In order to increase the number of highly skilled specialists in economics in the region the Ministry of Higher Education of the RSFSR issued order No. 318 of 3.06.1981 to form the Faculty of Economics as an independent structural unit of Mari State University.
During the period of its formation as an independent structural unit the Faculty of Economics trained 450 full-time students and about 300 correspondence students in two specialities: "Agricultural Economics" and "Accounting in Agriculture". There were two departments: the Department of Economics and Organization of Agriculture and the Department of Accounting.
By the resolution of the Academic Council of Mari State University of June 17, 2008 the Faculty of Economics was reorganized into the Institute of Economics, Management and Finances. The necessity of the reorganization was caused by the fact that at that period the faculty was training about 2000 full-time and part-time students in 8 specialities, and the number of regular teaching staff was over 125 people.
The Institute offers post-graduate and doctoral courses. Students showing an aptitude for research work take a post-graduate course. Today there are post-graduate courses in 5 specialities. There are four departments training specialists, bachelors and masters: the Department of Managing small and medium businesses; the Department of Analysis and Accounting; the Department of Applied Statistics and Information Technology; the Department of Economics and Finances.