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Bachelor of Arts in Economics

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Online Economics Degree Student, Emily Sayler
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Online Economics Degree

Learn to make informed decisions based on economic principles, data and hypotheses with our online economics degree. You'll gain conceptual, analytical and technical abilities that will prepare you for several high-paying career paths or graduate study. The degree program is offered through UMass Lowell's College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences. The flexibility of the curriculum makes it an excellent choice if you're looking to finish your bachelor's degree in an accelerated timeline, since there are more options to transfer in prior college coursework that fit the degree requirements.

Career Outlook

96,198
Jobs (2022)
+2.8%
% Change (2022-2023)
$91K/yr
Median Earnings
11,234
Annual Openings
Source: Lightcast (2023) Target Occupations in New England for Economics Majors

Occupations

  • Economic Analyst
  • Financial Advisor
  • Business Consultant
  • Market Researcher
  • Policy Analyst
"The median annual wage for economists was $105,630 in May 2021."
— Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Economists (visited March 16, 2023)

Key Takeaways

  • Draw inferences and analyze data based on economic studies
  • Apply economic theory using graphs, algebra and statistical methods
  • Identify the role of supply and demand in a market economy
  • Discover the advantages of a market system
  • Understand the sources of market failure
  • Examine the use of government tax and transfer policies
  • Evaluate fiscal policy

Success Story

"At UMass Lowell, I was able to get leadership experience. I don't think my experience is unique; I think those opportunities are there for anyone who seeks them out and is willing to work for them."

Emily Sayler, Bachelor of Arts in Economics

One Success Leads to Another

Apply credits from lower credentials to higher ones. Our programs are designed to build upon themselves:

Curriculum Outline

- Number of Courses Required: 40 (120 Credits)
- For students entering the program in Fall 2023 and beyond.
- View Course Descriptions »

Economics Requirements (6 Courses / 18cr)

Economics Electives (6 Courses / 18cr)

Choose 6 Economics courses with a prefix of ECON.xxxx at the 3000/4000 level.

  • ECON.3020 Labor Economics† (3cr)
  • ECON.3120 Managerial Economics (3cr) - Available Fall 2024!
  • ECON.3160 Investments: Instruments and Strategies (3cr)
  • ECON.3180 Financial Markets and Monetary Policy (3cr)
  • ECON.3250 United States Economic History (3cr)
  • ECON.3450 Health Economics† (3cr)
  • ECON.4010 Special Topics in Economics (3cr)
  • ECON.4030 International Economics (3cr)
  • ECON.4060 International Macroeconomics (3cr)
  • ECON.4150 Introduction to Environmental Economics (3cr)

Note: This is a partial list of approved courses. View additional courses that may be used as Economics Electives.

Free Electives (16 Courses / 48cr)

This program gives you the freedom to choose any 16 courses that interest you. Transfer credits may also satisfy this requirement. You may also choose to pursue a minor. Please speak with your advisor for additional information.

ECON.3020† and ECON.3450† are two courses that may interest students in the economics program. In addition, they can be used to satisfy the University's Core Curriculum Essential Learning Outcomes for Diversity and Cultural Awareness (DCA) and Social Responsibility and Ethics (SRE).

University Core Curriculum (12 Required Courses / 36-38 credits)

Under UMass Lowell's Core Curriculum, students must meet Breadth of Knowledge (BOK) requirements and Essential Learning Outcomes (ELOs).

Breadth of Knowledge (BOK) Requirements

Mathematics Perspective (1 Course / 3cr)
STEM Perspective (1 Course / 3cr)
College Writing I and II (2 Courses / 6cr)
Arts & Humanities Perspective (AH) (3 Courses / 9cr)
  • ----.---- Arts & Humanities Perspective (AH) Course (3cr)
  • ----.---- Arts & Humanities Perspective (AH) Course (3cr)
  • ----.---- Arts & Humanities Perspective (AH) Course (3cr)
Social Sciences Perspective (SS) (3 Courses / 9cr)
  • ----.---- Social Sciences Course (3cr)
  • ----.---- Social Sciences Course (3cr)
  • ----.---- Social Sciences Course (3cr)
Science with Lab Perspective (SCL) (2 Courses / 6-8cr)
  • ----.---- Science with Lab Course (3/4cr)
  • ----.---- Science with Lab Course (3/4cr)

Essential Learning Outcomes (ELOs)

Students must meet the University's 7 Essential Learning Outcomes (ELOs).

†Satisfies an ELO. Check your advertisement report in SiS or speak with your advisor to make sure you are fulfilling all 7 ELOs.

Course Descriptions

ECON.2010 Principles of Microeconomics (3cr)

Studies the principles of production and exchange. An introduction to demand, supply, pricing, and output under alternative market structures. Derived demand and resource markets are introduced. Meets Core Curriculum Essential Learning Outcome for Quantitative Literacy (QL).

ECON.2020 Principles of Macroeconomics (3cr)

This course studies national accounts, inflation, and aggregate unemployment, as well as the driving forces behind business cycles and long-run growth in the context of aggregate demand and aggregate supply. In addition, it examines monetary and fiscal policy, the Federal reserve, and select additional topics, such as an introduction to open-economy macroeconomics.

ECON.2110 Statistics for Business and Economics I (3cr)

Presents descriptive statistics, sophisticated counting techniques and other components of probability, simple random variables and their distribution, bivariate functions, sampling theory properties of estimators.

Requirements:

MATH 1210 pre-req

ECON.2120 Statistics for Business and Economics II (3cr)

Discusses interval estimation, hypothesis testing, analysis of variance, applied regression theory, correlation analysis, and other selected topics.

Requirements:

ECON 2110 pre-req

ECON.3020 Labor Economics (3cr)

An introduction to the economic analysis of behaviors and institutions in the labor market: labor supply and participation, labor demand by firms, wage determination under different institutional settings, and gender, race or ethnicity as determinants of different labor market outcomes. The course presents microeconomic models, empirical findings and their public policy implications on topics such as minimum wage, affirmative action, social insurance programs, workplace safety, and subsidized day care. Prerequisites: 49.201 or instructor's approval. Meets Core Curriculum Essential Learning Outcome for Diversity and Cultural Awareness (DCA) and Quantitative Literacy (QL).

Notes:

HSV

Requirements:

ECON.2010 pre-req

ECON.3030 Microeconomic Theory (3cr)

Provides an advanced examination of price and production theory and the theory of the consumer and the firm.

Requirements:

ECON.2010 pre-req

ECON.3040 Macroeconomic Theory (3cr)

Building on Principles of Macroeconomics (ECON.2020), this course studies goods markets and money markets in further detail. Emphasis is placed on aggregate labor markets and also on the relationship between inflation, unemployment, and aggregate output. These topics are contextualized in order to examine aggregate economic developments in the short, medium, and long run. Optimal monetary and fiscal policies are examined against this background. Select additional topics are covered, such as the basics of open-economy macroeconomics. This course meets the Essential Learning Outcome of Critical Thinking and Problem Solving (CTPS) as defined under the Core Curriculum requirements.

Requirements:

49.202 pre-req

ECON.3120 Managerial Economics (3cr)

Applies the economic theory and statistical methods to business decision making. Estimation of demand, production, cost functions and accompanying elasticity estimates, pricing and output decisions, value maximization problems, and capital budgeting.

Requirements:

ECON.2010 pre-req

ECON.3160 Investments: Instruments and Strategies (3cr)

In this course we will look at different types of investments, from stocks, bonds and real estate top mutual funds, hedge funds and derivatives exploring how and when to use them. Students will create a diversified investment portfolio using an online trading program that incorporates products covered in class. In addition we will look at how different exchanges operate and the role of financial investments in real capital accumulation and rising living standards.

Requirements:

ECON.2010 pre-req

ECON.3180 Financial Markets and Monetary Policy (3cr)

This course studies the formal role of money, interest rates, interest rate determination, and financial markets within the context of aggregate economic activity. These topics are related to central banks, with a focus on the Federal Reserve, and linked to money supply and the tools of monetary policy. Formal theories and practical implementation of strategies and tactics of monetary policy are addressed, as well as their implications for aggregate economic activity. This course meets Core Curriculum Essential Learning Outcome for Information Literacy (IL) and Written & Oral Communication (WOC).

Requirements:

ECON 2010 and 202 pre-req

ECON.3250 United States Economic History (3cr)

The evolution of institutions and their functions, and sources of economic development. The contributions of railroads, agricultural population growth, immigration, capital formation and technological progress to economic development. Other areas addressed: rapid industrialization and antitrust laws; evolution of financial institutions, the creation of the Federal Reserve System, crash of 1929, the depression of the 1930s, the New Deal and various banking acts, the labor movement, the growth of international trade.

Requirements:

ECON 2010 or ECON 2020 pre-req

ECON.3450 Health Economics (3cr)

An introduction to the economic analysis of health care market The course presents microeconomic models, empirical findings and public policies referring to the following topics: the production and demand for health (the investment/consumption aspects of health and the relationship between socio economic status and health status), the issues of moral hazard and adverse selection in the insurance market, the role of information in the physician-patient relationship, the different regulation and payment systems for providers, the Medicare and Medicaid programs, and the comparisons between the US system and the health systems of other western economies and developing countries. This class aims to help students becoming more informed future citizens and consumers or producers of healthcare. Prerequisites: 49.201 or instructor's approval. Meets Core Curriculum Essential Learning Outcome for Critical Thinking & Problem Solving (CTPS) and Social Responsibility & Ethics (SRE).

Requirements:

Pre-Req: ECON.2010 Principles of Microeconomics

ECON.4010 Special Topics in Economics (3cr)

Special Topics in Economics is a course for advanced undergraduates in Economics. The content will vary from semester to semester depending on the research interests of the Faculty member teaching the course.

Requirements:

ECON.2010 pre-req

ECON.4030 International Economics (3cr)

This course is devoted to the study of why countries trade the products they do and the attendant benefits and costs of trade. The course covers both the main theories of international trade, and their empirical applications.

Requirements:

ECON.2010

ECON.4060 International Macroeconomics (3cr)

This course is part of the two sub-disciplines that compose the overall discipline of International Economics, with the other sub-discipline being International Trade. As such, International Macroeconomics is complementary to International Trade, but neither course is a prerequisite for the other. This course provides an overview of open economy macroeconomics, and international financial markets and policies. The focus is on exchange rate determination, the importance of the balance of payments for both the domestic economy and the economies of other countries, international capital flows, the impact of internal debt on the balance of trade, and the interaction and potential conflicts between domestic and international economic police objectives.

ECON.4150 Introduction to Environmental Economics (3cr)

Examines economic and policy aspects of environmental quality, natural resource and relevant work-environment related issues. Models are used to blend economic theory (e.g. market failure caused by externalities, asymmetric information, lack of property rights etc.) with environmental facts using standard benefit-cost or efficiency criteria. Students will learn to derive policy insights from theoretical constructs. The primary objective is to show how the basic principles in economics can play a valuable role in analyzing and evaluating critical environmental issues and help in determining policy guidelines (in terms of direct controls, voluntary programs, taxes, other monetary incentives etc). Graduate students in work environment will be required to do an economic analysis of an occupational health and safety intervention. Graduate students from ESDR will undertake a project that is relevant to his or her field of specialization with the permission of the instructor.

Requirements:

ECON.2010.

ENGL.1010 College Writing I (3cr)

A workshop course that thoroughly explores the writing process from pre-writing to revision, with an emphasis on critical thinking, sound essay structure, mechanics, and academic integrity. Students will read, conduct rhetorical analyses, and practice the skills required for participation in academic discourse. Students will write expository essays throughout the semester, producing a minimum of four formal essays.

ENGL.1020 College Writing II (3cr)

A workshop course that thoroughly explores the academic research writing process with an emphasis on entering into academic conversation. Building on the skills acquired in College Writing I, students will learn to write extensively with source material. Key skills addressed include finding,assessing, and integrating primary and secondary sources, and using proper documentation to ensure academic integrity. Students will produce analytical writing throughout the semester, including a minimum of four formal, researched essays.

MATH.1205 Applied Precalculus (3cr)

Intended for students in online degree programs. The objective of this course is to provide students with problem-solving and computational techniques needed for further coursework and/or in their occupations. Topics covered include a comprehensive review of algebra, functions, and relations, system of linear equations in two variables, polynomial functions, rational functions, and inverse functions. Applications from business, IT, and biological sciences are included. ANTI-REQUISITES: Credit will only be granted for one of the following: MATH.1200/1225, MATH.1205 or MATH.1210.

MATH.1220 Management Calculus (3cr)

Review of difference quotient, least squares modeling, limit of difference quotient, differential calculus: derivatives, differentials, higher-order derivatives, implicit differentiation, relative and absolute maxima and minima of functions, and applications of derivatives to business and economics. Integrals and applications to business. No credit in Science or Engineering.

Requirements:

MATH.1200 Precalculus Mathematics I, or MATH.1210 Management Precalculus, or MATH.1270 Preparation for Calculus, or MATH.1280 Calculus IA, or MATH.1290 Calculus IB,or ALEKS score of 67 or higher.

Undergraduate Degree Requirements

All bachelor's degree candidates are required to earn a minimum 2.000 cumulative grade point average (GPA), to present a minimum of 120 semester hours, to fulfill the residency requirements, to conform to the general regulations and requirements of the University, to satisfy the regulations and academic standards of the colleges which exercise jurisdiction over the degrees for which they are matriculating, to satisfy the curriculum requirements established by the departments or programs in their major, and to complete the University's Core Curriculum requirements, which are listed within the program's curriculum outline. For additional information regarding the University's general policies and procedures, transfer credit information and residency requirements; please refer to our Academic Policies & Procedures.

Tuition & Fees

Tuition at UMass Lowell is typically half the cost of private colleges, and our online tuition is among the lowest in the nation. Tuition for online programs offered through the Division of Graduate, Online & Professional Studies is the same whether you live in-state, out-of-state or outside of the U.S.

Summer 2024 Tuition

Cost Per Credit Cost Per 3-Credit Course*

Undergraduate

Online and Virtual $385 $1,155
On Campus Lowell $3551 $1,065
*Tuition is priced on the listed credit hour unless the contact hour is different. Tuition is then based upon the listed contact hour.
1A tuition increase is anticipated for Fall courses.

Additional Costs

Cost
Term Registration Fee $30
Returned Check Fee $30
Undergraduate Degree Application $60

Please note: Tuition and fees are subject to change.

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Looking for Financial Assistance?

UMass Lowell offers a variety of financial aid and scholarship options.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The course requirements are the main difference between a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Economics. A B.A. in Economics has a broader curriculum, focusing on social sciences and humanities and offering many free electives. The free electives make the B.A. in Economics an ideal choice for transfer students or those who want to include a minor. A B.S. in Economics has a heavily structured curriculum, emphasizing mathematics and statistics and offering fewer elective courses.
  • There are many lucrative and rewarding career paths open to economics majors. Economics is a versatile and in-demand field, offering career opportunities in finance, consulting, market research, data analysis, business intelligence, government and public policy and more. Economics graduates are also well positioned to advance to graduate studies to pursue a Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA), a Master of Science in Finance, or a Master of Public Administration (MPA).
  • A Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) is an excellent choice for economics majors who want to combine their knowledge of economics with business skills. An MBA will expand your career options in finance, consulting and management. You'll learn about topics like financial analysis, strategic planning and marketing.

    While an economics degree and an MBA focus on business and finance, these degrees have some key differences. A Bachelor of Arts in Economics typically focuses on the theoretical and analytical aspects of economics, including micro and macroeconomic theory. An MBA is more practical and focuses on developing management, leadership, and decision-making skills.
  • An online economics degree can lead to many rewarding and in-demand career opportunities that often require a balance of analytical (left brain) and creative (right brain) thinking.

    If you're interested in pursuing a Bachelor's in Economics but are concerned with your return on investment, the earning potential for economics graduates is promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, "The median annual wage for economists was $105,630 in May 2021." However, those working in the finance and insurance industry had a median annual wage of $130,230, while those working in the federal government had a median yearly salary of $116,020. Consulting firms also offer high earning potential, with some entry-level positions offering salaries of $80,000 or more.

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Applying into an Undergraduate Degree Program

Complete the Online Undergraduate Degree Application Form (preferred), or print, complete and submit the Undergraduate Degree Application .pdf form. Please note: Your application will be processed once we have received your $60 application fee. Return your completed application along with your application fee to:

University of Massachusetts Lowell
Division of Graduate, Online & Professional Studies
GPS Admissions
839 Merrimack Street
Lowell, MA 01854

Questions? See our helpful Step-by-Step Guide to the Application Process.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for acceptance into a bachelor's degree program offered through the Division of Graduate, Online & Professional Studies, students must hold a high school diploma or have passed either the GED® or HiSET®. Graduate, Online & Professional Studies operates on a rolling admissions basis and each application is reviewed when the student's file is complete. Students must be admitted to a degree or certificate program in order to be eligible for most financial aid.

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Questions Regarding Your Undergraduate Application?

Email OCE_Admissions@uml.edu or call 978-934-2474.

For General Assistance:

Call the Advising Center at 978-934-2474 or 800-480-3190. Our academic advisors are here to help!

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