University of Tennessee

Admission to the Program

Candidates for the Haslam’s Ph.D. in economics apply directly through the Graduate School. There is no separate department application process. The program generally enrolls six to 10 students per year.

Economics Ph.D. Program Requirements
Priority Deadline February 1 (applications considered until class is filled)
Undergraduate Degree All accepted, economics preferred
Master’s Degree Not required
Acceptance rate 30-35%
Mean GPA 3.6 undergraduate, 3.8 graduate
Mean GRE–Quantitative 85th percentile
Mean GRE–Verbal 68th percentile
English Language Proficiency
*IBT 100 or higher
*PBT 600 or higher
IELTS 7 or higher

We prefer the GRE although the GMAT is also acceptable. The TOEFL or IELTS is required for non-native English speakers, except students who have earned a degree from a U.S. institution within two years prior to enrollment. The application deadline for international students is February 1.

Recommendation letters and performance and completion of coursework in economics (intermediate microeconomics and macroeconomics), mathematics (two to three semester of calculus, one in linear algebra) and econometrics/statistics is also very important. Therefore, we encourage applicants with GRE scores below these benchmarks to apply. We are interested in attracting talented, motivated students. Strong writing, computer programming and quantitative skills are highly desirable.



Recommended Coursework
*Intermediate Microeconomic Theory (Econ 311 or equivalent)
*Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory (Econ 313 or equivalent)
*Introduction to Econometrics (Econ 381 or equivalent)
*Introduction to Statistics (Stat 201 or equivalent)
*Calculus I & II (Math 141 & 142 or equivalent)
*Matrix Algebra I (Math 251 or equivalent)

Additional coursework in economics, statistics and mathematics is of course desirable.

New students are required to take a three-credit course in mathematical economics (ECON 581), which begins approximately three weeks before the first semester.

Oral Proficiency Exam

All students (including U.S. citizens and permanent residents) whose native language is not English are required to take the OPIc (Oral Proficiency Interview computer). Admission to the program does not depend upon the results of the OPIc. Test results will be used in advising, coursework determination and in making work assignments.

Financial Aid

Applicants indicate as part of the admissions application whether they wish to be considered for funding. There is no separate application form.

We award approximately eight assistantships each year on a competitive basis. Assistantships pay about $18,000 per academic year, and include a tuition waiver and health insurance. Typically those awarded assistantships serve as teaching assistants in their first and second years. More advanced students are either assigned to teach their own courses or are assigned to faculty or projects as research assistants.