Admission Requirements

Your degree.
You must hold, or reasonably expect to hold by September, a bachelor's degree for entry into the M.A. program or a master’s degree in Economics for entry to the Ph.D. program, however, exceptional candidates holding a bachelor’s degree will be considered for direct admission to Ph.D. 1 level. The minimum acceptable CGPA (Cumulative Grade Point Average) is 3.0 out of a possible 4.0, which is equivalent to “B” on a letter scale, or at least a 3.2/4.0 over the last two years of study. The University assesses degrees earned outside Canada to determine if they are equivalent to a McGill degree. "International Degree Equivalency" for several countries is listed here*Please be sure to calculate what your CGPA translates to at McGill before applying, and if your CGPA is below 3.0, you are not eligible for our graduate programs.*
Math requirements.
To enter the MA or PhD programs you must have taken at least the following:

(a) two terms of calculus (differential and integral calculus, including constrained optimization methods, functions of several variables, partial derivatives, constrained optimization using the method of Lagrangian multipliers and Riemann integration);
(b) one term of matrix algebra (rank, inverse, eigenvalues, eigenvectors and quadratic forms);
(c) statistics: a full-year course in statistics from an economics or mathematics department.
To enter the QY you should at a minimum be familiar with functions, limits, continuity, differentiation, and integration. If you enter the QY program without the mathematics background specified under (a) and (b), you must be prepared to take both math and economics courses as part of your QY program.

If your degree is not in Economics.

An Honours B.A. in Economics is the normal requirement, although students holding an ordinary B.A., whether in economics or another discipline, may also be eligible for admission. Students judged by the admissions committee to have deficiencies in their preparation in economics may be admitted to a Qualify Year in which they undertake advanced economics honours-level undergraduate work. Admission to the QY does not imply an exemption from GRE. The minimum preparation is a full year of intermediate macroeconomics, microeconomics, and statistics, two semesters of introductory calculus and one semester of linear algebra.

The Qualifying Year
Graduate applicants who do not have an adequate background in either economics or mathematics may be admitted to the Qualifying Year (QY). QY students take three full-year (September-April) Honours economics undergraduate level courses:

ECON 250D1/D1 Intro to Econ Theory: Honours; and
ECON 257D1/D2 Economic Statistics: Honours; and
ECON 352D1/D2 Macroeconomics: Honours;and
either a fourth year-long course or two semester-long courses for a total of 24 credits.

Substitutions for the core economics courses are possible in special cases. Students considered by the admissions committee to have an inadequate mathematics background must take one or two semester-long mathematics courses, most commonly MATH 223 Linear Algebra and multivariable calculus MATH 222 Calculus 3.

To enter the MA from the Qualifying year program, a student must earn a GPA of at least a 3.2 in the program approved by the QY academic advisor, and a minimum grade of B in all courses. Where mathematics courses are included in a Qualifying Year student's program, the requirement of a minimum grade of B applies to those courses. A student may be in the Qualifying Year program for only one year. Neither the University nor most granting agencies provide financial support for QY students. In all cases, after the completion of a Qualifying Year, an applicant interested in commencing a degree program must apply for admission by the posted deadline.


Back to top