Economics: A Way of Thinking
Economics is often called the study of how to resolve scarcity so as to best satisfy our wants and needs—how to allocate scarce resources, such as money, natural resources, our time or our energy, among their many competing uses. That's the subject of economics.
Perhaps more important, though, is that economics is a way of thinking. The most important thing you'll get from studying economics is that you'll learn to "think like an economist"—developing skill at identifying the essential elements of a problem and developing the analytical skills for finding solutions.
This economic way of thinking and analyzing can be applied to a remarkable range of problems, in many different fields: how to make good individual decisions and good business decisions; how to take account of strategic considerations; how to explain human behavior (and even animal behavior!); how to address public policy issues such as unemployment, inflation, pollution and international trade and politics.
New ways are always being discovered to apply the economic way of thinking: to marriage, divorce and fertility; to intellectual property and the Internet; to the ecological balance of nature; to just about anything people, animals, firms and governments do.
Undergraduate Economics Offerings
Students enter as Pre-Economics majors, and then transition to the professional phase of the Economics curriculum upon obtaining advanced standing.
BA in Economics
The Economics (BA) major offers a lot of flexibility for students to explore other topics in addition to their major coursework. This major requires four semesters of foreign language and a minor.
BSBA in Business Economics
Students enter as Pre-Business majors, and then transition to the professional phase of the Business Economics curriculum upon obtaining advanced standing through professional admission.
Minor in Economics
To fulfill a minor in economics at the UA students must take at least 18 units of economics coursework, of which at least nine units must be upper-division.
Required courses for Economics students, ranging from one to three units, are offered fall and spring semesters. Select elective courses are offered during fall and spring, as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
Economics undergraduate FAQs include such topics as the difference between the BSBA and BA majors, course sequencing, prerequisites and more.
Careers in Economics
Consequently, studying economics gives you a superb preparation for many careers in business, law, government, education, and consulting. Graduates with a bachelors degree in economics are sought by financial institutions, by consulting firms, by government agencies, by law schools and business schools, and by business firms of all kinds and all sizes. This is reflected in the salaries that economics graduates command—and not only at the beginning of their careers, but also in growth of income throughout their careers.
For undergraduates, the University of Arizona's Economics Department offers two majors: a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Economics and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in Business Economics, under the auspices of the Eller College of Management. The courses required for the two majors are similar, while required courses outside the major emphasize other aspects of business or other areas in the liberal arts. We also support a Minor in Economics.