General Information

The LBJ School of Public Affairs offers the Bachelor of Arts in Public Affairs (BAPubAff) with a major in Public Affairs. The BAPubAff is a multidisciplinary degree that will prepare students for careers in the public, non-profit and private sectors. The major provides students with the substantive knowledge, analytical skills and informed perspectives needed to tackle social problems with innovative public policy solutions that promote the public good. The degree is designed to develop skills in leadership, decision-making, collaboration and team-management; economic, political and statistical analysis; financial management and budgeting; and policy design, evaluation and implementation. 


A Legacy of Leadership: The LBJ School was the first graduate public affairs program to blend academic theory with practical experience—exposing students to real public life challenges both in and outside the classroom. This unconventional approach proved to be extremely effective, and today it is an accepted model for public affairs graduate programs. 

A Legacy of Action: President Johnson insisted on "getting it done." The LBJ School carries out that mandate in a tradition that goes far beyond LBJ's sweeping Great Society program to confront a global environment that is fraught with complex problems. We do not shy away from difficult and persistent problems: they fuel our imaginations. 

A Legacy of Public Service: Contributing viable solutions to society is our legacy and our trademark. It's in the LBJ School's DNA, from LBJ himself to distinguished faculty members such as Barbara Jordan to the desire of our students to be tomorrow's public leaders. 


The Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs is committed to improving the quality of public service in the United States and abroad at all levels of governance and civic engagement. Our goals are to: 

  • Prepare students and professionals, from a variety of backgrounds, for leadership positions in public service by providing educational opportunities grounded in theory, ethics, analytical skills and practice;
  • Produce interdisciplinary research to advance our understanding of complex problems facing society and to seek creative solutions for addressing them;
  • Promote effective public policy and management practice by maintaining a presence in scholarly and policy communities and in the popular media;
  • Foster civic engagement by providing a forum for reasoned discussion and debate on issues of public concern.


The LBJ School of Public Affairs was designed by President Lyndon B. Johnson to foster new generations of purpose-minded leaders who would continue his mission for social change. Established in 1970, the LBJ School embodies President Johnson’s vision of a public affairs school that blends the academic and the practical. 

"Above all, I hope that as they master new techniques and disciplines to improve the machinery of government, they will still build their careers of service around a dedication to one of the most cherished principles of our democracy: the greatest good for the greatest number." —Lyndon B. Johnson, May 22, 1971 


The LBJ School is the only public policy school tied to a top-tier research university, a presidential library, a state capital and a foreign border. The LBJ School and its students are connected via a stately granite plaza to the LBJ Presidential Library, whose vast historical archives are an amazing resource for students.  

The LBJ School contains several classroom and event spaces, providing unparalleled opportunities for students to be on the front lines of society’s greatest public policy challenges. Each year, the country’s most important policymakers visit the LBJ School, providing exceptional experiences in and beyond the classroom.  

The LBJ School Computer Lab is reserved for public affairs students and is available 24 hours a day. It provides access to a variety of software useful for completing coursework such as ArcGIS, Stata, and Tableau. Five Windows and five macOS computers are physically available in the lab along with four monitors that can be connected to a personal laptop using a ring of adapters. Additionally, there are five Windows systems available for remote connections which enable access to this software from a personal computer while off campus. 

The School’s research centers focus on a range of public policy issues, around which faculty members and students collaborate on interdisciplinary policy research. 

Centers Located in the LBJ School

CSRD leads an important and robust dialogue on race relations, civil rights and democracy through interdisciplinary research and scholarship. 

A collaboration between Dell Medical School and the LBJ School of Public Affairs, The Impact Factory is an engine for civic innovation, entrepreneurship and service learning at The University of Texas at Austin. A first-of-its kind, cross-sector collaboration, The Impact Factory aims to measurably improve health and prosperity for vulnerable populations in the United States. 

LBJ Urban Lab   

A "do-tank" that will inform future urban policy and create strategy for cities in Texas and beyond, training the next generation of local leaders and exploring issues affecting urban communities. 

The LBJ Washington Center helps aspiring policy professionals launch their careers via immersive programs involving accelerated study and work focused on policymaking within the federal arena. The Center currently offers three pathways to policy leadership in our nation’s capital. 

  • DC Concentration: A 15-month accelerated degree during which students work as policy professionals at a required policy apprenticeship and take evening classes taught by experts and scholars working in Washington.
  • DC Foreign Policy Semester: An immersive spring semester providing students with unparalleled exposure to how foreign policy is created and impacted by entities within the federal arena.
  • DC May Term: A condensed one-week program offered in conjunction with the Patman Center in which students gain a foundational understanding of the federal arena with an emphasis on civil discussion and advocacy.

The Patman Center for Civic and Political Engagement seeks to strengthen democracy by offering practical skills to the next generation of civic leaders. The Center will support the undergraduate Leadership Laboratory. Learning modules may include understanding your leadership strengths, giving oral testimony, building coalitions, and running for elected office. 

The Prison and Jail Innovation Lab (PJIL) serves as a bridge between academic research, practical experience, and policy in order to shine a light on conditions of confinement, advocate for improved oversight, and transform the way we treat people in prisons and jails. 

RMC Identifies and fosters creative solutions to challenging education, workforce and social problems through applied research, policy analysis and innovative program design. 

RGK prepares the next generation of nonprofit and philanthropic leaders through graduate education and research. 

ISP was established to be a premier center for the study of U.S. Intelligence through a variety of programs, including new course offerings and research projects, as well as periodic conferences and other public events focused on intelligence topics. 

Affiliated Centers

CEPA trains and influences leaders who can solve prevailing public problems through the twin arts of politics and policymaking. 

CIEEP is a joint initiative with UT’s Jackson School of Geosciences that seeks to inform the policymaking process with the best scientific and engineering expertise. 

The Energy Institute leverages the expertise of UT Austin faculty members to study critical energy policy questions and broadens the educational experience of students by creating a community of scholars around energy issues of importance to Texas, the nation and the world. 

PRC provides infrastructure resources and supporting research that moves well beyond the bounds of traditional demography to the cutting edge of population research. 

The Strauss Center supports policy-relevant research, innovative education, fellowship opportunities and public events, with more than a dozen specific programs ranging from cybersecurity to the influence of water scarcity on conflict in the Middle East. 

Clements Center for National Security 
The Clements Center draws on the best insights of diplomatic and military history to train the next generation of national security leaders. 

Student Services 

The Office of Student Affairs and Admissions (OSAA) offers a robust community of care model of services to LBJ students. Arranging student engagement and belonging events, student success initiatives, professional development and mentorship opportunities, affinity groups, co-curricular skills-based offerings and more, the OSAA team works to ensure that students feel welcomed and supported throughout their experience at the LBJ School. 

Academic Advising 

The Office of Student Affairs and Admissions (OSAA) advising team provides personalized 1:1 advising to students to help them map out their LBJ School degree pathway and program experience.  We partner with faculty to ensure that students get the information and mentoring they need to excel in our academic environment. 

Career Development 

The Office of Student Affairs and Admissions (OSAA) offers student a robust set of career and professional development programming including: 

  • Career roadmap planning
  • Semester action plans
  • Workshops (on topics such as networking, salary negotiation, and the job search journey)
  • Labs (on topics such as digital branding, resumes and cover letters)
  • Resume and cover letter development
  • Individualized counseling
  • Career and internship fairs
  • Employer information sessions
  • Job search strategies and resources
  • Interview preparation through mock interview practice and workshops
  • Employer and alumni connections
  • Job board access and weekly "hot jobs" report
  • Case competitions
  • Alumni Mentorship Program