The Majors and Minor

Concentrations, Offerings, Requirements, Faculty, Research, and more  

Economics is a study of decision-making to allocate scarce resources, and it affects every aspect of our lives.  A prominent economist, John Maynard Keynes, once wrote: 

"The theory of economics does not furnish a body of settled conclusions immediately applicable to policy. It is a method rather than a doctrine, an apparatus of the mind, a technique of thinking which helps its possessor to draw correct conclusions." 

Because economics touches such a wide range of disciplines, courses in the Economics Department at St. Thomas cover topics including business, environment, law, international and public policy issues, as well as behavioral economics and game theory. In addition, our econometric and forecasting courses provide you with the technical skills to analyze data to answer real world questions.   These are necessary skills for the workplace given that “the world’s most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data.” (The Economist May 6, 2017)

Academic Offerings

Major Requirements

The Department of Economics offers both a bachelor of arts (B.A.), a bachelor of science (B.S.), and a minor in economics. Our degrees help students develop the general, flexible and important skills valued by both the business community and graduate programs from law to business and economics. While some students major in economics without another degree, many pursue complementary coursework in other fields (e.g., math, political science, statistics, English, international studies).  

The core for both types of majors consists of five economics courses and two allied requirements (in calculus and statistics). The B.A. requires three additional electives of the student’s choosing. The B.S. requires more coursework in economics and in allied disciplines, and has four possible paths: 

The degree you choose depends on what you would like to do once you leave St. Thomas.  For example, if you want to attend graduate school in economics you typically would major in mathematical economics. If you want to go into government work, you might consider the public policy major. Those who plan to enter the business world and want to pursue an MBA will often choose business economics. 

Economics (B.A.) - Major Field Guide

Core Courses

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 315 Introduction to Econometrics (4 credits)
  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)

Plus:

  • Twelve credits in courses numbered 300 and above.

Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take ECON 315, 351 and 352 by the end of the junior year.  

Allied requirements

Four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Plus either:

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) or MATH 303 Statistics for the Applied Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • MATH 313 Probability (4 credits) and STAT 314 Mathematical Statistics (4 credits)

Business Economics Path (B.S.) - Major Field Guide

A path which emphasizes additional tools for analyzing business situations as well as incorporating a basic foundation in the field of business.

Core Courses

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 315 Introduction to Econometrics (4 credits)
  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)

Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take ECON 315, 351 and 352 by the end of the junior year. 

Allied Requirements

Four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Plus either:

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) or MATH 303 Statistics for the Applied Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • MATH 313 Probability (4 credits) and STAT 314 Mathematical Statistics (4 credits)

Path Requirements

  • ECON 311 Forecasting (4 credits)
  • ECON 332 Industrial Organization (4 credits)
  • ECON 401 Managerial Decision Making (4 credits)

Plus:

  • Eight credits in elective economics courses numbered 300 or above 

Plus:

  • ACCT 210 Introduction to Financial Accounting (4 credits) 

Plus eight credits from the following:

  • ACCT 215 Managerial Accounting (4 credits)
  • FINC 300 Finance for Non-Business Majors (4 credits)
  • FINC 321 Financial Management (4 credits)
  • MGMT 305 Management and Organizational Behavior (4 credits)

 

International Economics Path (B.S.) - Major Field Guide

Prepares students for careers in which an understanding of the complexities of cultural differences and international economic relationships is crucial.

Core Courses

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 315 Introduction to Econometrics (4 credits)
  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)

Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take ECON 315, 351 and 352 by the end of the junior year. 

Allied Requirements

Four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Plus either:

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) or MATH 303 Statistics for the Applied Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • MATH 313 Probability (4 credits) and STAT 314 Mathematical Statistics (4 credits)

Path Requirements

Twelve credits from the following:

  • ECON 345 Economics of Development and Growth (4 credits)
  • ECON 346 Country and Area Studies in Economics (4 credits)
  • ECON 341 Economics of International Finance (4 credits)
  • ECON 342 International Trade (4 credits)

Plus:

  • Eight credits in elective economics courses numbered 300 or above (ECON 346 can only be included one time in fulfillment of the path requirement, and not as one of the additional electives)

Plus:

  • A minor in a foreign language or significant study abroad experience approved by the department chair

 

Mathematical Economics Path (B.S.) - Major Field Guide

Prepares students for the core competencies necessary for graduate study in economics.

Core Courses

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 315 Introduction to Econometrics (4 credits)
  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)

Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take ECON 315, 351 and 352 by the end of the junior year. 

Allied Requirements

Four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Plus either:

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) or MATH 303 Statistics for the Applied Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • MATH 313 Probability (4 credits) and STAT 314 Mathematical Statistics (4 credits)

Path Requirements

  • ECON 355 Game Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 418 Mathematical Economics (4 credits)

Plus four credits from the following:

  • ECON 301 History of Economic Thought (4 credits)
  • ECON 337 Economics of the Public Sector (4 credits)
  • ECON 339 Labor Economics (4 credits) 

Plus:

  • Eight credits in elective economics courses numbered 300 or above

Plus:

  • MATH 114 Calculus II (4 credits)
  • MATH 200 Multi-Variable Calculus (4 credits)
  • MATH 240 Linear Algebra (4 credits)

Note: STAT 333 Applied Statistical Methods may be substituted for ECON 315

It is advised that students applying to graduate school complete MATH 240 prior to submitting their application.

 

 

Public Policy Economics (B.S.) - Major Field Guide 

Prepares students for careers in the government or non-profit sectors, or for graduate study in public policy.

Core Courses

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 315 Introduction to Econometrics (4 credits)
  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits)

Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take ECON 315, 351 and 352 by the end of the junior year. 

Allied Requirements

Four credits from the following:

  • MATH 109 Calculus with Review II (4 credits)
  • MATH 111 Calculus for Business and Social Science (4 credits)
  • MATH 113 Calculus I (4 credits)

Plus either:

  • STAT 220 Statistics I (4 credits) or MATH 303 Statistics for the Applied Sciences (4 credits)

or

  • MATH 313 Probability (4 credits) and STAT 314 Mathematical Statistics (4 credits)

Path Requirements:

  • ECON 337 Economics of the Public Sector (4 credits)

Plus eight credits from the following:

  • ECON 326 Health Economics (4 credits) 
  • ECON 333 Regional and Urban Economics (4 credits)
  • ECON 370 Environmental and Natural Resource Economics (4 credits)

Plus:

  • Eight credits in elective economics courses numbered 300 or above

Plus:

  • POLS 104 American Government in Comparative Perspective (4 credits)
  • POLS 205 Introduction to the American Public Policy Process (4 credits)

Plus:

  • Four credits in elective political science courses numbered 300 through 319

The minor in economics, requiring only six courses in the discipline, serves as a complement to any major at St. Thomas since economics informs the study of everything, from history to business to engineering (and more).  

  • ECON 251 Principles of Macroeconomics (4 credits)
  • ECON 252 Principles of Microeconomics (4 credits)

Plus four credits from the following:

  • ECON 351 Macroeconomic Theory (4 credits)
  • ECON 352 Microeconomic Theory (4 credits) 

Plus:

  • Twelve credits in elective economics courses numbered 300 and above.

Here is a Sample Guide displaying the different course requirements for each economics path offered at St. Thomas. Sample four-year schedules are available under each individual path.