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Bachelor’s/Master’s Program

The Program

An accelerated pathway combining a B.A. in Economics, a B.S. in Financial Economics, or any other UMBC undergraduate major with a Master’s Degree in Economic Policy Analysis (offered jointly by the Department of Economics and the School of Public Policy).

What are the advantages?

• Career opportunities beyond those available to someone with only a bachelor’s degree.
• Less expensive and less time than a traditional M.A.
• Good foundation for further graduate study and a good complement to a law degree.

Who is eligible?

UMBC undergraduates can be admitted to the accelerated bachelor’s/master’s pathway if they:
• Have at least a 3.0 GPA overall and a 3.4 GPA in Econ courses,
• Will have completed ECON 311 and 312 (Intermediate Microeconomics and Macroeconomics),
Intermediate Statistics, ECON 490 (Analytical Methods in Economics), and ECON 421 (Introduction to Econometrics) by the beginning of their senior year.

How does it work?

Students accepted into the accelerated Bachelors/Master’s pathway take up to four graduate-level courses required in the M.A. program while they are undergraduates. These courses can double-count for both the bachelor’s and the master’s degrees. Therefore, students in the accelerated program need fewer than the 150 credits normally required for both bachelors and master’s degrees (a student may need as few as 141 credits). Students pay undergraduate tuition rates for graduate-level courses taken as undergraduates.

How long does the program take to complete?

• Full-time students can complete both the bachelor’s and the master’s degrees in as few as five years (see suggested plan of study on back), or
• Part-time students can take longer to complete the program.

Additional financial support available

Students currently receiving undergraduate scholarships may be eligible for continued financial support into the fifth year. In addition, accelerated program students may apply for research and teaching assistantships for their fifth year of study.

How do I find out more?

Talk to your economics professor or contact Tim Gindling, Economic Policy Analysis Graduate Program Director at (410)455-2160 or (410)455-3629 or email

Suggested Plan of Study:

Below we present a plan of study to complete the bachelor’s and master’s degrees within five years. However, students can take advantage of the accelerated pathway without necessarily completing the full program within 5 years. For example, a student may take from 1 to 4 of the ECON core courses in their senior year (to take advantage of the tuition break), and then complete the rest of the M.A. as part-time students. Many other combinations are possible.

1. Pre-requisites

Before the beginning of the senior year, at a minimum, students must have completed ECON 311, 312, 421, 490, as well as STAT 351 or 355. Both ECON 421 (Introduction to Econometrics) and ECON 490 (Analytical Methods in Economics) will be offered in the spring semester and summer session.

2. Senior Year

First Semester

 Second Semester

  •  ECON 601 – Graduate Microeconomics
  •  ECON 611 – Econometrics I
  • Other courses toward the B.A. or B.S. degree
  • ECON 602 – Graduate Macroeconomics
  • ECON 612 – Econometrics II
  • Other courses toward the B.A. or B.S. degree

 3. Fifth Year

First Semester

 Second Semester

  • PUBL core course (see note below)
  • PUBL core course (see note below)
  • Economics elective
  • Elective 
  • Economics elective 
  • Economics elective
  • Elective
  • ECON 699

Note: In consultation with their faculty advisor, students must choose two of the following courses:  PUBL 601 Political and Social Context of the Policy Process; PUBL 603 Theory and Practice of Policy Analysis; PUBL 613 Managing Governmental Organizations; PUBL 623 Government Budgeting; SOCY 606 Social Inequality and Social Policy.

4. Admissions Requirements

Before the beginning of their senior year, students apply for admission to the accelerated program. The application form for accelerated bachelor’s/master’s programs can be found HERE.

While they are still undergraduates, students in the accelerated program must submit a “Request for Approval for Undergraduates to Take Courses for Graduate Credit” form each semester before they may officially enroll in the 600-level courses. This form can be found HERE.

During their senior year, accelerated program students MUST apply for graduation to receive their bachelor’s degree, and also MUST apply for admission to the Graduate School. The ECPA program will recommend admission to the Graduate School for any student who successfully completes the four core M.A. Economics courses (ECON 601, 602, 611 and 612) with a “B” or better. To be admitted to the Graduate School a student must have an overall GPA of 3.0 or above. The Economics Department will waive the GRE requirement in the application for admission for students in the accelerated program.