The BA-MA Program in Economics
Students enrolled at Columbia College, SEAS, Barnard, and the School of General Studies may apply to the MA program in Economics and begin their MA coursework in their senior year while completing their undergraduate degree.
Students seeking admission into the MA program should contact the Director of Graduate Studies in the second semester of the junior year. Applications for admission should be submitted no later than April 15 of the student’s junior year for admission in the following fall semester. Decisions will be announced no later than June 1.
Successful applicants for admission will have completed the following courses prior to the spring semester of junior year:
- ECON W3211 Intermediate microeconomics
- ECON W3213 Intermediate macroeconomics
They should have either completed or be enrolled in the following courses in the spring semester of their junior year:
- ECON W3412 Introduction to Econometrics
- MATH V2500 Analysis and Optimization or MATH V4061 Modern analysis I
- MATH V2010 Linear algebra
- At least one upper level statistics course (either STAT W4107,W4150, or W3107)
Students must maintain an average of at least 3.7 in these 6 required courses. In the event that all courses have not been completed by the time an admission decision is made and grades on the subsequently completed courses reduce a student’s average in these courses below 3.7, the offer of admission may be rescinded.
The department encourages applications not only from qualified majors in economics but also from students in any other major or concentration who have completed appropriate coursework and have excellent academic records.
Credit points and registration
Coursework taken to satisfy any requirement of the undergraduate degree - i.e., courses taken to complete a major, a concentration, the science requirement, or the 124-point requirement - cannot be applied towards the requirements of the MA program. After the senior year, an undergraduate dean will certify what specifically did not count for the BA degree and therefore can be applied to the MA. However, students should consult with deans and advisors before the senior year when designing a course of study for completion of the BA and then the MA degree.
In the initial year in the joint program (that is, the student’s fourth year of college), students are expected to take, at a minimum;
- Math camp (a no-credit course in August)
- ECON G6410 Mathematical Methods
- ECON G6411 Econometrics I and ECON G6412 Econometrics II.
These first-year courses are 12 credits.
In the second year of the program, they are expected to take ;
- ECON G6211 Microeconomic Analysis I and ECON G6212 Microeconomic Analysis II
- ECON G6215 Macroeconomic Analysis I and ECON G6216 Macroeconomic Analysis II
- ECON G6417 Econometrics III.
- In addition, students will complete at least two field courses in the same field.
They will be expected to maintain a 3.00 average in these courses in both years. If they do not have at least a 3.00 average in the listed courses at the end of the first year, they will not be permitted to continue. The courses listed in this paragraph are the requirements for the MA degree.
Students who receive early admission to the Economics MA program will have up to one residence unit of advanced standing credited towards their MA degree, depending on the number of courses they take toward the MA degree before receiving their bachelor’s degree.
Admission in the MA program may be revoked if after admission students fail to make adequate progress toward either the undergraduate or graduate degree. Examples of failure to make adequate academic progress include severe declines in GPA and cases of academic dishonesty.
When students are enrolled in the MA program and have finished their fourth year, they officially become students of GSAS. As such, they will lose their rights to undergraduate housing and undergraduate financial aid once they are enrolled in the MA program and have finished their fourth year. However, at that point they will be eligible for MA housing and financial aid.