What does a microeconomist do? The word "micro" means small. So a microeconomist predicts the trends in specific markets and uses his information to forecast growth or recession based on his analysis. The specific market a modern day microeconomist is looking at is individual households.
A microeconomist is an expert economist who focuses on the buying and selling trends of goods and services. Someone who aspires to this career should be analytical in their abilities, good at math and statistics, and possess a certain interest in the fluctuating trends of the economy and the theories of "supply and demand."
The typical educational plan for a microeconomist would include a four-year (Bachelor’s degree) in Economics, Math, Statistics, or a related field, follow by tests related to the economics field. The Bachelor’s degree is the minimum required education you need to become a microeconomist.
An Alternate Route
You are required to get a Bachelor’s degree, as a minimum to become a true microeconomist. One could take some coursework in Math or Economics and work on some level as an associate to an economist, but a four-year degree is required to become a respected micro economist in most cases.
Steps to Becoming a Microeconomist
If you aspire to work in the field of Economics, you must be highly analytical, extremely good in math, and possess a fortitude for economic theory. If you are good with numbers and have the determination, you could make a name for yourself in this challenging and highly theoretical field.
If you want to follow this path to a career as a micro economist, here are some steps you could take to get started:
1) Get a four-year (Bachelor’s degree) in math or economics. This is the basis for the career and it is required in most cases. So work on your degree first. Choose a degree that has a good mix between economic theory, statistics, basic math, and applications of economics.
2) Take science or math electives. In addition to required economics courses, it is a good idea to take electives that deal with other disciplines which apply economic theory or statistics. This way, you will be able to apply what you learn to a variety of different situations and research. Quantitative methods are also often taught in the science discipline areas, and this can prove beneficial to micro economists in the long run.
3) Get experience in economics related jobs or environments. The more you can relate what you learn to the real world, the better you will be at your job. Work in educational or research programs, or work for a corporation. Businesses are interested in how to increase their revenue and maximize profit, which is also a very big part of microeconomics. So if you can work in one of these areas, it will greatly increase your ability in the field.
4) Become a "specialist." It is wise to remember that you are a specialist as a microeconomist. You are a field expert in how to bring in revenue for corporations and a trend expert for governmental agencies. It is possible you could work in either arena, depending on your career goals. So focus on learning all you can about how the field of microeconomics applies to both.
5) Study "opportunity cost." Opportunity cost is the cost of spending money another way other than the way consumers are spending it. This is at the heart of microeconomics, in that it predicts what someone may do, based on the amount of money they have at their disposal. The microeconomist studies this process and tries to determine what will happen in the market based on this assumption.
As you can see, the study of microeconomics is a detailed one, and it is steeped in theory and math applications. If you are naturally good in math and desire a prestigious career that puts you in the driver’s seat as an expert economist, a career in microeconomics may be for you. Start with a Bachelor’s degree in economics and plan your career in this diverse field. One step at a time, you can do it!