Most students accepted for admission to the Master's program in economics at Queen's possess an Honours Bachelor's degree with a major concentration in economics. Most successful applicants will have taken undergraduate courses in statistics and quantitative methods for economics, intermediate and advanced micro- and macroeconomic theory, and two or three further upper-year courses in economics, plus courses in linear algebra and differential and integral calculus. Applicants whose previous degree is not from a Canadian or U.S. university, are required to submit the GRE.
The Master's program normally requires at least three terms of full-time study to complete, and must be completed satisfactorily within two years of initial registration in the program. Students entering the Master's program with full-time status in the Fall Term must take at least three half-courses in each of the Fall and Winter Terms. The degree may be taken according to one of three program patterns, the requirements for which are as follows. Program of study and course choice are subject to the review and approval of the Graduate Coordinator.
Six half-courses and a Master's Thesis (ECON-899, which is equivalent to one full-course). The courses selected must include ECON-810 Microeconomic Theory or ECON-811 Advanced Microeconomic Theory I; ECON-815 Macroeconomic Theory or ECON-816 Advanced Macroeconomic Theory I; and ECON-852 Quantitative Methods; and three additional graduate courses in Economics.
The Master's Thesis should involve the student in approximately four months' work on a well-chosen topic and is written under the direction of a supervisor. The choice of a manageable topic is critical to the successful completion of the thesis. Guidelines for judging the quality of the Master's Thesis are described under General Regulations, section 8.6 of the graduate calendar. The thesis will be examined orally by a committee consisting of the Chairperson of Division V (or delegate), the Supervisor, two other members of the Department, and a member of another department.
Seven half-courses and a Master's Essay (ECON-898, which is equivalent to one full-course). The courses selected must include ECON-810 Microeconomic Theory or ECON-811 Advanced Microeconomic Theory I; ECON-815 Macroeconomic Theory or ECON-816 Advanced Macroeconomic Theory I; ECON-852 Quantitative Methods; and four additional graduate courses in Economics. A GPA of 2.8 will be required in the course work.
The Master's Essay, of between 7,500 and 12,500 words, is written under the direction of a supervisor. The topic may be a limited empirical research project, a critical review of the literature in a particular area, or a critical analysis of a theoretical or important policy problem. The essay is examined and assigned a percentage grade by a committee composed of the supervisor and one other member of the department. The average grade of the two committee members will be assigned unless the individual grades differ by more than 10 percentage points. In such a case, the Coordinator of Graduate Studies or his/her delegate will examine the essay and assign a final grade based in part on consultation with the committee members. In the event of a failing grade, revision of the essay or submission of a new essay may be made on the approval of Division V. Full guidelines regarding the Master's Essay are available in the Graduate Office.
Eight half courses. The courses selected must include one of the following two sequences: (i) ECON-811 Advanced Microeconomic Theory I, ECON-813 Advanced Microeconomic Theory II and ECON-815 Macroeconomic Theory, or (ii) ECON-816 Advanced Macroeconomic Theory I, ECON-817 Advanced Macroeconomic Theory II and ECON-810 Microeconomic Theory; ECON-850 Econometrics I or ECON-852 Quantitative Methods; and four additional graduate half courses in Economics.
A GPA of 2.8 is required in the course work. In addition, students must fulfil a mathematics requirement by attending and passing the Graduate Methods Review course. Students who are admitted to the PhD program after completing Program Pattern III will have advanced standing in the PhD program.
All three Master's programs are designed to prepare students for subsequent graduate studies at the Ph.D. level. The vast majority of Master's students opt for Program II.