Economics, B.A. (Liberal Arts)

Program Code: ECLBA_BA

Entrance to Major

To be eligible for entrance into the Economics (ECLBA) major, a degree candidate must satisfy requirements for entrance to the major.

Specific entrance requirements include:

The degree candidate must have completed the following entrance-to-major requirements with a grade of C or better: ECON 102 and ECON 104.

Degree Requirements

For the Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics, a minimum of 120 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 15
Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements 24
Requirements for the Major 36

3 of the 24 credits for Bachelor of Arts Degree Requirements are included in the Requirements for the Major, General Education, or Electives and 0-12 credits are included in Electives if foreign language proficiency is demonstrated by examination.

Per Senate Policy 83-80.5, the college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. For more information, check the Recommended Academic Plan for your intended program.

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Knowledge Domains

  • Arts (GA): 6 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 6 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits

Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)

  • Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement    

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

B.A. Degree Requirements

Foreign Language (0-12 credits): Student must attain 12th credit level of proficiency in one foreign language. See the Placement Policy for Penn State Foreign Language Courses.

B.A. Fields (9 credits): Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Arts, Foreign Languages, Natural Sciences, Quantification (may not be taken in the area of the student's primary major; foreign language credits in this category must be in a second foreign language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the first language)

Other Cultures (0-3 credits): Select 3 credits from approved list. Students may count courses in this category in order to meet other major, minor, elective, or General Education requirements, except for the General Education US/IL requirement.​

Requirements for the Major

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the major. To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn at least a C grade in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

 
Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
ECON 102Introductory Microeconomic Analysis and Policy Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 104Introductory Macroeconomic Analysis and Policy Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 106Statistical Foundations for Econometrics3
ECON 302Intermediate Microeconomic Analysis Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 304Intermediate Macroeconomic Analysis Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 306Introduction to Econometrics3
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better
Select 18 credits in Economics 300 or 400 level with department approval, including at least 9 credits at the 400 level18

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.

READ SENATE POLICY 32-00: ADVISING POLICY

University Park

Liberal Arts Academic Advising
814-865-2545
Use the Liberal Arts Majors and Minors web page to see the contact information for the specific adviser(s) of this program

World Campus

Undergraduate Academic Advising
301 Outreach Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-863-3283
advising@outreach.psu.edu

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2020-21 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition (Note: the archive only contain suggested academic plans beginning with the 2018-19 edition of the Undergraduate Bulletin).

 Economics, B.A. at University Park Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ECON 102 or 104*#3ECON 102 or 104*#3
ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 15 (GWS)3General Education Course3
General Education Course (First Year Seminar)3General Education Course (IL or US Cultures)3
General Education Course (GQ)3General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
World Language Level 14World Language Level 24
 16 16
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ECON 302 or 304*3ECON 302 or 304*3
CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C (GWS)3300 Level ECON Course*3
General Education Course3ECON 106* 3
General Education Course (IL or US Cultures)3General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
World Language Level 34General Education Course3
 16 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
300/400 Level ECON Course*3300/400 Level ECON Course*3
ECON 306*3400 Level ECON Course*3
General Education Course (Writing Across the Curriculum)3BA Requirement: Other Cultures3
BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification or World Language3BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification or World Language3
Elective3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
400 Level ECON Course*3400 Level ECON Course*3
General Education Course (GQ)3BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification, or World Language3
ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, or 202D (GWS)3General Education Course (GHW)1.5
General Education Course (GHW)1.5Elective3
Elective3Elective3
 13.5 13.5
Total Credits 120

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

All incoming Schreyer Honors College first-year students at University Park will take ENGL 137H/CAS 137H in the fall semester and ENGL 138T/CAS 138T in the spring semester. These courses carry the GWS designation and replace both ENGL 30H and CAS 100. Each course is 3 credits.

Bachelor of Arts Requirements:

Bachelor of Arts students must take 9 credits in Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Fields (Humanities; Social and Behavioral Sciences; Arts; World Languages [2nd language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the 1st]; Natural Sciences; Quantification). The B.A. Fields courses may not be taken in the area of the student’s primary major. See your adviser and the Degree Requirements section of this Bulletin.

Bachelor of Arts students must take 3 credits in Other Cultures.
See your adviser and the full list of courses approved as Other Cultures courses.

Economics, B.A. at Commonwealth Campuses

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ECON 102 or 104*#3ECON 102 or 104*#3
ENGL 15, 30H, or ESL 15 (GWS)3General Education Course3
General Education Course (First Year Seminar)3General Education Course (IL or US Cultures)3
General Education Course (GQ)3General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
World Language Level 14World Language Level 24
 16 16
Second Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C (GWS)3BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification, or World Language3
General Education Course (GQ)3General Education Course3
General Education Course (IL or US Cultures)3General Education Course3
World Language Level 34General Education Course (Inter-Domain)3
Elective3Elective3
 16 15
Third Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
ECON 302 or 304*3ECON 302 or 304*3
ECON 106*3ECON 306*3
General Education Course (Writing Across the Curriculum)3300/400 Level ECON Course*3
BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification or World Language3BA Requirement: Other Cultures3
Elective3Elective3
 15 15
Fourth Year
FallCreditsSpringCredits
300/400 Level ECON Course*3400 Level ECON Course*3
300/400 Level ECON Course*3400 Level ECON Course*3
400 Level ECON Course*3BA Requirement: Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Quantification, or World Language3
ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, or 202D (GWS)3General Education Course (GHW)1.5
General Education Course (GHW)1.5Elective3
 13.5 13.5
Total Credits 120

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.

Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.

Bachelor of Arts Requirements:

Bachelor of Arts students must take 9 credits in Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Fields (Humanities; Social and Behavioral Sciences; Arts; World Languages [2nd language or beyond the 12th credit level of proficiency in the 1st]; Natural Sciences; Quantification). The B.A. Fields courses may not be taken in the area of the student’s primary major. See your adviser and the Degree Requirements section of this Bulletin.

Bachelor of Arts students must take 3 credits in Other Cultures.
See your adviser and the full list of courses approved as Other Cultures courses.

Career Paths

The field of Economics provides many opportunities (in both the public and private sector), as well as opportunities for graduate studies.

Careers

Employers know that a degree in Economics provides students with a logical way of making decisions for individuals and firms, as well as understanding the creation of policies and their consequences. Recent graduates have started private sector careers in consulting, sales, banking, and financial advising, as well as public sector careers with the FDA and DOJ. An economist will help a firm or public agency make important decisions using quantitative cost/benefit analysis, and will be able to understand how new policies will affect the firm.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT POTENTIAL CAREER OPTIONS FOR GRADUATES OF THE ECONOMICS PROGRAM

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

Many schools offer graduate (both M.A. and Ph.D.) programs in Economics. In addition, with the logical thought processes learned and appropriate math background, the Economics degree will prepare students for an M.B.A. or J.D. If you are considering graduate studies in Economics, the B.S. is recommended with extra math preparation, particularly calculus and linear algebra.

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT MATH PREPARATION FOR GRADUATE STUDIES

Professional Resources

Contact

University Park

DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMICS
403 Kern Graduate Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-1457
prd138@psu.edu

http://www.econ.la.psu.edu

World Campus

DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMICS
403 Kern Graduate Building
University Park, PA 16802
814-865-1457
prd138@psu.edu

https://www.worldcampus.psu.edu/degrees-and-certificates/economics-bachelor-of-arts/overview