The following information outlines criteria for admission to the Public Affairs major for students who were admitted to UCLA as freshmen. Students are responsible for ALL the information provided on this page. Please read carefully!

For students who were admitted to UCLA as Junior Transfer students, please see the Information for Transfer Students page.

Admission Criteria

Students should apply to the Public Affairs major during winter quarter of their 2nd year, once they have satisfied the following criteria:

  • Must be in good standing at UCLA at the time of application. This means students must have a minimum 2.0 term and cumulative GPA and cannot be on Probation or Subject to Dismissal status when they apply.
  • Have completed, with a C or better, at least five of the eight required lower division Public Affairs courses (including courses taken winter quarter of year 2). Completed courses must include PA 40 & PA 60. The remaining three courses, if not yet taken, must be taken as soon as possible. Typically, the remaining courses are completed during the spring quarter of the second year and during the third year at the latest. NOTE: For the Winter 2021 Application cycle, we modified our application requirements due to challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. For the Winter 2021 application only, students who have completed at least four of the eight required lower division courses are granted the exception to apply.
  • Have taken all courses for both the pre-major and the major (if applicable) for a letter grade. NOTE: This requirement is waived for courses taken during Spring 2020, Summer 2020, Winter 2021, and Spring 2021. During these terms, students who earn a grade of Pass can petition to apply courses completed on a P/NP basis toward major requirements. Grades of No Pass do not satisfy major requirements. Should you have any questions or concerns please contact the Public Affairs Office of Student Services.
  • Have completed at least 45 units (including AP and transfer units, if needed) by the end of winter quarter of the year they apply.
  • Have not exceeded 135 units of coursework (not including AP or other transfer units, if that brings the total over 135 units), by the end of winter quarter the year they apply.

Graduating Early

Students who plan to graduate within 3 years should to apply to the major in the 1st year, assuming the above criteria are met by the end of winter quarter of the 1st year.

In the event a student cannot complete the required courses by the end of winter quarter of the 1st year, the student may be eligible to apply in year two, and still graduate within three years. These students MUST contact the Experiential Learning Capstone Advisor and Coordinator, Kevin Medina, no later than the end of week two of winter quarter of the 2nd year to discuss the internship placement and experiential learning requirements. If the student fails to notify the Capstone Advisor and Coordinator of their plan to graduate early by the stated deadline, the student will not be eligible to graduate early as part of the Public Affairs major. In that case, the student will either have to move to a 4-year plan or seek a new major.

Students on the 3-year plan should review the experiential learning requirements and the sample 3-year study plan ASAP. The capstone workshops MUST be completed before the student can start the internship series. Failure to complete the workshops will result in the student being ineligible for the capstone series, and therefore the major.

Admission Guidelines

  • If students miss the 2nd year application deadline, they may consult with a Public Affairs Advisor to find out if a late application may be possible. Late applications may be considered during Fall of the 3rd year if space permits. Students who are permitted to apply late must still meet the criteria above by the end of the summer quarter before the 3rd Students are not permitted to apply after Fall quarter of the 3rd year.
  • Students should have a backup major in mind in the event they are not accepted into the Public Affairs major. Students may schedule an appointment with a Public Affairs advisor, via MyUCLA Message Center , to discuss suitable options.
  • Student athletes who wish to pursue the Public Affairs major should contact the Public Affairs Undergraduate Student Services Office (MyUCLA Message Center or at 310-794-4080) as soon as possible to create a study plan that complements their athletic schedule.


The Luskin School of Public Affairs Undergraduate Program is now accepting applications for the Public Affairs major 2020-2021 application cycle. Students who meet the eligibility criteria listed above are eligible to apply during Winter 2021. Be advised that completion of course requirements, or a high GPA alone, do not guarantee admission to the major. Transfer students who were not admitted to UCLA as Public Affairs majors are not eligible to apply to the Public Affairs major.

The Winter 2021 Public Affairs major application is open Monday, March 1, 2021 at 8:30am (PST) through Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 5:00pm (PST).

To apply to the Public Affairs major, students must submit their completed application materials via the online application available here. We recommend that students carefully review the “Public Affairs Major Application: Winter 2021 Application Instructions” prior to beginning the application process.

Admission to the Public Affairs major is not guaranteed. Applications will be reviewed holistically based on academic performance and submitted application materials. Please make sure to complete all aspects of the application. Incomplete applications, including applications that are improperly assembled or labeled at the time the application closes, will not be considered.

Application decisions will be emailed to students on Friday, May 14, 2021 by 5pm (PST).

Important Links:

Questions? Contact the Public Affairs Undergraduate Student Services Office via MyUCLA Message Center or at 310-794-4080.