Economics MA with Thesis

Application Requirements​

The Economics department invites applications from highly motivated students with strong analytical training regardless of background.

A complete package of application includes the following documents:

1.Transcripts (B.A. and M.A. when applicable)
You must have a minimum 3.00 GPA

2. GRE or ALES

3. English Proficiency Exam (TOEFL or YDS/e-YDS or YÖKDİL/e-YÖKDİL)

4. Statement of Purpose

5. Letters of Recommendation

Minimum Required Scores for Admission to Economics MA Program

Minimum Required Scores for Admission to Economics MA Program
ALES (Equally Weighted) 70
GRE (Quantitative) 155
YDS/e-YDS 80

Statement of Purpose

Required for all applicants. It should not exceed 2,000 words focusing on the following questions: 

  • Why do you apply to Koç University?
  • Why do you apply to this program?
  • What are your career objectives?

Letters of Recommendation

  • The Graduate School requires two letters of recommendation for MA applications.
  • Letters of recommendation should be by persons well qualified to speak from first-hand knowledge about the applicant’s potential for graduate study.
  • Letters of recommendation must be submitted online.


  • You must have a minimum 3.00 GPA.
  • We strongly encourage applicants to submit a scanned image of the transcript at the time of application, which can speed processing; however, a final, official transcript will be required of all admitted students during registration.

**Applicants who have attended international institutions must submit transcripts or certified attestations of study, with certified English translations.


  • Applicants to MA programs must have their results from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE-for foreign applicants) or ALES (Akademik Lisansüstü Eğitim Sınavı-for native applicants) General Test.
  • You need to upload available scores during online application. You will be able to leave these spaces empty if your scores are not available at the time of application.
  • We do accept applications without ALES/GRE scores. However, you must submit your scores as soon as they are announced.

English Proficiency Exam

  • All applicants whose native language is not English must have their results from one of the following exams:
    • YDS or e-YDS
    • YÖKDİL or e-YÖKDİL
  • You need to upload available scores during online application. You will be able to leave these spaces empty if your scores are not available at the time of application.
  • We do accept applications without English proficiency exam scores. However, you must submit your scores as soon as they are announced.

MA with Thesis

MA in Economics is a two-year program with a thesis requirement that establishes a solid foundation in economic theory and econometrics and emphasizes rigorous research under close faculty supervision. The first year of the program is built around core courses in Mathematics, Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, and Econometrics. During the second year students take further advanced courses in their fields of interest and participate in seminars. They start working on their thesis by the end of their first year and continue throughout the second year. Students are expected to present their thesis research at different outlets and turn it into a publishable paper.

The program is designed to prepare students to conduct theoretical and applied research inside or outside academia. Its rigorous mathematical approach provides an excellent preparation for a Ph.D. in Economics. It also imparts highly marketable applied research skills and prepares students for careers in government, business, and private non-profit organizations.

The Economics faculty at Koç University has a solid reputation as contributors to the frontiers of knowledge in Türkiye and abroad.

Recently, the department has been ranked number 1 in Türkiye and continues to improve its ranking in Europe and the world.

Rankings are available here.

We strongly believe that Koç University is one of the best places for a master’s degree in economics.

The Economics department invites applications from highly motivated students with strong analytical training regardless of background.

ECON 500- Summer Semester: Mandatory Math Camp for 3 weeks
1st Year – Fall Semester1st Year – Spring Semester
ECON 501 – Mathematics for EconomistsECON 504- Microeconomics I
ECON 503 – Microeconomics IECON 508- Macroeconomics II
ECON 507 – Macroeconomics IECON 512- Econometrics II
ECON 511 – Econometrics IElective
KOLT 500: TA WorkshopsECON 590- Seminar Course
TEACH 500: TA AssignmentsETHR 500 Ethics Course
ECON 590: SeminarTEACH 500: TA Assignments
2nd Year – Fall Semester2nd Year – Spring Semester
ECON 510- Research MethodsECON 595: MA Dissertation
ElectiveTEACH 500: TA Assignments
ENGL 500 : English Academic WritingECON 590: Seminar
TEACH 500: TA Assignments 
ECON 595: MA Dissertation 
ECON 590: Seminar

* Either 2 of the following electives:This template is subject to change

ECON 530 – Experimental Economics
ECON 532 – Economics of Information and Contracts
ECON 580 – The Economics of Institutions
ECON 505 – Topics in Microeconomics
ECON 509 – Topics in Macroeconomics
ECON 513 – Topics in Econometrics
ECON 550 – Topics in Economics

In addition, students must enroll in ECON 591 Seminar in Economics in Fall, ECON 592 Seminar in Economics in Spring, and ECON 595 MA Thesis in Spring. These are non-credit courses.

Students who have teaching assignments are required to take the TEAC 500 course.  

Course Descriptions

ECON 500-Mathematical Foundations (non-credit, pre-fall Term 1st Year)
To facilitate a swift transition from undergraduate to graduate training, the mathematical foundation that all students should have before starting the MA courses is reviewed in a four-week long intensive Math Camp.  Classes meet three days a week and there is an evaluation at the end of each week. Topics include:  mathematical statements and proofs; functions; sequences and limits; continuity; differentiation; metric spaces; integration.

ECON 501 Mathematics for Economists
Covers selected topics in mathematics that are frequently used in the economic theory and its applications. Topics include: introduction to optimization theory (existence of a solution, alternative characterization of compactness, Weirestrass Theorem, convexity); convex sets, concave and quasi-concave functions; characterization of a solution, Lagrange and Kuhn-Tucker approaches; parametric continuity, correspondences and maximum theorem; parametric monotonicity, lattices, supermodularity; fixed point theorems.

ECON 503 Microeconomics I
Consumer theory; production theory; general equilibrium and welfare.

ECON 504 Microeconomics II
Choice under uncertainty; game theory; mechanism design; principal-agent models.

ECON 507 Macroeconomics I
Long-term economic growth; overlapping generations models; consumption, saving, and investment; real interest rates and asset prices; money and inflation.

ECON 508 Macroeconomics II
Classical and Keynesian theories of cyclical fluctuations; real business cycle theory; determination of employment and real wages; credit markets and financial stability; stabilization policy.

ECON 509 Topics in Macroeconomics
Focus is on applications that address macroeconomic problems. Topics will be announced before the semester.

ECON 510 Research Methods

Comprehensive overview of research methodology and ethical norms underlying the production and dissemination of original research in economics. Formulation of the research question, understanding the use of different types of tools in answering the question, and presenting the findings in a carefully crafted scientific book or article.  Analysis of important methodological issues confronting researchers in economics, such as the efficacy of economic models in capturing important real-life phenomena, the problem of identifying causality or making appropriate statistical inferences from available data.

ECON 511 Econometrics I
Review of probability and statistics: random variables, univariate and joint probability distributions, expectations; bivariate normal; sampling distributions; introduction to asymptotic theory; estimation; inference. Linear regression: conditional expectation function; multiple regression; classical regression model, inference and applications.

ECON 512 Econometrics II
Departures from the standard assumptions: specification tests; a first look at time series; generalized regression; nonlinear regression; simultaneous equations, identification, instrumental variables. Extensions and applications: ML, GMM, VAR, GARCH, panel data.

ECON 513 Topics in Econometrics
Focus is on econometric applications which address both micro- or macroeconomic problems. Students will acquire proficiency with standard econometric software. Topics will be announced before the semester.

ECON 532 – Economics of Information and Contracts
This course analyzes problems created by informational asymmetries between agents and how properly designed contracts could ameliorate those problems. Topics covered will include adverse selection, screening, signaling, and moral hazard, as well as various applications to insurance, labor, and credit markets; auctions; and corporate finance.

ECON 530 – Experimental Economics
This course aims to introduce students to the use of experiments in analyzing economic behavior. The course will teach the fundamentals of designing a good economic experiment, and discuss economic theories and issues through the lens of laboratory and field experiments. Topics will include decision-making under risk and uncertainty, market experiments, bargaining and fairness, incentive schemes, public goods experiments, gender and decision-making.

ECON 550 Topics in Economics
Focus is on applications which build on a broad foundation, requiring elements of both micro- and macroeconomics. Topics will be announced before the semester.

ECON 580 – The Economics of Institutions
This course will examine the role played by institutions and political economy
considerations in determining overall economic performance. The course aims to describe the role and evolution of institutions in economic growth, to understand basic models of politics, and to provide an introduction to the dynamic effects of fiscal and monetary policy. By the end of the course, students should be able to understand the role of institutional failure, models of governance and mis-governance, optimal fiscal policy, and the concepts of reputation, credibility, and time inconsistency

ECON 591-2 Seminar in Economics (non credit)
Participation in weekly seminar is required.

ENGL 500 Graduate Writing (3 credits)
This is a writing course specifically designed to improve academic writing skills as well as critical reading and thinking. The course objectives will be met through extensive reading, writing and discussion both in and out of class. Student performance will be assessed and graded by Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory

ECON 595 MA Thesis (non credit)
Supervised individual research.

TEAC 500 (3 credits)
Teaching Experience

Provides graduate students with hands-on teaching experience in undergraduate courses. Reinforces students’ understanding of basic pedagogy and affords an opportunity to share their knowledge of the subject matter in a classroom environment. 

ECON M.A. Program Guidelines


Required and Elective Courses: M.A. Students must take 9 courses* (27 Credits) in the course of the M.A Program: 7 required and 2 electives.

Required Courses:

Year I
ECON 501: Mathematics for EconomistsECON 504: Microeconomics II
ECON 503: Microeconomics IECON 508: Macroeconomics II
ECON 507: Macroeconomics IECON 512: Econometrics II
ECON 511: Econometrics I 

Additionally, students are required to take the following 6 non-credit courses:

MATH-CAMP: A 3-week intensive math review before the beginning of the 1st semester. Although this is a non-credit course, it is graded and counts towards 10% of the grade in ECON 501.

ENGL 500: Academic Writing (Required to be completed in the 3rd Semester)

TEACH 500: Teaching Experience (Required to be completed in the 2nd semester)

ECON 595: Thesis Course (Required every semester after completing all the course requirements and starting the Thesis)

ECON 591: Seminar Course (Non-Credit)

ECON 550: Research Methods

Elective courses are subject to the approval of the thesis advisor and the graduate program coordinator.

Students must complete all the course requirements by the end of 4th semester. See degree requirements for details.

Students must have a minimum of 3.00 GPA to graduate.

Taking Courses from different departments: M.A. students may take relevant graduate courses offered at KU and other universities with the approval of the thesis advisor and program coordinator.

Independent Study: Students may conduct independent readings and research on an academic topic of interest under the supervision of a faculty member for course credit. (Must be approved by the program coordinator.)

Undergraduate CoursesStudents may take up to 2 undergraduate level courses if approved by the program coordinator.

Transferring Courses from previous studies: Please consult with the office of GSSSH and then the program coordinator.


Apointing an advisor: Students are required to assign a thesis advisor, notify the program coordinator and turn in the advisor appointment form to GSSSH office latest by July 1st of their first academic year.

Changing an advisor: Students may change their advisor subject to the consent of the new advisor and the program coordinator. They should notify the GSSSH office about the change as soon as it takes place.

Withdrawal of an advisor: If the advisor decides to discontinue monitoring the student’s thesis, then the student must immediately notify the program coordinator.

Secondary Advisor: Students may appoint more than one advisor. Second advisor may be from another university.

Forms Required: can be found in this link:


All MA students must submit a thesis proposal latest by the first week of their 3rd semester. Please click here for a proposal template.


The thesis can be structured as a book with chapters or a journal article that can be submitted for publication to an academic journal in the field.


Thesis jury is composed of 3 Faculty members. 1 Member must be from another university. The Jury must be appointed by The Department and approved by the Graduate School. Members of this committee must be affiliated with a University or an Academic Institution and must hold at least an Assistant Professor title.


Final draft of the thesis must be sent to all the appointed Jury members at least 3 weeks before the defense date.

Students must notify the Graduate School of their defense date and provide announcement information at least 2 weeks before the defense date.


LEAVE OF ABSENCES: Except for official holidays when the University is closed, graduate students are expected to be on campus fulfilling their degree requirements. During summer months graduate students who are on scholarships can take paid vacation (maximum two weeks) upon the recommendation of their advisors and the program coordinator. Otherwise they all have to be on campus.

Long-Term Leave of Absence: Students may hold their studies up to two consecutive semesters with the approval of their advisor, program coordinator and the graduate office. Their stipends will also be on hold during these terms.  Students who would like to expand their hold beyond two consecutive semesters will have to consult with the program coordinator and the graduate school and students may lose their stipends and benefits and may be subject to pay registration fee.


All students are appointed as teaching assistants at the beginning of each semester. Faculty members may also seek research assistance from students. Please find the TA/RA regulations set by the graduate school in this link. Please note that the task found in the enclosed is not exhaustive. 


All GSSSH students are expected to be present for proctoring exams (including make-up and amnesty exams) of the courses they are assigned to. They may also be asked to proctor exams for courses which they are not assigned to as TAs. These extra proctoring assignments would not exceed 4 per academic year. Proctoring assignments will be done centrally by the graduate office. Proctoring may be necessary on weekends, late evenings, or times outside of regular hours.


All grievances should be first communicated to the program coordinators.