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Joint Programs

The Joint Programs

The Joint Programs

In addition to your interest in the IDE Master’s Degree, there is the possibility of including IDE in one of two joint programs at Yale: IDE and Yale School of the Environment or IDE and School of Public Health. Both joint programs require 2.5 years of study at Yale.

Application Process

To apply for either joint program you have two options:

  1. Simultaneous Application: You apply to the IDE master’s degree and, at the same time, apply to the masters in Forestry or Public Health. You must be accepted into both programs to qualify for the Joint Program. You need to adhere to all application deadlines posted on each school’s website. If you are accepted by both programs you are all set. If you are accepted by one program but rejected by another you may follow the consecutive application procedure and re-apply in the following application season.
  2. Consecutive Application: You apply to one program; you are accepted; you begin your first year. During the first semester of your first year you decide you want to add a second master’s degree. Adhering to the respective school’s calendar for new applications, you apply to and are accepted into the second program. You then extend your studies at Yale to complete the joint degree.

The Joint IDE/Yale School of the Environment Master’s Degree Program

Natural resources are important to the economic development process. Forests, water, minerals, and hydrocarbons comprise the inputs to basic industries. Without careful management, the by-products of development can despoil local environments with consequent costs to public health, life quality, and further development itself. Natural resources and climate change also play an increasingly important role in the relationships among developing and economically advanced nations.

In two and one-half years students of this joint degree obtain both

  • Master of Arts degree in Economics

and one of four degrees from the Yale School of the Environment: Master’s of 

  • Environmental Management
  • Environmental Science
  • Forestry
  • Forest Science

The program is designed for individuals who envision careers whose central missions relate natural resource and consequences of climate change to economic development or trade.

Program of Study

The joint IDE/Yale School of the Environment (YSE) program requires a minimum of two and one-half years in residence and the successful completion of at least 20 courses.

Students in the joint program must complete all 8 required IDE courses (core & electives) in the two and one-half year period.

The 12 required YSE courses (eight core and four elective courses) are designed to develop a broad multidisciplinary foundation for problem solving. In addition to their core courses students will choose an advanced study area within which they chose their elective courses. The nine advanced study areas include

  • Ecology
  • Ecosystems & Biodiversity
  • Environment, Health & Policy
  • Forestry, Forest Science & Management
  • Global Change Science & Policy
  • Industrial Environmental Management
  • Policy, Economics & Law
  • the Social Ecology of Conservation & Development
  • Urban Ecology & Environmental Design
  • Water Science, Policy & Management.

Linkage of the summer internship (between the first and second residence years) and the independent project is desirable but not required. With sufficient planning, the independent project can be completed in absentia.

Finally, joint IDE/YSE students are required to complete the three-week technical skills training module prior to beginning at YSE.  These modules are offered every August.


Students may enter the joint IDE/YSE program by two alternate routes. Applicants may apply to both the Graduate School and to the Yale School of the Environment at the same time and state their intention to pursue a joint degree, or they may apply to one school before the end of their first year of study at the other. In either case, application is made separately to the two schools, and each school makes its own admission decisions. Applicants will be admitted only at the beginning of the fall term except for those applying after one term of residence.

For more details, please see the Yale School of the Environment website

The Joint IDE /School of Public Health Master’s Degree Program

In recognition of the increasing relationship between international development and public health issues, the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) and the International and Development Economics Program (IDE) in the Department of Economics offer a joint degree program in public health and international development. This program is especially oriented to individuals who plan careers in international health and economic development.

The joint degree program normally requires two and one half years of study. 

Successful candidates are awarded the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree and the Master of Arts (MA) degree in Economics at the conclusion of the two and one half year period.  A joint degree student will pay tuition to YSPH for three semesters and to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences for two semesters.  

A joint degree is more than simply a list of courses taken at both Schools.  It is an integrated educational program which is designed to achieve a combination of the two programs in a way that is complementary to both while protecting the integrity of each separate program.  The DGS in International and Development Economics and the Dean of Student Affairs at YSPH will consult regularly to review the progress of students in the joint program.


Admissions decisions are made independently by YSPH and the Yale Graduate School.  Students may apply to both schools at the same time, or they may apply to one school during their first academic year at the other.  Applicants who apply simultaneously must indicate that they are doing so on each application. Students who are already enrolled in one of the programs must inform both programs of their intention to apply to become joint degree students. Students must formally apply and be accepted into both the YSPH and IDE programs before enrolling as joint degree students.

Program of Study

The normal pattern for joint degree candidates is to spend the first year mostly in one program and the second year predominantly in the other.  In the fifth semester, students combine international development and public health courses. The two schools have made accommodations in order to make possible the completion of the joint courses of study in five semesters without burdening students with extraordinary course loads in any term. 

Joint degree candidates must complete all of the normal departmental required courses as described in the Yale School of Public Health Bulletin.  All students must complete a set of core courses in biostatistics, epidemiology, environmental health, health policy, and social and behavioral sciences.  Students must also complete all required courses in the division of their concentration and the internship and thesis requirements. Joint degree students need only to complete a total of 15 YSPH course units for the joint degree.  

To fulfill the MA requirement students have to take and pass all six IDE core courses as well as the four elective courses. Students also have to fulfill all grade requirements as stated by the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

Each course taken may only be counted toward one degree.   

Tuition and Financial Aid

Joint degree candidates will owe three terms’ tuition to YSPH and two terms’ tuition to the Graduate School.  Students requesting financial aid during a particular semester must make arrangements with the school charging tuition during that semester.  Tuition, fees, and financial aid policies may differ between the two schools. The Graduate School does not provide financial assistance to students in the IDE program.  Students should consult the financial aid officers in each school for a description of their respective policies.

For more details, please see the Yale School of Public Health website.