Return to: 2110 Department of Economics
The Master of Arts in Economics program is a STEM degree (as of Fall 2020) designed to meet the needs of students planning careers in local, state, and federal government and in the private sector or those seeking to apply to PhD programs in the future. Emphasis is placed upon data analysis and analytical skills; micro and macroeconomic theory and mathematical statistics are required. At the same time, the program is sufficiently broad to satisfy the needs of social science and economics teachers at the secondary and college level. An economics degree also combines well with training in other disciplines such as finance, real estate, political science, or history. Students with an interest in applying to PhD programs in the future also have the option of taking additional undergraduate math courses without graduate credit to better prepare themselves for PhD coursework.
Economists study the ways a society distributes scarce resources such as land, labor, raw materials, and machinery to produce goods and services-choices that must be made because time, income, wealth, workers, and natural resources are limited. Economic principles are useful at all levels of decision-making and provide an essential framework for analyzing and understanding such issues as inflation, unemployment, deregulation of banking, tax reform, fluctuations in foreign exchange rates, labor productivity and foreign debt crises.
Economists use mathematical models to develop programs that predict, for example, the nature and length of business cycles, the effects of inflation on the economy, or the effects of tax legislation on unemployment levels. Being able to present these concepts in a meaningful way is particularly important for economists involved in making policy for their organizations. Most economists are concerned with the practical applications of economic policy in a particular area. They use their understanding of economic relationships to advise businesses and other organizations, including insurance companies, banks, securities firms, computer and data processing companies, management consulting firms, industry and trade associations, labor unions, and government agencies. Some economists work abroad for companies with international operations and for organizations like The World Bank and the United Nations.
Students may choose from a broad array of elective course areas including data analysis and management, coding in R for policy analytics, causal inference and evidence-based policy, monetary economics, urban economics, public finance, health economics, education economics, economic development, international economics, labor economics, industrial organization, economic forecasting, economic history, and history of economic thought.
A student enrolling this program whose preparation is found to be deficient in basic economics, elementary statistics, or mathematics will be required to take additional undergraduate coursework without graduate credit.
The undergraduate courses listed below are in addition to the graduate coursework required for the degree and will normally have been completed in a previous undergraduate degree program. However, they may be assigned as part of the admissions process based on a review of each student’s transcript. Prerequisite courses can be exempted if equivalent coursework has been previously completed with grades of B or higher. (If a student received a grade lower than a B in a principles class, but subsequently received a grade of B or higher in an intermediate level class in the same subject, the requirement may also be exempted.)
- ECON 3900 Macroeconomics
- ECON 3910 Microeconomics
- MATH 1220 Survey of Calculus