Five-Year BA in Economics / MS in Health Economics (4+1)


The 5-year BA in Economics / MS in Health program in economics allows qualified undergraduate students to take graduate level economic courses and count them towards their B.A. degree in economics.  After completing the B.A. in economics, up to 12 graduate level ECON credits taken as an undergraduate student may be counted again towards the M.S. in Health Economics degree.  This allows a student to complete both the B.A. and M.S. degrees in as few as five years.  Students who decide not to pursue a M.A. or M.S. degree in economics at CU Denver after earning a B.A. degree in economics retain their B.A. degree along with all other undergraduate credentials on their transcripts.  Learn more about the M.S. degree in health economics here.

Course Requirements

Undergraduate required courses (30 or 31 credit hours):

  • ECON 2012 – Principles of Microeconomics
  • ECON 2022 – Principles of Macroeconomics
  • ECON 4071 – Intermediate Microeconomic Theory
  • ECON 4081 – Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON 4811 – Introduction to Econometrics
  • MATH 1401 – Calculus I
  • MATH 2411 – Calculus II
  • MATH 2421 – Calculus III
  • MATH 3382 – Statistical Theory (3 hours) or ECON 3811 – Statistics with Computer Applications (4 hours)

Undergraduate electives (9 credit hours):

Three undergraduate economics (ECON) courses and at least 2 of them must be at 4000-level.

Graduate required courses (21 credit hours):

  • ECON 5803 - Mathematical Economics (3 credits)1
  • ECON 5073 - Microeconomics Theory (3 credits)
  • ECON 5083 - Macroeconomics Theory (3 credits)
  • ECON 5813 - Econometrics I (3 credits)
  • ECON 5823 - Econometrics II (3 credits)
  • ECON 7073 - Microeconomics Theory II (3 credits)
  • ECON 7661 – Health Economics I (3 credits)
  • ECON 7662 – Health Economics II (3 credits)

ECON 5803 (Graduate Mathematical Economics) can be waived with the graduate advisor's approval.  Students who have ECON 5803 waived will be required to complete 12 gradaute elective credit hours.

Graduate electives (9 credit hours):

Any course numbered 5000 or higher with an ECON or HSMP prefix.  Courses numbered 6611 or higher with a BIOS prefix may be taken with the graduate advisor’s approval.

Dual credits (12 credit hours)

Students only need to take three ECON electives at the undergraduate level; up to four courses taken at the graduate level can be double counted in fulfilling both the BA and MS graduation requirements. The maximum number of dual credit hours is 12.

Total economics/mathematics credit hours = 69 or 70

Total credit hours for the combined degrees = 138


Note: the mathematics courses that students take also fulfill some of CU Denver (up to 8 hours) and CLAS (up to 4 hours) graduation requirements.


Additional graduation requirements

All other grade and GPA requirements towards the B.A. and M.S. degrees (e.g., a C- or better is needed in each undergraduate-level required course and a B- or better is needed in each graduate-level required course). Students are expected to meet all course prerequisites.

Students will earn the BA degree upon completing all the requirements for the B.A. degree.  Students are expected to be admitted to the Graduate School in their final two semesters prior to earning the M.S. degree.

Admission requirements

  1. Meet all general admission requirements of the Graduate School.
  2. Be a current CU Denver Economics major with a GPA of 3.5 or better.
  3. The following courses must have been completed at CU Denver with a grade of B+ or better: MATH 2411, MATH 2421, ECON 4071, and ECON 4811.
  4. Students may apply to the 4+1 BA/MA program any time after conditions 1-3 are met.
  5. Students who do not meet requirements 1-3 may apply, but may be required to submit GRE scores and two letters of recommendation; otherwise both are waived.  The graduate application fee is also waived.
  6. Students will receive an admissions letter, but will not be formally admitted to the Graduate School until after they are awarded the B.A. in Economics.  Before being admitted to the Graduate School, students will require the graduate advisor approval to enroll in graduate level econ courses.

To apply, students should submit a regular application to the MS in Health Economics program here.  Students who meet the admission requirements are not required to pay the application fee, submit GRE scores, letters of recommendation, or a personal statement.  Students must contact the graduate advisor after their application is submitted to have this material waived (

Sample curriculum

Year Fall Spring
1 MATH 1401 - Calculus-I MATH 2411 - Calculus-II

MATH 2421 - Calculus-III

ECON 2022 - Principle Micro

ECON 2012 – Principle Macro

Math3382 - Statistic Theory


ECON 4071 - Int. Micro

ECON 4811 - Intro Metrics

Under elective-1

ECON 4081 - Int. Macro

Under elective-2


ECON 5073 - Micro Theory I

ECON 5813 - Econometrics I

Under elective-3

ECON 5823 - Econometrics II

ECON 7661 - Health Economics I

ECON 7073 - Micro Theory II


ECON 7662 - Health Economics II

Grad elective-1

Grad elective-2

Grad elective-3