Global Economics Degrees by Degree Program Level

Global economics degrees prepare students to provide financial guidance and leadership to companies or organizations in international markets. Programs are available at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree levels.

Essential Information

Global economics is integral to the understanding of many international issues, ranging from healthcare and education to business and media. Available at both undergraduate and graduate levels, global economics degree programs cover social sciences, foreign language and particular issues influenced by global economics. Students in bachelor's programs usually spend some time studying abroad and focus on a specific geographical area. Diplomacy, financial analysis, consulting and international banking are some of the fields in which graduates may work.

Master's degree programs in global studies usually include concentration options, such as foreign policy, finance or economic development, and students complete an internship, thesis or capstone project. Master's-level graduates may pursue various leadership positions. Doctoral programs in economics prepare students for jobs in research, teaching and consulting, and students usually focus on a specialty after they complete their core courses.

Bachelor's Degree in Global Economics

An undergraduate degree in global economics involves the interdisciplinary study of economics, foreign language and international banking. Many bachelor's degree programs in global economics allow students to focus on particular geographic regions and often include study abroad opportunities. The final year of the program typically includes capstone projects or seminars that offer in-depth analyses of specific economic issues. Graduates with global economics bachelor's degrees have applicable knowledge for many career fields.

The majority of bachelor's degree programs in global economics are offered through universities that require a GED or high school diploma as well as ACT or SAT scores for admission. To gain entrance into a global economics major, students are typically required to complete entry-level economics courses and earn a certain grade point average. The coursework of an undergraduate global economics program introduces students to concepts of economics, finance and business studies in addition to providing a foundation in the politics, history and language of a geographic region.

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Economic development
  • International banking
  • Global politics
  • Foreign language

Master's Degree in Global Studies

Graduate level degree programs that include instruction in global economics generally employ it as a tool to analyze larger global issues. These programs typically provide students with a background in global economics, finance and international relations. Students in most programs are free to design their own concentrations, though typically they specialize in areas such as globalization and economic development, diplomacy and foreign policy, international trade and finance or international education. Global studies master's degree programs culminate in a thesis, capstone project or internship that addresses students' concentrations.

Admission to a master's degree program in global studies requires that applicants hold bachelor's degrees from accredited institutions and that they submit GRE or GMAT scores. Some programs require that applicants have participated in a structured academic or professional program outside of the United States and that they demonstrate proficiency in foreign languages. Students with no background in international history, politics or economics may be required to complete prerequisite coursework prior to enrollment. Students in a global studies master's degree program complete a set of core courses, related to global studies in general and to their specialization. Additionally, if students have not already reached a professional level of language fluency, there may be a foreign language requirement.

  • International trade
  • International affairs and policy
  • Global economics analysis
  • Conflict management
  • Global environment
  • Economic development

Doctoral Degree in Economics

Doctoral degrees aren't generally offered in global economics, though interested candidates may earn a Doctor of Philosophy in business, political, agricultural or general economics. Within many economics doctoral programs, students have the option of specializing in economic development, international business, government and other areas pertinent to global economics. Students begin a doctoral program by taking core courses. After passing several exams, they focus on a specialty area and write a dissertation. To earn this degree, students are required to complete and defend their dissertations and pass final oral exams.

To qualify for doctoral programs in economics, applicants must hold bachelor's degrees from accredited schools and must have taken either the GRE or the GMAT. Most programs require that students have taken intermediate economics courses and at least one course in statistics and calculus. Some programs administer a test in micro- and macroeconomics before admitting students to the doctoral program. Aside from a series of foundational courses, the curriculum of a doctoral economics program varies greatly based on a student's concentration.

  • Microeconomic theory
  • Macroeconomic theory
  • Quantitative and statistical methods
  • Econometrics
  • International trade theory
  • International economics

Popular Career Options

The interdisciplinary nature of global economics prepares students for a variety of career paths that involve global analysis, business, communication and development. Some career options include policymaker, non-governmental organization administrator and international banker. Graduates of master's degree programs possess skills that can advance their careers or help them obtain leadership positions in private or public organizations, including diplomat, foreign policy specialist, international marketing manager and corporate executive. A doctoral degree in economics specifically prepares graduates to pursue teaching or research in a corporate, government or academic setting. Many graduates go on to take positions at colleges and universities, research institutions or NGOs. Possible job titles include:

  • Financial analyst
  • Non-governmental organization director
  • International media director
  • University or college professor
  • International economics researcher
  • International business executive

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), demand for financial analysts is expected to grow by 12% from 2014 to 2024, ( The BLS reported financial analysts earned a median salary of $80,310 in 2015. Employment for international marketing managers is expected to grow 9% from 2014 to 2024. Marketing managers earned a median salary of $128,750 in 2015.

Continuing Education

Though some candidates who earn a master's degree in global studies go on to earn a Doctor of Philosophy, most students enter a doctoral program directly after earning a bachelor's degree. Doctoral programs related to global economics often lead to degrees in public policy, political economy, management or health policy. Additionally, many master's degrees in global studies are offered as dual degree programs, engaging students in simultaneous study of law, environmental policy, journalism, healthcare management or business management.

Many candidates who earn a bachelor's degree in global economics pursue graduate study in law, business, politics or international affairs. Students in these degree programs develop further expertise in a particular element of global economics, qualifying them for management and leadership positions.

Global economics is a broad field, affording many educational and career opportunities to interested individuals, including study abroad opportunities. Students may pursue bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degrees in a wide variety of subject areas relating to global economics.

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