Apr 12, 2024  
2023 - 2024 College Catalog 
2023 - 2024 College Catalog

Economics Minor

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Economics is the study of the process through which individuals and societies solve a particular human problem: how to ensure that limited resources are put to their highest and best use. Economists research a variety of subjects related to this particular problem, including unemployment, technological change, poverty, environmental quality and international trade.

Two trends in the modern economy are given special emphasis in the economics major. First, for the last two centuries there has been a trend in the global economy toward the use of individual choice through markets as the process for dealing with this basic human problem of resource use. Second, there is an increasing economic integration among the world’s economies as global trade in international markets becomes extensive.

The 21st century will see a continuation of the spread of markets as the organizing mechanism of economic activity throughout the world. The economics major focuses on how markets serve this function and analyzes what policies are needed for them to serve it effectively. With this focus, the economics major is structured to assist students in gaining a systematic introduction to the theoretical and empirical techniques of economics. Since many areas of economics have broad social implications, the major also provides the opportunity to study economics as a social science and to discover the interrelationships which economics has with other disciplines.

Economics is primarily an analytical discipline. Therefore, the economics major begins with a core of theory and research methods that students will need in order to analyze economic problems.

Students will then work on economic problems by choosing from options in the areas of economic and social policy, economic theory and applications, global economic issues, and business economics. Students complete the major through their participation in a senior experience seminar or their production of a St. Mary’s Project. The goals of the major are to provide students with a framework for understanding and evaluating the operation of the United States and other economies, to assist them in the formation of intelligent, informed and critical judgments on economic issues of public and private concern, and to empower them to have a solid foundation of economic knowledge that will enable them to be lifelong learners.

A major in economics provides a suitable basis for careers in business, government and international agencies, law, teaching, public service and journalism. It also offers the introductory stage for students interested in graduate work in economics or business. As the economy of the 21st century will require knowledgeable workers who can function in information-based organizations, courses in the economics major stress the use and application of information technology.

Members of the economics faculty will advise each student on the composition of an appropriate program, given the individual’s interests and objectives. Any student considering a major in economics is urged to consult with a member of the economics faculty as early as possible. Members of the economics faculty are committed to mentoring students in the development of their own ideas in the initiation and realization of St. Mary’s Projects.

Degree Requirements

General College Requirements

General College Requirements (see Curriculum  section), including the following requirements to satisfy the minor

At least 24 Credit-Hours in Economics

Elective Courses (12 Credit Hours)

  • Three other 4-credit economics courses, two of which must be at the 300 or 400 level.

Minimum Grade and GPA Requirements

Students must earn a grade of C- or better in all required economics courses and maintain an overall GPA of 2.0 or better in these courses.  Prerequisites for economics courses must be fulfilled with a grade of C- or better.

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