About the Major

Welcome to the economics major. On this page, students can find information on the requirements of the major, a description and schedule of current and upcoming economics courses offerings, and frequently asked questions about the major.

Course descriptions of all regularly scheduled economics courses can be found in the Academic Catalog. Scheduling and planning an economics major within a four year plan can be found in Academic Planning for First-Year Students. Other information about the major is provided on the frequently asked questions page.

Major Description and Requirements

To complete a major of economics, a student must complete a minimum of 8 four-credit economic courses. Required are:

  1. Economics 111;
  2. One economics field course (numbered 200-250)
  3. One of the following courses in empirical analysis:
    • Economics 286 Econometrics, or
    • Mathematics 336 Probability and Statistics II (Note, Mathematics 336 does count toward satisfying the course requirement in empirical analysis but does not count toward the minimum eight courses required in economics)
  4. Economics 280 and 282;
  5. One advanced analysis course (numbered 300 – 350);
  6. Two economic seminars; and
  7. One history course above the 100-level from a list approved by the economics department (for list of approved see below), which does not count toward the eight-course minimum.

Economics 111 introduces a student to the discipline and covers topics in both microeconomics and macroeconomics. The courses numbered 205 – 250 consider important areas of applied economics at a level accessible to all students who have taken Economics 111. The tools of economic analysis are systematically developed in intermediate theory courses (280, 282), and Econometrics (286), which are recommended to all students who expect to make use of economics in their studies, careers, or vocations. Students should take one course numbered 205 – 250 before taking Economics 280, 282, or 286; students who have already taken Economics 280, 282, or 286 would not normally take courses numbered 205 – 250. Following the intermediate theory courses (280 and 282), students proceed to take advanced analysis courses (those numbered 300 – 350) to develop additional analytical capabilities. Finally, seminar courses provide advanced applications of the discipline’s theoretical, empirical, and institutional insights. Additional information regarding these different levels of economics curriculum can be found in the college catalog.

A student majoring in economics will find available complementary work in history, other social sciences, and mathematics (including statistics and computer science). While some students double major in mathematics and economics, you do not have to be a math whiz to be a successful economics major. Quantitative reasoning is encouraged, and students will be expected to access data and to use spreadsheet and statistical software to analyze economics issues. However, beyond differential calculus and applied statistics, high order math classes are not required for the major. Another subject area that complements economics is history. Courses in history often provide context for understanding the development and evolution of institutions that impact economic activity.

In addition to these fields of study, off-campus study provides an excellent opportunity to observe and analyze how economic choices are made in other societies. To be considered for honors in economics, graduating seniors, in addition to meeting the College's general requirements for honors, must demonstrate to the department's satisfaction that they have achieved depth and breadth in their course of study.

History Requirements

Courses That Fulfill the Economics Department History Requirements
HIS 201 Colonial Latin America
HIS 202 Modern Latin America
HIS 212 Democracy in America, 1789-1848
HIS 214 The American Civil War and Reconstruction
HIS 220 U.S. Environmental History
HIS 222 The History of Women in the United States
HIS 223 American Medical History
HIS 225 Native American History, 1491-1865
HIS 226 Native American History, 1877-Present
HIS 227

African-American History                                                    

HIS 229 American Economic History
HIS 235 Britain in the Modern World
HIS 236 Britain in the Modern World II
HIS 237 The Spectacle of Modern France
HIS 238 The Making of Modern Germany
HIS 242 Rise & Fall of the Soviet Union
HIS 261 Southern Africa
HIS 262 Modern Africa from the Sahara to the Zambezi
HIS 266 History of Modern Middle East
HIS 267 Islam in the Modern Era
HIS 271 Imperial Collisions in the Asia - Pacific
HIS 275 China's Revolutions
HIS 277 China's Rise
HIS 281 Science and Society
HIS 283 When the World Became Global


We use cookies to enable essential services and functionality on our site, enhance your user experience, provide better service through personalized content, collect data on how visitors interact with our site, and enable advertising services.

To accept the use of cookies and continue on to the site, click "I Agree." For more information about our use of cookies and how to opt out, please refer to our website privacy policy.