Skip to main content

M.A. Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements

The M.A. in Economics is a 30-hour program that requires the completion of coursework and a substantive research project. Students generally complete the degree in 21 months by studying during the fall and spring semesters of two consecutive academic years. However, some students have completed the program in 15 months. Doing so generally requires taking summer courses and more than a full load in the final fall semester. Students must achieve an overall GPA of 3.0 (B) or higher in order to receive the degree.

Students must achieve an overall GPA of 3.0 (B) or higher in order to achieve the degree. Please see the Courses section below or the Graduate Catalog for more detailed information about specific M.A. courses.

  • 12 hours of core courses
  • 6 hours of field courses
  • 9 hours of elective courses

All students must complete a substantive research project. The project contributes three credit hours to the degree requirements and is completed in conjunction with a seminar or field experience.

M.A. Courses

Students must complete 12 hours of core courses, 6 hours of field courses, 9 hours of electives, and a substantive research project, which contributes 3 hours to the degree requirements. Some electives may be taken outside the Economics department.

Core courses are the same for all students. ECON 6100, ECON 200, and ECON 6500 are always taken during the first semester of the program.

ECON 6100: Microeconomic Theory

ECON 6200: Macroeconomic Theory

ECON 6500: Statistical Analysis

ECON 6600: Econometrics

Students must take 6 credit hours from the following courses in trade and development.

ECON 7100: Project Evaluation

ECON 7600: International Trade and Economic Development

ECON 7881: Special Topics in Development Policies

ECON 7882: Special Topics in Development Policies

ECON 7910: Seminar in Research on Economic Development: Microeconomic Applications

ECON 7920: Seminar in Research on Economic Development: Macroeconomic Applications

ECON 7930: Field Experience in Economic Development (offered based on instructor availability)

Students must take 9 credit hours of elective courses. Possible electives include:

  • Any GPED course not counted as a core, field, or research course
  • Any ECON or FNEC course numbered 5000 or above
  • ECON or FNEC courses numbered below 5000, with prior permission of the GPED director and the relevant instructor
  • Ph.D.-level ECON courses, with prior permission of the Economics department Director of Graduate Studies and relevant instructor (second-year students only)
  • Courses offered by another Vanderbilt department or school, provided the following conditions are met:
    • Courses must be listed in the Graduate Catalog
    • Students must obtain prior permission from the GPED director if taking more than 6 hours of electives outside the Economics department

Students must complete a substantive research project in conjunction with one of the following courses:

ECON 7910: Seminar in Research on Economic Development: Microeconomic Applications

ECON 7920: Seminar in Research on Economic Development: Macroeconomic Applications

ECON 7930: Field Experience in Economic Development (offered based on instructor availability)