Fact Sheet

An economic way of thinking is valuable in many fields of interest to our students. Some economics majors pursue a Ph.D. in economics while others pursue graduate work in business or law. Students in this major pursue various career paths after graduation, including management consulting, financial services, forecasting, and insurance.

The curriculum includes course sequences in the core economic theory, business economics, international economics, public policy, and quantitative economics, providing additional opportunities for in-depth study within the economics major, minor, or concentration. The senior capstone experience sharpens written and oral communication skills.

However students choose to customize their study of economics, they leave the program with a keen understanding of the global implications of economic activity and policy and a mastery of the analytical and decision-making skills that drive them.

Economics Department Research Focus Statement

Economics Department faculty members work on a wide range of empirical and theoretical issues utilizing state-of-the-art techniques. A major focus of several Economics faculty members is on research that contributes to the frontier of knowledge about how students learn economics most efficiently. In addition, faculty members make contributions to the macroeconomic literature on the impact of uncertainty on the economy, understanding resource allocation, how data revisions affect forecasts and monetary policy, and the determinants of capital flows and trade flow between countries. On the microeconomics side, Economics faculty members work on issues including economics and ethics, policy issues in higher education, and the role of the environment in the economy. Other economists in the department test economic theory using laboratory experiments, examine monopoly power in agriculture and explore the use of exchange-traded funds in financial portfolios. The diversity of topics illustrates the wide-ranging interests of department members.

Goals for Economics Students

  • Each student shall understand fundamental economic theory.
  • Each student shall comprehend how economic models are formulated and tested.
  • Each student shall gain an understanding of economic institutions and be able to put them in sociological, economic, and political contexts.

Department Emphases

An economics student will master the analytical tools necessary to evaluate personal choices, private business decisions, and government policies. The diversity of our course work can teach students to:

  • Recognize the influences of taxes and government spending on the economy.
  • Measure movements in interest rates.
  • Understand policies made by the Federal Reserve.
  • Determine the value of international currencies.
  • Interpret the influence of events in other parts of the world on the United States' economy.
  • Evaluate the effect of legal structures on economic efficiency.

Students may pursue an economics major from within the School of Arts and Sciences or the Robins School of Business. Liberal arts students earn a Bachelor of Arts degree; business students earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in economics.

Upper-level elective courses are offered in many areas, including macro economics, environmental economics, international economics, economic history, public policy, labor, and quantitative economics.

Options in the Study of Economics

There are various options available to the liberal arts student or the business student.

Students may major in economics by completing a required number of units of coursework in the department. Requirements for the major include: Principles of Microeconomics, Principles of Macroeconomics, Microeconomic Theory, Macroeconomic Theory, Introductory Econometrics, the Senior Economics Capstone Seminar, and four additional economics courses chosen by the student.

Mathematical Economics Major
Arts and Sciences students may choose a combined Mathematical Economics major. Economics department requirements for the major include: Principles of Microeconomics, Principles of Macroeconomics, Microeconomic Theory, Macroeconomic Theory, Introductory Econometrics, Mathematical Economics, and additional electives chosen from 300-level Economics courses. In addition, a number of mathematics courses are required.

Arts and Sciences students may also minor in economics. Requirements for the minor include: Principles of Microeconomics, Principles of Macroeconomics, Microeconomic Theory, Macroeconomic Theory, and two additional economics courses chosen by the student.

Business school students majoring in business administration may choose an economics concentration by choosing four Economics courses. Liberal arts students majoring in international studies may pursue a concentration in international economics.

The Learning Environment

Each major is assigned to a faculty advisor within the economics department. The advisor will help the student arrange a schedule of coursework and advise students about degree.

To promote interaction with the professor, upper level class sizes are limited to 25 students. Professors also maintain office hours that are convenient for students. If problems arise, students are encouraged to visit the professor's office and seek additional help.

Sample list of graduate schools accepting recent economics graduates:

Duke University
Emory University
Georgetown University
Johns Hopkins University
Miami University
Stanford University
University of Alabama
University of Chicago
University of Georgia
University of Rochester
University of Texas
University of Virginia

Sample list of companies hiring recent economics graduates:

Bain & Co.
BB&T Corporation
Berkeley Research Group
Capital One
Deloitte Consulting
Ernst & Young Consulting
Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
Federal Reserve Board of Governors
First Annapolis Consulting
Goldman Sachs
Harris Williams & Co.
Oppenheimer & Co., Inc.
Teach for America
Wells Fargo

Transferring Courses from Other Institutions

To take an Economics course or Business Statistics (BUAD 202) or Business Ethics (BUAD 394) course elsewhere (in the U.S.) and have it count for credit at the University of Richmond, as a currently enrolled Richmond student you need to do the following before you take the course:

Complete the Transfer Work Approval Online Form from the Registrar's Office. On that form you need to:

  1. Attach details about the course, including a syllabus for the course; do not just send a link to the college catalog.
  2. Provide evidence that the college or university is accredited by including a link to the college website page where the college provides information on accreditation.

The department chair will then review the course information and determine if the course is comparable to our course. If it is comparable the form will be approved, and then you may enroll in the course.

Note that Economics majors must take Econ 271 at the University of Richmond; it will not be allowed to transfer from other universities.

Courses at community colleges are not acceptable for transfer from actively enrolled UR students because they are not comparable to our courses. The department chair will not sign off on a course transfer if the information about the course suggests that you will learn substantially less than at the same course here at the University of Richmond. Online courses are not acceptable (with an exception for summer 2021 because of COVID restrictions).

If you are taking a course as part of a study abroad program, you need to communicate Fae Bell in the office of the Associate Dean for International Programs, at fbell@richmond.edu.


During registration for courses, students often ask if they really need the listed prerequisites or if they may receive a prerequisite override. The Economics Department does not allow prerequisite overrides.

Economics Majors: Arts and Sciences versus Robins School of Business

Many students ask if they should get the Economics major in the School of Arts and Sciences or from the Robins School of Business. Our experience is that employers treat both degrees in the same way and that there is no systematic difference between the two degrees in terms of future outcomes, jobs, and salaries. Each student should determine if he or she want to take many business courses in addition to the Economics courses they need for the degree; if so, then an Economics major in the Robins School of Business is appropriate. If a student would prefer taking a wider variety of courses in the sciences or liberal arts, then an Economics major in the School of Arts and Sciences makes more sense.

General Information

The links below provide additional information on various aspects of the Economics programs.

Fall 2024 Course Offerings

Tracks for Economics Majors

Majors and Courses in Economics

Careers in Economics

Mathematical Economics Flyer and Careers

Honors Program in Economics

PPEL Program

Global Studies with Concentration in International Economics

Advising Sheets

Econ Major in Robins School

Econ Major in Arts and Sciences

Econ Concentration in Robins School

Math Econ Major in Arts and Sciences