Why Major in Economics?
An economics major is a general degree intended to teach problem-solving techniques as well as basic economic principles. A few reasons for majoring in economics:
The economics major provides the preparation for understanding economic issues of great importance. Economics students learn to think creatively and deeply about some of the most important economic concerns facing the world today. Students learn to apply a variety of theoretical perspectives to issues of economic efficiency, economic growth, globalism, wealth and poverty, power, individual freedom, discrimination, cultural values, and environmental concerns.
The economics major provides substantial intellectual depth and interdisciplinary breadth as well as critical thinking. The Economics major allows exploration of a variety of disciplinary and interdisciplinary views on economic questions and policy. Economics majors learn to think critically about economic issues and problems.
An economics major is good preparation for Law School. An economics major is viewed favorably by law schools and many economics majors go on to law school. Law and economic principles are often closely related, and the concepts and tools of economics are frequently used by legal scholars to analyze problems in law, focusing on contracts, property, torts, and the legal process. Additionally, a major in economics provides students with the intellectual discipline and analytical abilities necessary to succeed in top law schools.
What are Salary and Employment Prospects for Majors in Economics?
The median starting salary for economists in 2005 was $40,000 and employment opportunities for economics majors are numerous and varied.
The economics major provides an excellent foundation for any career or graduate study in public policy analysis. Economics is one of the keystones of public policy analysis, and both employers and graduate schools in public policy and administration require a strong foundation in economic analysis.
An economics major is good preparation for many private and public sector jobs and careers in managerial, administrative, or sales positions. Employers look with favor on college graduates with economics majors. The ability to apply economic principles to “real-world” problems can enhance the kinds of decisions people make and is therefore of value to a wide variety of different employers. Economics provides students with a broad range of analytical, quantitative, and communication skills that are useful in many different occupations in management, finance, banking, public administration, non-profit organizations, and community service.
Students who major in economics are required to complete a total of 42 credit hours of study, including 21 hours of core courses: ECO 201, 202, 311, 312, and 470, MAT 201 and 223. Students must also complete 21 hours of 300 and 400 level economics electives. At least six hours of these electives must be at the 400 level. Students should have completed ECO 201, 202, and MAT 201 and 223 prior to their junior year.
Students must complete a total of 18 hours, including ECO 201, 202, 311*, 312 and 6 hours of 300- and 400-level economics electives.
*ECO/BUS 420 may be substituted for ECO 311.