Graduate Admission for both MAsters and Ph.D. programs
(Except where stateD)


To complete an application to the Economics graduate program, the following are required (note that the requirements for the PhD program and MA program are the same):

  1. File a complete, official graduate application form with the application fee of U.S. $100.
  2. Provide proof of 3.0 undergraduate grade point average overall (on a scale in which A=4, B=3, C=2, D=1, F (failure) =0) and a B average (that is, at least 3.0) in the undergraduate major. This requirement is waived for foreign students.
  3. Submit 3 letters of recommendation from instructors or academic advisors.
  4. Provide 2 official copies of transcripts from previously attended colleges.
  5. Provide test scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  6. For foreign students, provide scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or the IELTS. This is a hard requirement, no exceptions for non-native speakers even if you have obtained a degree in an English speaking university including US universities.


Applications are accepted only for starting of the Fall semester.

Applications for the Ph.D program (with financial support) must be received by January 15.

Applications for the MA program by international students must be received by May 1.

Applications for the MA program by domestic students must be received by August 1.



Applications are only accepted on line. All application materials are available online from the Graduate School at this link

Please send supplementary material to:

The Graduate Program
The Department of Economics
Stony Brook University
100 Nicolls Road
Stony Brook, NY  11794-4384

English Proficiency

As indicated above, for admission to graduate school the University requires the applicant's scores on the TOEFL or the IELTS. The University requirement for admission in the MA program is a 85 in the internet based TOEFL, and 90 into the PhD program. You will need recent scores in these tests, otherwise your application will not be considered, no exceptions if you are a non-native speaker, even if you hold or will hold a degree from a US university.

Prospective applicants should be aware that a good spoken and written knowledge of English is essential for productive interaction with other students and faculty. Command of English is important not only to the student's own learning experience, but also to eligibility for teaching assistantships and other forms of financial aid. We strongly emphasize that financial aid will be denied to those students who are unable to communicate properly in English.

Evaluation of Applications

Complete application files, containing all of the items listed above, are considered by an Economics Department Admissions Committee. This committee gives particular emphasis to the applicant's undergraduate training in economics and allied quantitative disciplines, such as mathematics, statistics, engineering, and the physical sciences. The Committee looks favorably on training in multivariate calculus (at least 1 year of differential and integral calculus is required by the Department), linear algebra, real analysis and topology, introductory statistics and probability. The applicant's GRE and TOEFL scores are carefully reviewed. (Note that the applicant need not take the GRE Advanced Test in Economics. The Economics Advanced Test is not a requirement for admission.) The committee also takes Masters-level training in economics into account for admission to the PhD program. Informative letters of recommendation make a difference, where by "informative" we mean letters that provide evidence of the intellectual strength of the applicant and motivation for graduate study.

Decisions about admission are normally made by March 15, for applications received by January 15.


Please refer to the Graduate School's bursar WebPage for more information.


Financial Support 

There is no financial support for MA students.

Qualified applicants may be offered two general types of financial support:

  1. Assistantships, which can be for either teaching, administrative or research purposes, and which are available only to full time students;
  2. Full or partial tuition scholarships.

These forms of financial support are offered on the basis of academic merit, and may be limited by the available funds and state budgetary approval. Assistantships require the student to devote 15 hours of service per week.

The Economics Department's practice has been to renew financial support for all supported students who are making satisfactory progress during their first four years of study. It is not possible, to receive support for more than four years. The criteria that define "satisfactory progress" are strict. Decisions on continued financial support are made on the basis of overall evaluations conducted twice a year by the full Economics Department faculty. For students at the course work stage, all letter-graded course work is expected to be graded B or better, with a significant number of B+'s and A-'s or A's. For students at the thesis stage, there must be evidence of progress in a timely fashion toward a high-quality dissertation, as evaluated by the student's thesis committee.

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