Master of Science in Agricultural Economics

student receiving a diploma
At Nebraska, you can create the future you want. Our flexible master's program gives you the tools to do more. One-on-one faculty membership helps you grow as a student, a researcher and a person. Our students collaborate with each other, across disciplines and across the world.

Do big things at Nebraska.

How to Apply


  • A four-year U.S. bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • An equivalent degree as evaluated by the Office of Graduate Studies.
  • We accept students from a variety of majors as long as the prerequisites have been satisfied.

Graduate Studies' admission policies


We do not have grade or G.P.A. requirements. However, the master's program builds on the skills learned in these courses so grades in these courses are an important part of the admission decision.

We may occasionally provisionally admit students of exceptional potential or ability who are deficient in one or more of these prerequisites. However, the course(s) must be completed before beginning the program.

Other Information

  • The GRE is not required but is recommended for students seeking an assistantship.
  • If your native language is not English, verification of English proficiency is required. Graduate Studies determines exemptions from this requirement.
  • You do not need to contact a faculty member to be considered for admission or an assistantship.


In addition to Graduate Studies' requirements. We require:
  • A one-page statement of purpose. It should explain why you want to pursue a graduate degree and describe your interests.
  • Three letters of recommendation. We recommend at least two of these letters are from faculty members who can describe your academic abilities.
  • Resume or curriculum vitae
Photo of Shane Roberts

Shane Roberts, M.S. student

Make sure your letter writers have enough time to write their letters of recommendation.

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Grant Gardner, M.S. alumnus

Take the GRE early and get it out of the way. It is a difficult test and takes time to study for. You may want to take it more than once.

What You'll Learn


All master's students take
  • AECN 873 - Microeconomic models and applications, 3 credits (Recent Syllabus)
  • AECN 896 - Econometrics, 4 credits
  • AECN 896 - Math preparation, 1 credit
  • AECN 821 - Orientation to research, 1 credit

Students work with their adviser to determine a program of study. Agricultural economics courses may be complemented with courses in other departments.

Economics, statistics, and math courses are popular choices. Students have also taken courses in areas like natural resources, political science, agronomy and survey research.


Nearly all of our students complete a thesis. It provides an opportunity to delve deeper into a topic of interest and explore economic questions. Our recent graduates' thesis work is available here.

Credit Hour Requirements

Option I (thesis)Option III (non-thesis)
Total credit hours 30 36
Coursework credit hours 20-24 36
Thesis credit hours 6-10 Not available
Graduate-only credit hours 8, plus thesis hrs 18
Minor Optional, 9 hrs Not available
Photo of Emmanouil Petrakis

Emmanouil Petrakis, M.S. alumnus

Great classes; I learned a lot. They are demanding but so is life!

Photo Kate Brooks

Eric Coufal, M.S. alumnus

My degree helped me analyze market conditions in order to make realistic decisions for helping farmers discover profitable marketing decisions.


At Nebraska, you'll find a community of students and faculty ready to help you succeed. The three-part mission of a land grant institution means you have access to researcher, teachers and extension specialists.


Faculty research is concentrated in five areas:

Current Students

Our master's students come from across the world and right here in Nebraska. The diverse experiences and backgrounds of our students enrich our program. We encourage collaboration and value the contributions of our master's students to our department.


Photo of Zhengzheng Gao

Zhengzheng Gao, M.S. alumna

My favorite thing about the department is the friendly environment.

Photo of Kara Zimmerman

Kara Zimmerman, M.S. student

The faculty in this department are all very friendly and continuously let you know they are there to help you in any way they can.

Funding and Cost

Graduate Tuition and Fees

For current graduate tuition and fee structure and rates, go to:


Graduate research assistantships are the most common form of financial assistance. A GRA consists of a stipend and benefits. Tuition is waived for students on assistantships, but fees of approximately $1,200/year must be paid by all students. A major portion of the fee for student health insurance is included in GRAs.

Each year, we receive funding from the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources Agricultural Research Division for GRAs. These are not tied to a specific research project but support the research needs of the department and institute. There is no separate application for assistantships and applicants do not need to contact a faculty member to be considered.

Faculty often have grants or other funding to support graduate students. More information

Photo Emmanouil Petrakis

Emmanouil Petrakis, M.S. alumnus

My assistantship helped me grow as a person and as a professional by following deadlines, working as a member of a team, and acquiring knowledge outside classes.

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Paloch Suchato, M.S. alumnus

Assistantship provide an opportunity to learn how to conduct academic research, how to work as team and how to take research initiative.