Agricultural and Resource Economics

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 17.2 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 35.2 k / Year(s) Deadline: Jan 17, 2025
601–800 place StudyQA ranking:4743 Duration:48 months

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The Department offers both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from one of the nation’s premier graduate programs in agricultural and resource economics. Both programs focus on the application of advanced microeconomic theory and econometrics to issues in environmental and resource economics, agricultural economics, and development economics. Courses are taught by leading researchers in those fields, who combine rigorous scholarship with extensive policy experience.

The Department’s faculty includes internationally prominent scholars in environmental and resource economics, agricultural economics, and development economics. In recognition of their research, Department faculty members have received such international awards as Germany’s Alexander von Humboldt Prize, the American Economic Association’s John Bates Clark Medal, and the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association’s Quality of Research Discovery and Publication of Enduring Quality Awards, among others. Several have been elected fellows of such professional associations as the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association (formerly the American Agricultural Economics Association), the Association of Environmental and Resource Economics, the Econometric Society, and the American Statistical Association. Department faculty members have served as presidents of the American Agricultural Economics Association and Association of Environmental and Resource Economists and as editors and associate editors of the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, the Journal of Public Economics, and Environment and Development Economics, among others. One faculty member is currently a research fellow of the National Bureau of Economic Research. For additional Department highlights, please visit

The policy experience of the Department’s faculty is equal to its scholarship in both quality and extent. Three have served on the staff of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. Other policy experience includes service as consultants to agencies and organizations like the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Environmental Protection Agency, the World Bank, and the Inter-American Development Bank. The University’s location in the Washington, D.C., area provides numerous opportunities for interaction with the World Bank, International Food Policy Research Institute, Resources for the Future, International Monetary Fund, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Agency for International Development, Food and Drug Administration, Inter-American Development Bank, Census Bureau, and a host of other such institutions and organizations.

  • ECON 603: Microeconomic Analysis I (3 credits)
  • AREC 623: Applied Econometrics I (4 credits)
  • AREC 624: Applied Econometrics II (4 credits)
  • AREC 620: Optimization in Agricultural and Resource Economics (3 credits)
  • AREC 610: Microeconomic Applications in Agricultural and Resource Markets (3 credits)

The M.S. program trains students to conduct economic research in the fields of environmental and resource economics, agricultural economics, and development economics. It provides rigorous training in microeconomic theory and econometrics and in the application of microeconomics and econometrics to policy issues. Students completing their MS degrees go on to work in U.S. government agencies and international organizations.

The M.S. program requires a minimum of 33 credits of coursework (i.e., 16 credits of electives in addition to the 17 credits of required coursework) and defense of a scholarly paper. No M.S. thesis is required.

Required courses for the M.S. program consist of basic coursework in microeconomic theory and econometrics:

  • The first semester of the sequence in microeconomic theory (ECON 603).
  • A two-semester sequence in applied econometrics (AREC 623 and 624).
  • A one-semester course on mathematical optimization (AREC 620).

A one-semester course on applications of microeconomic theory to agricultural and resource economics (AREC 610).

The first-year coursework normally includes these 17 credits (3 credits each for ECON 603, AREC 620, AREC 610 plus 4 credits each for AREC 623 and AREC 624).
M.S. students fulfill additional coursework requirements by taking electives to suit their own interests during their second year. Elective courses are normally selected from M.S. level courses (600 level or above) in AREC or ECON but may be taken in other disciplines with adviser approval. 


  1. Graduate application Graduate application (link is external)
  2. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores
  3. Transcripts
  4. Statement of purpose
  5. Three letters of recommendation
  6. A curriculum vitae or resume
  7. A listing of all economics, mathematics and statistics courses taken
  8. Non-refundable application fee ($75) for each program to which an applicant applies
  9. Students from non-English-speaking countries are required to demonstrate English proficiency by providing scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

The University of Maryland awards a variety of scholarships from federal, state, and institutional resources to help defray the student's cost of education. Scholarships and grants are gift funds that do not need to be repaid. Merit-based scholarships are primarily awarded to students based on academic performance; while need-based grants are awarded to students who demonstrate financial need based on the completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form.

Students holding only the following Visas are not eligible for any federal, state, or institutional financial aid:• Student Visas (F1 or F2).• Exchange Visitor Visas (J1 or J2).• G-Series Visas (international organizations).• Non-citizens with only I-688A or I-688B Cards.• Non-citizens with only a Notice of Approval to Apply for Permanent Residence (I-171 or I-464).• Non-citizens with only Family Unity Status (Form I-797).
To be considered for federal, state, and/or institutional aid, students must be at least one of the following:• United States citizen (native-born or naturalized).• U.S. national (includes natives of American Samoa or Swain's Island).• U.S. permanent resident. Must have an I-151, I-551, or I-551C (Alien Registration Receipt Card), or a Passport or an I-94 Form with a stamp indicating I-551 status.
Eligible Non-citizen with an INS Arrival-Departure Record (I-94) Form with one of the following designations:• Refugee• Indefinite Parole"and/or Humanitarian Parole• Asylum Granted• Cuban-Haitian Entrant, Status Pending• Conditional Entrant• Temporary Resident with an I-688 Card.
If you hold or intend to seek an F-1 Student or J-1 Exchange Visitor visa to study in the United States, you must complete the Certification of Finances, including providing bank statements that demonstrate sufficient funds to cover these expenses.

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