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Third Year


During the third year students take courses to complete the necessary coursework to fulfill the major and minor requirements, and/or to accumulate the 72 academic credits needed for graduation. All students are expected to be registered in a field seminar every term, graded or non-graded.

Students must present their second-year paper by the end of October of the third year. Papers are presented at the brown bag relevant to the student’s field of research. Both faculty readers and a member of the graduate committee must attend the presentation. Papers should be revised according to the readers’ feedback and a final version of the paper must be submitted by the first week of December. Readers evaluate the paper and judge its quality by its potential for eventual publication. All papers are considered for the Best Second-Year Paper Award.

Third year students are encouraged to initiate new research papers once the second-year paper has been completed. At this stage, and for the rest of the PhD program, all students should regularly attend and present research projects in the relevant brown bags. By the end of the third year, students should identify a main dissertation advisor who must be a faculty member in the economics department.

Many third year students use their research projects to apply for university fellowships, most notably the Mellon and the SSDD Fellowships. These awards free students from teaching requirements during the next academic year so that they can concentrate exclusively on research.

Third year students can request to be instructors of an undergraduate course during the summer.  Selected students are matched with a summer mentor, and at the end of the summer are eligible for the Graduate Student Teaching Award. 

Some students work as graduate research assistants (GSRs) for faculty members during the summer and they may continue holding this position during the academic year.