M.S. Economics & Computation

The joint field of economics and computer science has emerged from two converging intellectual needs: Computer science has become increasingly important for economists working with big data to address complex questions; computer scientists increasingly are expected to understand the economics of computing systems, as well as the informational and financial transactions between people, businesses, governments, and electronic agents.

The MSEC program combines the strengths of the Departments of Economics and Computer Science to educate students in these important computational skills linked to economics, and to prepare them for Ph.D. studies or careers in economics, finance, government, and business. Reflecting this strong interdisciplinary relationship, Duke University ranks No. 5 for research in economics and computation, according to CSRankings.org.

This program is designed to meet the needs of students with varied levels of exposure to either field, but a strong quantitative background is recommended. 

Program Requirements

Course Details

The program requires 30 credits in computer science and economics, or related fields, subject to approval by the program's directors of graduate studies. We expect that students will take four semesters to complete all the requirements. A maximum of 6 credits (two courses) may be undergraduate courses at the 200-level or above (200-499), subject to academic advisor approval. Students must receive a grade of B- or better to have such courses counted as part of their earned graduate credit. 

STEM Designation

This degree program classifies as STEM (CIP Code 45.0603: Econometrics and Quantitative Economics), and students in this program can apply for a 24-month STEM extension of F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT).