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Thread: Econ Terminal Masters to PhD Evaluation

  1. #1
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    Question Econ Terminal Masters to PhD Evaluation

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    Hi all. Need some advice on where I might be the best fit for a masters program to prepare for a PhD. I am American-Canadian and have spent a year out of undergrad on a prestigious area studies work fellowship abroad but I'm realizing that I want to take a different direction. I love economics, especially as it relates to development and international macroeconomics, and would like to use my brain a helluva lot more and have autonomy instead of going into development project management as my current path would be headed. Problem is in undergrad I had exactly the opposite intentions: I focused mostly on leadership and work experience. So I'll need to work hard to compensate for avg grades and develop strong math and research skills to demonstrate my seriousness and preparation. Please take a look at my schools and let me know if they're a good match for my interests/needs and if I'm competitive.

    Undergrad school: Top 5 public institution in USA, top 20 econ dept
    Undergrad GPA: Business Economics Major: 3.6/4.0 Cum: 3.4/4.0
    GRE: 163Q - 167V (will be retaking until I boost my Q to >167)
    Math Courses: Calculus of Several Variables (C+), 5 score on AP Calc AB and BC tests
    Econ Courses:Statistics for Economists (A), Microeconomic Theory (A+), Macroeconomic Theory (A+), Intro to Econometrics (B+), Intro to Game Theory(A+), Industrial Organization Theory (B+), Theories of Economic Development (A-), Environmental Econ (B)Research Experience: Current events research with an Area Studies dept of my school (so pretty much n/a)
    Teaching Experience: n/a
    Research Interests: Development, macro, public
    Terminal masters applying to: Columbia, Duke, Simon Frasier, University College of London, UT Austin, University of Wisconsin, University of Ottowa,
    Warwick

  2. #2
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    Re: Econ Terminal Masters to PhD Evaluation

    Terminal economics masters offer almost no value for econ undergraduates since the level of rigour is comparable to intermediate undergraduate coursework. You're better off focusing your attention on masters programmes that are reputed to act as a way stations (i.e programmes like LSE's EME/ MSc Econ, BGSE's MSc (Advanced track), CEMFI's MSc, Bocconi's, PSE/TSE, etc).

    Also, research interests are almost always irrelevant at this stage, when you're doing a masters since most places don't require you to write a thesis.

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