Bachelor of Economics

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The Bachelor of Economics (BEc or BEcon) [1][2] is a four-year undergraduate degree in economic theory, econometrics and applied economics. Specialized [3][4][5][6] economics degrees are also offered as a BA (Econ),[7][4] BSc (Econ),[8][9] BCom (Econ), BSocSc (Econ); other titles are Bachelor in Economic Sciences (B.Econ.Sc.)[10] and Bachelor of Applied Economics. These degrees may span three years. The curriculum is (substantially) more theoretical and mathematical than the major in economics available generally (BBA, general BCom or BA).[3][4][9][11][12][13]


The BEcon and the specialized degrees [3][4][5] each have their own structure, differing by university. Generally, though, the curriculum is built around a core of theory, to which is added courses in the various branches, and areas of application; [14] see next section. In the US, a structured "program" is often offered within the College of Arts and Sciences. [15] [16] [14] [17] In the Commonwealth, specialized BCom-Economics degrees are often offered through the commerce faculty. [18] [19] [20] [21] [22] The program is often available as a social science degree. [23][24] Several universities offer a separate 1 year Honours degree, [25] and the program then comprises "3 years plus 1"; often Honours (or Honors in the US) is included in the four year structure. [17] An Honours research-thesis will be required.

Under both specialized and general programs, economics is often combined with a second major in Finance or Management, [2] [26] [4] [22] or with other social sciences; [23][24] in the US, economics is often combined with a quantitative subject such as math or computer science.[27] The interdisciplinary "PPE" integrates Philosophy and Politics with Economics. Some business schools offer a joint program with the economics department; [28] [29] similarly, joint-majors are commonly offered with the mathematics department. [30] [31] [32] [33]

Some universities allow that the degree as a whole may be further specialized; either in one of the applied areas, or, more common, in one of the major branches, often development economics,[34] econometrics / mathematical economics, [35] [36] [37] political economy,[38] or agricultural economics.[39] Others allow this specialization at the Honours degree level. Some universities offer a "Bachelor of Applied Economics" [40] or similar, [41] which will be career-focused. Degrees in Financial Economics, [42] [43] [3] [44] integrate finance into the economics program, as opposed to via a second major.


Typically, [14] [45] [46] [47] the core-degree comprises microeconomics, macroeconomics and econometrics; while mathematical economics is sometimes required.[20][6] Micro- and macroeconomics are taught through the "intermediate" level, preparing the student for the "advanced" postgraduate courses. Macroeconomics extends to a discussion of the more advanced models of the economy, differences here between schools, and the related policy analysis; microeconomics extends to general equilibrium, to an analytic approach to demand, with curves derived from utility functions, and to game theory as applied to competition. Some programs then specify a course in microfoundations, where the macroeconomic models are derived by aggregating microeconomic models. Econometrics is intended to give empirical content to these economic relationships, and here focuses on the single-equation methods largely linear regression, and time series.

Building on this core, are courses in the major branches of economics: monetary economics, international economics, development economics, labor economics, and welfare economics. Social science oriented degrees may emphasize economic statistics and political economy; and often do not require econometrics or mathematical economics. History of economic thought and economic history may be included in either variant.

Electives [46][45] may be offered in the above branches, or in various areas of applied economics, such as agricultural economics, environmental economics, resource economics, managerial economics, and financial economics. Mathematical economics is often an elective; it is generally recommended for those intending graduate training in Economics. In the US, these students will often also study selected math-courses in multivariable calculus, differential equations, linear algebra, optimization, and sometimes analysis.[48]

Co-requisite courses from outside of economics are invariably a program requirement. Common to all business programs are introductory or business statistics, and "quantitative techniques", comprising basic calculus, interest calculations, and sometimes matrix operations; the social science programs often include these, and may also require sociology and psychology. Some knowledge of accountancy or management may be assumed in the "applied courses"; credits in these are usually inherent in the business degree.

Most specialized programs require further "Mathematics for Economists", essentially a (detailed) survey of the topics mentioned above re US students; [49] see Business mathematics #Undergraduate. Statistics is similarly extended,[7][19] often within the math course, as underpin to the econometrics coursework. The specialized BSc programs are often more math intensive than the BA programs.[5] Similarly, the Honors track will have additional math requirements.[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "BACHELOR OF ECONOMICS". University of Sydney.
  2. ^ a b "Bachelor of Economics [BEcon]". University of Hong Kong. Retrieved 2018-10-17.
  3. ^ a b c d "Economics Specialist", University of Toronto
  4. ^ a b c d e "Economics as an expanded subject", Bar Ilan University
  5. ^ a b c What can you do with an economics degree?, Times Higher Education
  6. ^ a b BCom with specialisation in Economics, University of the Free State
  7. ^ a b BA Economics, SOAS
  8. ^ BSc Economics, London School of Economics
  9. ^ a b BSc Economics, Tilburg University
  10. ^ Bachelor of Economic Science, University of the Witwatersrand
  11. ^ The Difference Between a BBA in Economics & Bachelor of the Arts in Economics, Seattle Post-Intelligencer
  12. ^ Bachelor of Commerce or Bachelor of Economics?, UNSW Business School
  13. ^ Bachelor of Economics, Rhodes University
  14. ^ a b c Course Information, UCLA
  15. ^ Undergraduate Program, MIT
  16. ^ Undergraduate Program, Princeton University
  17. ^ a b c Concentration Requirements, Harvard
  18. ^ Economics, Victoria University of Wellington
  19. ^ a b BCom (Economic Sciences), Stellenbosch University
  20. ^ a b BCom Economics, University of the Witwatersrand
  21. ^ Bachelor of Commerce in Economics, University of South Africa
  22. ^ a b ECONOMICS, University of Western Australia
  23. ^ a b BA (Honours) Social Sciences (Economics), Open University
  24. ^ a b Bachelor of Social Science Degree Majoring in Economics, University of Cape Town
  25. ^ Bachelor of Economics (Honours), Australian National University
  26. ^ Bachelor of Commerce, University of the South Pacific
  27. ^ Wendy A. Stock (2017). Trends in Economics and Other Undergraduate Majors. American Economic Review, vol. 107, no. 5, May 2017 (pp. 644-49)
  28. ^ BS in Economics, Wharton
  29. ^ BA(Hons) in Economics and Management, Saïd Business School
  30. ^ B.S. in Joint Mathematics-Economics, UCSD
  31. ^ Economics and Mathematics, Yale University
  32. ^ Mathematics and Economics BSc, University of Nottingham
  33. ^ Applied Math/Economics, Harvard
  34. ^ BSc Development Economics, SOAS
  35. ^ BSc Econometrics and Mathematical Economics, London School of Economics
  36. ^ BCom Honours Econometrics, University of Johannesburg
  37. ^ Major in Mathematical Economics, University of Kentucky
  38. ^ Bachelor in Political Economy, Norwegian University of Science and Technology
  39. ^ B.S. Agricultural Economics: Applied Economics, University of Idaho
  40. ^ Bachelor of Applied Economics, Massey University
  41. ^ Undergraduate Program in Applied Economics & Management, Dyson, Cornell
  42. ^ Financial Economics BSc (Hons), City University - London
  43. ^ Financial Economics (BSc), Birkbeck
  44. ^ Bachelor of Science in Financial Economics, UMBC
  45. ^ a b "Economics Major and Minor", University of Pittsburgh
  46. ^ a b Economics Major, Stanford University
  47. ^ Bachelor of Economics - Degree Structure, University of Adelaide
  48. ^ Courses and Requirements: Economics, Hamilton College
  49. ^ See for example these sequences. UQ: i, ii, iii; UCT: i, ii, iii. The final in both cases is at masters level and includes analysis. Some universities - UJ, for example - title the sequence "Quantitative Economics".