There is no formal graduate program in ‘Neuroeconomics’ at NYU at this time. Instead, graduate training in Neuroeconomics at New York University is managed through the Ph.D. programs of the Neuroscience, Psychology, and Economics departments in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS), as well as through the Stern School of Business. ISDM’s educational philosophy is that all prospective Neuroeconomists must have a core competency in a traditional field before they move on to become Neuroeconomists. For this reason, all incoming graduate students must apply to, and be accepted by, one of the above graduate programs. After admission, graduate students typically complete the standard first year curriculum in their home department before moving on to more specialized curricula in their second year. Training in the second year is individualized, by department, and takes place in parallel with graduate research in one of the Institute’s research labs.
Incoming Neuroscience graduate students spend their first year taking the four core graduate courses in neuroscience and rotating through two laboratories. During that year they typically attend the monthly Decision-Making Joint Lab Meeting and monthly Neuroeconomics Colloquium. At the beginning of their second year, students select a dissertation laboratory and take advanced electives in the Neural Science department, such as the Seminar in Neuroeconomics, and those in the Economics Department, such as Behavioral Economics.
The NYU Neuroscience graduate program also has a branch campus at NYU-Shanghai that offers neuroscience training for students interested in neuroeconomics. Doctoral students who complete their theses through the NYU-Shanghai track receive the same GSAS diploma from NYU as those who train at the New York campus. Neuroscience doctoral students on the Shanghai track complete a summer lab rotation in Shanghai before traveling to the New York campus, where they spend the first academic year of their doctoral studies completing coursework and lab rotations. Students return to the Shanghai campus for the remainder of their thesis work but receive funding for at least one additional (round-trip) visit to New York during their training. Students’ primary lab and mentors are in Shanghai, however, students are expected to select a co-mentor from the NY campus and include faculty from both campuses on their dissertation committee. Students interested in this track apply using the standard GSAS online application and select ‘Shanghai campus’ on the first page of the application. For additional information regarding the Shanghai track of the Neuroscience doctoral program, please see here.
Incoming Psychology graduate students commit to a laboratory for their thesis work before admission and then spend their first year completing core coursework that includes Math Tools for Neuroscientists, and Behavioral & Cognitive Neuroscience. During that year they also typically attend the monthly Decision-Making Joint Lab Meeting and monthly Neuroeconomics Colloquium. At the beginning of their second year these students take advanced seminars in Neuroeconomics including Neuroeconomics & Decision-Making taught in the Psychology Department and Behavioral Economics taught in the Economics Department.
Incoming Economics graduate students spend the entirety of their first year taking the core curriculum for the economics department and rarely do research of any kind during this period. At the conclusion of their first year they typically enroll in the Economics Department’s Psychology & Economics course, which serves as an entry point for Neuroeconomics research for these students. During the second year, they also typically attend the monthly Neuroeconomics Colloquium and perhaps the Decision Making Joint lab meeting. These students are also expected to take a number of other courses including Experimental Economics, Behavioral Economics and at least one undergraduate neuroscience course.
Stern School of Business
Incoming NYU Stern doctoral students select a particular field of study from one of eight Ph.D. programs offered and must fulfill the program requirements of that department. Generally, the first two years of each program focus on core departmental coursework, as well as electives in related areas (e.g., psychology, economics, etc.). In addition to coursework, students complete research practical alongside faculty members who work in areas related to the students’ research interests. The final 2 to 3 years of the doctoral program allow students to focus on research, present at academic conferences, and defend their dissertations. The interdisciplinary nature of the Stern doctoral programs allows students to integrate coursework and research interests from related areas. Of the Stern Ph.D. programs, marketing is one most commonly associated with neuroeconomics.
Masters Degree vs. PhD
With the exception of the Neuroscience Department, each of the aforementioned programs also offers Master’s Degrees for students. The Psychology Department offers two terminal MA degrees for individuals who wish to explore different areas of psychology, or gain research experience for admission to a doctoral program. The MA Program in General Psychology offers coursework on a broad range of topics in psychology. The MA Program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology focuses on providing theoretical and research training for how psychologists can study and apply psychological principles to work organizations. The Economics Department offers a Master’s Degree in Economics for students wishing to acquire a background in economic theory and principles, or as a preparatory degree before applying to graduate programs elsewhere. Finally, the Stern School of Business offers a number of Master’s degrees in topics that range from business administration to finance, marketing and more. Information and a comprehensive list of these Stern programs can be found here. Note that each of these programs offers terminal Master’s degree that are completed separately from the PhD programs described both regarding the application requirements and program curriculum.