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Agricultural & Applied Economics: Professional Option

Master of Science in Agricultural and Applied Economics

Taylor Hall on UW-Madison campus

The University of Wisconsin–Madison’s Master of Science in Agricultural and Applied Economics: Professional Option is a 15-month program that trains students to meet the data industry’s demands for quantitatively-skilled analysts and managers.


Is this program right for you?

The Master of Science in Agricultural and Applied Economics: Professional Option’s curriculum features three semesters and one summer term of core course offerings in econometrics, micro-economic theory, and professional development, along with a capstone practicum class leading to a professional report. Students also take electives to pursue specific interests of their choice. Students with a variety of undergraduate majors can apply to the program; previous coursework in economics (intermediate microeconomics) and math (Calculus I) are required prerequisites.

While the accelerated master’s program focuses on key themes of data analysis, applied economic intuition, and professional development, it retains enough flexibility for students to pursue individual interests in our major fields of specialty to pursue their interests in development, food and agriculture, commodity, energy, and environmental economics. Students will be well prepared to enter the professional workforce in both the U.S. and abroad in data-intensive and quantitatively focused jobs in economic consulting, business, agribusiness, non-profit organizations focused on development, and governmental sectors.

The Agricultural and Applied Economics program partners with the National Association of Business (NABE), allowing our students the option of completing NABE’s Certificate in Business Economics in conjunction with our master’s. This noncredit certificate enables students to sit for NABE’s certifying exam. The optional certificate provides a verification of Applied Economics students’ knowledge in the field of economics and data analytics. Additional coursework is required for this certificate.

Is this program right for you?

The Master of Science in Agricultural and Applied Economics: Professional Option’s curriculum features three semesters and one summer term of core course offerings in econometrics, micro-economic theory, and professional development, along with a capstone practicum class leading to a professional report. Students also take electives to pursue specific interests of their choice. Students with a variety of undergraduate majors can apply to the program; previous coursework in economics (intermediate microeconomics) and math (Calculus I) are required prerequisites.

While the accelerated master’s program focuses on key themes of data analysis, applied economic intuition, and professional development, it retains enough flexibility for students to pursue individual interests in our major fields of specialty to pursue their interests in development, food and agriculture, commodity, energy, and environmental economics. Students will be well prepared to enter the professional workforce in both the U.S. and abroad in data-intensive and quantitatively focused jobs in economic consulting, business, agribusiness, non-profit organizations focused on development, and governmental sectors.

The Agricultural and Applied Economics program partners with the National Association of Business (NABE), allowing our students the option of completing NABE’s Certificate in Business Economics in conjunction with our master’s. This noncredit certificate enables students to sit for NABE’s certifying exam. The optional certificate provides a verification of Applied Economics students’ knowledge in the field of economics and data analytics. Additional coursework is required for this certificate.

Admissions requirements

All applicants must:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
  • Have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0.
  • Submit GRE scores from within the previous five years using code 1846. (The GRE is waived for Fall 2021 applicants only.)
  • Submit evidence of English language proficiency, if applicable. The required proficiency scores are: TOEFL IBT 92, PBT 580; or IELTS 7.0.

Application materials required:

  • Online application
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of purpose
  • Transcripts
  • Two letters of recommendation

Connect with us

Program Overview: Environmental Remediation & Management

October 26
noon-12:30 p.m.
Join program staff to get more information about the Master of Science in Environmental Remediation & Management including curriculum, application process and potential career paths.
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November 10
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Meet with staff and faculty from our 160+ graduate degree programs, gain insight into the application process, and discover the array of services and resources available to graduate students at UW–Madison.
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Program highlights

  • The Agricultural and Applied Economics program is accelerated, so you can finish your master’s degree in just 15 months.
  • We recognize the importance of teaching not only valuable job and problem-solving skills, but professional work skills as well. That’s why we offer professional development opportunities, so you can sharpen your communication and management abilities.
  • Our program was designed directly with industry demands in mind. We created our courses in response to the surge in demand for quantitative-skilled analysts and data managers in fields across the agricultural and environmental spectrum.

How you'll learn

  • 15 months of full-time study on campus to earn your degree.
  • Complete a practicum course in the fall of year 2, integrating all aspects of the program.
  • Develop technical problem-solving skills while simultaneously building professional skills through the program.

Sample curriculum

Year 1 Fall

  • Microeconomics: Theory to practice
  • Applied Econometric Analysis I
  • Writing and Speaking for Applied Economists
  • Various electives

Year 1 Spring

  • Applied Econometrics Analysis II
  • Risk Analysis
  • Seminar in Quantitative and Applied Economics
  • Various electives

Year 1 Summer

  • Machine Learning in Applied Economic Analysis

Year 2 Fall

  • Professional Development for Applied Economists
  • AAEMS- PO Practicum
  • Various electives

Job outlook

Top Job Titles
  • Financial Analyst
  • Management Consultant, Risk Management, Compliance
  • Data Analyst
  • Forester
  • Energy Analyst
  • Data Scientist
Top Industries
  • Utilities
  • Crop Production
  • Support Activities for Agriculture and Forestry

Market Salary
$86K in 2019

Top Employers
  • Edison International
  • Cargill Incorporated
  • National Grid
  • Pacific Gas and Electric Company
  • Austin Energy
  • United States Forest Service

Source: Burning Glass Technologies: Labor Insight. 2020.
Burning Glass Technologies’ Market Salary is an estimated expected salary. Market Salary uses machine learning algorithms to account for experience, skill, and education among other factors that may impact individual salaries.

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Our friendly, knowledgeable enrollment coaches are here to answer your questions. Contact an enrollment coach to:

  • Learn how to make this program work with your life/schedule
  • Verify credit transfers
  • Get help with your application
  • Determine if financial aid is available

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