Applied Economics

Columbian College of Arts and Sciences

Master of Arts (M.A.)
Location(s): Foggy Bottom - Main Campus

Program Overview

The George Washington University’s Master of Arts in Applied Economics provides students with the tools to succeed as economists in today’s data-driven world. We teach our students how to draw meaningful implications from economic data, to apply economic theory and quantitative methods to answer real-world policy questions, and to integrate economic analysis into their professional lives.

Students actively participate in the program and develop the ability to communicate ideas through their classes, workshops, and intensive data and economic analysis. Students may enroll full-time or part-time to accommodate their work schedule while pursuing their degree. Students may also enroll simultaneously in a Graduate Certificate program in areas such as data science, budget and public finance, accountancy, financial management, digital marketing, and more.

Graduates are prepared for positions as economic analysts in government, private consulting firms, financial institutions, international organizations, and applied policy research institutions. Our classes integrate academic scholarship with hands-on research and data projects and allow our graduates to enter the job market with proven skills to succeed as economists in today’s data-driven world.

Our students come from the US and around the world and are a mix of recent graduates and students with years of work experience. Our students have the opportunity to conduct research with our faculty and to assist with the undergraduate program.

The MA in Applied Economics is a STEM-designated program.

Fall applicants who do not require a student visa may start in the summer term, pending course availability. Interested applicants must contact the CCAS Graduate Admissions Office ([email protected]) by 1 May for summer consideration.

Admission Requirements

Admission deadlines:

Fall – April 1 (February 1 for applicants who wish to be considered for a fellowship)

Spring - October 1

Applications received after the deadline will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Prerequisite requirements:

Successful completion of Introductory Macroeconomics and Introductory Microeconomics courses (with a grade of B or better), and one semester of college level calculus (B- grade or better).

Standardized Test Scores:

GRE is not required.

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or the PTE Academic is required of all applicants except those who hold a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree from a college or university in the United States or from an institution located in a country in which English is the official language, provided English was the language of instruction. 

Minimum scores for the M.A. program are:

  • Academic IELTS: an overall band score of 6.0 with no individual score below 5.0; or
  • TOEFL: 550 on paper-based or 80 on Internet-based;  or
  • PTE Academic: 53

Applicants to the M.A. program who do not meet minimum English language requirements may be eligible for our full-time Applied English Language program. 

Recommendations required:

Two (2) recommendations required.

Prior academic records:

Transcripts are required from all colleges and universities attended, whether or not credit was earned, the program was completed, or the credit appears as transfer credit on another transcript. Unofficial transcripts from all colleges and universities attended must be uploaded to your online application. Official transcripts are required only of applicants who are offered admission.

If transcripts are in a language other than English, English language translations must be provided. The English translation alone should be uploaded into your application.

Statement of purpose:

In an essay of 500-1,000 words, state your purpose in undertaking graduate study in your chosen field. Include your academic objectives, research interests, and career plans. Also, please discuss your related qualifications, including collegiate, professional, and community activities, and any other substantial accomplishments not already mentioned on your application.

International applicants only:

Please review International Applicant Information carefully for details on required documents, earlier deadlines for applicants requiring an I-20 or DS-2019 from GW, and English language requirements.

For more information on the admission process, please visit the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences Frequently Asked Questions page.

Supporting documents not submitted online should be mailed to:
Columbian College of Arts and Sciences – Graduate Admissions Office
The George Washington University
801 22nd Street NW, Phillips Hall 215
Washington DC 20052

Contact for questions:
[email protected] ~ 202.994.6210 (phone) ~ 202.994.6213 (fax)
8:30 am – 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday