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UTSA College of Business

Economics Department Master of Arts

Why a Master of Arts (MA) in Economics?
The dynamics of economic and social changes in the last decade have brought new realities to such fundamental fields as economics. The resurgence of international and domestic political economy and an increased reliance on market forces in various facets of social and economic life have underlined the crucial role of economics in many decision-making processes. A wide range of employers in both public and private enterprises now recognize the significance of the ability to understand and apply fundamental economic trends and interrelations for challenging positions that require analysis and planning beyond routine procedures. The MA program in economics at UTSA is an applied interdisciplinary program designed to provide students of diverse undergraduate training with a foundation to carry out advanced economic analysis with modern analytical and computational tools. The general topics of study include econometrics and forecasting, microeconomic analysis, international economics and finance, industrial organization, government and regulation, resources and environmental management. The program is helpful to those who seek careers in the public sector such as local, state and federal economic and financial agencies as well as those who seek opportunities in the private sector such as investment, banking, insurance, business management, forecasting and marketing firms, manufacturing and engineering, energy, retailing and trade companies. The program is also helpful to those who aspire to pursue further graduate studies such as a Ph.D. in economics.

Qualifications and Application
Those who hold a bachelor's degree in any area of study are qualified to apply. In particular, students with undergraduate training in various social sciences fields such as political science, history, sociology, psychology and various natural and physical sciences fields such as mathematics, statistics, computer science and engineering are encouraged to apply.

For students interested in pursuing their MA Economics degree on a full-time basis, there are opportunities to work as paid Research or Teaching Assistants in the Department of Economics. This is a good opportunity for students to work closely with faculty on research projects and/or teaching. Furthermore, these positions have the additional financial benefit of qualifying students for in-state tuition. Please contact the Department of Economics for details.

Program Admission Requirements
For admission to the MA Economics program, applicants must meet University-wide graduate admission requirements. Applicants are further considered on the basis of demonstrated potential for success in graduate study in economics as indicated by a combination of prior academic achievement, GMAT or GRE test scores, personal statement, résumé (optional) and references (optional). For further information, please contact the College of Business Graduate Advising Office (; 458-4641; BB 4.01.18). The following faculty will also be happy to discuss any of your questions or concerns: Dr. Lila Truett (

Application Process
Prospective candidates may apply for the fall, spring or summer semesters. The graduate application is available online at A non-refundable application fee and all required supporting documents must be on file with the University's Graduate School by the appropriate deadline.

Program Description
The Master of Arts Degree in Economics program requires 33 semester credit hours of coursework, blending traditional social sciences-oriented economics coursework with modern applied and analytical tools. Program requirements include core courses, elective work and a comprehensive examination. The program is interdisciplinary and flexible, offering students an opportunity to study economics and its complementary areas.

Course Requirements
Candidates must complete the following:

Required Economics Courses (12 semester credit hours)

  • ECO 6013 Microeconomic Theory
  • ECO 6033 Macroeconomic Issues
  • ECO 6103 Econometrics and Business Forecasting
  • ECO 6113 Mathematical Economics

Twenty-one (21) semester credit hours of elective graduate work, 9 of which may be noneconomics courses, contingent upon approval by the Economics Graduate Advisor. With approval of the advisor, students with graduate credits in a noneconomics field may apply up to 9 hours of graduate work to fulfill the noneconomics elective requirements. In the case of students who have not had similar courses in their undergraduate program, College of Business 5003-numbered courses other than ECO 5003 Economic Theory and Policy may, upon the Graduate Advisor's approval, qualify as electives. Such electives may be desirable for those with a prospect of entering the Ph.D. program in Business Administration at UTSA. Students pursuing the thesis option may fulfill up to 6 credit hours of elective work with a thesis. Economics elective courses are economics graduate courses not in the student's required course sequence, including:

  • ECO 6203 Government and Business
  • ECO 6213 Public Sector Economics
  • ECO 6323 International Trade and Finance
  • ECO 6403 Financial Economics
  • ECO 6523 Labor Economics
  • ECO 6533 Economics of Education
  • ECO 6543 Health Care Economics and Policy
  • ECO 6553 Urban and Regional Economics
  • ECO 6973 Special Topics
Students must pass a comprehensive examination administered by their graduate committee. This examination is normally taken in the semester before or during the semester in which degree requirements are completed. During the first month of the appropriate semester, the student informs the Economics Graduate Advisor of the intent to take the examination and requests the formation of the committee.

Economics Faculty

Samson Alva, Assistant Professor, Ph.D., Boston College (market design, matching theory)
Hamid Beladi
, Professor, Ph.D., Utah State University (international trade and finance, microeconomics)
Fathali Firoozi, Professor, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma (international economics, quantitative methods)
Edgar Ghossoub, Associate Professor, Ph.D., University of Kentucky (macroeconomics, monetary economics)
Daniel Hollas, Professor, Ph.D., University of Illinois (regulatory economics, microeconomic theory)
Don Lien, Professor, Ph.D., California Institute of Technology (econometrics, financial economics)
Long Liu, Associate Professor, Ph.D., Syracuse University (econometrics, labor economics)
Melody Lo, Department Chair and Associate Professor, Ph.D., Purdue University (financial economics, monetary economics)
Saeid Mahdavi, Associate Professor, Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara (economic development, macroeconomics)
John Merrifield, Professor, Ph.D., University of Wyoming (economics of education, environmental/resource and urban-regional economics)
Dale Truett, Professor, Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin (unternational economics, microeconomic theory)
Lila Truett, Professor, Ph.D., University of Iowa (international economic development, monetary economics)
Kenneth Weiher, Associate Professor, Ph.D., Indiana University (American economic history, macroeconomics)

(Please consult Graduate Catalog for official degree requirements.)

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