MBA/MA in Economics

The Master of Business Administration / Master of Arts (MBA/MA) in Economics is offered as a dual degree, administered jointly by the Graduate College of Arts and Sciences (GRS) and the Questrom School of Business. The program integrates scholarly rigor into the applied case study method of our management education.

Alumna Janna Lorenzen on the MBA/MA in Economics
Janna Lorenzen, MBA/MA in Economics ’10, talks about how the dual-degree program led to her BU.

Training in the related fields of management and economics has become professionally desirable in an increasing number of areas. The Economics program is cited by the Journal of Economic Perspectives as one of the top ten economics departments in North America. The Department of Economics offers a distinguished faculty and an international student body which generate a lively intellectual climate. This specialized dual degree satisfies this need by allowing students to complement their studies while fulfilling requirements for both degree programs.

Obtaining the two degrees separately would normally require six semesters in residence, but through careful course selection and by eliminating overlapping courses, the dual degree may be obtained in five semesters (80 credits). The entire program may thus be completed in two calendar years (two academic years and one summer for well-prepared students, two academic years and two summers for less well-prepared students).

Key Facts

  • Number of credits: 80
  • Program length : 5 semesters
  • Full-time or Part-time: Both full- and part-time basis
    • Please note, if you would like to complete the program on a part-time basis, many of your economics classes will only be available during the day.
  • Deadline to apply: Round 1 – October 16, Round 2 – January 8

Program Requirements

Following acceptance into the joint program, candidates normally register for two semesters in SMG, followed by three semesters cross-registered in both GRS and SMG. Students must successfully complete a minimum of 40 credits at SMG and 24 credits in the Department of Economics; the other 16 credits may be taken at SMG, the Department of Economics, or, with prior approval, elsewhere in the University.

Curriculum Map

Please note that this is a sample guide for full-time students. This is by no means a firm map of courses, and each individual’s schedule will vary. Students should meet with their advisors from both SMG and the Department of International Relations for assistance with course selection. The curriculum and courses are subject to change as recommended by deans, faculty, and administrators of SMG and the Graduate College of Arts and Sciences.

FIRST YEAR FALL (19 Credits) FIRST YEAR SPRING (17 Credits) SUMMER SECOND YEAR FALL (19-20 Credits) SECOND YEAR SPRING (18-19 Credits) SUMMER FALL (9-12 Credits)
MG700 Ethical and Global Foundations (1 Credit) ES701 PL700 Introduction to Business Law (1 Credit) Internship (Optional) Internship (Optional)
PL727 Organizations, Markets, and Society (3 Credits) IS710 IT Strategies for a Networked Economy (3 Credits) MG790 Ethical Leadership in a Global Economy (3 Credits) EC502 Marcoeconomic Theory (4 credits) Free Elective Either School (3 or 4 Credits)
QM716 Business Analytics:Data Analysis and Risk (3 credits) OB713 Leading Organizations and People (3 Credits) Free Elective, Either School (3 or 4 Credits) EC508 Econometrics (4 Credits)
AC710 Financial Reporting and Analysis (3 Credits) SI750 Competition, Innovation, and Strategy (3 Credits) EC505 Elementary Mathematical Economics* (4 Credits) Econ Elective (4 Credits) Free Elective, Either School (3 or 4 Credits)
OM725 Creating Value Through Operations and Technology (3 Credits) MBA Elective (3 Credits) EC501 Microeconomic Theory (4 Credits) Global Engagement Elective (3 Credits)
MK723 Marketing Management (3 Credits) MBA Elective (3 Credits) EC 507 Statistics for Economists (4 Credits) Free Elective Either School (3 or 4 Credits)
FE721 Finance 1 (3 Credits) Free Elective, Either School (SMG 3 Credits) Econ Comprehensive Exam Free Elective, Either School (3 or 4 Credits)
ES721 Teaming (0 Credits) ES721 Teaming (0 Credits) ES723 Career Management (0 Credits)
ES722 Executive Communication (0 Credits) ES723 Career Management (0 Credits) ES724 Professional Skills (1 Credit)
ES723 Career Management (0 Credits)
Purple: MBA, Blue: MA (Econ), Green: Either

Please note this is a sample guide for full-time students. It is by no means a firm map of course, and each individual’s schedule will vary.

*EC505 is not required for students who have a strong math background; course counts as one of the two required Econ electives.

**The MBA/MA Econ dual degree requires that students complete 40 credits at the Questrom School of Business, 24 credits in the Department of Economics, and at least 16 Credits from either school (four to six electives, depending on where they are taken)

Learning Goals

Master of Business Administration

Learning in the MBA program is heavily experience and team-based, emphasizing the higher levels of Bloom’s taxonomy (particularly analysis, synthesis, and evaluation in the cognitive realm), and cuts across traditional educational categories. In the first semester of the full time program, student teams are formed and engage in projects that combine application of content from multiple courses, culminating in competitive presentations and products. There is also a major simulation carried out by a separate set of teams that lasts several days and mimics iterative decision-making in the real world. Courses are heavily interactive, and cases are widely used in the classroom.

MBA Learning Goals

The learning goals of the MBA program have been adopted by the MBA Program Development Committee as the competencies all graduates of the program should attain. From these learning goals the program has developed measurable objectives, which are regularly assessed and results are fed back into the curricular process.

Specifically, the learning goals of Boston University’s MBA program are as follows:

  • We develop graduates with self-awareness and strong career management skills
  • We develop graduates who can apply integrative leadership, have strong communication skills, and can perform well and contribute appropriately on teams
  • We develop graduates who understand the strategic implications and application of technology within business
  • We develop graduates who possess a management-systems perspective. Graduates will have an understanding of core, functional, business knowledge; and will be able to successfully apply critical and analytical thinking within a management-systems perspective
  • We develop graduates who possess an ethical, global, perspective


While students are attending both GRS and SMG, they pay only one tuition. For the Questrom School of Business, tuition is currently set at $47,422 per year. However, if a student exceeds 18 credits in a given semester, additional tuition charges will apply. Additional charges also will apply when students take summer SMG courses while considered a GRS student.

Applicants to the dual MBA/MA in Economics degree are automatically eligible for merit based scholarships from the Questrom School of Business. Awards range from $5,000 to $40,000 per year.  Please visit the Questrom School of Business’s Tuition and Financial Aid page for more information.


Graduates of this program go on to a number of careers including investment banking, management, strategy, consulting, quantitative analysis, third world development, environmental policy and working for the public sector. Alumni include a manager of strategic research for Toyota Motor North America and vice president and equity risk manager at Merrill Lynch.

Admission Process

Applicants interested in the joint MBA/MA in Economics should submit a completed application to the Graduate Questrom School of Business.  The Questrom School of Business will then forward the application to the Graduate College of Arts and Sciences only if an offer of admission is made to the MBA program.

Please note that although you submit only one application, there will be two separate admission decisions, one by the Department of Economics and the other by the Questrom School of Business.  Please see the application checklist for what is needed to apply to the Questrom School of Business.

Contact Us

Contact the Questrom School of Business at (617) 353-2670 or contact the Department of Economics at (617) 353-4453 for program-specific questions. We’re also available on chat through MSN/AIM/Yahoo/Google Talk; our screen name is BostonUMBA.