Bill Coplin

Professor and Chair, Policy Studies

Bill Coplin

Contact Information

102 Maxwell Hall
(315) 443-2348
Office Hours:
By Appointment Only Through My Email
Curriculum Vitae
Bill Coplin Curriculum Vitae

Laura J. and L. Douglas Meredith Professor for Teaching Excellence


Ph.D., American University, 1964


Higher education, urban education, public policy analysis

Personal Website


PAF 101: Introduction to the Analysis of Public Policy
PAF 315: Methods of Policy Analysis and Presentation (Policy Studies Majors only)
MAX 401: Action Workshop (Civic Awareness and Citizenship Majors only)


Bill Coplin has devoted most of his recent teaching, research and service to changing undergraduate and high school education so that the fundamental skills required for career and citizenship success occupy a central place in the curriculum. More than 40,000 students have taken his course, PAF 101: Introduction to the Analysis of Public Policy at Syracuse University and more than 50 high schools in the northeast since 1977. Based on the highly successful Policy Studies Major he introduced in 1977 and managed since then, Bill has promoted the idea that the key to skill development is experience outside the formal classroom. He published 10 Things Employers Want You to Learn in College in 2003 which carries the same message. A revised edition was published in 2012.

His latest book is Public Policy: Skills in Action: A Pragmatic Introduction, which is the textbook for his popular PAF 101 course. He has also developed several opportunities to learn through experience including PAF 270: Experience credit and PAF 410: Practicum in Public Policy: SU Policies.

Bill received his BA in Social Science from Johns Hopkins University in 1960, and his M.A (1962) and Ph.D. (1964) in International Relations from American University. He has been the Director and Professor of the Public Affairs Program of the Maxwell School of Syracuse University and College of Arts and Sciences since 1976. He has published more than 110 books and articles in the fields of international relations, public policy, political risk analysis, education and citizenship, and has won most of the teaching and advising awards offered by Syracuse University. 

After looking at the two websites below, feel free to contact Bill directly. 

Public Affairs Website