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Economics is the study of human energy – how we organize our efforts to get what we want. Market exchange plays a central role in this process, but processes of conflict and coordination that take place outside of markets are also important. Economics contains two broad sub-disciplines: microeconomics analyzes the individual behavior of households, business firms, and governmental entities; while macroeconomics focuses upon aggregate economic performance of nations and their interdependencies in the global economy.

Undergraduate program options include a Bachelor’s degree, a minor, and multiple certificates.

Welcome to the Economics Community

Economics attempts to understand the economic choices of individuals, families, firms, and other institutions. For example, how do parents allocate time and other family resources? How do firms decide what to produce and whom to hire? Economists also attempt to understand the workings of the economy as a whole. What causes inflation, unemployment or inequality? How do regulation and deregulation of industries affect product prices and quality? Why does the cost of medical care rise faster than other costs? Economists have developed a body of principles and methods which help them to think about these problems. The study of economics is the study of those principles and methods, and their application to questions such as those mentioned above.

Economics majors all take courses in two basic areas of economics: microeconomics and macroeconomics; and in statistics and mathematics, which are useful tools in the study of economics. The remaining courses are chosen by the students themselves, in accordance with their interests and career objectives. Every student takes at least four courses of his or her choice in Economics; these can be courses in methods or courses in applied areas. Every student also has the option of substituting a five-course collateral field composed of courses taken outside of Economics for two otherwise required courses in Economics, as described in “The Major”; and “The Collateral Field Option.” Examples of such fields are: history, international relations, business management, and political science.

10 Great—and Very Different—Jobs for Economics Majors

10 Great—and Very Different—Jobs for Economics Majors thumbnail image

As you get ready to graduate with a degree in economics—or maybe as you’re choosing your major—you’re bound to be wondering what sort of jobs you’re qualified for. You likely know that you can go into investment banking or management …

By Regina Borsellino - The Muse
The Muse
Expert advice to answer your career questions.
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Spotting Fraudulent Employers

Protect Yourself from Scams

An employer that seems “fraudulent” or illegitimate should be taken very seriously. Fraudulent employer scams are often “phishing,”a crime related to identity theft.

How to spot a phishing scam:
The sender is suspicious.  The domain …

By Carol Sharick
Carol Sharick Director of Career and Professional Development for Undergraduates, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences Carol Sharick
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Featured Resources

Research Opportunities

The Office of National Scholarship Advisement (ONSA) at UMass helps students (and alumni who are not currently in grad school) …

The CHC provides a diverse community of academically talented students at UMass Amherst with extensive opportunities for analysis, research, professional …

The Department of Economics has instituted a program of undergraduate research assistantships in which current students majoring in economics work …

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