Applied Demography

Graduate Program HeadEric Baumer
Program CodeAPDEM
Campus(es)World Campus (M.P.S.)
Degrees ConferredMaster of Professional Studies (M.P.S.)
The Graduate Faculty


The M.P.S. degree in Applied Demography is a 30-credit program of study for working professionals interested in understanding the concepts, measures, data, software, and analytical skills that can be utilized in both the public and private sectors. The content of the program will include readings, materials, and exercises that draw on demographic research from both the U.S. and the international context.

The M.P.S. in Applied Demography provides professionals with the skills necessary to perform applied demographic analysis to aid in decision-making processes. The program content exposes the student to a broad range of methods and problems in the public and private sectors, aiming to provide students with practical experiences. The program will also familiarize students with the methods, techniques, and projects used in the applied demography setting in their line of work.

Admission Requirements

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

Applicants are expected to have one undergraduate course in Statistics or work experience where statistics are used.

Students who do not have an undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 will be considered on a case-by-case basis depending on the quality of their overall application. Work experiences will be considered for applicants who have more than two years of experiences in a related field. Applicants who are still completing their baccalaureate requirements at the time of application may be admitted to the Graduate School provisionally, pending the award of the degree. Completion of admission in such cases is dependent upon receipt of the missing credentials.

Core Application Packet

  • Completed official online Graduate School application and payment of a nonrefundable application fee.
  • Statement of purpose: a 2-3 page essay articulating career and educational goals that demonstrate the student’s written communication skills and basic statistical knowledge
  • A current curriculum vitae (vita) or résumé.
  • Three letters of recommendation that attest to the student’s readiness for graduate study and document the requisite of minimum of two years of work experience. Letters must be submitted through the online application system. Within the online application you will be asked to enter the names and email addresses of three individuals who will be providing your recommendation. Those individuals will receive a note via email asking them to complete a brief form that will serve as your recommendation. Applicants must inform all recommenders that recommenders must submit the form in order for the application to be complete.
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended.

Degree Requirements

Master of Professional Studies (M.P.S.)

Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-700 Professional Degree Policies.

Total required credits for the M.P.S.: 30 credits. At least 18 credits at the 500 or 800 level, with at least 6 credits at the 500 level.

Required Courses
APDEM 8013
SOC 573Demographic Techniques3
APDEM 8023
APDEM 803Applied Demography in Practice3
Electives 1
Supportive/ Program
Select a minimum 9 credits of the following:9
Business Demography
Public Sector Demography
Applied Demography & Health
Spatial Demography
Select up to 6 credits of the following:6
Community and Economic Development: Theory and Practice
Population, Land Use, and Municipal Finance
Analytical Approaches in Spatial Data Science
Health Care Marketing
Policy Analysis and Planning
Policy Making and Evaluation
Regression Methods
Applied Multivariate Statistical Analysis
Applied Research Methods
Culminating Experience
APDEM 808Capstone Project (Capstone Project)3
Total Credits30

M.P.S. in Applied Demography students will have the opportunity to design their program of study by choosing from a list of elective courses, based in their area of interest. The elective courses will be chosen in consultation with the student’s adviser. The elective courses counting towards the M.P.S. will be reviewed on an annual basis by an advisory board to ensure that we are matching the listed electives with M.P.S. student interests and needs, and that the identified courses outside of the M.P.S. are offered frequently enough.

The culminating experience provides students with an opportunity to apply their knowledge of applied demography to a research project. The choice of research project topic and exact form will be mutually determined by the faculty mentor and the student. The student will work with a faculty mentor/adviser on a capstone project that will be written up as a capstone report. Students are expected to utilize methods acquired during other courses in the M.P.S. in Applied Demography and apply them to a topic of interest. The report will be formally presented to peers in the M.P.S. and faculty members at the end of the semester (i.e. final presentation via videoconference). The capstone report must be approved by the faculty mentor/adviser to meet course requirements.

Substitutions for the above prescribed courses, either with resident-education courses, alternate online courses, or courses from other institutions, will be considered on a case-by-case basis consistent with Graduate Council policy, and must be petitioned and approved in advance by the program administrator, with input from the student’s adviser.


A graduate minor is available in any approved graduate major or dual-title program. The default requirements for a graduate minor are stated in Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-600 Research Degree Policies and GCAC-700 Professional Degree Policies, depending on the type of degree the student is pursuing:

Student Aid

World Campus students in graduate degree programs may be eligible for financial aid. Refer to the Tuition and Financial Aid section of the World Campus website for more information.


Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.

Applied Demography (APDEM) Course List


Campus World Campus
Graduate Program Head Michelle Lynn Frisco
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) or Professor-in-Charge (PIC) Stephen Augustus Matthews
Program Contact

Stephen Augustus Matthews
211 Oswald Tower
State College PA 16802
(814) 863-9721

Program Website View