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Agricultural & Resource Economics (MS) 
Program Description

Students in the Agricultural and Resource Economics (AREC) Master of Science degree program have a choice between a thesis option with Applied Economics and Policy Analysis (AEPA) and a non-thesis option with Applied Econometrics and Data Analytics (AEDA). The current curriculum requirements for the AREC Master of Science Degree programs can be found at and, we do not accept applications under the general Agricultural and Resource Economics Master of Science program, one of the two options above must be decided at the time of application. 

Department/Academic Unit(s)

Agricultural & Resource Economics -

The AREC Department offers a program leading to the Master of Science degree with a major in Agricultural & Resource Economics. A broad spectrum of agricultural economics subject matter is presented, with emphasis in natural resources, international business, and agribusiness. The Master's program provides training in the theory and methods of applied agricultural and resource economics. Graduating students are qualified for positions in the private sector with agribusiness, financial, farm management, and consulting firms, and in state and federal government agencies. Some students choose to follow the master's degree with enrollment in a Ph.D. program, either at the University of Arizona or elsewhere. Many AREC graduates have excelled in premier doctoral programs throughout the United States. We also offer an Agricultural & Resource Economics minor for PhD seeking students.  We have a strong and consistent history of Peace Corps Fellows in our Master's program and we proudly invite all Returning Peace Corps Volunteers to apply for this graduate program.  Interested in a Peace Corps Fellowship?  See for more information

See the Department sponsored interactive Returning Peace Corps Volunteer Mapping Project to view our program's connections with Peace Corps Volunteers:

College of Agriculture & Life Sciences  
Campus where offered
Main Campus - Tucson  
Admissions Contact
Danielle Pilar Buhrow
Graduate Program Coordinator
Danielle Pilar Buhrow
Director of Graduate Studies
George B Frisvold
Graduate College Degree Counselor
Guadalupe Estrella
Tuition and Fees
Please refer to the UA Bursar's Office Tuition and Fees Calculator for up-to-date information about tuition and fees. 
Please refer to the UA Registrar's's Office Special Course Fees for up-to-date information about special course fees. 

Admissions Information

Admissions Requirements
  • Bachelor's or Master's degree
  • GPA 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in Bachelor's Degree Program or Master's Program
  • GRE
  • 3 Letters of Recommendation PDF format
  • Statement of Purpose PDF format
  • CV or Resume  PDF format
Standardized Tests

Required test(s):
Recommended Minimum GRE Quantitative score of 70th percentile or higher.

International students (of non-English speaking countries):  See the University's Acceptable English Proficiency credentials here
Minimum TOEFL (Paper-based) Score: 550
Minimum TOEFL (Internet-based) Score: 80

Minimum IELTS (overall band score): 7

Financial Aid

Graduate assistantships

A majority of students in the M.S. program receive financial assistance, usually in the form of research and teaching assistantships. In view of the reasonable cost of living in Tucson, the real income offered by these stipends is relatively high and covers basic costs of living. The assistantships also carry waivers of out-of-state tuition and health insurance (exclusive of dental and vision).  All applicants that submit a completed admission application as of the annual priority deadline (Feb. 1) are reviewed for possible assistantships on a competitive basis.

Tuition waivers

A small number of in-state tuition waivers are available to students with a GPA above 3.4.


Several scholarships are available for academically qualified students. Frequently, a student not awarded an assistantship may be employed by the Department to aid in research work. Students who do not receive assistantships may also hold part-time jobs in other departments or jobs outside the University.

Admissions Deadlines

Domestic applicants:

  • Fall:  Priority deadline February 1, applications are accepted after this date but for those seeking graduate assistantships February 1st is the recommended deadline.  Due to the competitive nature of graduate assistantships, applications received after the priority deadline may not be eligible for a graduate assistantship or other departmental funding.
  • Spring: Atypical for students to begin in Spring semesters.  Contact department for more information.

International applicants:

  • Fall: Priority deadline February 1, applications are accepted after this date but for those seeking graduate assistantships February 1st is the recommended deadline.  Due to the competitive nature of graduate assistantships, applications received after the priority deadline may not be eligible for a graduate assistantship or other departmental funding.  For Visa reasons, the firm deadline for international application submission is May 15th each year for Fall admission.
  • Spring: Atypical for students to begin in Spring semesters.  Contact department for more information. 
International Conditional Admission
International applicants may be considered for conditional admission to this program at the department's discretion.
Other Information
The GRE Institution Code for The University of Arizona is 4832

Completion Requirements

Degree Requirements

General program requirements
AREC MS depending on the program selected, AEDA or AEPA, requires three or four semesters of coursework. Students complete a 15-credit core requirement including two courses in economic theory and two courses in econometrics. All M.S. students are required to take an intensive three-week review course in mathematics (AREC 580) before the start of the fall semester (July-August).  Each semester in which the degree is in progress, students are required to enroll in AREC 596A, the program's seminar course.  This course is 1 unit and will be completed 4 times for a total of 4 seminar units for those seeking AEPA and 3 times for 3 total units for those seeking AEDA.

Students may select remaining coursework according to their interests. To add depth to their program, students are encouraged (but not required) to focus their efforts in an area of specialization. Students choose specific courses in consultation with their advisor or Director of Graduate Studies.

Thesis and examinations
Students with our Applied Economics and Policy Analysis (AEPA) program will complete a thesis, students in the Applied Econometrics and Data Analytics (AEDA) program are not required to complete a thesis.  Under AEPA, students write a thesis and take a six thesis units after completing the core courses.  With the second option AEDA, students complete the core course requirements, as well as graduate level electives with the permission of the AREC Director of Graduate Studies.  

All AREC M.S. candidates must pass a final oral examination or a thesis defense, this exam will focus on the student's coursework/projects, and those in AEPA will complete a thesis, for which a thesis defense is required. In the event of failure, students may repeat the oral examination/defense once.

Grade requirements
Students are required to earn a 3.0 (B) grade or better in each of their core courses and a 3.0 (B) average GPA in all graduate coursework. Students failing to maintain a 3.0 grade average will be placed on academic probation and possibly dropped from the program.  If this occurs, the student must petition the Graduate Advisory Committee for permission to re-enter the program.

Core courses

AREC 504 Production Economics (3 units)
AREC 513 Consumption Economics & Price Analysis (3 units)
AREC 548 Introduction to Statistical Methods in Economics (4 units)
AREC 549 Applied Econometric Analysis (3 units)
AREC 580 Math for Economists (2 units)
AREC 559  Advanced Applied Econometrics (4 units) Required for AEDA only
AREC 596A AREC Seminar (taken each semester for 3 units AEDA or 4 units AEPA)

Language requirements

There are no language requirements for this degree.

Minor Requirements

A minor is not required for the Agricultural and Resource Economics Master of Science degree program, though some students may choose to pursue a minor in another program of study at the University of Arizona. Adding a minor to their program will require additional coursework and may require additional time to complete their degree. Students interested in a minor should discuss this option with their advisor or the Graduate Coordinator.

Student Handbook  
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Last revised 14 Jun 2019