Graduate Student Life

The Ohio State University (OSU) is one of America’s distinguished public universities, offering many highly ranked programs, over 170 majors, and nearly 11,000 courses.  Through its emphasis on teaching and research, the university provides students with unique learning experiences that few other institutions can match.  OSU also offers its diverse student body a range of social and cultural opportunities, with more than 600 student organizations on campus.  OSU has 19 colleges, seven schools, the Agricultural Technical Institute in Wooster, and regional campuses in Lima, Mansfield, Marion, and Newark, Ohio.  More than 55,000 students, including over 10,000 graduate students, come from every state in the nation and over 100 foreign countries.

Cost of Study:  For the 2011-2012 academic year, tuition and fees are $3,941 for Ohio residents and $9,516 for nonresidents per quarter.  Visit The Office of the University Registrar website for current information regarding tuition and fee rates.  The cost of living in Columbus is comparable to that in most US metropolitan areas. The annual maintenance budget for a student for the 2011-2012 academic year is approximately $13,980 including living expenses, health insurance, books and supplies.  Visit the OSU Graduate Admissions Estimated Costs website.

 for current information regarding living expenses.  While on-campus housing is available, many students choose to live off campus.  To obtain details on the OSU area housing for students, please visit here for information regarding on-campus housing, Visit Buckeye Village for family housing information, and visit here for information regarding off-campus housing. 

Life as an Econ Grad:  Approximately 90 students are currently enrolled in the Economics Ph.D. program of which two-thirds are male, and one-third is female.  Graduate students form a vital intellectual community.  Virtually everyone in the second year and above has an office in Arps Hall where the department faculty and staff offices are located.  The first year students have a common room equipped with PC terminals and printers in Arps Hall.  Students, especially the first year students, extensively use the Economics Lounge in Arps Hall for study groups and discussions.  The Economics Lounge is open 24 hours and 365 days a year for all students.  Many students form study groups to work on problem sets and prepare for exams. 

The Graduate Program Coordinator manages the Office of Graduate Studies (OGS), which maintains the files of the current and past students and serves as a day-to-day center of our Graduate Program operations.  The Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) serves as the advisor to all students in pre-dissertation stage.  Major petitions and decisions are taken up by the Graduate Studies Committee, which consists of the DGS and several faculty members appointed by the Department Chair.  It is customary that two graduate student representatives and the graduate placement director to participate in major topics of deliberation in the Graduate Studies Committee.

The department supports various events to promote esprit de corps.  The major player in graduate student life used to be the self-governing Economics Graduate Student Society (EGSS), which has become dormant in recent years after activist organizers have all successfully graduated, and which we hope a new generation of students will revive soon.  Such a student society can also serve as a voice in the context of faculty-staff-student relations, and can elect officers to represent economics graduate students in the Department Graduate Studies Committee and in university-level graduate student governance and associations.

Academic collaboration between students and faculty is encouraged.  It is not uncommon for advanced graduate students to co-author research papers with faculty members.  Students and faculty members participate in the same weekly workshops and seminars.  Every year about two dozen students participate in not only in regional but also in national and international academic conferences with the support and cooperation of the department and faculty. 

Although the academic curriculum is extremely demanding, graduate students, especially once they have completed the first year, can still find time to enjoy the many advantages of life in thriving central Ohio.  Columbus remains among a select group of cities in the country’s northeast quadrant that have posted consistent growth since the 1960s.  The state’s capital and the nation’s 11th largest city, Columbus boasts a diverse economy of information and research-based companies, and other service-sector industries.  The metropolitan area is the home of Ohio State and six other colleges and universities.  Several Fortune 500 corporations have headquarters or operations in the central Ohio area, and banking, retailing, and education have contributed significantly to the region’s growth.  The city has more than 112,500 acres of parks located throughout the area, and miles of bike paths winding through the city also provide a scenic route for relaxation and fitness.  The city’s cultural scene features a variety of music, opera, theater, and dance performances and exhibitions year-round.