Economics Course Descriptions
ECON 101 Foundations of Economics: Macroeconomics (3)
This course introduces students to the field of economics via macroeconomics. Topics include basic concepts such as: efficiency; trade; supply, demand, and how markets function; taxes and price controls; national income accounting, inflation, and unemployment. It also explores how market/capitalist systems work and how countries can foster economic growth. As a Core course, it touches upon economic ideas in the development of the West with the rise of market systems from the Industrial Revolution, the battle between economic systems of capitalism and communism in the twentieth century, to questions of the economic system’s connection to society and culture today. It also covers the recent shift in macroeconomic emphasis from ad hoc attempts to steer the economy with fiscal (tax and spending) and/or monetary policies, to setting the right policy conditions for long run stability and growth.
ECON 102 Foundations of Economics: Microeconomics (3)
This course introduces students to microeconomics: examination of economic behavior of individuals, firms, or markets. It begins with consumer theory, examining why people like goods and services and how they behave. It progresses to firm theory, e.g. production and costs, exploring such concepts as diminishing marginal productivity and economies of scale, as well as examining particular market types such as price takers, monopolies, and oligopolies. The course closes with capital and resource markets (e.g. wages, benefits, income, as well as natural resources). It often includes special applications such as market failures (e.g. externalities, public goods, information problems which are at the heart of many business/government and environmental issues), poverty, health care, education, social security, etc.
Prerequisites: ECON 101 or permission of the instructor.
ECON 211 Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory (3)
Genesis of national income, consumption function, multiplier and the effect of money and credit conditions on output, prices and employment. Attention to public and stabilization policy, international trade, federal budgetary problems and the supply side of the economic model. Students are required to track the performance of the U.S. macroeconomy for one semester.
Prerequisites: ECON 101-102.
ECON 212 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory (3)
A study of the foundations of microeconomic theory and its application in the real world. Topics include the analysis of demand and supply, production, costs, value and distribution, general equilibrium and welfare.
Prerequisites: ECON 101-102.
ECON 290 Mathematics for Economic Analysis (3)
A study of the mathematical tools necessary to be an economist and a business analyst in the contemporary world. Topics include differentiation, limits, continuity, optimization, comparative statistics, linear algebra and integration.
ECON 309 Money and Banking (3)
History, structure and functions of commercial banking and the Federal Reserve System; an analysis of money, financial intermediaries, money and capital markets, financial innovation and recent banking legislation. An evaluation of both Keynesian and monetarist views of monetary theory and policy.
Prerequisites: ECON 101-102.
ECON 310 International Trade, Investments and Economics (3)
An introduction to the economic principles underlying international trade structures, international monetary arrangements, and international business and investment.
Prerequisites: ECON 101-102.
ECON 312 Environmental Economics (3)
Examines the economics behind natural resource use and environmental issues. Studies in resource economics will consider problems such as forest use, fishing stock depletion, consumption of natural resources such as oil and minerals. The course then examines environmental problems such as pollution, global warming, acid rain, and land conservation. In each case, the economics will be used as framework for studying the source of the problems, as well as the policies used to solve them.
Prerequisites: Econ 101 or 102.
ECON 320 Statistics (3)
A detailed study of the principles and methods underlying the organization, analysis and interpretation of data. Topics include descriptive statistics, probability models, probability distributions, interval estimation, hypothesis testing, nonparametric methods and regression analysis. Cross-listed with BUS 320.
ECON 322 Thinking Strategically: An Introduction to Game Theory (3)
An examination of game theory applications in business, economics and political science. A study of strategy in elections, legislative voting, bargaining, auctions, cooperative business ventures and economic decisions. Only high school-level math is required.
ECON 329 Business and Economics of Sports (3)
Students examine the economic relationships surrounding professional and intercollegiate sports in the United States. Students develop a business plan for a professional sports franchise and manage the franchise through a number of economic environments, including salary caps, revenue sharing, insurance contracts, expansion and stadium/arena financing. They obtain a greater understanding of the market forces that shape professional leagues, the factors that determine player compensation, and the relationship between economic forces and competitive balance in professional sports.
Prerequisites: ECON 101 and 102.
ECON 340 Management Science (3)
An introduction to some of the contemporary quantitative methods used in management science and economics. Topics include probability concepts, forecasting, decision theory, linear programming, queuing theory, network models, MONTE CARLO simulation and Markov analysis.
Prerequisite: MATH 105 or BUS 320; BUS 311 and BUS 250 are recommended.
ECON 360 Global Business and Economics (3)
This course examines the challenges of globalization from the perspective of a business manager. Topics include an analysis of global and national business environments, international trade and investment, the international financial system, and international trade and investment. This includes the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the US Export-Import Bank, the US International Trade Commission, and other agencies. Discussions in class also include the cultural, ethical, and moral implications of these issues in international law and economics.
Prerequisite: ECON 101-102; BUS 250 is recommended.
ECON 403 Econometrics (3)
An introduction to basic quantitative and statistical techniques commonly used in economics, particularly regression analysis. Emphasis is on good methodology and correct usage of elementary econometric techniques.
Prerequisites: ECON 320 or MATH 105 or equivalent.
ECON 406 History of Economic Thought (3)
A capstone course study of the development of economic thought with emphasis on the relations between economic ideas and the historical, philosophical, theological, and political circumstances of the times. Begins with the early economic concepts in the writings of the Greeks philosophers as well as scholastic theologians such as Saint Thomas Aquinas, then examines the rise of mercantilism and its relation to the development of nation states. Covers the rise of classical economics, and classical liberalism generally, with Adam Smith and The Wealth of Nations, as well the ideas of Ricardo, Malthus, and Mill. Examines the works, and errors, of Karl Marx, their correction by the marginalist economists, and the rise of neoclassical economics, e.g. Marshall, in the late 1800s. Then traces the growth in the sub-fields within macroeconomics and microeconomics (e.g. labor, public, environmental, public choice, etc.) since then, all within a largely neoclassical framework, and generally through the economists who developed them (e.g. Keynes). Also includes examples of applications of economics to historical circumstances. Closes with an examination of markets and cultural/moral conditions.
Prerequisites: Econ 101-102, and 211-212 or permission of the instructor. Cross-listed with HIST 357.
ECON 417 The Federal Reserve Challenge (3)
The Federal Reserve Challenge is a student competition organized by The Federal Reserve Bank. In this competition against other colleges, a team of students develops an analysis of the current economy and makes policy recommendations before a panel of Federal Reserve economists. This requires that students spend the semester learning how macroeconomic analysis is done, what pieces are assembled, and how they are weighted and considered. Students are required to write a substantial term paper reviewing the conditions, a summarized version of which will be part of their presentation in the competition. These pieces include the financial markets, regional markets, international trade conditions, inflation, unemployment, fiscal policy, etc. Given how economic circumstances change from year to year, this course may be taken up to three times (with designations A,B,C).