Earning an online Masters in Economics is one of the best career options for those who like to work within the global markets or simply in a financial setting. Online degrees in economics provide the necessary tools that are needed to work in the stock market, financial institutions, advertising, and even insurance agencies. No matter what type of company setting you choose to work in, your teacher will be able to guide you so that you get all of the classes you need to succeed.

Online degree programs make it possible for returning students who are already working a full-time job to continue to do so. Individuals who are pursuing a Master’s in Economics online and are already working in the field in some capacity will continue to build the experience they need to be successful. Not only does a Master’s degree in Economics provide a solid education, when it is combined with hands-on experience, the student can apply for jobs in the economics field and know they have the best possible chance of getting the job.

How We Ranked the Best Online Master’s in Economics Programs

An online Master’s in Economics is only valuable if it has a real, positive impact on your career, and Best Master’s Programs editors know what prospective students are looking for. That’s why we feature only accredited, reputable institutions that have a proven history of making life better for graduates. Programs are ranked according to IPEDS and Niche data, including tuition cost, student satisfaction, and salary potential.

1. Georgia Tech

The Georgia Institute of Technology offers an MS in Economics that is recognized as one of the country’s best online masters in economics programs. Students enrolled in Georgia Tech’s MS degree in Economics can complete the program in one year (three semesters) if studying full time. GT’s best online masters in economics program requires degree candidates to complete 31 semester hours but can be done at the student’s preferred pace.

Georgia Tech was established in 1885. GT is a member school of the University System of Georgia with campuses throughout Georgia and internationally in China, Singapore, France, and Ireland. The school’s total enrollment as a space-grant school exceeds 32,500 students. The Georgia Institute of Technology was a primary part of the plans to rebuild the south after the civil war.

Degree: MS in Economics

2. UCLA

The UCLA College of Social Science & Economics offers a Master of Applied Economics (MAE) degree that is ranked among the best online masters in economics programs in California and beyond. UCLA’s best online masters in economics program is a classified STEM program in Econometrics & Quantitative Economics. Graduates of UCLA’s graduate economics degree have found rewarding careers working for PriceWaterhouseCooper, CIT, Amtech, the United Nations Development Program, and Apex Logistics, among others.

The University of California (UC Los Angeles) was established in 1919. UCLA is recognized among the nation’s public ivy institutions of higher education, ranked the best public university in the U. S. by US News and World Report. The University of California at Los Angeles was initially founded as a teacher’s college to the south of the State’s normal school.

Degree: Master of Applied Economics

3. California Polytechnic State University

California Polytechnic State University’s Orfalea College of Business offers a Master of Science (MS) degree program in Quantitative Economics that can be completed 100% online. This best online masters in economics program from Cal Poly does not require any minimum GRE scores, although there are teaching assistant positions available but limited. Statistics and calculus are pre-requisites for California Polytechnic State University’s best online masters in economics programs.

California Polytechnic (Cal Poly) State University was established in 1901 as an idea originating from Governor Gage. Cal Poly holds the distinction of being one of two polytechnic institutions of higher education within the Golden State of California. The school’s campuses total nearly 10,000 acres and serve more than 21,000 students, mostly undergraduates. It took several years for California Polytechnic State University to begin to admit female students to study for academic degrees.

Degree: MS in Quantitative Economics

4. University of Texas at Austin

The University of Texas at Austin offers one of the country’s best online masters in economics programs with its Master of Arts (MA) degree in Economics. Students enrolled in UT Austin’s best online masters in economics program offers students three delivery tracks – an accelerated track at ten months, an eighteen month track and a 2-year academic track. All academic tracks require degree candidates to complete 30 semester hours, with additional costs for the longer delivery tracks.

The University of Texas (UT) was established in 1883. UT Austin is recognized as the Lone Star State’s flagship campus and space grant institution of higher education with more than 50,000 students. UT Austin holds the distinction of being one of the few public universities in the country with education quality that match ivy league schools. The school is home to several museums, including the LBJ museum and the McDonald Observatory.

Degree: MA in Economics

5. Northeastern University

Northeastern University offers an MS in Commerce and Economic Development that is considered among the country’s best online masters in economics programs. NEU’s best online masters in economics program can be completed in 18 months as a full-time student or 2.5 years studying for the degree part-time. Northeastern University’s MS in Economic Development requires a capstone project and prepares students for a level 1 exam offered by the CFA – the Chartered Financial Analyst Program.

Northeastern University was established in 1898. The school’s main campus in Beantown covers more than 50 acres; however, NEU operates satellite facilities in England, Canada, and several other states. Northeastern University’s enrolled students participate in the school’s coop program, which allows students to earn full salaries while attending school full time.

Degree: MS in Commerce and Economic Development

6. North Carolina State University

North Carolina State University’s Economics Graduate Program offers a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Economics program that is ranked among the state’s best online masters in economics programs. This best online masters in economics program allow students to select from a Ph.D. preparation track or an applied focus track. Coursework for NCSU’s graduate degree in economics includes coursework in international economics, micro and macroeconomics, derivatives and options, math methods for economists, and foundations of capitalism, to name a few.

North Carolina State University was established under the Morrill Land Grant Act in 1887. NCSU is also a sea grant, and space grant public institution of higher learning that is a member school of the University of North Carolina system. More than 35,100 students are enrolled in NCSU’s more than 200 academic degree programs. NCSU, when first opened, only accepted white students.

Degree: MA in Economics

7. Georgetown University

Georgetown University’s Department of Economics offers a trio of graduate economics courses that are recognized among the nation’s best online masters in economics programs. Georgetown offers a Master of Arts (MA) degree programs in Political Economy or Applied Economics. Additionally, Georgetown also offers a best online masters in economics program that offers a Master of Science (MS) degree. Core courses for degree candidates include macroeconomics, data analysis, microeconomics, and econometrics. The MS in economics program includes more technical and intensive studies with STEM approved classes.

Georgetown University was chartered in 1789 and is one of the nation’s colonial colleges. The school was the brainchild of the first American president, with parts of the campus listed among National Historic Landmarks. Georgetown University was originally managed by the Jesuits, but operates independently and welcomes students of all faiths.

Degree: MA in Applied Economics, MA in Political Economy, MS in Economics

8. Ohio State University

The Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics at Ohio State University offers a Master of Applied Economics (MAE) degree program recognized as one of the state’s best online masters in economics programs. OSU’s a best online masters in economics program can be completed in only two – three semesters on the student’s schedule by completing classes in finance, consulting, risk assessment, economics, empirical theory, and performance & policy, to name a few. Degree candidates must complete 31 credit units to meet OSU’s economics degree program requirements.

Ohio State University was established in 1879 under the Morrill Land Act. OSU also holds the distinction of being a space grant, sea grant, and flagship institution of higher education with more than 68,000 students across all of the school’s main and satellite campuses. Ohio State University’s original moniker was the Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College.

Degree: Master of Applied Economics

9. Clemson University

Clemson University offers an MA in Economics program that is ranked among the state and southern US’s best online masters in economics programs. Clemson’s graduate degree in economics requires degree candidates to complete 30 semester units, plus an economic-related thesis and research report. Coursework for Clemson University’s best online masters in economics program includes the following classes – econometrics, microeconomics for public policy, least-squares analysis, regression, and final thesis project.

Clemson University was established as a land grant school under the Morrill Act in 1889. The school also operates as a sea grant institution of higher education and the second largest – in terms of student enrollment – university in the state of South Carolina. Clemson also manages an experimental forest that covers more than 15,00 acres. Clemson University’s at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains and Lake Harwell serves more than 24,800 students.

Degree: MA in Economics

10. Penn State World Campus

Penn State World Campus offers a Master of Professional Studies in Community & Economic Development that is considered among the best online masters in economics programs available online. This best online masters in economics program requires students to complete 30 semester units to graduate. Students enter the workforce as development specialists, research managers, economic development managers, and economic educators, to name a few. The curriculum for PS World Campus’ graduate economics degree includes principles of local economies, economic development, land use, leadership, and statistics, plus a master’s paper or 6 credit independent study.

Penn State World Campus (Penn State WC) was established in 1998 as an independent institution of higher education connected to Pennsylvania State University. The school’s administrative headquarters are located in University Park, PA, but more than 14,000 students study online. Pennsylvania State University has a long and distinguished history of providing distance learning since the late 1890s.

Degree: MPS in Community and Economic Development

11. Florida State University

Florida State University’s College of Social Sciences and Public Policy offers a Master of Science (MS) in Applied Economics degree program ranked among Florida’s best online masters in economics programs. US News considers FSU graduate economics online degree as the sixth best in the nation. FSU’s best online masters in economics program can be completed in twelve months for those students seeking an accelerated graduate nationally ranked economics programs. Classes include SAS for Economists, Economic consulting, Economics of Population, Financial Economics, Public Choice, plus special topics in big data and an applied internship.

Florida State University is a sea grant, and space grant institution of higher learning that was established in 1851. This senior member of the Florida State University system that is organized into ten colleges/schools that offer more than 325 academic degree programs. US News considers FSU among the top 20 public national universities in the nation.

Degree: MS in Applied Economics

12. University of Houston

The University of Houston offers a Master of Applied Economics degree program that is recognized as one of Texas’ best online masters in economics programs. UH’s best online masters in economics program can be finished by degree candidates in about one year. The 30 semester hours include classes in classes economic forecasting, health economics, econometrics, energy economics, and quantitative analysis, to name a few.

The University of Houston (U of H) was established in 1927. UH’s 600+ acre campus in Houston is home to the third largest student body in the Lone Star State. More than 45,000 students study for nearly 300 academic degrees offered by the university’s fourteen colleges/schools. The alumni association from the University of Houston has more than 255,000 individuals. Students graduate prepared for careers using the tools of regression analysis, critical thinking, statistical analysis, and trend monitoring, among others.

Degree: Master of Applied Economics

13. Louisiana State University

Louisiana State University offers an MS in Financial Economics that is ranked among the southern US’s best online masters in economics programs. This best online master’s in economics program from LSU includes faculty members who are actively participating in new economic research in macro, micro, and econometrics, to name a few. Much of this research is published in industry trade magazines and professional oversight curricula.

Louisiana State University is a land grant school established in 1860 under the Morrill Land Act. The school also operates as Louisiana’s flagship institution of higher education and a space-grant school. The school’s campus overlooks the Mississippi River on a plateau that covers more than 500 acres. Several schools within the university have received recognition, include the law and business schools.

Degree: MS in Financial Economics

14. University of Missouri

The University of Missouri offers an MA in Economics that is recognized among the nation’s best online masters in economics programs. Mizzou’s MS in economics requires degree candidates to complete 30 semester credits, through the school’s distance learning platform. Out of state students studying online for this best online masters in economics program pay the same tuition rates as in-state Mizzou students. Degree candidates find rewarding careers in modeling analysts, data scientists, energy market managers, or economics professors, to name a few.

The University of Missouri was established as a land grant school in 1839. This land grant and space grant institution of higher education is recognized as the first public university that was situated to the west of the Mississippi River and the largest university in the Show-me State of Missouri. Mizzou is home to the first journalism school that started in 1908 by Walter Williams.

Degree: MA in Economics

15. American University

American University offers an MA in Economics with an emphasis on Applied Economics Specialization that is considered one of the best online masters in economics programs available. Students enrolled in American University’s best online masters in economics program can complete the online coursework in only twenty months. Princeton Review recognizes AU’s graduate economics degree program among the top five in the country. Students find rewarding careers as consultants, think tank members, finance companies, government agencies, or nonprofits, to name a few.

American University was established in 1893. American University’s campus was once a fort before the university received a charter by the US congress. The school’s urban/suburban campus in the nation’s capital serves more than 14,000 students attending the university’s eight schools/colleges. American University is historically affiliated to the Methodist Church but welcomes students of all faiths to study at AU.

Degree: MA in Economics

16. Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins University offers an MS in Applied Economics that can be completed entirely online. JHU’s best online masters in economics program requires degree candidates to complete ten courses in about two years (as a part time student) or about one year (as a full time student). JHU’s best online masters in economics programs offer degree candidates several concentrations from which to select – public policy, environmental economics, spatial economics, health economics, financial economics, and internationals development.

Johns Hopkins University was established in 1876. The school operates several campuses in Washington DC, Maryland, and internationally in China and in Italy. More than 26,400 students attend Johns Hopkins University. The school bears the name of the university’s first benefactor, the American entrepreneur Johns Hopkins – a bequest that would exceed $140 million in current dollars.

Degree: MS in Applied Economics

17. University of Delaware

The University of Delaware’s Lerner Business and Economics College Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship (CEEE) offers an MA degree – a Master in Arts degree in Economics and Entrepreneurship for Educators recognized among the best online masters in economics programs. The curriculum for UD’s best online masters in economics program.

The University of Delaware was established as a land grant school under the Morrill Land Act in 1833. UD also operates as a space grant and sea grant institution of higher learning with several campuses in Newark, Dover, Wilmington, Georgetown, and Lewes. The school’s student body exceeds 24,000 students, of which more than 80% are undergraduate students. The University of Delaware holds the distinction of being one of only four institutions of higher learning that offer an art conservation academic degree.

Degree: MA in Economics and Entrepreneurship for Educators

18. Tufts University

Tufts University offers an MS in Economics program that is ranked among the best online masters in economics programs in New England and in the country. Tufts University offers an MS course that can be finished in twelve months, without a thesis. Tufts’ other best online masters in economics program is research-based and requires twenty-four months to complete and culminates with a master’s thesis near the end of the course.

Tufts University was established in 1852. The school began as a small liberal arts college but is now considered a significant research institution of higher education, with more than 11,300 students attending every semester. Tufts operates ten academic facilities in the greater Boston area and one internationally. Tufts University is considered a highly selective school with regards to admissions.

Degree: MS in Economics

19. University of North Dakota

The University of North Dakota offers an MS in Applied Economics and Predictive Analytics that is recognized by US News & World Report among the best online masters in economics programs in the country. Students enrolled in UND’s best online masters in economics program must complete 30 credits hours over a 24 month period to meet program graduation requirements. Additionally, this graduate economics degree program has received accreditation from the Association for the Advancement of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

The University of North Dakota (UND) was chartered in 1883. More than 13,400 students attend classes at UND – the flagship campus and space grant school in Grand Forks. Additionally, the school offered the first academic degree in unmanned space flight missions. The only law and medical school in the state of North Dakota is operated and maintained by UND.

Degree: MS in Applied Economics and Predictive Analytics

20. Georgia Southern University

Georgia Southern University’s Parker College of Business offers a Master of Science (MS) degree program in Applied Economics that is recognized by a number of college ranking services among the best online masters in economics programs in the country. GSU’s fully online best online masters in economics program includes coursework like industrial organizations, history of economic thought, applied economics, health economics, economics and risk, and behavioral economics, to name a few. Most students complete this AACSB International accredited classes in about two years.

Georgia Southern University was established in 1906. The school’s campuses cover more than 1,000 acres and serve more than 25,800 students each semester. Georgia Southern University is a member school of the University System of Georgia and a land grant college as well. The Effington Wetlands – 1,400 acres – are managed by the school and students.

Degree: MS in Applied Economics

21. West Texas A&M University

West Texas A&M University Engler College of Business offers several best online masters in economics programs as recognized by US News & World Report and TFE times. Students enrolled in WTAMU’s best online masters in economics program (MS in Finance and Economics (MSFE)) are required to pass a final MSFE program final examination to earn the graduate economics degree – in addition to 36 to 45 credit units, depending on exam course of study chosen.

West Texas A&M University was established in 1910 as a teacher’s college. The school’s art department was honored to have as its chairperson, Georgia O’Keefe, from 1916 – 1918. The school’s suburban campus serves more than 10000 students and covers more than 150 acres. More than 80% of the students attending WTAMU hail from Texas; however, more than 275 students hail from other countries.

Degree: MS in Finance and Economics

22. Western Illinois University

Western Illinois University offers an MA in Community and Economic Development that is ranked as one of the several best online masters in economics programs in the midwestern US. Western Illinois University’s Transfer credits are accepted for this best online masters in economics program if credits are earned from an accredited program that meets certain qualifications. Students enrolled in Western Illinois University’s graduate economics program must complete a thesis & dissertation to meet program requirements.

Western Illinois University (WIU) was established in 1899 and began as a teacher’s normal college that was state funded. The school’s campus sits upon land donated by the Freemasons and serves more than 7,000 students. Several buildings are listed within the Federal National Register of Historic Places. WIU operates a campus in Quad Cities that serves Iowa and Illinois locations near the Mississippi River.

Degree: MA in Community and Economic Development

23. Purdue University

Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management offers an MS in Economics that is considered among the country’s second best online masters in economics programs by bestcolleges.com. Purdue’s best online masters in economics program offers degree candidates four concentrations from which to choose – Advanced Theory, Public Economics & Policy, Business & Data Analysis, and Financial Economics. Purdue University’s graduate economics degree program requires students to complete 30 semester credits to meet program requirements.

Purdue University (Purdue) was established in 1869 under the Morrill Land Grant Act. Purdue is also a space grant, flagship, and sea grant institution of higher learning with one of the largest foreign student enrollments in the nation. More than 42,400 students study from the university’s colleges/schools. Purdue University offers more than two hundred baccalaureate and postgraduate academic degree programs.

Degree: MS in Economics

24. Regent University

Regent University offers an MBA with a concentration in Economics that is recognized among the best online masters in economics programs in Virginia and for military members and veterans. This best online masters in economics program from Regent University is accredited by ACBSP and considered one of the country’s most affordable Christian institutions of higher education. Students graduate to find rewarding careers as research analysts, consultants, economists, financial reporters, or financial leaders, to name just a few.

Regent University was established by Pat Robertson in 1977. The university is recognized as a Christian university that is organized into eight colleges/schools. Regent University operates a robust online distance learning platform. More than 8,400 students attend classes at Regent University’s 70 acre campus. Regent University has been called the Harvard of the Christian Right by Harvey Cox.

Degree: MBA in Economics

25. Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University offers an MS in Applied Economics that can be completed entirely online and is recognized as one of New England’s best online masters in economics programs. The best online masters in economics program from Southern New Hampshire University requires degree candidates to complete 36 credit units to meet program guidelines. This graduate economics program is designed to be completed in about 1.25 years, but students can finish the academic program at their own pace, on their own schedule.

Southern New Hampshire University was established in 1932. Southern New Hampshire University is a private institution of higher education that is considered among the fastest-growing schools, due to its successful online academic degree programs. Southern New Hampshire University was originally a business school that was found by a married couple who immigrated from Russia.

Degree: MS in Applied Economics

How Much Can I Make With A Master’s in Economics?

Graduates who have earned a Master of Science in Economics can expect to receive approximately $77,000. For a Master of the Arts degree program, the annual salary is slightly lower, averaging approximately $76,000. For students who have continued to pursue a Ph.D. in Economics will average the highest wages coming in at just over $100,000 per year. Each student is working with a specific set of circumstances and may earn more or less than what is listed here.

If you have already earned a Master’s in Economics and are ready to start working in the industry, you will more than likely start earning a wage that is much lower than the average yearly wage. Part of the reason for this is your lack of experience. If you earned your degree online and went to work while you were studying, your chances of earning a higher starting wage increases dramatically. The more experience you have, the better your chances are that you will make the best possible wage and also be eligible for raises much more frequently.

The type of industry you choose to work in will also have an impact on the type of wages you receive. For example, an economist who works with the stock market may not make as much as an economist who works with financial institutions or insurance agencies. Explore your options and look into each of these career choices so that you know what options are available to you.

How is the Job Market for a Master’s in Economics?

An online Masters degree in Economics will open many doors for you as you continue to move forward with your current career. The ultimate goal of any type of online degree program is to ensure you also have all of the knowledge you need to establish yourself as a professional in your field. It’s also important to ensure that you are fully prepared to take on any challenges that may arise as you continue to pursue your and apply for the positions that mean the most to you.

The higher your degree program, the better the outlook of the job market when it comes to establishing a career in the field of economics. Jobs in economics are steadily increasing due to the increased interest in both global and domestic economies. Business analysis, actuaries, and financial researchers must be able to work with economic trends to ensure the future of their companies as well as the future of the stock market.

Individuals who have been working in the field of economics for any number of years can dramatically improve their chances for advancement if they choose to return to school to further their education. Earning an online Masters in Economics from a school that has received the proper accreditation will ensure that you are adequately prepared for any economic situation you may be forced to deal with.

As the economy begins to improve, so will the job market for graduates who are working towards their Masters or Doctorate in Economics. The more time and effort you put into your education, the quicker you will be able to earn the experience you need to apply for those upper management positions in the industry that rank high on the list when it comes to higher pay and better benefits. Keeping an eye on the job market is essential if you are getting ready to graduate and want to find out which career path is right for you.

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