An introduction to economics stressing the fundamental and central concepts in economics and discussing methods and topics that engage economists. Topics include supply-and-demand analysis, determination of prices, output and profits, distribution of income, determination of real GDP, and fiscal and monetary policy.
Offered: every semester.
ECON 202. ENVIRONMENTAL ECONOMICS
This course is designed to give students a better understanding of how the environment and the economy interact and how public policy can be used to shape this interaction. The course begins by sketching out the flows of natural resources associated with economic activity and how the environmental effects produced by these flows are valued. The course then proceeds to show how market economies affect the environment. Particular emphasis is placed on the environmental damage generated by market economies and how public policy can best be used to address this damage.
Prerequisite: ECON 101
ECON 210. INTERNATIONAL ECONOMICS
This course examines the causes and consequences of international economic integration. It explores the forces that shape the pattern of international trade as well as the welfare effects of such trade. It also studies the policies that governments can use to regulate trade. Finally, it analyzes how international economic integration impacts aggregate economic performance by introducing concepts such as exchange rates and the balance of payments.
Prerequisite: ECON 101.
This course analyzes the financial and monetary systems in the United States. We will cover a variety of topics including the role of money in the financial system, the structure of financial institutions, types of financial instruments, monetary policy and the macroeconomic implications of those policies both domestically and internationally. Finally, the course explores the connections between financial markets and the Federal Reserve with economic models and current events.
ECON 224. MACROECONOMIC DATA AND ANALYSIS
Understanding how to find, manipulate and interpret macroeconomic date is an important tool to comprehend the world we live in and policy decisions made by central banks and fiscal authorities. Students in this course will learn how to obtain and use macroeconomic data such as GDP, inflation and unemployment for the analysis of current economic issues and policy decisions.
Prerequisite: ECON 101
ECON 246. EVOLUTIONARY GAME THEORY
An introduction to the concepts, techniques, and application of evolutionary game theory. The mathematics of game theory and natural selection offer insights valuable to the study of economics, biology, psychology, anthropology, sociology, philosophy, and political science. This course is intended to serve students with interests in any of these fields learn the approach, requiring minimal mathematical background, with special attention to apparent paradoxes, such as the evolution of altruism. [V]
Prerequisite: MATH 141, MATH 161, or MATH 165; and one of the following: ECON 101, BIOL 102, A&S 102, A&S 103, PSYC 110, GOVT 101, GOVT 102, GOVT 103, GOVT 104, PHIL 200, PHIL 145, PHIL 250, PHIL 260, or NEUR 201
Instructor: Ruebeck, Root
*Cross-listed with Math
A study of how individuals and organizations deal with the problem of scarcity, the role of prices in coordinating economic activity, criteria for determining desirable allocation of resources, the mix of private and public institutions, and the economic basis of public policies. (Formerly 211)
An examination of aggregate economic activity focusing on the forces that determine the behavior of real GDP, interest rates, and the price level. Economic growth, fluctuations, unemployment, and inflation are analyzed along with alternative policies for dealing with them. (Formerly 212)
This course focuses on building multiple regression models useful for testing economic theories and making business forecasts. Topics include simple and multiple regression, dummy variables, multicollinearity, heteroscedasticity, serial correlation, and binary dependent variable models. The coursework includes extensive use of statistical software packages and large data sets. Students who receive credit for 253 may not receive credit for ECON 365. Similarly, students who receive credit for ECON 365 may not receive credit for 253. (Formerly 213)
ECON 255. MULTINATIONAL BUSINESS AND CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
Strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) is about how a company resolves the dilemmas around its core product or service, how that product is produced, and how and to whom it is marketed. In effect, multi-national corporations which have a business model that uses profit to fuel constant innovation in new products, now have to include, for example, programs to reduce emissions, carbon trading, fair trade practices and differential pricing of general drugs in poor developing countries that demonstrate the potential for CSR; others illustrate the continuing limitations. The object of this course is to make students aware of international business situations that require moral reflection, judgement and decision, while revealing the complexities that often surround business choices and the formation of public policies. Learning through cases of irresponsible actions as well as responsible behavior, the course focuses attention on the study of International Business circumstances in which hard choices must e made under complex conditions of uncertainty and disagreement. Students who receive credit for 255 may not receive credit for ECON 352. Similarly, students who receive credit for ECON 352 may not receive credit for 255.
An introduction to the basic concepts and standards underlying the measurement and reporting of the financial effects of economic events on the business entity. Emphasis is on the theory of asset valuation and income determination and its implications for the communication function of accounting. Students are required to attend a weekly one-hour lab in which they learn spreadsheet techniques and applications to financial accounting.
ECON 300. INDUSTRY, STRATEGY, AND POLICY
This course serially examines the major sectors of the global economy using the tools of economic theory. For each sector, students analyze current market conditions and trends, financial performance, critical challenges, and relevant public policies.
Prerequisite: ECON 251
This course introduces students to the concepts and intricacies of federal income tax policies. Students learn to recognize the major transactions inherent in business and financial transactions.
Prerequisite: ECON 218
ECON 311. CAUSES OF THE FINANCIAL CRISES
Students in this course will evaluate the causes of financial crises with an emphasis on the latest financial crisis. There will be specific focus on financial leverage, financial innovation, capital imbalances, regulatory failure, and incentives (e.g., the “seven deadly sins”). Students will be asked to make suggestions for reforms to prevent or mitigate future crises. [W]
This course takes the principles of accounting and applies them to the world of finance. The emphasis is on the theory that underlies corporate accountability for financial reporting. Selected reporting and disclosure issues, such as financial statement presentations, earnings per share (EPS), debt, equity, and investments of excess funds for strategic financial management, as well as cash flow analysis, are incorporated. Excel spreadsheets are used extensively. [W]
Prerequisite: ECON 218
ECON 320. CORPORATE FINANCE
Analysis and practical application of corporate financial data as it relates to managerial decision making. Particular emphasis is placed on the corporate investment and financing decision, risk management, and the dividend.
Prerequisite: ECON 319
An examination of the portfolio theory and security analysis involved with both fixed income and equity securities. Topics include analysis, pricing, and risk management.
Prerequisite: ECON 320.
ECON 322. FINANCIAL MARKETS
This course is an introduction to Flow of Funds analysis and interest rate determination in the money and capital markets, the structure of interest rates, efficient market hypothesis, and major financial institutions in the United States.
ECON 323. MONEY, FINANCIAL INTERMEDIATION, AND THE ECONOMY
A theoretical analysis of the role of money in determining the level of economic activity. Topics covered include the determination of interest rates and inflation, the institutional structure of financial intermediaries and the Federal Reserve, and the history of monetary policy in the United States. [W]
This course examines the practices and principal theories of major options and futures markets. Special emphasis is placed on the role of derivative securities in facilitating risk management.
Prerequisite: ECON 321.
This course surveys a wide range of economic issues relating to women’s lives with special emphasis on family, work, and income. Public policy applications are stressed.
ECON 327. APPLIED MICROECONOMETRICS
The course introduces students to the application of econometric techniques commonly used by microeconomists. The emphasis is on specification, estimation, interpretation, and testing of microeconometric models rather than a thorough treatment of asymptotic properties of estimators. Methods considered include panel data estimators, instrumental variables estimators, difference-in-differences methods, limited dependent variable models, quantile regressions and non-parametric regressions. An emphasis will be placed on application through data-intensive assignments and a research project. [W]
ECON 328. LABOR ECONOMICS
This course examines in detail one of the most important markets in economics: the labor market. The course will investigate the key theories behind labor supply and labor demand and how they interact to determine wages and employment. Other topics include: the effects of government policies including welfare programs and minimum wages, compensating wage differentials, education, and human capital, immigration, discrimination. The course will take both a theoretical and empirical look into these topics.
An introduction to the economic analysis of urban areas. Theories of urban growth and of intra-metropolitan land use are explored. Topics include trends in the location of economic activity within urban areas, the urbanization of poverty, and problems of urban government.
This course integrates microeconomic theory with economic application techniques in an investigation of various market structures, strategic firm interaction, antitrust issues, and economic regulation. Beginning with the standard Structure-Conduct-Performance paradigm and proceeding through some of the most recently developed theories in noncooperative games, the course content exposes students to an array of methods that facilitate the analysis of market structures, antitrust, and regulatory issues.
Prerequisite: ECON 251 or permission of instructor
ECON 332. ECONOMICS OF HEALTH CARE
This course provides an overview of the economics of health and medical care. By the end of the semester, students should have the institutional knowledge and analytical tools needed to contribute to current public policy debates about health and medical care.
ECON 336. BEHAVIORAL ECONOMICS
Drawing on methods from psychology, sociology, neurology, and economics, this course sheds light on one of the most fundamental human activities: the decision process. In Behavioral Economics you will learn state-of-the-art theories and methods that explain the economic choices that we all make every day. In contrast to standard approaches, we will not only use economic tools but also psychology-based concepts such as impulsiveness, self-control, cognitive dissonance, overconfidence, anchoring, framing, emotional reactions, intrinsic motivation, etc.
Prerequisite: ECON 251
ECON 337. ECONOMIC ISSUES IN THE DEMAND FOR MEDICAL CARE
This course studies the health care systems and institutions, the demand for medical care and medical insurance, and the production and costs of medical care from an economic perspective. General issues in cost and benefit analysis will also be introduced. The objective of this course is to teach students to learn and apply various microeconomics tools to demand side health issues and problems, and to promote a better understanding of health policies. This course differs from ECON 336 which focuses on the supply of health care.
The application of theoretical economics to the sports industry. Professional and collegiate sports offer opportunities for both theoretical and empirical research due to the amount of data that is available. Topics include market structure and antitrust, managerial decisions for inputs and outputs, pay and performance in labor markets. Students chose a topic area for presentation and write a paper on a contemporary sports issue.
ECON 339. THE FOUNDATIONS OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
This seminar explores business entrepreneurship as foundational in an economy’s transformation, growth and development. Its analytical underlay is that entrepreneurship, whether redistributive or productive, converts ideas into economic opportunities, “assetizing” and commoditizing their intellectual properties and property rights into economic prices and tradable values through market exchange, which in turn drives and guides innovation and change and flexibility and dynamism in an economy. The focus will be on the institutional framework, environment, and analytical processes that enable business entrepreneurship.
Prerequisite: ECON 251
A study of the public sector of the economy that includes the theories of public revenues and expenditures, the tax structure of American governments including analysis of the rationale and consequences of major taxes, and major expenditure programs. Fiscal problems of state and local governments and intergovernmental fiscal relations are also examined.
This course is a study of the role of government in the economy: when should government intervene, how does it intervene, and what is the effect of interventions on economic outcomes? These issues are examined using the tools of economic theory and statistics, with emphasis on applications and analysis of policies in the United States and other countries.
Political economy examines issues that lie on the boundary of political science and economics. At one level, the course uses the tools of modern economics to examine behavior in political settings: why people vote, make campaign contributions, run for political office, favor specific legislative programs, and so forth. At another level, the course seeks a rich understanding of economic policymaking by considering the role of political institutions and non-market incentives.
An introductory survey of the economic structures and behavior of developing countries and how these factors influence their approach to the challenges of reducing poverty, improving health and education, and increasing their productive capacity and national and per capita income. The course examines the applicability of conventional economic logic and analytical tools to developing economies. Competing paradigms of development and the implications of different sets of behavioral assumptions are explored.
Instructor: Hutchinson, Stifel
ECON 347. ADVANCED TOPICS IN DEVELOPMENT ECONOMICS
This course will cover a series of topics on economic development in low-income countries. The emphasis will be on microeconomic theory as it applies to poor country settings. The topics addressed in the course are based on recent advances in economic theory related to information-based market failures and fragmentation, coordination failures, and self-reinforcing mechanisms that result in persistence of dysfunctional institutions prevalent in poor countries.
This course provides students with an understanding of the international monetary system. The course examines the foreign exchange market and the role that governments play in this market. A review of previous and current exchange rate systems and an analysis of international capital markets is provided.
This course examines the mechanics of doing business abroad and thoroughly explores the challenges that management faces today within an international environment. The greater the number of countries in which a corporation operates, the more “multinational” it is. More specifically, students are introduced to the field of global strategic management and are provided with a good understanding of the fundamental importance of cultural, economic, political, and environmental factors in the growth of global business and investment.
This course examines the ways in which international trade in goods and services is regulated through trade policy. This course has several objectives: 1) to provide students with an understanding of how and why international trade is regulated, 2) to demonstrate to students how particular trade policies affect international trade and international economic welfare, and 3) to expose students to the economic and political forces that shape international trade policy.
Analysis of the contemporary economic environment in Africa: political sociocultural identity and economic structure, trends in public and private capital flows, African regional and international economic institutions, trade development and relations with world markets, investment concessions and risk, with case illustrations from African countries.
ECON 358. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE AND ETHICAL RESPONSIBILITY IN THE GLOBAL ENVIRONMENT
The publicly owned corporation is the dominant legal form for business enterprises in the past 100 years. Corporate governance refers to the organizational structure that supports an enterprise’s efforts to utilize firm assets to produce goods and services for profit. The main focus of this course is the intersection of corporate governance principles, financial accountability and the effective execution of ethical business decisions by both large multinational enterprises (as individual entities) and the employees that act on behalf of the firm. Thus, this course will examine the rights and responsibilities for each of the constituents who serve a key role in facilitating efficient and effective business practices, most notably the chief executive officer, the board of directors and the shareholders. Legal requirements, other regulatory financial reporting constraints, as well as the role of corporate culture throughout the globe are also considered.
Prerequisite: ECON 319
What products do firms decide to introduce? How do they price and promote existing products? Drawing from knowledge in the areas of microeconomic theory and strategic marketing, students use analytical modeling, case study, and computer simulation methods to explore techniques as well as ethics and economic efficiency of product promotion, pricing, and differentiation in today’s diverse and evolving markets. [W]
Prerequisite: ECON 251 or permission of instructor
ECON 361. MARKETING RESEARCH
Although the pervasive assumption in microeconomics is that firms know their market demand functions, understanding how firms actually acquire this information requires studying the well-established techniques embodied in the field of marketing research. Consumer demand features studied include preferences among existing products, new product development, competitive analysis, and customer satisfaction. Research design, data collection methods, sampling issues, and data analysis using basic and advanced statistical techniques are covered. Students apply econometrics to the task of understanding consumers’ needs.
Econometric analysis is a blend of mathematics, statistics, and economic theory. It focuses on the development of multiple regression models useful for testing economic relationships and making business forecasts. The multiple regression model and problems encountered in its application are developed in lecture and individual applied research papers. Topics include serial correlation, heteroscedasticity, simultaneous equations, limited dependent variable models. Special attention is given to the matrix algebra determination of estimators. Students who receive credit for 365 may not receive credit for ECON 253. Similarly, students who receive credit for ECON 253 may not receive credit for 365.
Instructor: Averett, Stifel
ECON 366. MACROECONOMETRICS
The twin objectives of this course are to 1) introduce students to macroeconometric theory and techniques and 2) provide students with practice applying those techniques. The topics covered in the course are: Solow Growth, Okun’s Law, the Phillips curve and monetary policy. Techniques covered include time series decomposition, vector autoregressions and conintegration. The course involves frequent use of econometric software to provide students with experience in applying the techniques discussed in class. [W]
ECON 367. INTERNSHIP
A one-semester course that emphasizes the practical application of economics and business management principles. A limited number of students are placed in either community business organizations or governmental agencies. Under the direction and supervision of a designated internship sponsor, the student completes a training program and a practical work project. Internships do not count toward the elective courses required in the major. Permission of instructor required.
ECON 368. ADVANCED MONETARY POLICY
A small group of selected students work together with faculty mentors in competition with teams from other colleges and universities. Each team develops a presentation involving U.S. monetary policy and delivers this presentation to judges from the U.S. Federal Reserve System. Interested students are encouraged to take Econ 323-Money, Financial Intermediation, and the Economy.
Prerequisite: ECON 252, Committee Recommendation
ECON 370-375. SPECIAL TOPICS
A seminar study of major economic issues facing the United States and world economies. Topics to be announced in advance of each semester.
Prerequisite: As stated for each special topics course
An investigation and report on a subject selected by the student. Open by permission of the department. Hours to be arranged.
ECON 401. ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF THE HEALTH CARE INDUSTRY
This course applies microeconomic theory to analyze the health care market from the perspectives of those who supply health care. We will start with a description of what a health care system is and discuss the recent health care reform in the U.S. We will then turn our focus to the production of health and then the production of health care. Our attention will then turn to those who supply care including the market for physicians and hospital services, and the pharmaceutical industry. Finally, the structure and performance of the U.S. health care system will be compared to that of other countries. Discussion of empirical studies, current policy debates, and the relevance and limits of the economic approach will be emphasized. Focus of the course is on the economics and not politics or personal opinions. Regardless of your own personal views on health care reform, the goal is for you to be able to analyze the market for health care using the tools and perspectives of an economist. [W]
This course applies economic theory to the analysis of the education sector and education policies. We will start by investigating why people make the decision to invest in education using two different models of the returns to education. We will then turn to the “production” of education, examining what the key inputs into education are and how they can be effectively used. Afterwards we focus on the education market itself, market reforms as well as government policies that can help or hinder the distribution and attainment of education. While this course will primarily focus on K-12 education, we will also discuss some early childhood learning as well as higher education policy. Throughout the course there will be a focus on empirical methods and studies. These studies will be viewed as a test of our economic models and help us analyze education policy from an economics perspective. [W]
ECON 403. ADVANCED TOPICS IN MACROECONOMICS
This course builds upon the theory introduced in Intermediate Macroeconomics, with emphasis on empirical research. First, using mathematical models of the macroeconomy, we will develop a set of tools in order to think about macroeconomic policy issues, most of which require us to think dynamically. In other words, we want to be able to answer questions that involve choices between today and tomorrow on relevant issues when thinking about development from a macroeconomic perspective (consumption, investment, fiscal or monetary policy, etc.). Second, we will practice economic thinking and writing, by asking specific questions and using empirical and statistical methods to investigate and test the predictions of various models. We will discuss the merits and drawbacks of the various approaches that are used. [W]
Instructor: Ogrokhina, Smith
ECON 404. BIG IDEAS IN ECONOMICS
This is a survey course of big ideas in economics-the kind of ideas that transformed the way we understand economics today.We begin by developing an understanding of economics as a set of often-competing models, rather than as a discipline defined by a general theory of economics (despite the titles of some of the works that we will read). We then turn to the foundational work of Adam Smith and the formalization of his work by Arrow and Debreu in the Fundamental Theorems of Welfare Economics. The remaining breakthroughs include Akerlof’s work on information asymmetry; the Stopler-Samuelson theorem on the relationship between tariffs and wages; Nash’s equilibrium and game theory; Keynes’ thinking on fiscal stimuli; and the Mundell-Flemin Trilemma. For each of the big ideas, we will identify the critical assumptions of the models so that we can better understand how/when they are applicable. [W]
For honors candidates. One course each semester, only ECON 496 counts toward the required electives in the major; ECON 495 does not. 496 [W]