Are you interested in applying the principles of economics to work in industry, government or nonprofit organizations? Are you seeking more marketable, state-of-the-art skills?

The master of science program in economics combines the analytical framework of modern economic theory and the quantitative methods of applied econometrics with special emphasis on the following areas: coastal resources and environmental economics; economic forecasting, financial economics; health care; and issues of poverty and regional development.

The program provides an ideal background for work in industry, government and nonprofit positions requiring the combination of analytical skills and institutional background. Although it is an excellent preparation for further graduate work in economics, it was conceived specifically to provide graduates with up-to-date and marketable skills. One of the strengths of the program is in the small class sizes and a close working relationship with the faculty. Faculty who are active contributors to the areas in which they teach conducts all graduate field courses.

The structure of the program reflects the research interests of the faculty. Some of the faculty conduct research and teach in areas of macroeconomics, but the preponderant emphasis within the department is on neoclassical microeconomics applied to areas such as coastal and marine resources, environmental economics, health care, labor economics, regional development and income distribution.

ECU Advantage

The program design includes a healthy measure of theory and econometric technique. The structure of the program reflects the conviction that people best learn economics by doing economics: our elective courses are taught as applications of the theory and technique courses and encourage students to define all research questions in a manner that will permit empirical testing.

A successful working economist must not only master the statistical techniques of modern empirical research, but must also be able to convey the results of this research in a persuasive and articulate manner. Our program accordingly gives students ample opportunity to develop necessary analytical and presentation skills. The department also conducts regular economics seminars at which our faculty and invited external speakers present their latest research.

What You Will Study

Program Coordinator: Philip Rothman (424-A Brewster Building; 252-328-6151; rothmanp@ecu.edu)

Applicants to the MS in quantitative economics and econometrics must meet the admissions requirements of the Graduate School, submit three letters of recommendation, make an acceptable score on the general portion of the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), and have had at least one undergraduate course each in introductory statistics and differential calculus. Nonnative speakers must make an acceptable score on the TOEFL. Undergraduate courses in intermediate microeconomics and macroeconomics are strongly recommended.

Students in this degree program must complete a minimum of 33 s.h. of course work. Core requirements in economics theory, econometric technique, and research methodology constitute 21 s.h. with the remaining 12 s.h. being electives. Up to 6 s.h. of electives may be taken outside the department with the approval of the graduate director.

1. Core courses:
  • ECON 5360 - Mathematical Economics
  • ECON 5501 - Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON 6301 - Econometrics I
  • ECON 6302 - Econometrics II
  • ECON 6390 - Research
  • ECON 6401 - Microeconomic Theory I
  • ECON 6402 - Microeconomic Theory II
2. Comprehensive Examination

A comprehensive examination is administered after completion of

  • ECON 5360 - Mathematical Economics
  • ECON 5501 - Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON 6301 - Econometrics I
  • ECON 6302 - Econometrics II
  • ECON 6401 - Microeconomic Theory I
  • ECON 6402 - Microeconomic Theory II
  • Note:

    The examination will test skills in applied theory and econometrics. Successful performance on this examination is necessary to continue in program.

    3. Research
      Research skills:

      Four of the core courses listed above constitute 12 s.h. of research skills in quantitative methods and research methodology:

      • ECON 5360 - Mathematical Economics
      • ECON 6301 - Econometrics I
      • ECON 6302 - Econometrics II
      • ECON 6390 - Research
      Research project:

      The final component, ECON 6390 (research project) is the culmination of student’s analytical work and is designed to demonstrate applied research skills.

      For more information about this degree visit the university's academic catalogs.

      Careers With This Degree

      Graduates with this degree are successful in many fields and careers, including the following:

      • Market Research Analysts
      • Economics Teachers, Postsecondary
      • Economists

      Career Opportunities

      ECU has developed resources to help you learn more about career opportunities and job market outlook. In addition, the websites below provide specific information on careers in the various majors from which students may choose:

      NC Tower

      This website provides graphs and tables of in-depth information on employment rates, wages and ongoing higher education enrollment of graduates from the North Carolina Community College System and from the University of North Carolina system schools. NC Tower includes data on former UNC students who are working in roughly 90% of all jobs in North Carolina. This database excludes information for graduates who are:

      • Self-employed;
      • Work for the federal government, including the military: or
      • Work outside of North Carolina.

      US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

      This website also provides in-depth information regarding pay, projected new jobs, required education, growth rate and on-the-job training information on various occupations.

      Degree-specific internships

      For information on internship information for specific majors, go to the home page of the department in which the major is located and, as available, find the link to the information on internships in that major.

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