christopher Carver has taken advantage of the many opportunities here at Penn State.  In his junior year, he was selected by The McCourtney Institute of Democracy as a Nevins Fellow. The fellowship provided him with a funded internship through The Convergence Policy Resolution Center in Washington, DC, which matched Christopher’s interests in social justice and bipartisanship. To be considered for an internship, he enrolled in PLSC 209: Democratic Leadership, a five-week, one-credit intensive course offered in the fall.  He also participated in a study abroad program to Chile, where he worked for a non-profit devoted to ending hunger. This was an opportunity that appealed to his desire to learn the history and geography of Chile, as well as contribute to the community.

Emma Rohan Emma Rohan
Emma Rohan has been an active and engaged student in an integrated undergraduate-graduate program at Penn State. She is simultaneously pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a master’s degree in Educational Theory & Policy. Currently, she works with World in Conversation, where she has facilitated hundreds of dialogues on relevant and contentious social issues in domestic, international, and global initiatives.  As a Nevins Fellow through the McCourtney Institute for Democracy, she worked with the Jefferson Center in Minneapolis, MN to lead Citizens Jury events. This was an opportunity that came to her through the course PLSC 209: Democratic Leadership, an intensive class that is offered in the fall semester. Additionally, she has studied abroad in Rabat, Morocco, interned at UNESCO in Paris, and was an outdoor adventure guide throughout college. She wrote her undergraduate thesis about charter school policies in the United States and her master’s thesis on the impact of charter schools on Pennsylvania labor markets.