Master of Arts in Applied Economics

Earn your M.A. in Applied Economics in 16 months (3 semesters plus a summer course) OR work toward the degree at your own pace.  All courses required for the program begin at 5:30 p.m. or later to accomodate work schedules.

Western Michigan University's Master of Arts in Applied Economics provides students with a strong foundation in economic analysis combined with the ability to apply theory to contemporary problems. Graduates of the program are employed in industry, government and academia. Some students continue their training and pursue a Ph.D. in economics or a related field.

NOTE:  Our MA in Applied Economics has the following CIP Code: 45.0603

M.A. Brochure

Ten courses make up the M.A. Seven of these courses are required; three are electives. 


The requirements for the M.A. in applied economics are as follows:

  • The satisfactory completion of either 30 hours of courses, or 24 hours of courses plus a master's thesis (six hours). At least an overall B average in the economics courses that are taken in an advisor-approved program of study is required.

  • Required courses:
    • ECON 5040: Mathematics for Economists (Fall)
    • ECON 6220:  Economics Statistics (Fall)
    • ECON 6620:  Macroeconomic Analysis (Fall)
    • ECON 6030: Microeconomic Analysis (Spring)
    • ECON 6190: Econometrics Analysis (Spring)
    • ECON 6290: Research Methods (Fall)
  • If the non-thesis option is selected, students will take four elective courses approved by the director of graduate programs in the Department of Economics.
  • If the thesis option is selected, students will take two elective courses plus six credits of ECON 7000, Masters Thesis. 
  • Electives can be used to obtain a concentration in economic development (studies of low income countries) or econometrics/statistics (see below for course details). The concentration:
    • Will be formally listed on your transcript upon graduation.
    • Includes courses in the departments of economics, statistics and political science, allowing you and interdisciplinary experience in the M.A. coursework.


To be considered for admission, applicants should have:

  • A strong foundation in economics, including intermediate-level coursework in microeconomics and macroeconomics.
  • At least one course in calculus and one course in statistics.

No GRE or references are required.

Funding opportunities

  • A limited number of assistantships and scholarships are available on a competitive basis for full time students.  To be considered for funding, applications must be submitted by February 1.

Application instructions

General application information for the University, as well as specific requirements for Economics, are available in WMU's online application system.

Apply now

Applicants are asked to include some program-specific information, with a summary for these requirements found below:

Applicants are encouraged to bookmark this information for quick reference while working through the graduate application process.

Thank you for your interest in applying for this graduate program.

Application deadlines

  • Fall admission: August 1 (February 1 to be considered for funding)
  • Spring admission: November 15
  • Summer I admission: April 1
  • Summer II admission: May 1
    Note: Per WMU policy, international students are not admitted for summer II session.
  • International Applicants may be required to take the TOFEL examination. Further information can be found at here.

Meet our students

The Department of Economics has a diverse student body with students from all over the world.

Faculty research

Our faculty are involved in a variety of research areas and regularly publish books and articles.


Contact Dr. Christine Moser, director of graduate programs, for more information.