Business and policy decisions are about change. Managing and excelling amid that change requires a knowledge foundation in the underlying business and policy decision-making process, a skillset geared to analyzing change, and the adaptability to use knowledge and tools effectively regardless of the magnitude of change.
Are you looking for a graduate degree that prepares you to apply theoretical and empirical tools to business and policy problems?
The fully-online Master of Science in Applied Economics (MSAE) program provides students with the skills and competencies necessary to perform theoretically meaningful empirical analysis of financial markets, industrial organization, government regulation, international trade, health care, economic development and consumer choice. Our students learn how to evaluate business decisions and policy programs and explain progression of various events and their impact on the economy in a business or policy context.
Do you want to excel at managing rapid change?
To manage change, we first establish that which has not changed. The economic theory courses provide a foundation in the structure and common patterns of business and policy decisions. This foundation helps to put new events in the context of what we already know and to see what has largely remained constant from one situation to the next. We then focus on the determinants and causes of change. The empirical economics courses teach you to quantify relationships and to evaluate the relative importance of changes in the economic environment, thus gaining a better understanding of what has been fundamentally altered. The third step is to transfer knowledge across fields so that expertise gained in one area may be used to analyze previously unobserved threats and opportunities. The elective courses deliver knowledge in individual areas of economics while honing your ability to transfer your knowledge and problem-solving skills across content fields. By learning to transfer your knowledge across content fields, you recognize the characteristics of new problems, adapt quickly to new circumstances, and attack the problems with skills developed from other areas.
Why approach business and policy analysis with this focus?
Without a solid theoretical underpinning that helps you understand the structure of economic decisions, each problem or opportunity seems completely new and unique. Why reinvent the analytical wheel every time something changes? We believe that large changes in the policy and business landscape can be analyzed by carefully applying economic concepts that are already well understood. Very little that happens is truly new. The underlying economic structure remains stable but is often obscured by constantly changing circumstances. The MSAE helps you apply established concepts to new circumstances so you can avoid the trap inherent in treating every threat and opportunity as unique rather than as variations on a theme we have already seen.
Why base analytics on economic theory?
Our graduates are prepared to build sound econometric models, to use the best available software packages to estimate them and to interpret results in a way that helps make business and policy decisions. We believe the currently fashionable reliance on data mining and wrangling without sound theoretical underpinnings that allow correct interpretation of the results in a cohesive and systematic manner is a weakness in the decision-making process for both business and policy.
Where do graduates go from here?
Graduates will be able to compete for employment in the for-profit and non-profit private sectors and in federal, state, and local agencies.
What are the key advantages in the structure and delivery of the program?
No campus visits required
Courses are fully asynchronous permitting students to complete their work on their own schedule
2-year (5 semester) curriculum with a spring or fall start
Take 2 courses/semester to accommodate busy schedules
Courses designed and delivered by experienced Georgia Southern professors certified to teach online
Engagement in simulations, discussions and multimedia presentations
Training in applied economic analysis using real-world data
Graduate Certificate in Applied Economics meets regional accreditation for teaching
Seamless transition from the certificate to the MSAE
The MSAE helps you develop answers to business and policy questions.
Why did households respond to a policy change in an unexpected manner?
How should your firm respond to changes in government regulation?
How to design effective policies and make managerial decision to minimize unintended consequences?
How to interpret results of empirical studies?
How do we model the behavior of our competitors to find a more profitable strategy?
Federal law requires colleges and universities to make certain disclosures to prospective students of these programs. These disclosures include information on the University’s authority to operate outside of Georgia, complaint processes, adverse actions, and refunds.