Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs

The La Follette School and the Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture (DPLA) offer a three-year double-degree program in planning and public affairs that culminates in two degrees: a Master of Science in Urban and Regional Planning (URPL) and a Master of Public Affairs or Master of International Public Affairs degree. The program requires 72 units of graduate credits and normally requires three years for completion.


Persons interested in this double-degree program must apply to both departments. At the time of original application to the University of Wisconsin–Madison Graduate School, applicants may apply for both programs simultaneously. At any time during enrollment at UW–Madison, students may also request to add the second major. In applying for the second major, currently enrolled students should inquire about the timeline for admission decisions by the second program.

More details are available from advisers in either department. Students considering the double-degree program are urged to contact both URPL and La Follette representatives.

Degree Requirements

Students in the double-degree program must satisfy 36 credits toward the MPA or MIPA degree. They will receive 19 credits from 6 core courses worth 3 credits each, in addition to a 1 cr. career development seminar for public affairs. The remaining credit requirements for the La Follette degree are met with elective courses, and 9 credits can be counted toward both the LFS and URPL degrees. A total of 45 credits is required for Urban and Regional Planning curriculum. In total, a student must complete 72 credits to earn both degrees.

In general, students in the program are expected to complete core requirements for both programs by the end of their second year of studies. This permits course work in year three to focus upon an URPL area of concentration.

Core Public Affairs Courses

Introduction to Statistical Methods for Policy Analysis

Microeconomic Policy Analysis

Policymaking Process

Public Management

Introduction to Policy Analysis

Workshop in Domestic Public Affairs

Core Urban & Regional Planning Courses

Methods of Planning Analysis

Geospatial Methods

Planning Orientation Seminar

Planning Thought & Practice

Planning Workshop

Planning & the Legal System

Structure & Functions of Cities & Regions

Visual Communication for Planners

MPA-URPL Degree Plan

MIPA-URPL Degree Plan

Double-Degree URPL & Public Affairs Alumni

Highlighted below are a few La Follette School and URPL double-degree alumni: 


Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture

University of Wisconsin–Madison Graduate School Application

Adding a major (For students already enrolled in the MPA, MIPA or URPL)

Graduate School Information


Please contact Mo O'Connor at the La Follette School at 608-262-3582 for more information about La Follette programs and Amy Rivera for information about Urban and Regional Planning at 608-890-4697 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.