Frequently Asked Questions

Below please find answers to some commonly asked questions about UVA’s Master’s of Public Safety program. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to, or complete the Request for Information form.

What will I learn and how will this help me?

The Master’s Of Public Safety program is for leaders who want to develop professionally while earning a graduate degree from one of the nation’s top public universities.

The program is designed for working professionals, and the curriculum focuses on the complex realities of modern public safety. Graduates will finish the program with a deeper understanding of how to run complex organizations, negotiate and collaborate with peer agencies, and build and nurture the community relationships that are vital for success.

How does the program work?

Students will earn 30 credit hours by taking five core courses and five restricted electives. UVA offers the five core courses throughout the year over five eight-week sessions. All coursework is completely online, delivered asynchronously, and designed for working adults. 

Students can be admitted at any time during the three admission cycles: Summer, Fall and Spring. Students are not required to take classes every session, but must complete the program requirements within three years after taking the first core course.

How much does it cost?

Tuition is $599 per credit hour for Summer 2021, and there’s no difference for in-state and out-of-state students.

Is it online?

Yes, all courses are online. The core coursework is asynchronous, meaning students do not have to attend class at scheduled times, but will be responsible for accessing materials and completing work on their own time. Instructors support students each step of the way as they build critical skills.

I’ve already done the FBI National Academy, FBI ELEVATE or UVA National Criminal Justice Command College. Will those credits count?

Yes! Past participants in the FBI’s National Academy, FBI ELEVATE or UVA’s National Criminal Justice Command College may use their existing graduate coursework, but must take all five core courses, 15 credits, to complete the program. Eligible students who have already completed 15 graduate credits with SCPS that meet elective requirements, may complete the program in one year by taking one eight-week course per session

If I have previously attended the FBI National Academy, FBI ELEVATE or UVA National Criminal Justice Command College, do I still have to submit those transcripts when I apply? 

You will need to provide unofficial transcripts for any past courses taken through UVA (including the FBI National Academy, FBI ELEVATE or UVA National Criminal Justice Command College) with your application. Those unofficial transcripts can be easily accessed at

You do not, however, need to request the official transcripts for UVA-administered courses, as they will be provided by SCPS administration during the application process. 

How long does it take to complete the program?

Students may apply up to 15 restricted credits from other select SCPS graduate programs. Students must take all five core courses, 15 credits, after being admitted to the degree program. Students who have completed their restricted electives can complete the program requirements in one year by taking one course per eight-week session. Students with no prior SCPS graduate credits and no transfer credits can complete the program in two years taking one eight-week course per session.

Are scholarships or financial aid available?

UVA is currently not offering scholarships for the program, though students may use employer-provided professional development funds, or scholarships or grants from outside sources.

This program is eligible for student loans. Learn more about using federal loan programs at the University of Virginia.

When does it start and how can I apply?

UVA is now accepting applications for classes beginning in Fall 2021. Interested students can request additional information or begin an application. The deadline to apply for Fall 2021 is July 1, 2021.

What are the policies for adding/dropping classes and refunds?

Please click here for details.

What’s it like to take an online class?

Our goal is to deliver an exceptional student experience, whether you're learning in one of our classrooms or learning online from where you live and work. When you enroll in an online course, you’ll experience a collaborative environment where you’ll interact with your instructor and other students who live not only in Virginia, but also in other parts of the country or around the globe.  Watch our short videos and hear from students and faculty about their experiences with online learning.


I’ve never taken a class online before. Will I have help with the technology?

Absolutely. Here's a brief list of the online learning tools the program uses, along with links to resources. In addition, students can reach out at any time for help acclimating to online instruction. The orientation process will introduce students to the tech tools we use, and strategies for effective online learning.

Please see the technical support contact information below:

Canvas troubleshooting & tech support:, or 434-218-1756

Additional resources include:


Will there be an orientation?

There will be an online orientation prior to classes starting in Summer 2021.

Are the course and programs offered through UVA SCPS accredited?

Yes. The University of Virginia is accredited by the commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.   

Will the degree earned from SCPS be the same as others earned from the University of Virginia?

This degree is awarded by the University of Virginia. You will be getting the same high quality education as you would if you attended the University as a traditional student. Graduates are entitled to the same privileges and opportunities available to all students who have earned degrees from the University of Virginia.

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