Professors: Winston H. Griffith, Thomas C. Kinnaman (Chair), Janet T. Knoedler, Christopher S.P. Magee, Geoffrey E. Schneider, Nancy E. White
Associate Professors: Nina E. Banks, Wei Ge, David Kristjanson-Gural, Gregory A. Krohn, Berhanu Nega, Amy M. Wolaver
Assistant Professors: Erdogan Bakir, Aïchatou Hassane (visiting), Paula Kazi, Nhan Le (visiting), Yun Li (visiting), Ian Seda-Irizarry (visiting)
The study of economics, as with the other social sciences, attempts to explain various types of human behavior and the impact that society's institutions have in determining that behavior. Of particular interest are the forces that determine an economy's production, employment, distribution of income, poverty, and international economic relationships.
Economics at Bucknell is also an integral part of the liberal arts. The department's primary goal is to cultivate patterns of inquiry that produce economic literacy, independent thinking, and a commitment to lifelong learning and a socially responsible life.
A major in economics offers a background for careers in law, journalism, finance and consulting, government and international affairs, teaching, industrial relations, public service, and many others. The major also provides the essential first stage for students interested in graduate work in economics, and a solid foundation for the graduate study of business and the law.
The major in economics consists of a minimum of eight courses in economics, in addition to one semester of calculus (such as MATH 192 or MATH 201) and one semester of statistics (such as MATH 216). ECON 103 is required along with two courses in neo-classical economics (ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257) and ECON 258 Intermediate Political Economy. Students also are required to take a minimum of one economics course above the 200 level and one economics senior seminar during the final year of study. Selection of the remaining economics courses needed to fulfill the major requirement will be planned with the assistance of a departmental adviser. Students scoring a 4 or 5 on both the micro and macro AP exams are awarded credit for ECON 103. ECON 100 does not count toward the economics major.
No more than two course credits earned off campus may be used to meet the economics requirements. This restriction does not apply to transfer students; in addition, all economics courses taught by, or sponsored by Bucknell faculty members in the Bucknell en España, Bucknell en France, Bucknell in Barbados, or Bucknell in London programs will count toward the major and the minor. With the exception of these Bucknell-sponsored programs, courses taken off-campus normally may not substitute for one of the core course requirements or for one of the two 300-level courses. The department chair may allow an exception if provided with clear information about the character and quality of off-campus courses, and if these courses adequately substitute for material that would be taught on-campus.
Each academic year, the department will solicit applications from all potential majors. Criteria for acceptance to the program will emphasize academic achievement.
Students interested in pursuing postgraduate work in economics upon graduation from Bucknell are strongly encouraged to take the following mathematics courses: MATH 201 Calculus I, MATH 202 Calculus II, MATH 211 Calculus III, MATH 216 Statistics I, MATH 303 Probability, and MATH 304 Mathematical Statistics. Other mathematics courses (for example, MATH 245 Linear Algebra; MATH 212 Differential Equations) are also helpful. In addition, students preparing for graduate study in economics should strongly consider taking ECON 341 Econometrics. Please see the economics department graduate school adviser as early in your degree program as possible for additional information and guidance.
The economics major contributes the College Core Curriculum of the College of Arts and Sciences by introducing three intellectual skills required of all majors. Information literacy is covered in ECON 256 and ECON 257. In these courses, students will be introduced to microeconomic and macroeconomic data and/or information sources used to perform economic analysis. In statistics (MATH 216), a co-requisite course for the major, students will learn about statistical inference, another key component of information literacy in economics. Writing within the curriculum will be introduced in ECON 258. Students in this course will be given repeated opportunities to write about economics in a clear and cohesive manner. Finally, speaking will be introduced in the senior seminar. In each seminar, students will give a formal presentation and also will write a research paper in economics, which will require them to reference peer-reviewed scholarship.
The senior seminar serves as the Culminating Experience for the economics major. The economics major is a hierarchical major, requiring students to complete the introductory course and three intermediate theory courses. All senior seminars require these intermediate theory courses as prerequisites and serve to culminate the accumulated body of economic knowledge and experience. Some senior seminars will also build upon calculus and statistics, which are also required courses for economics majors. The Culminating Experience requirement may also be fulfilled if a student completes an Honors Thesis.
The minor in economics consists of ECON 103 plus four elective economics courses at the 200 level or above. Students in other off-campus programs may count one off-campus course toward the minor. No particular combination of courses is required and students may wish to consult individual faculty members about course selection.
Economics Transfer Credit
Course credit in certain cases involving AP credit or transfer courses. The department chairperson assigns this credit when appropriate.
Workshop in Social Science Methods (II; 1, 0) Half course.
Covers basic introduction to research methods, skills, and ethics. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are covered. Offered as a prerequisite to summer research assistantship. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.
Economic Principles and Problems (I and II; 3, 0)
General introduction to both macroeconomics and microeconomics, along with an introduction to economic history, international economics, and political economy. The course also examines the origin of economic ideas in the works of Adam Smith, John Maynard Keynes, Karl Marx, and others.
Independent Study (I or II; R; 3, 0)
Individual study or project supervised by a member of the economics department typically resulting in the production of a long research paper. Prerequisites: ECON 103 and permission of the instructor.
Introduction to Public Policy (I or II; 3, 0)
Introduction to the study of public policy, including methods to identify social problems, analysis of the political process, policy analysis, and how individuals and institutions respond to policy using a variety of social science disciplines.
Money and Banking (II; 3, 0)
An examination of the role of money and the financial system in our economy, including the impact of Federal Reserve monetary policy. Prerequisite: ECON 103. Not open to students who have taken or plan to take ECON 328. Normally not open to students who have taken ECON 257.
Economic Topics (I or II; R; 3, 0)
Selected issues in economic theory or policy. Prerequisite: ECON 103 or permission of the instructor.
African Political Economy (I; 3, 0)
Analysis of topics in films and novels by Ousmane Sembene: pre-colonial history, colonialism, post-colonial independence, racial and gender oppression, worker exploitation, religious conflict, and modernization. Prerequisite: ECON 103. Crosslisted as WMST 224.
International Economics (I; 3, 0)
An examination of international economic relations today and of the theory used to analyze trade and financial relations. Attention is given to the problems of government policy with respect to international issues. Prerequisite: ECON 103 or permission of the instructor. Not open to economics majors, who are advised to enroll in ECON 327, or students who have taken ECON 327.
Resources and the Environment (I; 3, 0)
This course will develop economic concepts to explain why well-intentioned individuals so often choose to abuse their own environment and stock of natural resources, and suggest and evaluate policies designed to remedy the situation. Prerequisite: ECON 103 or permission of the instructor.
African Economic Development (I; 3, 0)
A historical, institutional analysis of Sub-Saharan African economic, social, and political development. Primary emphasis will be on the analysis of the economic crisis facing the subcontinent since the late '70s and the structural adjustment programs that have been instituted to deal with the crisis. Prerequisite: ECON 103.
Unemployment and Poverty (I or II; 3, 0)
A study of the causes of unemployment and poverty in the United States and policies to generate full employment and eliminate poverty. Prerequisite: ECON 103 and/or permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as WMST 236.
Health Politics and Health Policy (I; 3, 0)
History of health care delivery and financing in the United States and introduction to and evaluation of current topics in health policy. Prerequisite: ECON 103 or permission of the instructor. First- or second-year standing, others by permission.
Urban Economics (I or II; 3, 0)
Study of household and business location decisions and public policies aimed at congestion, pollution, and crime. Prerequisite: ECON 103. First- and second-year standing, others by permission.
Sports Economics (I; 3, 0)
The study of the economics of professional sport teams and leagues including ticket pricing, the market for broadcast rights, the effect of revenue sharing, and other league practices on the distribution of talent and players salaries, and government subsidies to stadiums. Prerequisites: ECON 103 and one semester of statistics.
Gender and Migration (II; 3, 0)
Role of gender in internal and international migration flows; economic restructuring; state policies; transnational domestic laborers and sex workers; and migration effects. Prerequisite: ECON 103. Crosslisted as WMST 253.
Intermediate Microeconomics (II; 3, 0)
Intermediate economic theory of the consumer, the firm, market structures, and resource allocation. Not open to students who have completed ECON 259. Prerequisite: ECON 103.
Intermediate Macroeconomics (I; 3, 0)
The study of national income, employment, inflation, interest rates, and the impact of monetary and fiscal policy on the economy. Prerequisite: ECON 103.
Intermediate Political Economy (I or II; 3, 0)
Intermediate study of Marxist and institutionalist political economy. The ideas of Marx and Veblen applied to such matters as the distribution of income and power, the environment, working conditions, consumerism, and race and gender issues. Prerequisite: ECON 103.
Intermediate Mathematical Microeconomics (II; 3, 0)
Intermediate microeconomic theory of the consumer, the firm, market structures, and resource allocation. Topics are introduced using differential calculus. Not open to students who have taken ECON 256. Prerequisites: ECON 103 and MATH 192 or MATH 201.
Political Economy of the Caribbean (II; 3, 0)
The development of the Caribbean from colonial times to the present. A look at the social, political, and economic development of the Caribbean as a whole rather than as independent aspects of development.
South Africa: Social Entrepreneurship (S; 15, 0)
The course examines the legacy of apartheid and the role of social entrepreneurship in transforming communities. Student are placed in community organizations in nearby townships. May be crosslisted as MGMT 270 or PSYC 270. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.
The British Economy: Structures and Policies (I or II; 3, 0)
Offered as an option for Bucknell in London students. This course will treat a distinct topic relating to British economic affairs.
Latin American Economic Development (II; 3, 0)
A historical analysis of Latin America's economic and political development. Primary emphasis on the experiences of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Central America. May be crosslisted as IREL 278 and/or LAMS 365. Prerequisite: ECON 103.
The French Economy: Structures and Policies (II; 3, 0)
Analysis of government planning since 1945. The conflict of liberal and socialist ideologies today. Prerequisite: Bucknell en France students only.
Political Economy of Media and Advertising (I or II; 3, 0)
Examines the interrelationship of cultural, political, and economic aspects of media content and advertising from the perspective of institutional and Marxian political economy. Prerequisite: ECON 103 or permission of the instructor.
Teaching Assistant in ECON 103 (I or II; 3, 0)
This course can only be taken by economics majors who have permission. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259, ECON 257, and ECON 258 and permission of the instructor.
Independent Study (I or II; R) Half to full course.
Individual study or project, supervised by instructor. Prerequisites: ECON 256, ECON 257, ECON 258, or ECON 259 and permission of the instructor.
Honors Thesis in Economics (I; R; 3, 0)
Individual research, leading to an honors thesis in economics, undertaken by qualified students, and supervised by an instructor in the department of economics. This course may be repeated for credit for a second semester for those students completing the honors thesis in economics. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259, ECON 257, ECON 258, and permission of the instructor and University Honors Council.
Globalization and Its Implications (II; 3, 0)
This course explores opposing economic views on globalization and its effect on the social, cultural, and environmental aspects of life in developed and developing countries. Prerequisites: junior or senior status; ECON 257 and 258. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Labor Economics (I or II; 3, 0)
An examination of economic models related to labor markets, current labor market trends, and the influence of related government policies. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and one semester of statistics. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Economic History of Women in the United States (I; 3, 0)
Examination of the history of women in the U.S. economy, with particular attention to racial-ethnic and class differences among women. Both neoclassical economics and political economy are utilized to analyze the economic status of women. Prerequisites: ECON 256, ECON 257, ECON 258, or ECON 259 and permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as WMST 318. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
European Economic History (I; 3, 0)
Development of the market economy and its major institutions. The changing place of the economy in society. Prerequisites: at least one of the following: ECON 256, ECON 257, ECON 258, or ECON 259 and/or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Money and Financial Institutions (II; R; 3, 0)
An analysis of the role of the financial system in the U.S. economy. Topics include determinants of asset prices, risk management, and financial regulations. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257 or concurrent enrollment and one semester of statistics. Not open to students who have taken ECON 221. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Seminar in Economic Topics (I or II; R; 3, 0)
Guided discussion of economic issues. Topics to be announced at time of preregistration. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Macroeconomic Policy (I; 3, 0)
A study of the effects of fiscal and monetary policies on economic stability and growth. Current and proposed policies will be analyzed. Prerequisites: ECON 257 and one semester of statistics. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
International Monetary and Financial Economics (II; 3, 0)
The course covers balance of payments, foreign exchange markets, international monetary systems, the adjustment mechanism, macroeconomic policy in an open economy and monetary integration. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257 and ECON 327 or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Classical Marxism (I; 3, 0)
The goal is to develop an understanding of Marx's analysis of capitalism by reading mainly original texts by Marx and consider its applications to disciplinary thinking. Crosslisted as GEOG 350.
Economic Development (I; 3, 0)
The main theories of development; economic and social dualism; agricultural, industrial, and trade strategies; the use of monetary and fiscal policies in promoting economic development; and the role of less developed countries in the emerging global economy. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257 or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Marx on Media (A1 or AII; 3, 0)
Examines a number of media industries to critically examine the effects of capitalist competition on media content and industry dynamics from a Marxian perspective. Prerequisite: ECON 258 or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Comparative Economic Systems (I or II; 3, 0)
A critical analysis of the organization of economic systems. The characteristics of selected capitalist and socialist economics studied and assessed from both mainstream and Marxian analytical perspectives. Prerequisite: ECON 258 or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 305.
Health Economics (II; 3, 0)
Theoretical and empirical examinations of issues in health economics. Course includes semester-long research project on a health topic. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and MATH 216 or MATH 304, and one semester of statistics or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 312.
Public Finance (II; 3, 0)
An analysis of the government's role in the economy. Topics include the economic rationale for government, expenditure analysis, and the allocative and distributive consequences of taxation. Prerequisite: ECON 256 or ECON 259. It is strongly recommended that students have one semester of statistics. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 313.
Population and Family Economics (I or II; 3, 0)
The course investigates the economic determinants and consequences of demographic changes in the context of both developing and developed countries. Topics include household formation and structure including marriage, divorce, dowry, and fertility. The course also examines investment in children, son preference, child labor, population aging, and the efficiency of population policies. Prerequisites: MATH 216 or MATH 304 and ECON 256 or ECON 259. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 315.
American Economic History (I and II; 3, 0)
An examination of the development and influence of American economic institutions from colonial to current times. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257, or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 318.
The British Economic Miracle (I; 3, 0)
This course examines the early British economy and the role it played and continues to play in influencing the modern world. Prerequisites: ECON 256 and ECON 257.
International Economics (I; 3, 0)
Theoretical principles underlying international trade, investment, commercial policy, economic integration, adjustment mechanisms, and balance of payments policy will be examined with an application of these principles to current national and international policies. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257, or concurrent enrollment. Not open to students who have taken ECON 227 or ECON 327. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Political Economy of Financial Crises (II; 3, 0)
This course will explore the causes and consequences of financial crises from macroeconomic perspectives, with most of the attention given to the recent financial crisis in the United States. Prerequisite: ECON 258 or permission of the instructor. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 329.
Industrial Organization Economics (I; 3, 0)
Topics include market structure, industrial concentration, firm conduct, mergers, advertising, market performance, examined in the context of U.S. antitrust policy. Prerequisite: ECON 256 or ECON 259. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors. Not open to students who have taken ECON 331.
China and the World Economy (I; 3, 0)
An analysis of economic transition and development in China, with emphasis on its role in the Asia-Pacific and world economies. Prerequisites: ECON 256 and ECON 257 or permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as EAST 339. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
Econometrics (II; 3, 0)
The application of statistical methods to quantify and test economic theories, analyze government policies, and forecast economic variables. Prerequisites: ECON 256 or ECON 259 and ECON 257, and one semester of statistics or permission of the instructor.
Marxian Economics (I or II; 3, 0)
Examines the implications of class struggle on microeconomic competition, the distribution of value within and between firms, and macroeconomic instability accumulation and crises at the national and international level. Prerequisite: ECON 258. Preference given to ECON and ECMA majors.
GEOG 209 and ANTH 266
Economic Geography and Economic Anthropology are acceptable for credit as economics courses.
Courses offered occasionally
326 History of Economic Thought, 330 Law and Economics, 338 Seminar in International Economics