General program information

The Master of Science in Economics (MSE) is a modern, internationally oriented Master‘s degree program that provides students with a profound knowledge in economics. It is aimed to students with a strong interest in economics seeking a first-rate education preparing them for a variety of career paths, ranging from management positions in firms and other organisations to academics.

The language of instruction of all core subjects and a large variety of electives is English. As a result, the MSE can be studied fully in English, and the student body is very international. German skills are welcome, but not required for completion.

A core feature of the program is that small classes and seminars enable a face-to-face exchange with professors and researchers. Upon arrival, students get quickly integrated into the academic community at the department through close interaction with professors and their research teams. A mentoring program connects students with junior scientists, and students can apply to paid jobs as research assistants.

The department encourages and supports students who want to study abroad for up to two semesters at one of our partner universities. The program also supports students who want to collect up to five credits via an internship at one of our selected partner institutions, including several research institutes located all over Germany.

Current Information

  • WiSo MasterDay on 18th of April 2024
  • New application requirements for the winter semester 2022/23


The student profile covers a broad array of study and career competencies:

  • A profound understanding of modern economics
  • A special focus on the practical application of empirical and quantitative methods
  • Qualifying students to conduct independent academic work
  • Development, communication and implementation of problem-solving capacities, both independently and in team work

Career opportunities

The main career paths taken by the graduates of the study program lead them to work for consultancy firms and large companies, international organisations, the public administration, professional associations, and academic institutions, like universities and research institutes.

To broaden the students’ perspective and prepare them for the job market, students can participate in regular field trips, allowing them to learn about job opportunities for economists and the work of professionals. Furthermore, the department offers a placement program into internships at selected partner institutions, including several research institutes, international organisations, and the Bundesbank. Finally, excellent graduates aiming at a doctoral degree can apply for a scholarship to finance the initial two years of their doctoral studies.

Target group

The study program targets highly motivated students who have completed (or are about to complete) a Bachelor’s degree in economics or related fields. The program’s student body is very international, and the department invites applications from students all across the world. Especially welcome are applications from students interested in obtaining a high-class education in applied economics, with a special focus on modern methods of data analysis. As FAU is a public university, there are no tuition fees.

Course of study

The MSE is a two-year program split into four teaching terms (semesters). For graduation, students are required to earn a total of 120 ECTS. The first (fall) semester comprises a total of six compulsory courses, covering the basic fields of economics. In the second and third semester, students choose electives from a very broad range of subjects. By choosing appropriate electives, students can complete different fields of specialization. On the list are Labor Economics, Macroeconomics and Finance, Public Economics, Energy Markets, and Health Economics. In the fourth semester, students write their master’s thesis under close supervision of one of the department’s lecturers.

Compulsory courses

In the first semester, the students obtain an education providing for a solid background in all major fields of economics. The six compulsory courses (all taught fully in English) comprise Mathematics for Economists, Applied Econometrics, Microeconomics, Game Theory, Macroeconomics: Economic Theory, and Macroeconomics: Business Cycles.

Elective courses

Students choose 12 courses, including at least 10 electives from economics and up to two free electives, like language courses. The participation in at least one seminar is mandatory.

Electives are grouped to form five fields of specialization:

  • Labor Economics: Students explore the area of labor economics from different perspectives. They study theoretical models, delve into current empirical work on labor market issues, and learn how to apply empirical research tools to examine labor market policies.
  • Macroeconomics and Finance: This field of specialization contains macroeconomics, applied econometrics and finance. Included courses cover topics such as monetary policy, international economics, or banking, and methods such as time series econometrics or macro modelling. The field prepares for jobs at central banks and commercial banks, international organizations, and academic research.
  • Public Economics: This field of specialization is focused on the analysis of tax systems and government expenditures, public finance and public policy, as well as regional, urban and development economics. Students apply microeconomic theory together with modern methods of data analysis to evaluate a variety of policies.
  • Energy Markets: This field of specialization considers relevant aspects of energy markets, such as market design, energy transformation towards a low-carbon system and climate policies. These issues will be addressed not only from a theoretical perspective but also using empirical methods, such as computational, econometric, and behavioural/experimental approaches.
  • Health Economics: Students who specialize in this field study the supply and demand for medical services from a microeconomic perspective. Students explore a variety of markets in the health sector to learn how to optimally design a health care system.


In their final semester, students write a Master’s thesis. By doing so, they demonstrate a capability of addressing an economic question or topic independently. In a related seminar, students present and discuss their thesis.

The department supports the writing of the Master’s thesis in cooperation with external business partners, making use of diverse contacts of the collaborating chairs, including N-Ergie, IAB, GfK, BayernLB, ifo Institute.