Applications and Admissions FAQ

What is the application deadline?
The official online application deadline for the Ph.D. program in Economics is midnight (Eastern Standard Time) on January 15, 2015. This is the final deadline for international and domestic applicants. All completed applications received by the January 15, 2015 deadline will be reviewed, and admissions decisions will be made without regard to the date of submission of the application. Late and incomplete applications will not be considered.

Can you send me information on the Ph.D. program in Economics?
The Economics Department no longer mails brochures. Information on our Ph.D. program is available on our website.

Do you offer a master's program in Economics? If so, how do I apply?
Our department offers admission only to students interested in earning a Ph.D. Our program is not designed for students who are interested only in a Master's degree. However, our Ph.D. students may obtain an M.A. degree during their program, either as a terminal degree for students leaving the Ph.D. program, or as an intermediate sign of achievement for students who are continuing in the Ph.D. program.

For students who are interested in applied economics, but are not pursuing a Ph.D., the University of Maryland offers a master of professional studies in applied economics. This program is designed for working professionals; it is not appropriate for a Ph.D. in economics.  Contact masters@econ.umd.edu or visit http://masters.econ.umd.edu for more information.

Do you offer a part-time program?
Our Ph.D. program in Economics is strictly a full-time program.

Do you offer spring or summer admission?
Applicants are considered for admission to the fall term only. There is no spring or summer admission.

Where can I find an application for the Ph.D. program in Economics?
The University of Maryland no longer prints paper applications. The Graduate School strongly encourages prospective students to apply online at: http://www.gradschool.umd.edu/gss/admission.html

Where do I send my application materials?
General instructions for applying to graduate school at the University of Maryland can be found at: http://www.gradschool.umd.edu/gss/admission.html

When and how will I be notified of the admissions decision?
Admissions decisions are usually made in early March. We will send an offer letter of admission by email to be followed up by an official offer letter by first class mail. If you are not offered admission, you will receive a formal rejection letter directly from the Graduate School.

How can I pay the application fee?
Most students elect to pay the non-refundable $75 application fee with a credit card during the electronic application process. If you'd like to pay by credit card, but are hesitant to submit your credit card payment online, please go to http://www.gradschool.umd.edu/images/uploads/Graduate%20Application%20Fee%20Payment%20Form.pdf and print and mail the completed form to:

University of Maryland, College Park
Enrollment Services Operations - Attn: Graduate Admission
Room 0130 Mitchell Building
College Park, Maryland 20742

Payments by check or money order should include the applicant's full name and University/Student Identification Number, have encoded routing and transit numbers, and be drawn on a U.S. bank.

How much is the application fee? Can it be waived? Can I pay the fee after I find out if I have been admitted?
The non-refundable application fee for both international and domestic students is $75. There is a cost associated with processing applications. That cost is met through the payment of the application fee. We do not provide fee waivers under any circumstances. We will not begin our evaluation of an application until we have confirmation from the Graduate Admissions Office that the fee has been paid. As a result, you may not pay the application fee at a later time, nor can you wait to pay the fee until after you find out if you have been admitted. We understand that currency restrictions often present payments problems for international applicants. In these cases, international students may have their fee paid by a third party (someone who is currently in the United States and has access to USD). Should you choose to do this, please make sure that payments clearly identify the applicant by name and date of birth.

I am interested in an assistantship or fellowship. Do I submit a separate application for funding?
It is not necessary to submit a separate application for funding. All applicants will be considered for assistantships and fellowships through the regular application review process. Funding from the department is merit-based.

I am currently in a Ph.D. program. How can I transfer to your program?
You will need to apply through our regular admissions process, and your application will be evaluated along with the other applications that we receive from students seeking admission to the program.

In general, credits do not transfer. A student can petition the Graduate School to allow course work from another institution to count toward course work requirements in the department, but permission is not automatically granted. Students who have completed course work at another Ph.D. program can opt to try to pass our first-year comprehensive exams upon entering the program rather than take our first-year course work, but virtually all transfer students end up taking our first-year courses upon arrival.

How can I check the status of my application?
To check the status of your application to the University of Maryland, please go to http://www.testudo.umd.edu/apps/graddoctrack, Maryland's online records and registration site.

You will login with your University ID (probably your Social Security Number) and the PIN will be your birthdate (MMDDYY). By clicking on "Admission Status Check," you will find out whether you have been admitted, rejected, or if your application is pending. By clicking on "Graduate School Application Document Status Check," you can find out which documents (transcripts, letters, etc.) have not been received and processed by the University.

We check off as "received" your admission documents (letters of recommendation, transcripts etc.), as soon as possible. As the admissions deadline approaches, there is sometimes up to a two-week delay from when your materials are received and when we are able to check them off on your online application.

I am having technical problems with my University Online Application or the Application Supplemental Form. What should I do?
Please email gradschool@umd.edu with technical issues concerning the Online Application or Application Supplemental Form. Please be clear in your email as to which application you are having problems with.

How many applications do you receive? How many students will you admit? And how many of these will receive an offer of funding?
We expect to receive about 700 applications. We anticipate sending acceptance letters to approximately 120 applicants and we expect to have an entering class of 30 to 35 students. Approximately 2/3 of our entering class will receive funding of some kind (assistantship or fellowship) in the first year of our Ph.D. program. The ultimate number of acceptance letters we send and the ultimate number of students who receive funding is subject to budgetary considerations.

What kind of mathematics preparation do I need in order to be admitted?
It is extremely rare for us to admit a student who has not completed the equivalent of three semesters of calculus, a semester of linear algebra, and a semester in differential equations at the time of application. The overwhelming majority of admitted students have also completed course work in real analysis or other upper-level mathematics courses.

If I send an email to you with information on my GPA, my GRE scores, the courses that I have taken, and my work experience, can you assess the probability that I will be admitted to the PhD program?
Because of the large number of inquiries we receive concerning admission to our Ph.D. program, and the large number of completed applications we receive, we cannot assess an individual's probability of admission without evaluating that individual's completed application and the completed applications of all other applicants.

In general, our admitted students have GPA's well above a "B" average, particularly in economics and mathematics; very high GRE's (particularly quantitative); math preparation that includes at a minimum three semesters of calculus, a semester of linear algebra, and a semester of differential equations; and three excellent letters of reference that speak to an applicant's potential to successfully complete a Ph.D. in economics.

Can you provide some summary statistics on this year's incoming first-year class?
The median GRE test scores of our admitted students were: Quantitative=800; Verbal=620; Analytical Writing=4.5. Not surprisingly, there is a considerable variation among students in the Verbal and Analytical Writing sections due to differences in English language proficiency. Our first-year class for 2012 is 21 percent female and 86 percent international. 68 percent of the class has received funding (in the form of a fellowship or an assistantship) from the department. We do not publish average GPA scores of incoming students since not all students come from systems with comparable grading scales, and since the quality of the undergraduate (or graduate) institution can measurably affect how the GPA is evaluated.

Can I reapply if I am denied admission? How do I reapply?
Yes. We maintain application materials for one year. If you wish to reapply, you must submit a new application and application fee. If you would like to update any other supporting materials, please do so. You can also request that supporting materials in a prior application be used for your new application.

Are there graduate-level, non-degree options at the University of Maryland? If so, how can I apply?
Non-degree seeking students wishing to take graduate classes at the University should apply as Advanced Special Students. For more information on Advanced Special Student status, see http://www.gradschool.umd.edu/gss/non_degree_admission.htm. The Advanced Special Student status is not available to students in F-1 or J-1 status. These students should consult with the Office of International Studies at 301-314-7740 if they have questions about exceptions in this category.