Bachelor of Arts


The Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Economics provides an excellent preparation for employment in the private and public sectors, and for graduate study in a variety of fields, such as law and MBA programs.

The importance of economics among the social sciences, and its appeal to many students who choose it as a major, reflects its deep intellectual roots, its rigorous analytical methods, and its powerful ability to explain social phenomena. An economics major trains students not only in deductive methods of logic, but also in inductive methods of reasoning using statistical methods and a variety of social and economic data. A firm foundation in economics is essential to a meaningful training in business administration, public administration, or social science.

How to Apply for Admission to the BA Major

If you have questions about admissions requirements or the economics major, email an economics adviser at or visit the office during drop-in hours.

Courses Required to Apply and Admission Standards for the Major

  1. A minimum of 45 college or university credits completed including:

    • ECON 200 Introduction to Microeconomics
    • ECON 201 Introduction to Macroeconomics
    • STAT 311 Introduction to Economic Statistics
      • Acceptable substitutes for STAT 311: Q SCI 381, STAT 340, STAT 341, STAT 390.
      • IND E 315 is acceptable, for students also pursuing College of Engineering disciplines.
      • PSYCH 317 & 318 are acceptable, if both are completed, for students also pursuing Psychology.
      • Not acceptable: STAT 220, STAT 221, STAT 321, STAT 394, Q METH 201, PSYCH 315.
    • One of the following: MATH 112, MATH 124, MATH 134, or MATH 145 (MATH 124 preferred)
    • One English Composition course 
    • Completion of the RTW assessment 
  2. Achieve a minimum GPA of 2.5 for the four prerequisite courses above, with no less than 2.0 in each course.
  3. Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 for all prior college work including transfer credits, and a minimum GPA of 2.5 for coursework taken at UW.
  4. A grade must be recorded for all of the courses above prior to admission. Each of these prerequisite courses can only be repeated once. We will take into account the better of the two grades. Academic credits earned from AP, IB, and A-Level exams are acceptable.

5. 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?

For prerequisites see the UW Course Catalog.

The application deadline is the 2nd Friday of each quarter (Autumn, Winter and Spring). Admission is competitive. Meeting the above criteria does not guarantee admission to the major. Transfer students must be admitted to the University before they can apply to the major.

You may apply for admission to the major as soon as you have received a grade in all the courses listed above. Applications are due no later than the second Friday of the quarter.

IMPORTANT: Do not wait for notice of acceptance to the major before registering for additional economics classes such as ECON 300. Premajors may register for ECON 301 during Registration Period II.

If you do not meet the minimum admissions requirements, make an appointment with an undergraduate economics adviser as soon as possible. You are also strongly encouraged to meet with an adviser in the Gateway Center to develop an alternative plan.

When you are ready to apply, visit our How to Apply page where you can download an application. You may also stop by to Savery 305 to pick up a printed application.

Graduation Requirements: Completing the BA Major

  1. Admission to the economics major
  2. ECON 300* Intermediate Microeconomics. Grade of 2.0 or higher required.
  3. ECON 301* Intermediate Macroeconomics.Grade of 2.0 or higher required.
  4. ECON 382* Introduction to Econometrics (Note: A student may use a higher-level econometrics course -- ECON 424, 482, 483, or 484 -- to fulfill this requirement. To reach 50 ECON credits, an additional ECON 4XX-level course may be required. See chart below.) 
  5. Five ECON courses at the 400 level (25 credits not including ECON 496, 497, or 499.)
  6. You must complete at least 50 credits in economics courses (courses with the prefix ECON), and you must have an average of 2.0 or higher in these 50 credits. See the chart below for a guide.
  7. ECON 300, 301, and 382 must be taken at UW. A minimum of 15 credits of 400-level ECON courses must be taken at UW.
  8. You must complete all University and College of Arts and Sciences requirements and 180 credits total for the undergraduate degree.
  9. You must make an appointment with an advisor to apply to graduate (no later than the end of the third week of the quarter in which you wish to graduate). To receive Graduating Senior Priority (GSP) registration, apply 2 ½ quarters before graduation.
With ECON 382: With substitute for ECON 382:
ECON 200 (5 credits) ECON 200 (5 credits)
ECON 201 (5 credits) ECON 201 (5 credits)
ECON 300 (5 credits) ECON 300 (5 credits)
ECON 301 (5 credits) ECON 301 (5 credits)
ECON 382 (5 credits) ECON 424/482/483 (5 credits)
ECON 4XX (5 credits) ECON 4XX (5 credits)
ECON 4XX (5 credits) ECON 4XX (5 credits)
ECON 4XX (5 credits) ECON 4XX (5 credits)
ECON 4XX (5 credits) ECON 4XX (5 credits)
ECON 4XX (5 credits) ECON 2XX/3XX/4XX course (5 credits)
Total: 50 "ECON" Credits Total: 50 "ECON" Credits

For prerequisites see the UW Course Catalog.

For College and University Graduation Requirements, refer to the website or the Bachelor’s Degree Planbook from the Undergraduate Advising Center in 171 Mary Gates Hall.

Both the General Catalog and the Quarterly Time Schedules are available online in the Student Guide Section of the UW home page.