Requirements for a Ph.D. in Economics

Requirements for the Ph.D. in Economics includes a broad spectrum of economics courses with qualifying examinations and a minor area in business, math or statistics.


Preliminaries


  • Math for Economists

No qualifying exam, but the course is highly recommended.


Microeconomics Sequence


  • Microeconomics I
  • Microeconomics II
  • Game Theory and Applications
  • Economics of Contracts

Qualifying exam required, with a question based on each of these four courses.


Macroeconomics Sequence


  • Macroeconomics I
  • Dynamic Competitive Analysis
  • Computational Methods for Economics

Qualifying exam required, with a question based on each of these three courses.


Econometrics sequence


  • Econometrics I
  • Econometrics II

Qualifying exam required, with a question based on each of these two courses.


Advanced Economic Analysis (AEA) Sequence


  • AEA I (Structural Models in Microeconomics)
  • AEA II (Advanced Econometrics)
  • AEA III (Advanced Macroeconomics)
  • AEA IV (Market Design)

Qualifying exam required, with a question based on any two of the four courses listed above, depending on course availability in a given year.


Minor Area

Minor area requirements consist of three mini-semester courses (18 units) outside of Economics, either in any of the functional areas within Tepper School of Business, or in Ph.D. programs of Math or Statistics departments at Carnegie Mellon, subject to the approval of Economics faculty.

During their first two years of study, students are also required to write summer papers on an original research topic that interests them. At the review after the third semester, the faculty evaluates performance on the first-year summer paper and performance on qualifying exams.

A second-year summer paper concludes the requirements for year two. At this time, students begin formulating a thesis topic and preparing for a formal thesis proposal.