Master of Arts in Economics

This degree is designed to equip students with the conceptual knowledge and practical skills needed to do state-of-the-art economic and statistical analysis in business, industry and government.

The program focuses on the following areas:

  • Providing fundamental concepts of economic analysis.
  • developing strong quantitative skills in econometrics, economic forecasting and statistical analysis.
  • in-depth application of the SAS statistical software package, which is the leading statistical analysis tool used by business and government today.
  • certification in data mining from the SAS Institute.

Prerequisites

It is preferred that applicants complete classes in the following before entering the program:

  • Intermediate microeconomics & macroeconomics
  • Statistics
  • Calculus
  • Business degree NOT required

Track I: Ph.D. Preparation

Track I prepares the student for a doctoral program. It mirrors the first year of courses for the Ph.D. in Economics. Students have the ability to proceed into the Ph.D. program upon completion of the requirements for the master's degree. Alternatively, this track is excellent preparation for study in doctoral programs at other universities. This degree program requires 30 hours of coursework.

Required Courses

  • EC 570 - Introduction to Mathematical Economics
  • EC 610 - Seminar in Microeconomic Theory
  • EC 611 - Seminar in Macroeconomic Theory
  • EC 616 - Seminar in Monetary Economics
  • EC 660 - Game Theory
  • EC 670 - Econometrics
  • ST 554 - Mathematical Statistics I

In addition to these courses, students would complete an additional twelve hours of graduate coursework. To maintain consistency with the Ph.D. program, students should enroll in ST 554. In particular, courses from the following specialty areas would be recommended: Industrial Organization, International Trade & Finance, Public Sector Economics, and Monetary Economics.

Students in the Ph.D. program may apply for an M.A. degree after completion of the first-year courses, after passing the qualifying exam and after passing two additional courses.

 

Track II: Applied Economics

Track II is for students who want to prepare for a career for which they apply the skills of economic analysis. These jobs are typically in the financial sector, government agencies or industry.

EC 570 Introduction to Mathematical Economics should be completed prior to entry into the master’s program in the fall. For students who have not completed this course or its equivalent, this class is usually offered during summer school and also as an intensive three-week course in August. The course is intended primarily for students entering the Ph.D. program in the fall, but it would serve the needs of master's students as well. Completing this course prior to the fall semester allows students to complete their degree program in a timely fashion. This program requires 27 hours of coursework.

 

Required Courses

  • EC 570 - Introduction to Mathematical Economics
  • EC 508 - Microeconomic Theory
  • EC 513 - Economic Forecasting & Analysis
  • ST 521 - Statistical Data Management SAS I
  • ST 531 - Data Mining
  • EC 509 - Macroeconomic Theory & Policy
  • EC 571 - Econometrics
  • ST 522 - Advanced Statistical Data Management SAS II
  • ST 532 - Advanced Data Mining II

The set of required courses enhance students’ understandings of the core concepts in microeconomics and macroeconomics, developing the quantitative skills necessary to work in econometrics and economic forecasting.

These skills are complemented by the four courses in statistics, which develop and hone students’ understanding of statistical methods, but also the use of the statistics software package, SAS. This package is widely used by organizations in both the public and private sector; the capabilities these courses provide should improve a graduate’s career prospects substantially. It is also noteworthy that upon successful completion of the set of statistics courses, students receive a Data Mining Certificate from SAS Institute.

Most students in Track II (and in Track III) will enroll in EC 596 Capstone Masters. This course will satisfy the graduate school's requirement for a comprehensive exam, which all Economics candidates must satisfy. 

 

Alternative Elective Courses

  • EC 516 - Monetary Theory & Policy
  • EC 530 - International Trade
  • EC 531 - International Finance
  • EC 523 - Public Expenditure & Policy Analysis
  • FI 510 - Financial Management
  • FI 512 - Macroeconomic Theory & Policy
  • FI 514 - Investments

Other courses may be substituted as electives with permission from the Graduate Program Committee.

 

Track III: Policy Economics

The set of courses enhances students’ understanding of the core concepts in microeconomics and macroeconomics, as well as enhancing students’ skills in understanding and analyzing policy issues. Students also gain quantitative skills through course work in econometrics and economic forecasting. This degree program requires 30 hours of coursework.

Required Courses

  • EC 570 - Introduction to Mathematical Economics
  • EC 508 - Microeconomic Theory
  • EC 513 - Economic Forecasting & Analysis
  • EC 509 - Macroeconomics
  • EC 571 - Knowledge Discovery & Data Mining I

Four 500-level elective courses are also required.

Students who have taken EC 470 or its equivalent (with a grade of B or above) will be allowed to waive this requirement. All students who have not completed this course are very strongly urged to take it in the summer prior to entry into the program in the fall semester.

Most students in Track III (and in Track II) will enroll in EC 596 Capstone Masters. This course will satisfy the graduate school's requirement for a comprehensive exam, which all Economics candidates must satisfy.

 

 

Alternative Elective Courses

  • EC 512 - Industrial Organization
  • EC 516 - Monetary Theory & Policy
  • EC 523 - Public Expenditure & Policy Analysis
  • EC 530 - International Trade
  • EC 531 - International Finance

Other courses may be substituted as electives with permission from the Graduate Program Committee.

 

Program Coordinator
Dr. Harold Elder 205-348-8976
232 Alston Hall Box 870224
Contact