The Agricultural and Applied Economics M.S. AAE Traditional Option (MSTO), a STEM-designated program, is ideal for students interested in preparing to apply to Ph.D. programs in Agricultural and Applied Economics or in pursuing a research or business career. Students take a set of core courses and choose elective courses in Economics of Natural Resources and Environment, International Development, Economics of Agriculture or Community Development Economics. The degree requires 30 credits of coursework and normally takes 3 to 4 semesters to complete. Applications are accepted for the Fall term only.
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- Online application
- Statement of purpose
Summarize educational goals, past experiences relevant to future study, and career plans. Include details about your specific research interests. Information about educational background or other relevant details should be included. Use pdf format to upload to the online application.
- Three letters of recommendation
Solicit detailed letters from instructors or advisors who are able to judge your qualifications for graduate work in this field. Most useful are letters from faculty who have taught you in one or more classes. In the application, you will supply their email addresses, and the Graduate School will send them instructions on how to upload their letters.
- Transcripts from all colleges or universities
- You will be asked to upload unofficial transcripts or copies of official transcripts into the online application. The Graduate School will request official paper copies of all transcripts if you are admitted to the department.
- International academic records must be in the original language accompanied by an official English translation.
- Graduate Record Exam scores.
GRE scores must be from within the previous 5 years. For score reporting, use the UW-Madison institution code of 1846. No department code necessary. GMAT scores are not accepted in lieu of GRE.
- English proficiency exam for international students
We accept scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB), or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) This requirement is waived for students who have studied for at least 2 semesters in the U.S. or if English was the language of instruction for their undergraduate degree. For score reporting, use the UW-Madison institution code of 1846.
Cost of Study and Financial Aid
The AAE Department does not offer graduate assistantships to M.S. students as part of the admission process. M.S. students may find positions in other departments on campus through the UW Job Center.
MSTO Admissions Information
- The MS AAE Traditional Option includes course work that presumes students have successfully taken courses in:
- intermediate microeconomic theory
- intermediate macroeconomic theory
- two semesters of calculus
- introductory statistics
Number of credits of taught courses: 30
Average time to degree: 3-4 semesters
MSPO Admissions Timeline
Early November: Take the Graduate Record Exam
December 15: Priority consideration applications due
January 15: All complete applications DUE
February: Admissions Decisions sent via email
May 1: Deadline to accept admission
Frequently Asked Questions
MS AAE Traditional Option
Questions about the Application
Q What are the institution and department codes I should give to ETS so that my GRE or TOEFL scores will come to you?
A The institution code for UW-Madison is 1846. You do not need to list a code for agricultural economics. Our Graduate School will obtain scores electronically and load them into an applicant database accessible by any department.
Q I graduated from a U.S. University. Do I have to take the TOEFL?
A No. Your U.S. studies exempt you from this requirement. Anyone who has studied in the United States or another English-speaking country for one or more years, and the language of instruction was English, does not need to submit a TOEFL score.
Q Is there a form for letters of recommendation?
A Recommendation writers should follow emailed instructions for electronically submitting letters.
Q Do you admit students for the spring semester?
A No. Courses are sequenced so that the fall courses must precede the Spring courses.
Q Can I apply to both the departments of Agricultural and Applied Economics and Economics? What is needed to do so?
A Yes. You can apply with ONE application to three graduate programs when you apply to the UW Graduate School. If you are accepted to all, you have to choose one at the end of the process.
Q Can I apply to both the traditional Master’s program and the MS Professional Option?
A Yes. Simply indicate interest in both degree options in your statement of purpose.
Q I can’t afford the application fee – can I apply for a fee waiver?
A There are no waivers at this time. Students must submit the application fee before the department will be able to review their application for admission.
Q I am a Visiting International Student. Can I apply to the MS AAE Traditional Option?
A Yes, you can apply at the end of your first year for the Fall start. Up to 15 credits can be counted toward your MS AAE Traditional Option program. Applications are taken for Fall only.
Q I’m not yet certain if I want a Ph.D. If I apply to the MS AAE Traditional Option program, can I later apply to go on for a Ph.D.?
A Yes. You can apply at the end of your first year of the MS AAE Traditional Option study. Master’s students are not considered for financial aid. Your PhD application will be considered for funding opportunities.
Questions about Academics
Q What is the difference between the MS Traditional Option and MS Professional Option?
A The MS Traditional Option is ideal for students interested in preparing to apply to Ph.D. programs in Agricultural and Applied Economics or in pursuing a research or other related data analytic careers. Students take a set of core courses but have much more flexibility in choosing courses in Economics of Natural Resources and Environment, International Development, Economics of Agriculture or Community Development Economics. The degree normally takes 3 to 4 semesters to complete. Applications are accepted for the Fall term only.
The MS AAE Professional Option (MSPO) program is a full-time, 15-month, accelerated professional master’s program offered on a cohort model. The program focuses on helping students to develop skills in economic reasoning, data management, empirical analysis, and technical communication. Students are prepared to enter the professional workforce in both the US and abroad in data-intensive and quantitatively focused jobs in economic consulting, businesses, agribusinesses, non-profit organizations focused on development, and governmental sectors. Students take a prescribed set of courses in a cohort setting. Full-time students attend Fall, Spring, Summer and Fall terms. Applications are accepted in Summer and Fall only. Students enter this program with a variety of majors but have taken the prerequisite courses. There is also a tuition difference. The MSPO program’s tuition is $1500 per credit.
Q How is your program ranked?
A There are many rankings, with Wisconsin consistently placing in the top five to twelve programs nationally.
Questions about Admissions and Financial Aid
Q Is there a minimum grade point average or test score required for admission?
A The Graduate School requires an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) or the equivalent for admission. There is no cutoff for GRE scores here are average scores for accepted candidates. All application materials are taken into consideration when making admission decisions.
GRE V: 155/69%
GRE Q: 166/88%
Q Do you provide assistantships or scholarships for MS AAE Traditional Option degree students?
A No, not at this time. MS students can apply to jobs that are posted in the UW Jobs listing and work on an hourly basis.
Q What is your acceptance rate?
A The acceptance rate for MS AAE Traditional Option is 34%.
Q What is the size of your entering class?
A The combined MS AAE student number is generally 25 to 40 students. Each year there are 4-8 MSTO students and 12-15 MSPO students.
Q Can I be a part-time student?
A Students can pursue the MS AAE Traditional Option on a part-time basis. However, International students who are on F1 Visas must be enrolled full-time.
We welcome you to come visit the department. Any prospective students who would like to arrange an on-campus visit should contact the Graduate Program Coordinator at least two weeks before coming. We will arrange meetings with students and faculty, to help you learn as much as you can about our programs.
This program admits students only for the Fall semester that begins in September each year. There is no summer entry.
|By November||Take Graduate Record Exam (GRE). GRE scores must be from within the previous 5 years.|
|December 15||Complete application due for priority consideration for admission|
|January 15||All applications due|
|February||Admissions offers emailed|
|May 1||Deadline to accept admission|