BA in Economics

A student writing on her notebook in an economic class

The Bachelor of Arts in Economics degree covers foundational concepts in micro- and macroeconomic theory, business statistics and economics principles. 

BA students complete six elective courses (compared with seven for the BS in Economics), with options in regional and international fields such as Introduction to the Economy of China and International Trade Theory.


Recommended BA Course Schedule

All prospective economics majors need to take the ALEKS Placement Test to determine which course schedule is recommended for their calculus proficiency level. Students with AP Calculus credit or those who place above MATH 1231 may move through the required MATH and STAT courses at a faster pace than this schedule indicates.

ALEKS Placement Test

Recommended Schedule: ALEKS Scores of 61+

Freshman year: ECON 1011, ECON 1012, STAT 1111/1053/1051, MATH 1221/1231/1252

Sophomore year: ECON 2101, ECON 2102, two ECON electives

Junior year: STAT 2112/2118 or ECON 2123, two ECON electives

Senior year: Remaining ECON electives, ECON 4198W

Recommended Schedule: ALEKS Scores Below 61

Freshman year: ECON 1001, ECON 1011, STAT 1111/1053/1051 and MATH 1221/1231/1252 (or any other pre-requisites needed for enrollment into these STAT and MATH courses)

Sophomore year: ECON 1012, ECON 2101, one ECON elective, and STAT 1111/1053/1051 and/or MATH 1221/1231/1252 (if not completed already)

Junior year: ECON 2102, two ECON electives, STAT 2112/2118 or ECON 2123

Senior year: Remaining ECON electives, ECON 4198W

Important Notes for All Students
  • Students are encouraged to complete the two principles classes (ECON 1011 and ECON 1012) plus the intro stats (STAT 1111/1053/1051) and Calculus I (MATH 1221/1231/1252) classes no later than the first semester of sophomore year so that they are fully prepared for entry into the economics major.
  • Note that Calculus I is a pre-requisite for intermediate micro and macro (ECON 2101 and ECON 2102), meaning that it cannot be taken concurrently with intermediate micro or macro. Hence we do not recommend putting off the Calculus I course beyond the first semester of sophomore year.
  • We recommend that students take intermediate micro prior to taking intermediate macro as it will enhance students’ understanding of the macro material.
  • Intermediate micro and macro as well as one advanced stats course (STAT 2112/2118 or ECON 2123) and three ECON electives are pre-requisites for the capstone proseminar course (ECON 4198W). Students will not be allowed to enroll in proseminar until they have completed these pre-requisites. It is therefore imperative to plan ahead and finish these pre-requisite courses by the end of the first semester of senior year.
  • We strongly recommend completing all ECON BA major requirements prior to enrolling in ECON 4198W. Materials covered in the required major classes will be extremely helpful to students in completing their research projects in the proseminar course.
  • For students wishing to study abroad in their junior year, you are encouraged to only transfer back ECON electives courses. We recommend taking the core theory classes (ECON 2101/2103, 2102/2104,2123) at GW.

Course Requirements

The following requirements must be fulfilled:

The general requirements stated under Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Undergraduate Programs.

Program-specific curriculum:

Required core courses
ECON 1011Principles of Economics I *
ECON 1012Principles of Economics II *
ECON 2101Intermed Microeconomic Theory
or ECON 2103 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach
ECON 2102Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory
or ECON 2104 Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory: A Mathematical Approach
ECON 4198WProseminar in Economics
MATH 1221Calculus with Precalculus II **
or MATH 1231 Single-Variable Calculus I
or MATH 1252 Calculus for the Social and Management Sciences
STAT 1111Business and Economic Statistics I (or equivalent) **
or STAT 1051 Introduction to Business and Economic Statistics
or STAT 1053 Introduction to Statistics in Social Science
STAT 2112Business and Economic Statistics II **
or STAT 2118 Regression Analysis
or ECON 2123 Introduction to Econometrics
Additional requirements
18 credits (six courses) in Economics (ECON) electives numbered between 2000 and 4999 are required. The following guidelines and restrictions apply:
FINA 3101 and/or FINA 3301 may be used as substitutes for up to two ECON elective courses (6 credits) numbered between 2000 and 4999. However, credit may not be earned for both FINA 3301 and ECON 2121.
No more than three courses (9 credits) can be selected from ECON 2169, ECON 2198, ECON 3098, and ECON 3198.
No more than two courses (6 credits) can be selected from ECON 2180, ECON 2181, and ECON 2182. ECON 2180 does not satisfy the major elective requirement if taken concurrently with or after successful completion of ECON 2181 or ECON 2182.
If ECON 2123 is taken instead of STAT 2112 or STAT 2118, only five additional ECON courses (15 credits) are required.

* Post-matriculation residency requirement: For ECON 1011 and ECON 1012 to count toward the major it must be completed at GW with a minimum grade of C-. Students who matriculate with AP or transfer credit for one or both courses are exempt from this residency requirement for the relevant course(s).

** The MATH course selected from MATH 1221, MATH 1231, or MATH 1252, and the STAT course selected from STAT 1051, STAT 1053, or STAT 1111, must be completed with a minimum grade of C-.