Masters of Arts in Economics
Milton Friedman once described the “Chicago School” of economics as rejecting both theory without evidence and evidence without theory. This is equally true of economics at Clemson. The goal of our graduate program is to help students become adept at using economic theory in order to formulate and test hypotheses about any aspect of social interaction. The wide range of topics investigated by Clemson students testifies to our success in reaching this goal. In recent theses and dissertations, our students have studied the political determinants of the geographical distribution of Canadian federal government spending, the pattern of state spending on African-Americans’ education in South Carolina in the first half of the twentieth century, the relation between education and economic growth in the states of the U.S., the proper pricing of stock options, and the extent to which tort reform has affected health care services.
The MA in Economics
Many students come to Clemson for the purpose of obtaining a terminal master’s degree. We consider our master’s program an integral part of our overall graduate program and believe that we offer excellent professional preparation for analysis or management positions in business or government. Job placement for Clemson’s MA graduates ranks with the top MBA programs in the region. The program is also an excellent first step toward advanced graduate work in economics or law at other universities. As in the case of the PhD program, the MA curriculum stresses the development of students’ analytical skills, in particular their ability to identify key questions and to use theoretical and empirical tools to answer them.
Students who enroll in the MA program as their terminal degree as well as students with plans to pursue further graduate study elsewhere are required to complete 24 semester hours of course work and submit an acceptable thesis. There is also a non-thesis option in which students substitute more quantitative courses for the thesis.