Master’s Program

Learn how to apply economic theory and research through our Master of Arts (MA) program in Economics at UBC Vancouver.

The MA in Economics is a 12-month program based primarily on intensive and thought-provoking coursework. We designed the program to prepare students for employment in the public or private sector or pursue further studies in a PhD program.

Recent graduates have taken positions at the Bank of Canada, the Department of Finance, Statistics Canada, KPMG, PricewaterhouseCoopers, various consultancies and numerous other organizations. Those looking to pursue a PhD in economics have studied at Berkeley, Michigan, Minnesota, Princeton, Stanford, UCLA, Yale, Chicago, and our own PhD program.

Each year we typically admit about 50 students to our program. As a result, we can offer training in a wide range of theoretical, empirical, and policy-related fields.


Program Structure

The MA in Economics program is capped off by an applied economics course and major paper intended to showcase students’ skills throughout the year. The following provides a brief description of the standard progression of the MA program.

Before coursework in September, students undertake an online mathematics review.

Students take core courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics, mathematics and statistics, and econometrics (ECON 500, 502, 526, and 527). This comprises 12 credits of coursework.

Students take four field courses specializing in their choosing, comprising an additional 12 credits of coursework. These are typically 500-level economics courses.

Students enroll in ECON 594 Applied Economics (a six-credit course) and ECON 595 Major Essay (a requirement for graduation, but not worth any credits) during the summer.

ECON 594 provides students with experience in combining economic theory with econometric methods in empirical research. Each student undertakes an applied research project and writes a major paper based on that research; successful completion of the research paper constitutes ECON 595.

Upon completing satisfactory standing in 30 credits of work (and ECON 595), students earn their master's degree.

A 24-month thesis is available for students. Please consult the VSE graduate program office for more information.

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