Apply to the Economics Major

Application Requirements

The following materials and criteria are required for a complete application to the Department of Economics:

  1. Admission to the University of Washington
    • Eligible applicants must be accepted and be current UW students. For more information about admission to the UW as a first-year student or transfer student, see here.
  2. Completion of the Prerequisite Courses
    • Please check the major requirements page for a list of the prerequisite courses for each major.
    • These courses must be completed with a standard/numerical grade. Credits earned through Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), or Advanced Level (A-Level) exam scores are acceptable.
    • Prerequisite courses may not be in-progress. Courses must be completed before applying.
    • Each course may only be repeated one time each. The higher of the two grades may entered on the application, and will be considered.
  3. A completed Undergraduate Program Application (PDF) form
    • Please download and read all form instructions carefully. Incomplete forms will not be considered.
  4. Updated UW Transcript
    • Unofficial Transcripts may be printed from the Academics tab of your MyUW. Please use the “printer-friendly” format.
    • Official Transcripts are not required.
    • If you need additional help accessing your UW Unofficial Transcript, click here for detailed instructions.
  5. Transcripts from Transfer Institutions/Colleges/Universities (for Transfer & Running Start Students)
    • Please include a transcript from your other institution(s). Unofficial Transcripts are acceptable. Official transcripts are not required.
  6. Personal Statement
    • See the personal statement prompt below.  
  7. Completion of the ECON Reading Comprehension, Critical Thinking, & Writing Skills Exam (RTW Exam).
  • Please see RTW Exam website for details.
  • Students applying from the Bachelor of Arts to the Bachelor of Science do not need to retake the RTW, and may have their previous RTW score considered, if preferred.
  • RTW scores will be reported directly to the Department of Economics. Students do not need to supply their RTW score on their applications.
  • Academic Course Planning Worksheet or Printer-Friendly Version of MyPlan
    • For those planning to pursue a double major or double degree, please submit a printout of your MyPlan, showing your quarterly plans. Please be sure to take note of the UW's Satisfactory Progress Policies.

    Please print and submit the complete application packet (Application Form, Transcript(s), Personal Statement, MyPlan Printout) in person to the Department of Economics (305 Savery Hall).

    Interested students are also highly-encouraged to attend a Prospective Student Information Session for an in-depth look at the application & admissions process.

    When to Apply?

    Admission Cycle Deadline For admission to ECON starting...
    Autumn 2nd Friday, Autumn Quarter Subsequent Winter Quarter
    Winter 2nd Friday, Winter Quarter Subsequent Spring Quarter
    Spring 2nd Friday, Spring Quarter Subsequent Summer or Autumn Quarter
    There is NO Summer Admission Cycle during the Summer Quarter available.

    Applications are due no later than 5pm on the second Friday of the quarter.

    Applicants will be notified of their results by the end of the 5th week of the quarter, in time to register for the subsequent quarter.

    You may refer to the UW Academic Calendar to identify when each quarter begins and when each "Second Friday" application deadline will be.

    Admissions: By the Numbers

    The Department of Economics is a capacity-constrained major. Meeting the basic criteria does not guarantee admission to the major.

    Admission Cycle Applications/
    Number Admitted
    % of Applicants
    Average Prerequisite*
    GPA for Admits
    Average Overall
    GPA for Admits
    Average RTW Score
    for Admits (1-6 scale)
    Winter 2016 176/113 64% 3.54 3.50 3.76
    Spring 2016 163/110 67% 3.52 3.48 3.79
    Autumn 2016 179/113 63% 3.52 3.50 3.77
    Winter 2017 215/133 62% 3.48 3.50 3.57
    Spring 2017 224/121 54% 3.50 3.51 3.65
    Autumn 2017 205/128 62% 3.55 3.50 3.44
    Winter 2018 259/125 48% 3.54 3.52 3.45
    Spring 2018 246/124 50% 3.58 3.55 3.54
    Autumn 2018 222/115 52% 3.54 3.54 3.27

    (These GPAs are averages, not cutoffs; roughly half of the students accepted to the major in Winter 2018, for example, had prerequisite and overall GPAs lower than 3.54 and 3.52, respectively. The admissions considerations are holistic. Please be aware that the admissions committee considers many factors when making its decisions, including cumulative GPA, prerequisite GPA, RTW score, the overall strength of the applicant’s academic background/transcript, and the quality of the applicant’s personal statement.)

    *Prerequisite coursework included in this average are ECON 200, ECON 201, Statistics, and Math coursework. English Composition is omitted from this average.

    The Personal Statement

    Please submit a 300-500 word (one-page, one-sided) personal statement with your completed application.  The Admissions Committee suggests you spend your time discussing some or all of the following that pertains to you:

    • Why are you interested in the Department of Economics?  What are your personal, educational, and/or career goals and how do you expect to further those by studying economics? What led you to apply to this major? If you are pursuing a double major or double degree, why are both majors important to your goals?
    • Please let the committee know if there are any circumstances that you feel the committee should know that has affected your grades/transcript.
    • Describe an experience with diversity or adversity that has had a profound effect on you.
    • If you have previously applied to the Economics major, what has improved since your previous application?

    The Personal Statement is an important piece of your application. Please be sure to address the prompt(s), and adhere to the parameters. UW has plenty of resources that can help you write a great personal statement:

    Tutoring Resources

    There are a number a tutoring resources available at the UW for courses such as ECON 200, ECON 201, introductory statistics and calculus.

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