Graduate Catalog
Policies, Procedures, Academic Programs
College of Science
Academics and College of Business administration. Known as Commerce Hall 1957-69; renamed Pamplin Hall in May 1969. Building completed Fall 1957; cost $734,645; 49,060 sq. ft. Named after Robert Boisseau Pamplin (1911-2009) and Robert Boisseau Pamplin Jr. (1941- ) who was a member of the Class of 1964.
3016 Pamplin Hall, Mail Code:0316, 880 West Campus Drive Blacksburg VA 24061
Pamplin Hall
Degree(s) Offered:
• PhD
PhD Degree in Economics
Minimum GPA: 3.0
Offered In:
Web Resource(s):
Phone Number(s):
Application Deadlines:
Fall: Feb 01
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The Graduate School
Pamplin Hall

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Department Head : Sudipta Sarangi
Graduate Program Director : Niloy Bose
Emeriti Faculty: Amoz Kats
Professors: Richard Ashley; Sheryl Ball; Niloy Bose; Suqin Ge; Hans Haller; Djavad Salehi-Isfahani; Sudipta Sarangi; Aris Spanos; Thorwald Tideman
Associate Professors: Eric Bahel; Richard Cothren; Adam Dominiak; Xu Lin; Kwok Tsang
Assistant Professors: Ali Habibnia; Siddharth Hari; Shaowen Luo; Melinda Miller; Benjamin Rosa; Alexander Smith; Gerelt Tserenjigmid (Blackbsurg)
Wilson Schmidt Professor: Aris Spanos
Advanced Instructors: Gebremeskel Gebremariam
Collegiate Assistant Professors: Matthew Kovach; Steven Trost

Economics Introduction

The Virginia Tech Economics program was established September 1, 1961, and since then, has awarded more than 200 doctoral degrees in economics. From 2000 onwards, the program has taken a new direction - while students still earn a doctorate in Economics, the program is jointly administered by the Department of Economics and the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, giving students access to a greater number of courses.

1. Curriculum - The Ph.D. program is designed to be completed in 4-5 years, with the first 2 years focused on coursework and the remaining years on research and completion of the dissertation. Following a set of compulsory core courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics, and econometrics in the first two years, the students take more advanced and specialized field courses in areas like applied microeconomics (health, labor, and development economics), microeconomic theory, experimental and behavioral economics, econometrics, and macroeconomics. They must pass a Qualifying Exam at the end of the first year and before the end of their third year, students must complete a Third Year Research Paper. Each student is expected to successfully defend a doctoral dissertation by the end of the fourth or fifth year in the program.

2. Career - The doctoral program in economics prepares students for research and teaching careers, as well as careers in the public and private sectors that require knowledge and understanding of the most advanced economic theory and methods. Our recent graduates have found jobs as successful professionals worldwide in a variety of academic institutions, in the finance and investment industry, other large business corporations, and both the non-government and the government sectors.

3. Faculty Research - The faculty members conduct research in diverse fields including i) Microeconomic Theory & Game Theory, ii) Applied Microeconomics (Labor, Development, Industrial Organizations, and History), iii) Experimental & Behavioral Economics, iv) Econometrics, v) Resource & Environmental Economics, and vi) Macroeconomics and Finance.

4. What Sets Us Apart - In addition to conducting research in core subject areas, the economics faculty engages in research in the emerging and cutting-edge interdisciplinary fields such as behavioral economics, big-data science, decision theory, and neuroeconomics. As a medium-sized department, our doctoral students receive personalized attention and start collaborating with faculty members in their career. Participation in conferences and workshops is encouraged and students also actively participate in self-created research groups.

Offered In (Blacksburg)

Degree Requirements

Minimum GPA: 3.0
Institution code: 5859
Testing Requirements:
    • Paper
      • 600.0
    • Computer
      • 250.0
    • iBT
      • 90.0
  • GRE
    • General Test
      • Quantitative : 155.0
Students seeking the Ph.D. must complete 90 total credit hours of work, consisting of 24 credit hours of core requirements, 21 credit hours of field courses, 30 credit hours of research & dissertation, and an additional 15 credit hours of research & dissertation or other Graduate level courses with the permission of the Graduate Director.

The Economics Department does not offer a free standing terminal master's program. The M.A. degree in Economics is intended to serve advanced VT undergraduate students who participate in the 5th year B.S./M.A. program and those Ph.D. students who begin their studies but are unable to complete the program.

The Economics Department does not offer Spring admission. Nor does it offer summer courses for graduate students.

The PhD in Economics is a STEM discipline.

Economics Facilities Introduction


The Department

Students on assistantship are allocated office space in the department in Pamplin Hall. All students have access to computers in their office with internet access. The department has an experimental economics lab in 2088 Derring Hall.
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