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    Masters in Economics in Canada: A Complete Guide for International Students

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    Bhavya Rawal

    Study Abroad Expert


    Masters in Economics in Canada is a 1 to 2-year program available as a Master of Arts (MA) and Master of Science (MS). It is offered in more than 20 universities of Canada and costs around 13,000-45,000 USD (all expenses included) annually. Masters in economics is also offered as a specialized degree focused on one discipline such as Development Economics, Natural Resource Economics, Economic Policy, Agriculture Economics etc. 

    • Students can choose to pursue course-work or thesis-based masters in economics from Canadian universities.
    • Bachelors degree holders with economic theory, microeconomics, econometrics, or mathematics as a part of their course-work can apply for masters in economics in Canada. 
    • The average salary of an entry-level economist in Canada is around 42,948 USD/annum. 

    Why Study Masters in Economics in Canada

    Due to lenient PR policies and welcoming culture, Canada ranks high on the priority list of international students for studying abroad. Let's look at the reasons why studying masters in economics in Canada is a good choice.

    • According to the QS News Ranking of 2019 for Economics & Econometrics, 18 of the Canadian universities were included in the list of top 500 universities of the world.
    • Over 19,800 new jobs are expected to be created for economists in Canada till the year 2026. 
    • The expected annual demand growth rate for economic graduates in British Columbia is 1.3%. 
    • With 5-9 years of experience, an economist can earn up to 54,400 USD per annum. 

    Masters in Economics in Canada: Top Universities

    According to the QS News Ranking of 2019 for economics and econometrics, following are the top-ranking universities offering masters in economics in Canada. The table also summarizes the basic cost of program (complete tuition fees): 

    Masters in Economics in Canada: Course Details

    Economics program involves independent research using complex statistical data in a broad spectrum of majors including Resource and Environmental, Financial & Labour Economics, Public Finance, Development Economics, International Economics, Law and Economics, and Industrial Organization. 

    Although the curriculum of Masters in Economics in Canada differs by the school, each program integrates aspects of social sciences such as sociology. The standard curriculum structure of most economics programs offered in Canadian universities is given below:

    Course Curriculum for Masters in Economics

    Masters in Economics in Canada: Admission Process

    To apply for a Canadian university, you are required to fulfil certain eligibility criteria. These are further discussed in this section. 

    Application 

    International applicants are required to apply online through the college website. Applications must be sent to the universities before the application deadlines to ensure enough time for obtaining a Canadian study permit

    Eligibility for Masters in Economics in Canada Admission

    The eligibility criteria for most universities offering MA Economics in Canada is given below:

    • 16 years of education with a break up of 10+2+4.
    • A 4-year bachelor’s degree in the same field or its equivalents with preference to students holding upper-year courses in advanced economic theory, microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometrics, statistics, and mathematics.
    • A minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 point scale or a CGPA of 7 to 8 on a scale of 10 is required.
      • This means the minimum percentage should be 78-81% or the grade should be B.
    • GRE scores are mandatory
    • Admission eligibility also depends upon strong academics, analytical and abstract skills to evaluate the costs and benefits associated with any action. 
    • Prior work experience in a related field is an added advantage to secure an admission.

    Documents Required for Masters in Economics in Canada Admission 

    Your application package must include the following documents supporting your application form: 

    • Transcripts- Official, unofficial or certified copies
    • Updated Curriculum Vitae (CV)
    • Letters of recommendation/ reference reports with necessary details of academic and professional achievements. Two to three reference letters are required by different universities. 
    • Supporting documents: Statement of interests, personal statements, etc stating your detailed interest in the program and in the specific university.

    Test Score Requirement for Masters in Economics in Canada

    For most of the universities offering masters in economics in Canada, there are certain tests that an international student has to appear for. These include language proficiency tests and competitve exams like GRE. The minimum test score requirement of each university is detailed below:  

    University GRE Score TOEFL (iBT) IELTS Others
    University of Toronto 300 or more 93 7.0 COPE:76
    Academic Preparation Course(U&T): Grade B
    McGill University Prefered  86 6.5 MELAB:85
    CAE: Grade B
    CPE: Grade C
    University of British Columbia 160 in Quant 93 6.5 N/A
    University of Alberta Required
    150 in Quant
    92 7.0 N/A
    Universite De Montreal Not Required N/A N/A French level B2
    University of Waterloo Required
    no minimum score
    90 7.0 MELAB:85
    PTE:63
    University of Calgary Not Required 86 6.0 MELAB:80
    PTE:59
    Queen’s University at Kingston Required 88 7.0 MELAB:80
    Dalhousie University Required 92 7.0 PTE:65
    MELAB:85

    Admission Decision for Masters in Economics in Canada

    The review and assessment of the application are performed by either graduate school or the department of Economics admissions committee after completion of personal, academic information and supplementary application form (if required) along with the payment of the application fee.

    As observed in University of British Columbia 2020 admissions, out of 500 applicants received for masters in Economics, only 50 candidates were granted entry to the program, suggesting a high competition for the course in top-ranking universities.

    The status of the student's application can be accessed via the Application Portal on the respective university’s official website. Successful applicants receive an Offer of Admission via the portal. Offers of admission will typically be made within minimum 2 months of the application deadline depending on the acceptance or denial of the admission offered by the university.

    Masters in Economics in Canada: Cost of Study

    International students planning to study in Canada must have sufficient funding to meet out their pre-arrival costs, tuition fees and cost of living as directed by the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

    Pre-Arrival Costs

    The one-time expenses incurred by international students before or along with the admission process for their masters' studies in Canadian universities are as tabulated:-

    Type of Expense Cost (USD)
    Program Application Fees 113-150*
    Study Permit Application Fees 235**
    Health Insurance 10,000
    IELTS Fees 185-190
    TOEFL Fees 160-250
    GRE Fees 205-230
    Airfare 450-1400

    *Depends on the university

    **150 USD for a Canadian Study Permit and 85 USD is Biometric fees. 

    Tuition Fees for Masters in Economics in Canada

    Comparison of the overall tuition fees for the complete masters in Economics at top economics colleges in Canada is given in the image. The costs are mentioned in USD. Applicants must note that these costs are approximate values and are subject to change each year as per university’s guidelines. 

    Annual Tuition Fees for Masters in Economics in Canada

    Cost of Living in Canada

    The cost of living in Canada largely depends on the university and program you’ve enrolled in, your lifestyle and the institute’s location. The basic structure of the average living costs for international students in Canada is discussed below:- 

    Type of Expense Cost in USD/year
    Books and Material 756 – 1510
    Food and Beverage  3000 – 4000
    Accommodations  4,500 – 15,000

    Scholarships for Masters in Economics in Canada

    You can apply for various scholarships available for studying in Canada. There are program-specific as well as graduate-level scholarships offered to students. Scholarships from some of the top universities are given below. You must ensure that you explore through the official website’s funding page for details on the options available. 

    University Scholarship Details (USD)
    University of Toronto Ontario Graduate Scholarship
    H. Stanley Hunnisett Fund
    Dorothy J. Powell Graduate Scholarship In International Economics
    11,300/session
    Varies
    Varies 
    University of Waterloo Ontario Graduate Scholarship 11,300/ session
    University of British Columbia Mackenzie King Scholarship
    Toptal Scholarships for Women
    7900-9500/year 
    7900/year
    University of Alberta AD O’Brien Graduate Scholarship in Public Finance
    Alberta Graduate Excellence Scholarship
    4021/year
    9000 (one-time)
    Universite De Montreal Lise Salvas Foundation Award
    Maurice Bouchard Foundation Award
    PBEE Merit Scholarships for Graduates
    760/year
    760/year
    Varies 

    Career Opportunities After Masters in Economics in Canada

    With the growing demand for economists in Canada, you can work as consultants, public policy analysts, financial managers, health insurance analysts in diverse fields of research agencies, consultancy firms, economic advisory services of governments, banks, financial institutions, international agencies, universities, multilateral organizations, and non-governmental organizations.

    Role of Economists

    • Devise systems for the collection of economic and statistical data regarding utilization, production, and distribution of economic resources.
    • Develop models for projecting economic-related activities
    • Compile, analyze and interpret a wide range of economic data and activity
    • Preparation of reports for policy development 
    • Decision-making in government or business.

    The professional scope after completion of masters in Economics in Canada along with their median salaries is listed below:

    Profession Median salary (USD)
    Financial Market Economist 165,000
    Economist 86,180
    Economic Development Director 86,800
    Budget Analyst 75,000
    Policy Analyst 71,000
    Research Officer 64,000
    University Professor 69,800
    Consultant 65,000

    The growing demand for economists is an outcome of the increasing complexity in the global economy, competitive business environment, and additional financial regulations. Hence, Economist, Data analyst/actuary, Securities trader, Financial consultant, Pricing analyst are the high demanding positions in the public and private sector organizations. 

    With a variety of sectors needing skilled personnel from Economics background, postgraduates in Economics can land up with high paying jobs in Canada. The ROI for the course is high with an investment of around 20,000-50,000 USD and returns of around minimum 65,000 USD. 

    FAQs

    Ques. Name some of the top Canadian universities for economics.

    Ans. University of Toronto, University of British Columbia, McGill University, Western University and Queen’s University at Kingston are some of the top-ranking universities for masters in economics in Canada.

    Ques. Should I opt for MBA or Masters in Economics in Canada?

    Ans. Pursuing MBA from Canada costs more than masters in economics. However, the salary after MBA is also higher than what is offered to economics graduates. After completion of MBA, you will be offered managerial and administrative roles in various industries. A masters in economics in Canada will land you a job in banking sector mostly. 

    Ques. What are the requirements for applying to masters in economics in Canada?

    Ans. Students should have a bachelors degree in economics or related field and a good GRE score (300 or more). IELTS (6.5) or TOEFL (86) is also required to be submitted as a proof of English proficiency for admission of international students.

    Ques. Are there job opportunities after completing a masters in economics in Canada?

    Ans. Students having a degree in masters in economics in Canada can earn an average pay of 50,000 USD per annum. Popular employers of economists in Canada are the Bank of Canada and Statistics Canada. Both of them offer good paygrade.

    Ques. How much does a masters in economics in Canada?

    Ans. A masters in economics in Canada costs around 20,000 to 45,000 USD. This is the tuition fees of the program. Additionally you will require funds for living in Canada