Job Description and Requirements for Starting a Career As an Economist
If you want to begin a career as an Economist, you'll need at least your master's degree in the field. Experience as a statistician or research assistant will be helpful for beginning a career in Economics. Read on to learn more about how to become an Economist.
A Career as an Economist Defined
Economists study how societies and markets distribute resources, such as raw materials, land, human labor and capital in order to create goods and services. Economists are employed by a wide variety of entities, including government agencies, investment houses, banks, think tanks, non-profit groups and large corporations. Common duties of Economists include collecting data, analyzing reports, utilizing modeling techniques, studying business forecasts and producing reports.
How to Become an Economist
Education Required for a Career in Economics
Generally, a minimum of a master's degree in Economics is required to pursue a career as an Economist, but a Ph.D. may be required for some jobs. After completing a 4-year bachelor's degree, a master's in Economics typically takes 2-3 years to complete; a Ph.D. in Economics takes at least five years to complete. Some courses that will prepare you for a career as an Economist include macro and microeconomics, econometrics, mathematics, calculus, accounting and statistics.
Skill Requirements for a Career as an Economist
In addition to strong math and analytical skills, Economists need to have strong computer and technology skills because much of the analysis Economists do utilizes computer applications and tools. Those seeking a career in Economics also must be able to prioritize tasks and pay careful attention to details.
Economic and Employment Outlook for Economics
The employment outlook for Economists is about average; the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), www.bls.gov, projects that employment in this field will grow seven percent from 2006-2016. Over half of Economists are employed by the government. Median annual earnings for Economists in 2006 were $77,010.