Economics is the study of production, distribution, and exchange of goods and services. It investigates such questions as price formation, level of employment of labor and other resources, efficient use of scarce resources, and the basis and effects of government policies in the economy. Economics also analyses, compares, and contrasts different economic systems in the world, and studies the international economic relations among countries.
The undergraduate economics program is designed to give students a beginning sense of what economists do as well as how they think. After taking the introductory course, ECO 108, students are required to acquire a more thorough background in economic theory by taking ECO 303 Intermediate Microeconomics, ECO 305 Intermediate Macroeconomics, ECO 320 Mathematical Statistics, and ECO 321 Econometrics. The remaining economics courses used to satisfy the major requirements go into particular aspects of economics (e.g., labor markets, industrial organization, money and banking, economic development, finance) showing how economists analyze theoretical and empirical issues. Some upper division courses apply statistical methods, which are taught in the program.
In order to be prepared for a globalized 21 century, the Economics Department recommends that majors consider an international experience as a study aboard or exchange student participant. Either alternative will allows students to earn GED or Major requirements after consultation with the undergraduate advisor. For more information go to the Study Abroad and Exchange website.
Graduating majors can pursue graduate studies leading to an M.A. or Ph.D. in economics, or to a Master of Business Administration degree. The major is also especially useful for students interested in graduate studies in such areas as law, human resources, public policy and health economics. The majority of graduating economics majors who continue their education either go to law school or pursue an M.B.A. A small number of graduates have gone to graduate school in economics, receiving Ph.D.'s from schools such as Harvard, Duke, and Berkeley. More than half the graduating seniors go directly into the job market. The great majority find entry level positions in finance, marketing, sales, state and local government and various forms of business analysis and research. Many M.B.A. programs require applicants to have had work experience before applying to their program, so many students enter the job market temporarily and eventually return to school for an advanced degree. For additional information, visit the Career Center website.
Students may consider enrolling in ECO 488, Internship. Internships provide opportunities for students to integrate work experience into the Economics major by doing related readings, keeping a daily journal, and writing an analytical paper under the supervision of a faculty member. It is essentially an independent research project. In order to register for ECO 488, students must have the permission of the Internship manager in the University's Career Center. For further information, students should contact the Undergraduate Coordinator in the Economics Department.
Qualified students can graduate with Honors in Economics. The requirements for graduation with Honors in Economics include an honors thesis approved by the Department's Undergraduate Committee (see the requirements section for more information). Qualified students interested in graduation with honors should seek the permission of a faculty member to enroll for ECO 487 (Independent Research). If the advising faculty deems the submitted paper to be outstanding, they can nominate it to be evaluated as an honors thesis.
Graduation with honors is different from membership in Omicron Delta Epsilon (ODE) , the national economics honor society. Their mission is to create an intimate community among students with interest in economics as well as graduate students and professors in the department. There are events throughout the academic year which include, Economics Professor Panels and Q&A, Student Job Prospect Presentation, Annual Economics Movie Night and more. To become a member, complete the ODE application or contact the department for additional information.