Economics  {SF State Bulletin 2011 - 2012}

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College of Business

Interim Dean: Caran Colvin


Department of Economics

HSS 142
Phone: 415-338-1839

Chair: Sudip Chattopadhyay
Graduate Coordinator: Lisa Takeyama



Professors: Blecha, Chattopadhyay, Mar, Moss
Associate Professors: Chaudhuri, King, Potepan, Takeyama
Assistant Professors: Bar, Chernomaz, Janko



B.A. in Economics

Minor in Economics

M.A. in Economics



Program Scope

The Bachelor of Arts in Economics provides students with a foundation in economic theory while allowing them to apply what they have learned in real world settings. The program fully exposes students to the primary methods of economic inquiry and analysis. Courses in the program call on students to use both quantitative and qualitative reasoning to analyze and explain economic events and problems. Students also develop practical skills in collecting and statistically analyzing economic data to reach conclusions about economic issues. The undergraduate program in economics provides an excellent preparation for students planning to enter careers in business management, government service, and in non-profit organizations. It can also serve to fully prepare students for advanced graduate and professional study in economics, business, public policy, urban and regional planning, law, and other related fields.


The Master of Arts in Economics allows students to pursue advanced study in economics and focuses on theoretical foundations and real world applications. The program requires students to develop skills in the mathematical modeling of economic theory and statistical analysis of economic data, as well as writing and communicating economic ideas. The M.A. program provides excellent advanced training for students wishing to obtain professional positions as researchers or administrators in private businesses, governmental agencies, or non-profit organizations. The program also offers a solid foundation for students interested in continuing their graduate studies in Ph.D. programs elsewhere.


Career Outlook

Both the undergraduate and graduate programs prepare students for a wide variety of careers in business, government, and non-profit organizations. Their somewhat practical orientation and strong emphasis on quantitative reasoning allow graduates of these programs to move into interesting, useful careers in a number of fields. Undergraduate students majoring in economics, particularly those who have supplemented their program with additional course work in accounting and computer programming, are very attractive job candidates. Graduate students in the master's program develop advanced theoretical, statistical, and data analytical skills, which allow them to compete successfully for more advanced positions. Economics majors have recently been placed in entry level positions in business management, marketing, financial services, research consulting firms, public policy analysis, teaching, and many other fields. The undergraduate major also provides excellent preparation for advanced graduate and professional studies in economics and related disciplines. M.A. graduates have recently been placed in advanced positions with public utilities, economics consulting firms, the research divisions of large companies, and local and state governmental agencies.


Bachelor of Arts in Economics


Lower Division Core Courses

Economics majors are required to take three courses at the lower division level: ECON 100, Introduction to Macroeconomic Analysis; ECON 101, Introduction to Microeconomic Analysis; and MATH 226, Calculus I.


Upper Division Core Courses

Economics majors are required to take six upper division core courses: ECON 301, Intermediate Microeconomic Theory; ECON 302, Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory; ECON 311, Statistical Methods and Interpretation; ECON 312, Introduction to Econometrics, and ECON 605, History of Economic Thought. Finally, in the senior year, majors are required to take the capstone course ECON 690, Senior Seminar: Economic Inquiry and Analysis. Majors must earn a minimum grade of C in each course.


Upper Division Electives

Economics majors are required to take five upper division elective courses in economics. There are over twenty elective courses offered each year on such subjects as: money and banking, international economics, labor economics, public finance, law and economics, economic history, urban economics, the economics of crime and justice, environmental economics, economic geography, and economic development.


Declaring the Major and Undergraduate Advising

Students can declare economics as a major at the Economics Department Office at HSS 142. The Economics Department requires that all majors meet with an adviser each spring. Students who do not see an adviser will not be able to register for the fall semester. Advisers advise students on the selection of economics courses, as well as G.E. requirements and other courses in the university. Advisers provide important information and guidance for meeting career and/or life objectives.


On-line course descriptions
are available.


Core Courses

Course Title Units
ECON 100 Introduction to Macroeconomic Analysis 3
ECON 101 Introduction to Microeconomic Analysis 3
MATH 226 Calculus I 4
ECON 301 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory 3
ECON 302 Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory 3
ECON 311 Statistical Methods and Interpretation 3
ECON 312 Introduction to Econometrics 3
ECON 605 History of Economic Thought 3
ECON 690 GW Senior Seminar: Economic Inquiry and Analysis - GWAR 3


Upper Division Electives

Units selected from upper division economics courses: 15 units
Upon prior advisement, one course may be from another department in a related discipline

Total: 43


Minor in Economics

Economics is highly complementary with a number of other disciplines and some students may choose to minor in economics while pursuing a major in another field. Students often decide to minor in economics after having already taken several economics courses and realizing that a few more courses will satisfy the minor requirements. Students minoring in economics are required to take ECON 100, Introduction to Macroeconomic Analysis, and ECON 101, Introduction to Microeconomic Analysis. They are also required to take either ECON 301, Intermediate Microeconomic Theory, or ECON 302, Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory. In addition, minors are required to take four upper division elective courses. Upon advisement, two of these elective courses may be taken in a related discipline including courses counting toward the major.



Course Title Units
ECON 100 Introduction to Macroeconomic Analysis 3
ECON 101 Introduction to Microeconomic Analysis 3
ECON 301
ECON 302
Intermediate Microeconomic Theory
Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory

Units selected from upper division elective economics courses. Upon prior advisement, two of these four courses may be from another department in a related discipline: 12 units

Total: 21


Master of Arts in Economics

Graduate Coordinator: Takeyama


Admission to Program

For admission to the graduate program in economics, a student must meet the general university requirements as stated in this Bulletin. To qualify for classified status, a student must satisfy the following criteria:

  • Earn a 3.0 grade point average in an undergraduate major in economics (or equivalent);
  • Complete a course in intermediate macro and micro theory (ECON 301 and 302 or equivalents) with a grade of B or better;
  • Complete a semester of calculus (MATH 226 or equivalent) with a grade of B or better;
  • Complete a semester-length course in Statistics and in Econometrics (ECON 311 and 312 or equivalents) with a grade of B or better.

Students who do not have Bs in all of the above four courses, or who did not major in economics but earned overall grade point averages of 3.0 or better, may be admitted conditionally. Students admitted conditionally should understand that any prerequisite courses indicated in their conditional admission cannot be applied toward their graduate program.

Students applying to the master's in economics must submit the following material to both the Division of Graduate Studies and to the graduate coordinator of the Department of Economics. These materials should be submitted to both places at the same time.

  • Transcripts from all colleges and universities attended.
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores for the general test.
  • Two or more letters of recommendation, preferably from professors the applicant has taken courses with or worked with in some capacity.

The deadlines for submission of all of the above material to both the Division of Graduate Studies and the graduate coordinator of the Department of Economics are determined by the university. These deadlines are available at


Written English Proficiency Requirements

The university requires that graduate students must demonstrate both initial English proficiency (level one) upon entrance to graduate study and an advanced English proficiency (level two) prior to graduating. Level One: prior to admission, students must satisfy at least ONE of the following: a score of at least 4.0/6.0 on the GRE or GMAT Analytic Writing Assessment; a minimum score of 24/30 on the Writing section of the Internet-based test (IBT) TOEFL; or a score of at least 6.5/9.0 on the IELTS writing test, or a concordant score on the Pearson Test of English. Level Two: to demonstrate advanced level proficiency, the student must complete a written term paper as part of the required ECON 890 course.


Advancement to Candidacy

Besides meeting all general requirements for advancement to candidacy, students must earn a minimum of a B in ECON 615, 630, 701, 702, 725, 730, and 890; and a minimum of a B- in each graduate elective course; and earn a minimum of 3.0 grade point average in all courses combined. On-line course descriptions are available.


Core Requirements

Course Title Units
ECON 615 Mathematical Economics 3
ECON 630 Econometric Theory 3
ECON 701 Seminar: Microeconomic Theory I 3
ECON 702 Seminar: Macroeconomic Theory I 3
ECON 725 Applied Data Analysis in Economics 3
ECON 730 Seminar: Econometric Methods 3
ECON 890 Graduate Seminar in Applied Economics 3


Other Requirements

Graduate elective course. May be taken upon advisement in an allied field or in interdisciplinary study: 3 units


ECON 898: Master's Thesis and Oral Defense OR additional graduate economics courses and Oral Comprehensive Examination

Minimum total: 30


Oral Comprehensive Examination: A three-hour comprehensive oral examination is required of all candidates. The examination covers the project completed in ECON 890 or the master's thesis. Examinations are conducted during the regular fall and spring semesters. No student is permitted to take the examination until having completed 24 units of the Advancement to Candidacy with a B (3.0) average. ECON 615, 630, 701, 702, and 890 must be included in these 24 units. The examination may be taken only twice.


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