College of Social and Behavioral Science


B.A. in Economics

Program Purpose

The undergraduate program in Economics offers students the opportunity to develop a rigorous understanding of economic theory and its application to real-world issues. It also allows students to customize their degree towards specific goals and interests. Beyond the core sequence in micro- and macroeconomics and quantitative and statistical methods, students can choose elective courses focused on money and banking, environmental economics, economic development in poor countries, labor economics, health economics, econometrics, and many other topics. Our curriculum offers students an exposure to an unusual breadth of economic thought, as is reflected in elective offerings that examine feminist, Marxian, historical, and institutional approaches. Many of our students combine their economics degrees with minors or second majors in related fields. Our undergraduate program attracts a wide variety of students, including those seeking careers in business, public policy, the law, and academics.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how people provide for their economic needs through markets, households/families, and the government
  • Understand how markets work, the circumstances under which they fail, and the role of government regulation of markets
  • Think in terms of abstractions or models, including graphical and mathematical models;
  • Apply economic models to real world situations;
  • Evaluate the strengths and weakness of economic models;
  • Predict the effects of alternative economic policies;
  • Interpret economic data including measurement of inflation, unemployment, labor market participation, poverty, rates of interest and of profit, and productivity;
  • Understand the interaction of national economies through trade, migration, and financial relationships