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Economics with lack of Math

4 posts in this topic

Hi guys,

I am graduating this spring as a double major in International Economics and Latin. As a double major I havent been able to take too many quantitative classes. I have taken Calc I, Statistics, econometrics, and Linear Algebra. I got all A's in those classes. I skipped Calc II.

My current cumulative GPA is a 3.97. I am a certified Stats, Economics, and Latin tutor. I also have been notified that I am winning my schools outstanding Economics award and am a finalist for a Fulbright Grant for next year. I am also part of our schools economics and Latin academic fraternities.

I haven't taken my GRE's as I am going to take a year off but will be planning on applying for a Ph.D. program in the fall. I am just afraid that my lack of quant classes will disqualify me. I would like to apply to the Ivies, and Vanderbilt's Law and Economics program, but I know all of these are long shots. What are some other schools that I could realistically have a shot at? Any advice would be appreciated! Thanks guys!

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I don't think you'd be a contender at schools in the Top 15/20, to be honest. It's great that you have such a high GPA given your classes, but none of them really speak to the quantitative rigor of, say, MCWG Microeconomics, which will be of the 'easier' textbooks/material you'll find at top programs (Micro theory-heavy schools like MIT will start off with MCWG, Varian, and Kreps), which demand high familiarity with analysis/proof-based math backgrounds.

But that's just speculation. You're a potential Fulbright scholar, which may change up the expectations, but the typical admit at Econ PhD programs at the Ivys (only looking at the Ivys that are actually known for Economics) and other top schools, your current course load really wouldn't impress any adcomm.

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If you really have your sights set on only going to a top program (which is smart if you do eventually want to have an academic job at a research university), then I'd highly recommend to get a Masters or at least take some classes in Math that will at demonstrate to adcomms that you can handle the rigor. That's really the only uncertainty an adcomm will have towards your application--it's just that math abilities are also the most diagnostic/important factor in admissions.

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