The curriculum of the MS in Applied Economics and Statistics is relatively flexible. There is a thesis option and a non-thesis option. Students must maintain a Grade Point Average of 3.0 or better, on a scale of 0 to 4, in order to earn a graduate degree from Clemson University.
- Required Core Courses
Students must earn 12 credits in four core courses in applied microeconomics, macroeconomics or public-policy economics, econometrics or regression analysis, and statistics or advanced econometrics. In particular, the core courses are these:
- Microeconomics for Public Policy (ECON 8230), offered in fall semester.
- Public Policy Economics (APEC 8220) or Macroeconomic Theory (ECON 8050) both offered in spring semester.
- Introduction to Econometrics (ECON 6050) or approved substitute course.
- Advanced Econometrics (ECON 6060), Sampling (STAT 8040), Design and Analysis of Experiments (STAT 8050), Multivariate Statistics (STAT 8170), or Time-Series Econometrics (ECON 9090)
The econometrics courses, which integrate economic theory and statistics, are critically important. Regression and Least Squares Analysis (STAT 8030) can be substituted for ECON 6050 if its undergraduate relative, ECON 4050, or as similar course, has been taken by the student in their undergraduate program. STAT 8030 is often selected elective course taken by students desiring additional training in basic regression analysis.
Intermediate microeconomics (ECON 3140) or Microeconomics for Public Policy (ECON 8230) or its equivalent is a pre-requisite for APEC 8220. Intermediate macroeconomics (ECON 3150) or its equivalent is a pre-requisite for ECON 8050.
Statistical Methods (STAT 8010), an equivalent graduate course, or an undergraduate introduction to probability and statistics, is a pre-requisite for ECON 6050, STAT 8030, STAT 8040, STAT 8050, and STAT 8170. STAT 8010 is offered each summer session, in addition to being offered in the fall and spring semesters. Students needing to take STAT 8010 may include the course credits in their degree program.
- Elective Courses
Students must earn at least 18 additional graduate credit hours beyond the 12 hour core requirement to complete the degree program. For students pursuing the thesis option, six of the additional required credit hours are thesis credit hours and the other 12 hours would be selected from elective courses. Students pursuing the non-thesis option are required to take an at least 18 additional elective credit hours.
Elective courses cover a wide array of topics such as:
- benefit-cost analysis
- economic or regional development
- environmental economics
- natural resource economics
- commodities and futures
- financial economics
- international economics
- industrial organization
- labor economics
- mathematical economics
- monetary economics
- public finance, anti-trust policy and regulation
- multivariate statistics
- spatial statistics
- experimental design
- sports economics
Students may also take, with approval of their advisory committee, at most two non-economic or non-statistical but relevant elective courses, such as Geographical Information Systems (GIS) or financial mathematics.
- Thesis Option
The thesis option provides additional training in the use of economic theory, econometrics, and statistics to analyze real world economic issues. Students who choose this option often plan to pursue a PhD degree or a career that requires a high level of research competence. An acceptable Master’s thesis will include a problem specific theoretical section that generates testable economic hypothesis and an empirical section that tests the validity of the economic hypothesis.
Students who choose the thesis option must take at least 24 credit hours of course work and 6 units of thesis research (ECON 8910 or APEC 8910) to earn the minimum 30 credits. A student must earn at least 12 of the 24 credits in 8000-level or 9000-level courses for this option. Well-prepared, full-time students in this option can earn their degree in one calendar year but most take 1.5 to two years to finish the course and thesis requirements. Completion of a thesis is often a prerequisite to most Ph.D. graduate programs in Economics or Applied Economics.
- Non-Thesis Option
The non-thesis option provides practical training in applied economics, econometrics, and data analysis for business or government. The program provides additional technical skills for business public-service-oriented students. A technical, or professional, paper is required. An acceptable technical paper is similar to a project report or paper for a capstone course and could be used as the 3 basis for a grant proposal or, with substantial extra work, could be publishable.
Students who choose the non-thesis option must earn at least 30 credit hours of course work. A student must earn at least 15 of the 30 credits in 8000-level or 9000-level courses for this option. Well-prepared, full-time students in this option can earn their degree in one calendar year (academic year plus summer semester), but generally take longer to finish.
- One-Year Schedule of Courses for MS in Applied Economics and Statistics
Schedule of Courses Semester Course Credits Fall Microeconomics for Public Policy (ECON 8230) 3 Fall Introduction to Econometrics (ECON 6050) or other pre-approved econometrics course, e.g., Regression and Least Squares Analysis (STAT 8030) 4 or 3 Fall Elective 6000- or 8000-level ECON, APEC, STAT, or AGRB courses 6 Fall An elective 6000- or 8000-level ECON, APEC, STAT, AGRB or other preapproved course 3 Subtotal for Fall
16 or 15
Spring Public Policy Economics (APEC 8220) or Macroeconomic Theory (ECON 8050) 3 Spring Advanced Econometrics (ECON 6060), Sampling (STAT 8040), Design and Analysis of Experiments (STAT 8050), Multivariate Statistics (STAT 8170), Time-Series Econometrics (ECON 9090) or other pre-approved econometrics or statistics course 3 Spring Elective 6000- or 8000-level ECON, APEC, STAT, or AGRB courses 6 Spring An elective 6000- or 8000-level ECON, APEC, STAT, AGRB or other preapproved course 3 Subtotal for Spring