Jun 16, 2024  
Graduate Catalog 2012 - 2013 
Graduate Catalog 2012 - 2013 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Urban Studies and Public Affairs, Ph.D.

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Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs

Urban Affairs 231
(216) 687-2136

Ms. Joan Demko, 216-523-7522
Wendy A. Kellogg, Ph.D., Interim Program Director

Areas of Study

Public Administration
Urban Policy and Development


The Ph.D. program in Urban Studies and Public Affairs integrates urban-related knowledge from a number of academic disciplines. Through disciplinary integration, doctoral students analyze, design, test, and evaluate strategies for urban policy-making and management within the public and private sectors. The program is offered jointly by Cleveland State University and the University of Akron. Students may matriculate at either campus and schedule course work at both institutions to take advantage of the diversity of faculty backgrounds and approaches.

Ph.D. Mission and Goals

The mission is to prepare scholars for research, teaching, and reflective practice in positions related to urban studies and public affairs in universities or public-policy organizations. The goals of the program are:

  • To graduate scholars who possess a strong methodological foundation within the field of urban studies and public affairs together with an in-depth knowledge that enables them to recognize, identify, and articulate the frontiers of scholarship in a specialization.
  • To graduate scholars able to construct, execute, and present scholastically sound, independent research of either a theoretical or applied nature that expands the frontiers of knowledge within the field of urban studies and public affairs.

For updated Ph.D. program information, visit http://urban.csuohio.edu/academics/graduate/phd/.


Current faculty information can be located on the Cleveland State University Faculty Profile page.

Financial Assistance

The Ph.D. program awards graduate assistantships on a competitive basis to students with superior academic records. Graduate assistantships are designed both to serve the needs of the Levin College and to assist in the professional development of the student. Assistantships are regarded as apprenticeships, during which students interact with academics and practitioners through classroom and applied instruction, research, and administrative experiences to become more effective members of their fields. Graduate assistants are required to spend twenty hours per week in their apprenticeships.

Admission Information

Students are admitted to the Ph.D. program in Urban Studies in the fall semester only. Students entering the program with a master’s degree are expected to have a grade-point average of 3.5 or better. Both undergraduate and graduate grade-point averages are considered in determining eligibility for admission. Cleveland State also permits students with bachelor’s degrees to enter the program. Bachelor entry-level students must have achieved at least a 3.5 grade-point average in their undergraduate work.

Applicants are expected to have earned a minimum combined score of 1,050 on the quantitative and verbal sections of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), plus at least a 4.0 on the analytical writing section. In addition to the application requirements of the College of Graduate Studies, an applicant must submit two letters of recommendation, a writing sample, preferably a recently graded research paper, and a statement of purpose for seeking a Ph.D. in Urban Studies and Public Affairs. The application deadline is January 15. Submit all materials to the Graduate Admissions Office.

Non-native English speakers who do not have an earned bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited U.S. institution must demonstrate proof of English-language proficiency as indicated in this bulletin under “Admission Requirements for International Students and Permanent Residents”.

Apply Now: http://www.csuohio.edu/gradcollege/admissions/apply.html

Degree Requirements


Depending on previous graduate course work, Ph.D. students must complete some or all of the following master’s level prerequisite courses before enrolling in core or specialization courses. Those entering with a bachelor’s degree must complete all prerequisites. Students must earn a grade- point average of 3.0 or better in the following prerequisite courses:

Following completion or waiver of prerequisites, each student is required to:

1. Complete a common core of four courses with a grade of B or better in each course.

The core courses are:

2. Complete a concentration of twenty hours plus two electives.

Available concentrations or areas of specialization include:

  1. Communication
  2. Public Administration
  3. Urban Policy and Development

For more information and specific curriculum plans, please refer to the PhD program handbook, online at http://urban.csuohio.edu/academics/graduate/handbooks/phd_handbook.pdf.

Comprehensive Examination

Upon completion of all course work, students must take a comprehensive examination in the major area of specialization. Upon successful completion of the examination, a student is eligible to begin dissertation research.


The dissertation demonstrates the student’s ability to plan and carry through to successful completion a comprehensive research project. The dissertation should contribute to society’s knowledge about the area of specialization chosen.

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