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Thread: University of San Francisco Vs. Illinois State University (Master's)

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    University of San Francisco Vs. Illinois State University (Master's)

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    I got admitted into both of the schools for an MA in Economics .. and my ultimate goal is to get into a fine PhD program in the future.
    My undergraduate major isn't economics and I didn't have much math courses so I decided to go for a master's degree as a stepping stone
    to strengthen my background in Econ and take as many math courses as possible.

    of these two, which program do you think would be the right one to go for ?
    and would the fact that the Illinois State's program is "Applied" have any effect on my chances of admission for a PhD in the future ??


  2. #2
    Within my grasp! Icculus's Avatar
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    Yes -- an applied economics master < economics master, ceteris paribus.

    That doesn't answer your question completely because I have no idea about either of these programs.
    Last edited by Icculus; 03-21-2013 at 06:50 AM.

  3. #3
    Getting it stuck to The MAN's Avatar
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    I'm biased towards ISU and I would say USF is the better place to go if you want to continue on to a PhD. Here's a few reasons why (or things to think about)

    1) Placements for USF include Berkeley, Davis, and Cornell (from their website). Recent placements for ISU include Kentucky, Purdue, Kansas, Michigan State, and Syracuse. Assuming USF's placements on the web page are trustworthy, they strictly dominate.

    2) USF seems to be have a track that is dedicated toward placing MA students into PhD programs. ISU doesn't really have this (most MA students at ISU are there as part of the Peace Corp program or the Energy Regulation track). The few students at ISU that go onto PhD have to do a lot of work on their own to achieve that. [Note: I'm not saying the ISU professors aren't supportive of students going for PhD, it is just that you will have to figure out everything you need to do to be competitive for PhD admission on your own - and then do it].

    3) Are both offers funded? This should be low on your priority list, but I know that being a GA at ISU can greatly improve your profile for PhD programs (depending on which professor you are assigned to). I was able to get my name on a couple of published papers through my GA work.

    4) Do you have a location preference? Would anyone choose the middle of Illinois over San Fran?

    5) The "applied" title of ISU's program would probably be a detriment to PhD applications

    6) It is kind of crazy to talk about this with an MA program, but what fields are you interested in? I think USF is more geared toward International Economics and maybe Financial Economics (check their website for more information than I have). ISU has a few professors that do a lot in energy economics (and some environmental), one or two that do Econ of Ed, and the rest work on applied micro topics or macro topics.

    7) ISU has a history of letting MA economics students take math classes without much issue. I would think USF has a similar position, but I can't say for sure.

    Best of luck with your decision.
    On the long road to dissertation

  4. #4
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Thank you Wolfdiggitydog for your input

    and thank you THE MAN for the insights, I could now compare the two more easily ..

    although ISU would be a good one .. but it seems that USF outweigh it after all

    Thanks again

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