MA in Economics

The Master of Arts in Economics is a 1-year master’s program that equips its graduates with the advanced knowledge and skills required for an economic analyst in the business world, the consulting industry, or a central bank. The training provides a thorough understanding of fundamental economic principles, application of mathematical methods and modeling, and the use of computer software for large-scale data analysis. This is accomplished through the economics core (4 courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics, statistics, and econometrics) and 4 elective courses. These courses are designed exclusively for master’s students, distinct from our PhD and undergraduate offerings. The elective courses cover nearly all major areas of economics and are taught largely by our own research faculty.

Course Requirements

MA students must complete 8 full-semester graduate courses (32 credits) in the core and elective components.

1. The MA Core in Economic Theory and Quantitative Methods

  • EC 501 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • EC 502 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • EC 507 Statistics (4 credits)
  • EC 508 Econometrics (4 credits)

2. 4 elective courses (16 credits) selected from the MA-level Economics courses or their approved equivalents. Subject to academic advising and departmental approval, qualified students may pursue an independent research project (Directed Studies course) in place of an elective course.

EC 505 Elementary Mathematical Economics provides the essential mathematical background needed for the required courses. A determination is made whether it is appropriate to opt out of this course by taking the mathematics placement exam and by discussing their mathematical preparation with faculty advisors. EC 505 will count as one of the MA electives.

Comprehensive Examination

A comprehensive examination testing general knowledge of economic theory and quantitative methods is required.

Grade Requirements

All courses and the comprehensive examination must be passed with grades of B- or better. Students must have an overall grade point average of 2.85 in all courses taken after enrollment in the Graduate School of Arts & Sciences.

Time Requirement

All courses and examinations must be completed within three years of the original registration at Boston University’s Graduate School of Arts & Sciences. International students may be subject to additional restrictions imposed by the terms of their visas, as governed by the International Students & Scholars Office (ISSO).

The MA Program Rules apply to all master’s degrees.