Go to content

Undergraduate Catalog 2016-2017

Economics (ECON)

College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
3114 Tydings Hall, 301-405-3266
Chair: M. Cropper (Distinquished University Professor)
Director: C. Clement (Director of Undergraduate Studies)
Professors: K. Abraham, L. Ausubel, J. Chao, P. Cramton, A. Drazen, S. Galiani, J. Haltiwanger (Distinguished University Professor), J. Hellerstein, Z. Jin, S. Kalemli-Ozcan, M. Kearney, G. Kuersteiner, N. Limao, P. Murrell, I. Prucha (Distinguished University Professor), D. Vincent, J. Wallis
Associate Professors: S. Aruoba, P. Coughlin, E. Filiz Ozbay, E. Ozbay, J. Shea (Assoc. Chair & Director of Graduate Studies), A. Sweeting, S. Urzua
Assistant Professors: J. Goldberg, R. Guiteras, E. Kaplan, S. Lee, F. Saffie, L. Stevens, L. Turner
Lecturers: H. Abbasi Alikamar, M. Copelman, K. Dayaratna, N. Montgomery, E. Moody, J. Neri (Senior Lecturer), J. Sabelhaus, N. Sarna, S. Scandizzo, J. Straub, S. Verma
Professors Emeriti: C. Almon, R. Bennett, R. Betancourt, F. Brechling, C. Clague, J. Cumberland, R. Dardis, C. Harris, C. Hulten, H. Kelejian, M. McGuire, P. Meyer, M. Polakoff, T. Schelling (Distinquished University Professor), R. Schwab, P. Wonnacott

The Major

Economists study a wide range of phenomena using analytical methods which describe how people and collections of people behave and interact.  Many economists define their profession as the analysis of decisions made in the context of scarcity.  Economics can also be described as the study of the production, pricing, and distribution of goods and services within societies.  Economists study such issues as inflation, unemployment, poverty, environmental quality, financial markets, and international trade.  Economists also apply their methods of analysis to such diverse areas as crime, health care, discrimination, and the problems of developing countries.

Courses offered by this department may be found under the following acronym: ECON.  As a large, diverse department, courses are offered in many of the major fields of economic study.  Several courses analyze the role of the government policies impacting economic outcomes, while others focus on developing advanced applications of economic theories and methodologies.

Students can learn about the methods of analysis that economists use and about the various fields of inquiry where economists have been most productive. Undergraduate economics majors choose between two curriculums, one leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree and the other to a Bachelor of Science.  In the BA track, students learn how to apply economic analysis to a variety of social issues, as well as, the fundamental methodological tools.  In the BS track, students focus more attention on the methodology of economic analysis, which requires more emphasis on quantitative skills. 

Economics majors have a wide variety of career options, including positions in state and local government, federal and international agencies, business, finance and banking, journalism, teaching, politics and law.  Many economics majors pursue graduate work in economics or another social science, law, business or public policy.

Program Learning Outcomes

Students are expected to fully utilize the opportunities presented for learning and research.  Having completed the degree program, students should have acquired the following knowledge and skills:

  • Understanding of the key terminology used within the discipline.
  • Ability to use the fundamental methods and tools of the discipline to model economic behavior and to describe and analyze relationships between economic variables.
  • Ability to interpret and apply descriptive and inferential statistics.
  • Ability to analyze the effect of government policies on the economy using both conceptual and quantitative tools.
  • BA track: Ability to articulate how economic analysis can be used to improve decision-making in various situations.
  • BS track: Ability to carry out various techniques for evaluating hypotheses regarding economic phenomena.

Requirements for the Major

In addition to the university's general education requirements, students must earn a minimum of 39 credits via a combination of foundation and elective courses in Economics and Math as listed below. Both the Bachelor of Arts and the Bachelor of Science tracks require a sequence of courses starting with introductory micro and macroeconomics, as well as, calculus. Students then proceed to intermediate level courses in theory and statistics. Finally, students take at least one upper-level course focused on quantitative analysis plus several upper-level courses where you explore specific topics in more depth. Both tracks require the same number of courses. 

All courses must be passed with a grade of "C-" or better to count towards the foundation and elective requirements.  Students must have a minimum 2.0 cumulative grade point average across all courses used to satisfy major degree requirements.  A course used to fulfill one requirement for the major may not count towards any other economics major requirement.  

Bachelor of Arts

Foundation Courses




Principles of Microeconomics



Principles of Macroeconomics


MATH120 or MATH220 or

Elementary Calculus I or



    Calculus I



Applied Economic Statistics or



    Business Statistics



Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory & Policy



Intermediate Microeconomic Theory & Policy


Economics Electives Courses


One from*




Methods & Tools for Economic Analysis



Macroeconomic Models and Forecasting



Applied Econometrics



Economics of Cost-Benefit Analysis


Two from




Any 300/400 level ECON courses designated for the BA


Three from




Any 400 level ECON courses designated for the BA


One from




Economics Experiential Learning or

other experiential learning course(s) or

a 300/400 level ECON course designated

for the BA


Bachelor of Science

Foundation Courses




Principles of Microeconomics



Principles of Macroeconomics



Calculus I



Calculus II




Economic Statistics or




    Applied Probability and Statistics




Intermediate Macroeconomic Analysis




Intermediate Microeconomic Analysis




Econometrics I




Econometrics II




Advanced Microeconomics or




    Advanced Macroeconomics



Economics Electives Courses


Three from




Any 400 level ECON courses designated

for the BS


*The Economics curriculum may be updated over time, given college and campus approval.  Students will be notified as other appropriate courses are approved that fulfill the requirements for the major.

Other Requirements for the Major

Study Sequences and Plans of Study

Those students planning to pursue graduate study in economics must begin to prepare themselves analytically for graduate work by focusing on theory, statistics, and mathematics in their undergraduate curriculum. These students should consider the full econometrics sequence of ECON422 and 423. Mastery of advanced calculus and linear algebra is essential for entrance into graduate schools, and therefore students must take MATH140, MATH141, MATH240, MATH241 and MATH246. Students should also plan on taking MATH410 and 411.


In accordance with the University's policies, the Department of Economics expects students to make timely progress towards graduation.  To help measure progress during the early stages of a student's studies in economics, students will have to complete courses designated as benchmarks within a specified number of semesters in order to continue in their major.

Bachelor of Arts - Students must complete the following five courses within two semesters of entering the major:

  • ECON200, ECON201, and MATH120 or MATH220 or MATH140 with grades of C- or higher
  • One additional GenEd course with a D- or higher
  • Academic Writing with a D- or higher

Bachelor of Science - Students must complete the following six courses within two semesters of entering the major:

  • ECON200, ECON201, MATH140, and MATH141 with grades of C- or higher
  • One additional GenEd course with a D- or higher
  • Academic Writing with a D- or higher

These benchmark deadlines may not be appropriate for all incoming students (depending upon credit earned prior to entering the major and math placement). All students complete an individualized benchmark contract with an ECON advisor, either at orientation or in the process of declaring the major. Freshmen wishing to declare an Economics major should see an advisor as soon as possible in order to set appropriate benchmarks and establish a coherent graduation plan.


Departmental academic advisors work with current and prospective majors on a walk-in basis, Monday - Friday from 10:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  Majors are encouraged to see an advisor at least once an academic year to verify progress in their program requirements.  Further information on courses, internships, the department honors program, careers, and graduate schools may be obtained from the advisors. 

Location: 3108 Tydings Hall
Phone:  301-405-8367

Honors Program

The Economics Honors Program provides economics majors with the opportunity for advanced study in a seminar format, with faculty supervision of an honors thesis. The Honors Program is designed for students planning to attend graduate school or those seeking an in-depth study of economic theory and its application to economic problems.

For detailed information on the Honors Program, including eligibility requirements, visit the ECON website at www.econ.umd.edu/undergraduate/departmental-honors-program .

Student Societies and Professional Organizations

The Economics Association of Maryland is an undergraduate club that meets regularly to discuss graduate study in economics and other fields, employment opportunities, and recent economic trends. Please see the Undergraduate Economics Advisors in 3108 Tydings for more information.

Scholarships and Financial Assistance

The Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) administers all types of federal, state and institutional financial assistance programs and, in cooperation with other university offices, participates in the awarding of scholarships to deserving students. For information, visit: www.financialaid.umd.edu .

Awards and Recognition

The Dudley and Louisa Dillard Award is given to an outstanding economics honors student with one of the best honors thesis.

The Sujon Guha Memorial Award for Academic Excellence and Outstanding Leadership is awarded to an economics honors student with one of the best honors thesis.

The Martin Moskowitz Award is presented to a graduating senior based on academic excellence and a demonstrated commitment to and philosophy of public service.

The Moskowitz Family Scholarship is awarded to an academically successful economics major with demonstrated financial need.

The Mark C. Sullivan Economics Scholarship is awarded to an economics major who came from the eastern part of the state and has high academic performance.

The Honorable Idamae Garrott Memorial Scholarship supports academically talented majors who demonstrate financial need.

The Mark D. Turner and Tracye C. Turner Scholarship in Economics is awarded to an economics major who shows commitment to using their degree to assist minority communities.

The Melanie E. (Lee) Easley Memorial Scholarship supports an economics major with demonstrated financial need and a solid academic standing.

The John Cumberland Award in Environmental Economics is given to support the research and scholarship of an academically talented economics major in the fields of environmental economics.

The Peggy Rae and John Sapienza Scholarship is awarded to a junior or senior economics major and is intended to facilitate the education of a hardworking student and encourage him/her toward graduation.

Return to top