Doctor of Philosophy with a Major in Economics

Our curriculum features 24 credit hours of first year core courses, at least 30 credit hours of fields, and electives, and at least 24 credit hours of dissertation research (see Requirements tab). Thus, the minimum number of credit hours to be fulfilled is 72. Students receive rigorous training in microeconomic theory and quantitative methods during their first year of study.

Planned Curriculum and Sample Schedule

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FallCredit Hours
ECON 7004 Math for Economists 3
ECON 7012 Microeconomic Theory I 3
ECON 7022 Econometrics I 3
Required Elective 1 3
 Credit Hours12
Spring
ECON 7013 Microeconomic Theory II 2 3
ECON 7023 Econometrics II 3
ECON 7025 Empirical Res Methods 3
Required Elective 1 3
 Credit Hours12
Second Year
Fall
Major Economics Field, Course I 3
Minor Economics Field, Course I 3
Elective 6
 Credit Hours12
Spring
Major Economics Field, Course II 3
Minor Economics Field, Course II 3
Elective 6
 Credit Hours12
Third Year
Fall
Dissertation Research 6
 Credit Hours6
Spring
Dissertation Research 6
 Credit Hours6
Fourth Year
Fall
Dissertation Research 6
 Credit Hours6
Spring
Dissertation Research 6
 Credit Hours6
 Total Credit Hours72
1

 Require Elective Options: ECON 7015, ECON 7031, ECON 7032, ECON 8997, CETL 8713, CETL 8717, or course approved by Director of Graduate Studies.

We offer three specialization fields

  • Environmental Economics,
  • Industrial Organization and
  • International Economics.

Our fields build on our set of core courses, providing students with opportunities to explore research topics within three distinct but related areas. Each field provides an equal mix of theory and practice, consisting of two 3 credit hour courses.

Students are required to have a major and at least one minor in fields offered by the School of Economics. Occasionally, the School of Economics will offer elective courses that complement our field courses. In addition, students are allowed to take elective courses outside of Economics subject to the approval of the Director of Graduate Studies. A set of elective courses taken in another discipline will constitute a minor in that particular discipline if at least two courses are taken from this discipline.

Students must also register each semester for Dissertation Research, starting in the fall semester of the third year. In such a semester, students must register for at least six credit hours of Dissertation Research.  Students must complete a minimum of 24 Dissertation Research credit hours to graduate.

Preliminary Examinations:

Students must take two preliminary examinations during the summer after the first year in the program in microeconomics (covering ECON 7012 and ECON 7013) and econometrics (ECON 7022 and ECON 7023) and earn a pass in both. Students will have two attempts for both exams. Should a student not pass one or both exams after two attempts, he or she will no longer remain in the PhD program, but will be able to earn a master’s degree by completing six more credit hours.

Third year paper:

Each student must complete an original research paper by the end of the summer after the third year in the program. The paper has to answer an original research question. Should a student fail to complete the paper on time, he or she will be asked to leave the program.