My Intro

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Economist, Dec 30, 2009.

  1. Economist

    Economist New Member

    I'm Chris. Although, originally from Bulgaria, I have been a resident of Washington, DC since 1997.
    As my nick suggests, I am an economist (by both academic training and current occupation).

    I work for the U.S. federal government and teach economics on a part-time basis at Washington Adventist University - Takoma Park, MD.

    I just started working toward a D.Litt et Phil at UNISA and would love to exchange thoughts and opinions with with other current and former UNISA students.

    My previous academic degrees include:
    M.A. in Economics from American University - Washington, DC
    B.A. in Quantitative Economics from Millersville University - Millersville, PA
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 30, 2009
  2. Abner

    Abner Well-Known Member

    Awesome! Welcome aboard. Your feedback concerning UNISA would be very much appreciated and would be invaluable.

    Abner :)
  3. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    Hi Chris - I've been peeking at UNISA programs for a while now and I'd also like to hear something about your experience to date.
  4. Economist

    Economist New Member

    Abner and Kizmet,

    Thank you both for your kind words.
    When they say that at UNISA they don't do much hand-holding, they actually mean it. So far, I've discovered (entirely on my own) that during the first year I am supposed to subit a title proposal followed by a research one. It is not until those two requirements are met that the doctoral students is assigned a thesis supervisor.

    It would be interesting to learn what other UNISA students have experienced with respect to that.
  5. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I'm a bit surprised by your response. The UNISA admissions application requires that you submit a title proposal. How did you get admitted without this?
  6. Economist

    Economist New Member

    I did submit a title proposal and that's how I got in. I have not had any feedback from the head of the econ department ever since I did that.
  7. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I found this in about 30 seconds.

    If you were informed of your acceptance then you must have been assigned an advisor (or whatever they're called). You must have been given some instructions. Have you contacted the Economics Department? Are you writing your proposal?
  8. Economist

    Economist New Member

    Right after I was asked to turn in my title proposal I received a letter stating that I was admitted for the 2010 school year, eexcpet the letter did not indicate that my title proposal was accepted and that I had been assigned an adviser (I paid my fees for the 2010 school year already).

    Then I did something similar to what you did. I poked around UNISA's website and found out the link you posted.

    I am currently working alone on my research proposal.

    What I understood was that if my research proposal was not accepted within a year from my starting date, I would have to reapply.
  9. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I've heard the same thing. However, you should know well before that if there's a problem. Your advisor should be bugging you about deadlines all along. I'd suggest that you work out a timeline for yourself and work hard to hit your marks. Good luck.
  10. Economist

    Economist New Member

    That's the thing. As far as I know, you don't get an advisor until your research proposal is accepted.

    On a different note, yesterday I came across a link to UNISA's dissertation and thesis electronic database. One can actually get an idea of what a Master's dissertation or a Doctoral thesis should looks like in the academic field of his choice.
  11. TEKMAN

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!


    Welcome to Since you're an Economist, would you recommend somebody to be one? I am want to be one; right now I am making decission to apply to Johns Hopkins University's MA in Applied Economics. And want to apply to Northwestern University or Comlumbia University's Ph.D in Economics. What do you think?

  12. Economist

    Economist New Member


    Hi TEKMAN,

    Thanks for your kind words and for taking interest in the field of economics.
    There are two answers to your question.
    1. The short answer is no. Economics is by far one of the most ungratifying fields there is. It is heavily quantitative (for the most part) but the earning potential is lower than that of the MBA or DBA graduates.

    2. The (really) long answer is, it depends on your personal objectives. What do you want to achieve with a degree in economics?

    There are two types of economists:
    - economic scientists (those with Ph.D.'s in mainstream economics)
    - political economists (those with Ph.D.'s and MA/MS in economics focusing on public policy, public finance, welfare economics, economic development policy, gender economics, radical political economy, international political economy, and Austrian economics).

    The M.A. from Johns Hopkins will be helpful in the sense that you would be able to rely on your professors/advisor to help you land a lucrative position at the World Bank, IFC or IDB.
    If you want to truly learn economic policy and applied economics, I would recommend getting a Master's degree in economics for public policy from George Mason University. It is less expensive than Hopkins, it has 2 Nobel laureates on its faculty, and if specializes in fields such as public choice and Austrian economics. These fields are less quantitative but teach you how to see and analyze the logic and philosophy behind all economic phenomena.
    If you want to follow up the M.A. in economics from Mason with a Ph.D., I would suggest you pick a doctoral program in public policy or in philosophy with specialization in economic philosophy (SUNY at Buffalo has a philosophy department that offers a specialization like that).

    Northwestern and Columbia are great in the sense that economics is like the field of law. Where you went to school pretty much predetermines where you will be working afterwards. These programs will prepare you to become an economic scientist and they are heavily quantitative. The Northwestern program focuses on financial economics. Both programs require a previous background in economics.

    I hope this helps. Don't hesitate to write again if you have any follow-up questions. I will do my best to help.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 11, 2010
  13. TEKMAN

    TEKMAN Semper Fi!

    Hi Chris,

    Thanks for the information. I think I pass on the economics at Johns Hopkins University. Maybe I get a second master at Georgetown University before going for Ph.D in Computer Science instead.

    Happy Holiday!

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