Step 4: Individual Learning Plan & Elective Courses

Advisement in the EMPA program is meant to facilitate your learning and to ensure that you are connecting with the right people, finding the right courses, and satisfying degree requirements in accordance with your graduation timeline.

To help determine your curricular focus in the program early on, you will:

  1. Sign up for an ILP consultation via Zoom with Prof. Gordon Campbell 
  2. Complete your Individual Learning Plan (ILP) worksheet
  3. Email your completed ILP worksheet and a photo of yourself for our student directory to Prof. Campbell ( and EMPA Program Advisor Scott Statland ( at least one week before your ILP consultation. If you have questions about this process, please email Scott Statland.

Work on your ILP, but don't wait to register!

We encourage you to register for fall courses as soon as you have access to do so in NYU Albert. Though your ILP consultation will likely happen after you initially enroll in courses, it is easy to modify your fall schedule if you decide to do so. See Step 7 of this guide for instructions on using NYU Albert to register for courses—including adding, dropping, and swapping courses.

To assist your search for elective courses, please visit these links:

Prerequisite Notice

Before registering for any elective course, it is critical that you check for prerequisites in the course notes section in NYU Albert, then look up any prerequisite course numbers in Wagner’s course catalog.

Note that EMPA Public Services Leaders are exempt from a common prerequisite: CORE-GP 1020 Management and Leadership.

If you have not completed or waived out of a prerequisite, but feel you have equivalent knowledge via prior coursework or professional experience, contact the course's instructor to seek a prerequisite waiver. If granted one, forward that instructor's email to your Student Services Program Advisor, Scott Statland (

Wagner Core Course Limit

Wagner's core curriculum for standard MPA and MUP students consists of several foundational courses. You may not take two of these courses, since your EMPA core coursework covers similar ground:

  1. CORE-GP 1020 Management and Leadership
  2. CORE-GP 1021 Financial Management

If you would like to take a Wagner core course as an elective, you may choose no more than one of the following: 

  • CORE-GP 1011 Statistical Methods 
  • CORE-GP 1018 Microeconomics 
  • CORE-GP 1022 Introduction to Public Policy.