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Master of Science in Economics and Master of International Affairs Combined Degree Program

The Department of Economics and the Department of International Affairs offer students the opportunity to receive both a Master of Science in Economics (MS ECON) and a Master of International Affairs (MIA) in three years. Students are provided with rigorous advanced training in economics, econometrics, analytical and quantitative skills, international policies, global economy, American foreign policy, and research methods. Students who have a disposition toward leadership will be better prepared for careers in business, government, non-government organizations, and public service.

In this combined master’s program, students follow a strictly defined 78-credit-hour curriculum to be able to complete all of the requirements for both degrees (which normally each take two years) in this shortened time frame. These degrees provide students with a total of 66 unduplicated hours (30 credit hours for the MS ECON and 36 credit hours for the MIA), and 12 combined credit hours from an approved list of courses. In total, a student may combine no more than 12 credit hours in both degrees.

Combined Master students shall begin the MS ECON program in their first year and then begin courses in the MIA program in their second year. Students will complete their final year by completing their Capstone and remaining courses. Students are required to satisfy the MIA degree’s language requirement. If a student decides during the course of study to drop one of the degrees being sought, the requirements for the other degree will revert to the normal requirements for that degree.

Program Descriptions

The M.S. Economics STEM program provides rigorous advanced in-person training in economics, econometrics, and analytical and quantitative skills for students to prepare them for immediate careers in business or government. The M.S. Economics program has a structured curriculum with a total of 36 credit hours: 15 credit hours of core courses in economics, econometrics as well as a Capstone course; 6-9 credit hours of economics or econometrics elective courses; and 12-15 credit hours of electives which includes an optional internship. Students are eligible to complete the program in 18 months.

The Master of International Affairs degree is a 48-credit non-thesis program that includes a core curriculum of five courses within the International Development & Economic Policy (IDEP) track, a summer internship or intensive language and cultural study, a three-course specialization in each of two selected areas of concentration, and five additional elective courses. The curriculum is taught by a multi-disciplinary faculty who combine a mix of scholarly and professional international experience. The core curriculum includes seminars on international policies, the global economy, research methods, and American foreign policy. One of the five core courses must be a capstone. The capstone course requires a student group under the supervision of a faculty member to work on a research task received from a real-world client. Capstone research culminates in a major written report and oral briefing to the client. The Bush School Department of International Affairs equips students having a disposition toward leadership and public service with the vital skills and knowledge critical for successful careers whether in government or nongovernment organizations.

Students would be able to take Master courses simultaneously between the programs. MS ECON students will select 6 credit hours of double-count courses, and MIA students can select up to 12 credit hours of double-count courses: BUSH 635/ECMT 673, INTA 608/ECON 617, INTA 630/ECON 614, and INTA 670/ECON 675. This will not reduce the total number of credits required for the MS ECON and MIA degrees as part of this agreement. Students who have completed both degree requirements for the MS ECON and MIA programs will receive their diplomas concurrently.

Students are required to take a total of 30 unique credit hours in the MS Economics program that include 15 credit hours of core courses in economics, econometrics as well as a Capstone course, 6 credit hours of economics or econometrics concentration courses, and 9 credit hours of electives which include an optional internship.

Students will complete no less than 36 unique credit hours in the MIA program which include 6 credit hours of core courses, 18 credit hours of concentration courses, and 12 credit hours of electives.

Program Curriculum

The charts below indicate the path for a student to complete the combined degree program in three years:

Year One

Fall Semester (9 cr. hrs.) Spring Semester (9-12 cr. hrs.) Summer Term (6 cr. hrs.)
Core Courses:

  • ECON 607
  • ECMT 673 (double counts as BUSH 635 in MIA)

ECON/ECMT Elective Course(s)

Core Courses:

  • ECON 611
  • ECMT 674

ECON 614 (double counts as INTA 630 in MIA)
ECON 617 (or INTA 608 taken Fall)

ECON Internship
Elective Courses

Year Two

Students will complete courses in the Master of International Affairs program in the IDEP (International Development and Economic Policy) track.

Fall Semester (9-12 cr. hrs.) Spring Semester (9-12 cr. hrs.) Summer Term
Core Courses:

  • BUSH 631
  • INTA 606
  • INTA 608 (double counts as ECON 617 in ECON)
Two core courses and two electives; or
One core course and three electives
Internship; or
Intensive Language and Cultural Study

Year Three

Students will complete their remaining courses as well as the Capstone course.

Fall Semester (6-9 cr. hrs.) Spring Semester (9-12 cr. hrs.)
ECON 675 Capstone (may double count towards INTA 670 Capstone if the topic is international affairs related)

Elective Courses

MIA Concentration or Elective Course(s)

INTA 670 Capstone (if ECON 675 Capstone was not related to International Affairs)

Three Concentration or Elective Course(s)

Double Counted Courses Include:
ECMT 673 = BUSH 635
ECON 617 = INTA 608
ECON 614 = INTA 630
ECON 675 = INTA 670 (Capstone taken in ECON or INTA during Year Three double counts IF Capstone includes both economics and international affairs-related work.)

Program Costs

The MS ECON program charges a semester department fee of $5,000 (separate from the university’s graduate tuition rate and fee rates) which is retained by the Economics Department. The fee is billed for the three consecutive long semesters, separately. M.S. Economics students are required to enroll for the ECON 675 Capstone course, while the MIA students will have the option of enrolling for ECON 675 or INTA 670 Capstone. The department fee is not charged in the summer semesters.

The Master of International Affairs program charges $405 per 3 credit hours which is retained by that program.

Admissions & Degree Plans

Admission is once a year beginning in the Fall semester.

Students should apply to the Master of Science in Economics (primary degree program) through the TAMU Graduate CAS system for the Fall cohort. During their first year, the student will submit an internal application for the Master of International Affairs (secondary degree program). If admitted, they will begin their second year with the MIA program. Admission as a combined Master of Science in Economics/Master of International Affairs student will begin that Fall admissions cycle.

Students currently enrolled in the MS ECON or MIA programs who are interested in pursuing this combined Master’s program will be reviewed independently by the secondary degree program. Students must be in good academic and conduct standing to be considered by either program. Admitted students will submit a Change of Major, Department or Degree (MDD) Petition to the Graduate and Professional School to add the second degree.

Students will be required to submit a degree plan and apply for graduation to each degree program.

For questions regarding the MS ECON & MIA Combined Degree Program, contact Ms. Margaret Lomas Carpenter, at