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4+1 Program


The Economics Department is pleased to announce that it will start accepting applications for its 4+1 BA/MS degree program in Fall 2022 with the first cohort starting in Fall 2023. This unique degree program will allow current Emory students to seamlessly transition into a master’s program for increased marketability for a variety of opportunities upon graduation.

   


 

The vision of this program is to provide students with an education that combines economic reasoning with cutting-edge empirical methods and data analytics. A master’s degree can supplement undergraduate economics education by exposing students to more in-depth economic analysis which can open doors to many high-tech jobs as well as offering preparatory work for doctoral pursuit. Students will learn how to uncover patterns and analyze human behavior to support data-based decisions, improve productivity, and ultimately further understand the nature of the digital world. 

In addition to creating increased marketability for economics students, a graduate degree has strong financial return on investment. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 50 percent of economists have a master’s degree as their highest level of educational attainment compared to just 23 percent who hold a bachelor’s degree. Economists with a master’s degree have an annual median salary of $100,000, which is more than $20,000 higher than the annual median salary of economists with just a bachelor’s degree. 

Students enrolled in our 4+1 program also save money since they do not pay separate graduate tuition in their 4th year but are still taking courses towards their master’s degree. 

Students who meet the requirements for admission will apply to the program during their junior year. Admitted students take three graduate foundation courses along with undergraduate courses during their senior year; two of these courses count toward both their bachelor and master’s degrees, with the third course only counting toward their master’s degree. In their "+1" year at Emory, students will complete their core courses and specialization elective courses or an optional thesis. 

3 Foundations Courses (taken in the senior year-Econ 526 and 725 in Fall; Econ 520 in Spring) 

  • Econ 526 (3 hours): Quantitative Methods I  
  • Econ 725 (3 hours): Computer Programming & Data Management in Economics 
  • Econ 520 (3 hours): Data Sciences for Economics 

3 Core Courses (taken in Fall of the +1 year) 

  • Econ 521 (4 hours): Econometrics of Policy-Analysis & Causal-Inference 
  • Econ 522 (4 hours): Forecasting and Macroeconomic Analytics 
  • Econ 524 (4 hours): Big Data Econometrics 

Completion of Non-Thesis Specialization or Thesis (taken in Spring of the +1 year) 

Non-Thesis Track 

Complete Econ 540 (2 hours): Empirical Writing and Analytical Reports and select one of the following specialization tracks: 

  1. Health Econ Analytics and Policy: take two courses- Econ 570 (4 hours): Health Economics I and Econ 571 (4 hours): Health Economics II 
  2. Cost, Benefit, and Pricing Analytics: Choose two of the following courses: Econ 541 (4 hours): Pricing and Revenue Management, Econ 542 (4 hours): Transfer Pricing, Econ 543 (4 hours): Cost-Benefit Analysis, Econ 544 (4 hours): Internet Economics
  3. Financial Markets and Macroeconomic Analytics: to be offered in 2026 onwards 

Thesis Track 

Take one elective course and Econ 599R Thesis Research (6 hours) 

Foundation Courses to be taken in senior year: 
  • Econ 526 (3 hours), Quantitative Methods I:  The objective of the course is to cover the mathematical methods and tools that are used in modern economic analyses. These include the methods used in static as well as dynamic analyses. The materials covered include multivariate and integral calculus, matrix algebra, and difference and differential equations, with applications. Pre-requisite(s): Permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 725 (3 hours), Computer Programming & Data Management in Economics:  This is a programing and data management course with a central focus on data manipulation for economic analysis.  In this course students will learn how to access and manipulate data from IPUMS and the World Bank. Previous R knowledge is used to explore the data and define the next steps in terms of data manipulation for analysis. These tasks will be performed using more advanced tools and then replicated in other widely used data analysis software: Python and STATA. Students will also learn the basics of SQL and Tableau for data manipulation and visualization.  As part of this course, students will have a data analysis challenge manipulating and analyzing data using at least two of the software programs used in the course. The final work is presented to class.  Pre-requisite(s): Permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 520 (3 hours), Data Sciences for Economics: The first part of the course focuses on the necessary background material such as statistics, probability, linear algebra and some calculus to understand machine learning. This part is not a traditional ‘paper-and-pencil’ type of introductory statistics courses you can take elsewhere that covers theoretical concepts and techniques, but fails to include much programming and data analysis, which are at the heart of data science. Therefore, the emphasis of this course will be placed on combining programming techniques (such as parallelization) and statistical concepts simultaneously through the analysis of real-life data sets taken from various sources. The second part of the course uses knowledge of the first part to explain the two major approaches of machine learning techniques; generative methods and discriminative methods. Pre-requisite(s): Econ 526 and Econ 725. 
Core Courses to be taken in the fall of +1 year:   
  • Econ 521 (4 hours), Econometrics of Policy-Analysis & Causal-Inference:  This is an applied microeconometrics course with a central focus on causal inference and empirical analysis of policy impact.  As part of this course, the students will complete an empirical research project using raw data and employ econometric methods to analyze a research question relevant to contemporary microeconomic policies and present the results in class. The content of the course is split into two general areas: 1) acquisition, compilation, and management of real world panel data; and 2) empirical methods in program evaluation and causal inference. Each area of the course will be covered by way of posing a research question.  At the end, the students will be able to organize project files, clean and manage real-world datasets in R and R Studio, implement selected methods for causal inference using real-world data, explain research results with a written report and presentation.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 520, 526, and 725 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 522 (4 hours), Forecasting and Macroeconomic Analytics:  The course is intended to fulfill two needs: (1) introduce students to the tools to analyze time series data in an univariate and multivariate framework (2) to provide students with applied interests with the most sophisticated and up to date techniques used in empirical time series analysis and forecasting. The empirical relevance of every model will be emphasized while also maintaining a theoretical rigor. Computer exercises will help in keeping the class relevant. The importance of forecasting in macroeconomics research conducted at private and public sectors will be discussed.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 520, 526, and 725 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 524 (4 hours), Big Data Econometrics:  This course is intended for students who have completed Econ 520 or approved equivalent. It aims to provide modern skills in analyzing data and discover potential relations and associations. Modern methods of data sciences and computing techniques are introduced. Data analysis is placed on a sound basis with understanding of the algorithms and their meaning. This course will cover the key concepts of machine learning, including classification, regression analysis, clustering, and dimensionality reduction. These topics are intended to provide the students with modern skills for robust model discovery and latest advances in prediction with examples from economics, predictive text searches, market research, algorithmic financial decision making, and health sciences.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 520, 526, and 725 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
Specialty/Elective Courses to be taken in spring of  +1 year:   
  • Econ 540 (2 hours), Empirical Writing and Analytical Reports:  This course is designed to teach students methods for effective communication of empirical results.   Students will become proficient in interpreting, organizing, displaying, and writing results of quantitative research.  Students will learn techniques for writing an academic paper.  Students will also learn how to summarize and present empirical results for different audiences.  We will explore methods for communication to academics, policy makers, industry leaders, and the mass media.   Pre-requisite(s): Permission of the 4+1 Director. 
Specialization-Track: Health Econ Analytics and Policy 
  • Econ 570 (4 hours), Health Economics I:  (The Economics of Health Behaviors and Policy) This course is designed to introduce master’s level students in economics to the field of Health Economics.  The provision of health care and the production of health have different institutional properties and incentives than other consumer goods, making health-related markets unique topics for study.  This course will focus on the demand-side of health, emphasizing the difference between health as an outcome and medical care as one of many inputs into the production of health.  Health economics concepts will be linked to current policy debates at the state and federal levels.  Students will apply empirical techniques to research questions in health economics, with a focus on policy analysis.  Discussion of the relevance and limits of the economics approach to analyzing public health issues will be encouraged.   Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 571 (4 hours), Health Economics II:  (The Economics of Health Care Markets)  This course explores the industrial organization of health care markets in the U.S. We will focus on the following areas: hospital production and competition, information asymmetries, vertical integration between physicians and hospitals, insurance markets (including adverse selection and managed competition), and finally issues of insurer and hospital bargaining. The class is effectively designed as an empirical IO course with applications to health care. As such, we will also examine several econometric tools used in the literature, including production function estimation and demand estimation, as well as common empirical methods of causal inference.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
Specialization-Track: Cost, Benefit, and Pricing Analytics 
  • Econ 541 (4 hours), Pricing and Revenue Management:  This course covers a large number of pricing tools as well as techniques for selling goods and services under capacity constraints with advance booking, refunds, and overbooking. Applications will be drawn from a variety of industries, including soft drink manufacturing, grocery stores, Internet content providers, cable TV operators, airlines, hotels, phone operators, concert halls, movie theaters, and electricity and gas companies. A part of the assessment will be based on case study analyses. The main objective of the course is to equip students with the knowledge in pricing and revenue management strategy necessary for working as a business or academic economist, operations researcher, marketing scientist, pricing manager, or an economic consultant.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 542 (4 hours), Transfer Pricing: This course will introduce students to the economics of transfer pricing.  Transfer pricing involves finding reliable intercompany pricing in situations where free markets do not exist and accounts for over half of all international trade.  Given the extent of globalization in the current business environment, multinational enterprises must address transfer pricing issues on a day to day basis.  Taxing authorities throughout the world have instituted transfer pricing legislation to claim their “fair share” of profits from the multinational enterprises’ global income. As a result, this field has attracted significant attention from policy makers and businesses.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 543 (4 hours), Cost-Benefit Analysis:  The objective of this course is to introduce students to how economic theory can be used to make cost-benefit analysis for business planning by firms, for decision making by consumers, for regulatory practices by agencies, and for policy formulation by the legislature.  Such analyses serve as decision rule for selecting policies for maximizing economic efficiency or assessing economic efficiency when it is used as only one of the goals relevant to policy choice. The richness of the methodology for both public and private sector decision making is demonstrated with many examples and case studies, emphasizing practical applications and correct use of analytical tools.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 
  • Econ 544 (4 hours), Internet Economics:  There is no doubt that the Internet will play an increasingly bigger role in the society and economy. This course introduces various fundamental ideas and theories in economics that can help us understand online businesses better and more deeply. We will mainly cover several foundational theories, including search, two-sided markets, matching, and auctions. We will also discuss some contemporaneous topics, such as recommendation and ratings systems, net neutrality, and cryptocurrencies.  Pre-requisite(s): Econ 521, 522, and 724 or permission of the 4+1 Director. 

  1. Current junior standing 
  2. Minimum GPA of 3.5 
  3. By the end of a student’s junior year, completion of the following foundational courses: Math 111, Econ 101, 112, 201, 212, 220, and 320 plus 
  4. One of the following electives: Econ 333, Econ 371, Econ 372, Econ 315, Econ 415, Econ 405, or Econ 487 

  1. Statement of purpose 
  2. Resume 
  3. Two online recommendations (you will submit your recommenders' contact information as part of the online application) 
  4. PDF copy of your transcript with Fall 2022 grades reflected on the document 
  5. $75 application fee- please inquire if you believe you may qualify for an application fee waiver based on financial hardship 

You can access the Laney Graduate School application here: https://www.gs.emory.edu/admissions/application.html. All application materials are submitted through the online application.  

The application deadline for the 4+1 cohort starting Fall 2023 is January 31, 2023. We will notify students of their acceptance prior to the pre-registration period for Fall 2023 so that students can register for the appropriate coursework  

Since we are considering Fall 2022 grades in our admissions decisions, we ask that you please do not submit your application until Fall 2022 grades are reflected on your transcript.  

The 2022-2023 academic year is our first admissions cycle and we hope to admit a cohort of 15 students to begin the program in Fall 2023. The cohort size will increase significantly over time.  

The Economics Department does not offer any financial aid outside of the U.S. Department of Education’s Federal Student Aid. Students are saving a substantial amount of tuition by taking graduate and undergraduate courses concurrently in their senior year and only having to pay for graduate tuition in their +1 year. Moreover, completing an MS degree in one year provides an expedited path to a degree when most Economics master’s programs last eighteen months to two years after completion of an undergraduate degree. 

Our Senior Program Coordinator, Elizabeth Eichinger, can be reached at eeichin@emory.edu.