The W. A. Franke College of Business2021-2022
Business Economics, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
The primary mission of the economics degree program in the W. A. Franke College of Business (FCB) is to train our majors to successfully apply economic theory and concepts to real-world problems through the development of analytical and quantitative skills in order for them to succeed in their professional and academic endeavors. Economic majors learn how to think like an economist by developing analytical and quantitative skills in identifying the essential elements of a problem and finding solutions. They explore topics from pricing strategy and cost-benefit analysis to monetary and fiscal policy impact and international trade. Applied learning experiences such as undergraduate research, independent study, internships, and study abroad programs help students add context to classroom concepts. The degree program prepares students for careers in business, government, and public policy. In addition, the economics degree program also serves FCB business degree programs and Liberal Studies through our curriculum. The curriculum for business and Liberal Studies students focuses on essential concepts and principles of economics in order to help them understand, think, and form opinions about, and develop responses to local, national, and global economic issues.
Student Learning Outcomes
Economics graduates will be able to explain key economic concepts and principles in both Microeconomics and Macroeconomics.
- Scarcity, Opportunity Cost & Comparative Advantage
- Students use Production Possibility Frontier curves to calculate opportunity costs in order to evaluate the trade-offs involved in decision making.
- Students use comparative advantage to calculate efficiency improvements resulting from trade and specialization.
- Supply and Demand, Market Equilibrium & Price Elasticity
- Students can use demand/supply concepts to determine market equilibrium.
- Students can explain why supply and demand may shift over time and analyze the impacts on market equilibrium that result from these shifts.
- Students can calculate price elasticity of demand and illustrate its uses in market analysis.
- Efficient Markets: Costs of Production, Perfect Competition, Imperfect Competition, Labor Markets
- Students are able to distinguish between explicit and implicit costs as well as between average and marginal costs. They can use these relationships to derive the full cost of operating a business firm.
- Students use cost and revenue curves to determine profit-maximizing output under conditions of perfect competition and imperfect competition.
- Students are able to determine the optimal amount of labor to hire in order to achieve an efficient outcome in the labor market.
- Market Inefficiency: Externalities and Market Failure
- Students are able to explain the concept of market failure, and apply this to situations where environmental externalities are present.
- Economic Indicators: Gross Domestic Product, Business Cycles, Employment, Inflation & the Consumer Price Index
- Students can use the circular flow diagram to show that income from domestic production equals expenditure on domestic output.
- Students can identify & explain the expenditure components of GDP (Y = C + I + G + NX.)
- Students can describe the meaning and components of the business cycle and explain why the economy experiences good and bad times.
- Students can explain the concept of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and how to transform economic variables to account for the effects of inflation as well as explain differences between real and nominal interest rates.
- Economic Growth
- Students can analyze the determinants of productivity and evaluate policy implications of productivity changes that occur across the economy.
- Economic Theory: Aggregate Demand and Aggregate Supply (AD/AS)
- Students are able to use Y = C + I + G + NX to explain why aggregate demand (AD) is downward sloping and what factors can shift AD.
- Students are able to use both long-run aggregate supply (LRAS) and short-run aggregate supply (SRAS) to show how levels of output change in the economy over time.
- Students are able to use the transition from short-run equilibrium to long-run equilibrium to explain economic fluctuations which occur in the economy.
- Economic Policy: Fiscal Policy, Monetary policy
- Students are able to explain and calculate the impacts on the economy resulting from the multiplier and the crowding-out effects associated with fiscal policy.
- Students can describe the functions of money, how the banking system creates money, and how the Federal Reserve System uses its monetary control instruments to stabilize the economy.
- Students are aware of a broad range of nontechnical economic outlets including the popular press (newspapers and magazines) as well as government and historical documents.
- Students can analyze and explain the economic content appearing in these writings.
- Students are able to locate printed and electronic sources of data in order to conduct technical and nontechnical research in economics.
- Students can appropriately analyze economic issues and concepts, and can effectively demonstrate their economic reasoning with clearly written statements on exams.
- Students can communicate their economic reasoning using well-developed and concise language in assigned research papers.
- Students can assemble and analyze economic data as well as formulate models to test economic hypotheses.
- Students can explain the assumptions, applications and outcomes associated with using the basic regression model.
- Students will be competent in using a statistical software package in order to undertake and successfully complete quantitatively-based economic analysis.
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