As a student in our department, you will have access to a wide variety of coursework in Economics. You can examine how markets coordinate the activities of many diverse buyers and sellers or circumstances that make it difficult for markets to function effectively without government or nonprofit-sector intervention. In classic liberal arts tradition, taking classes in economics will improve your ability to think critically and help you develop a better, more nuanced understanding of the world around you.

Undergrad Courses

  • ECON-E 201: Introduction to Microeconomics
  • ECON-E 202: Introduction to Macroeconomics
  • ECON-E 270: Introduction to Statistical Theory in Economics
  • ECON-E 303: Introduction to International Economics
  • ECON-E 304: Introduction to Labor Economics
  • ECON-E 305: Money and Banking
  • ECON-E 307: Current Economic Issues
  • ECON-E 321: Intermediate Microeconomic Theory
  • ECON-E 322: Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory
  • ECON-E 327: Game Theory
  • ECON-E 337: Economic Development
  • ECON-E 375: Mathematical Economics
  • ECON-E 387: Health Economics
  • ECON-E 406: Senior Seminar
  • ECON-E 408: Undergraduate Readings in Economics
  • ECON-E 410: Selected Topics in U.S. Economic History
  • ECON-E 420: History of Economic Thought
  • ECON-E 450: Business Conditions Analysis and Forecasting
  • ECON-E 470: Introduction to Econometrics

Undergrad Course Descriptions

E101 Survey of Economic Issues and Problems

This course provides a basic introduction to economic concepts and principles along with a survey of important economic issues. It is intended for students who do not plan to major or minor in Economics. No previous instruction in economics is necessary.

E201 Introduction to Microeconomics

This course studies the economic principles governing the operation of particular markets and the decisions of individual economic agents: households, firms and government agencies. It studies the characteristics of different types of market organization, including perfect competition (demand and supply), monopoly and oligopoly. It also studies the principles and consequences of effective economic behavior by households and firms. It is required for Economics majors and minors, and for students seeking undergraduate degrees in the Kelley School of Business.

S201 Introduction to Microeconomics: Honors

This is a version of E201 for honors students and/or other students who are interested in a more challenging version of the course.

E202 Introduction to Macroeconomics

This course studies the measurement and determination of national economic performance, including performance measures such as national production and income (GDP), the economic growth rate, the unemployment rate and total employment, the price level and inflation, interest rates and the international trade balance. It studies the determinants of economic growth and the nature and causes of the business cycle (expansion and recessions), as well as the nature and effectiveness of government policies to try to promote growth and/or stabilize the business cycle (fiscal, monetary and trade policies). It is required for Economics majors and minors, and for students seeking undergraduate degrees in the Kelley School of Business.
Preparatory courses: E201 is recommended.

E270 Introduction to Statistical Theory for Economics and Business

This course reviews basic concepts of probability and statistics, using them to study the properties of statistical samples, summary statistics for those samples and their use to test statistical hypotheses. It also studies basic statistical decision theory and the use of statistical techniques to study relationships between variables: regression and correlation analysis, analysis of variance. It is required for Economics majors and for students seeking undergraduate degrees in the Kelley School of Business.
Preparatory courses: M118 is required.

E303 Survey of International Economics

This course studies trade between nations and regions: why it occurs and its economic advantages and effects. Both trade in goods and services (exports and imports) and financial trade (international borrowing/lending and investment) are studied, along with trade in different national currencies. Topics include measurement of the volume of trade and the determinants of the prices of traded goods (terms of trade) and currencies (exchange rates). They also include the nature and effects of policies to encourage or restrict trade, including subsidies, tariffs and quotas and international trade agreements.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are required.

E304/E582 Survey of Labor Economics

This course studies the operation of the market for labor, including how wage rates are determined, how the level of employment is determined, and how and why wage rates and employment levels differ across different industries and different types of jobs. Other important topics include the role of labor unions, and the role of the government in taxing or subsidizing labor and in regulating labor market practices (including imposing minimum wages). It also studies wage contracting behavior and why it may cause wage rates to be relatively inflexible over time.
Preparatory courses: E201 is required.

E305 Money and Banking

This course studies money, banks, financial markets and government monetary and financial policy. Monetary topics include the role of money in the economy, different types of money,  the measurement of the money supply, the nature of monetary institutions and the conduct and impact of monetary policy. Other important topics are the special monetary and financial role of banks and the nature and goals of bank regulation. On the finance side, the main focus is the organization of financial markets, the determination of interest rates and bond prices, and the nature and purpose of government regulation of the financial system.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are recommended, and at least one of the two is required.

E307 Current Economic Issues: Applied Microeconomics

Please note that this is a special-topics course, and that the “Course Description” for it in the iGPS system is drastically wrong. This semester’s version of the course studies Applied Microeconomics.
This course is offered concurrently with E581, a course in our master’s program.
Preparatory courses: E201 is required, M119 is recommended.

E307 Current Economic Issues: Health Economics

Please note that this is a special-topics course, and that the “Course Description” for it in the iGPS system is drastically wrong. This semester’s version of the course studies Health Economics.
This course studies issues involving the cost and effectiveness of the U.S. health care system, which is very costly by world standards but is not highly ranked in terms of health care outcomes. It studies how effective health care and health insurance should work, according to economic theory; how they actually work in the United States; why they don’t work better and are so costly; different strategies for improving them. Attention is directed both to government health policy and to the practices of private care providers and insurers. Another important topic is how the medical effectiveness of health care is measured and how its cost effectiveness can be assessed.
Preparatory courses: None.

E307 Current Economic Issues: Causal Inference

Please note that this is a special-topics course, and that the “Course Description” for it in the iGPS system is drastically wrong. This semester’s version of the course studies Causal Inference.
This course introduces the potential outcomes framework, a comprehensive structure that helps to clearly define a causal question. It then teaches students different empirical strategies to answer causal questions based on randomized control trial and quasi-experimental methods. By limiting the technical details of these strategies to a minimum level, and restricting our discussion to linear models, we hope to attract students who have interest in doing applied research using already-programmed estimators in statistical software. Due focus will be given to intuitive understanding of the different empirical strategies. The course also introduces R, a popular statistical software that is open source, so that students can take the knowledge and programs developed in the course directly into their jobs. The skills students acquire from this course will enhance their marketability, sharpen their critical thinking, and stir their interest to pursue a higher-level degree.
Preparatory courses: None.

E321 Intermediate Microeconomics

This course studies basic topics from Introduction to Microeconomics (E201) more thoroughly and in a more rigorous way. A key topic is consumer theory, which helps economists understand and try to predict how consumers allocate their incomes over different goods and services – including in situations where the consequences of different decisions are uncertain and/or depend on the action of others (game theory). Another common topic is the theory of the firm, which is the theory of how firms operating in different types of market environments – competition, monopoly, oligopoly, etc. – make decisions about production, employment, purchases of other inputs, investment in plant and equipment, etc.
Preparatory courses: E201 is required and M119 is recommended.

E322 Intermediate Macroeconomics

This course develops models of the economy as a whole that are designed to explain long-term economic growth and a country’s standard of living. There is a particular focus on how the government’s fiscal policy affects the economy. The models are applied to conduct a serious examination of three major economic issues facing the United States during the 21th century: the fiscal crisis and exploding public debt, slowing long-run economic growth, and widening wage inequality.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are required and M119 is recommended.

E327 Game Theory

Economists use games as a metaphor for situations in which economic agents – consumers, firms or government organizations – have to make decisions in situations where the consequences of those decisions depend on the decisions made by other economic agents. Situations like these are very common in modern societies: they arise in connection with economic decisions, but also decisions about finance, politics, personal or group relationships, government trade and regulatory policy, etc. Course topics include situations where decision-makers can cooperate or are in conflict, strategies for negotiation and bargaining, different concepts for describing solutions for game-related decision problems, and different methods for solving these problems.
Preparatory courses: E201 is required and M119 is recommended.

E337 Economic Development

This course studies the theory and practice of economic development, which is the process through which countries attain higher levels of production and income, and higher average living standards, over time. Topics include the economic and social problems associated with low levels of development, common elements of development paths, the nature and causes of differences in development paths, why some countries fail to develop or do so only very slowly, government strategies for promoting development, and the economic and social consequences of development.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are required.

E375 Introduction to Mathematical Economics

Much of economic theory is based on the belief that the behavior of economic agents can be described and/or predicted by assuming they optimize. Optimization (also called maximization) problems are most often posed and solved using mathematics. Calculus is very useful for optimization problems, and graphs are widely used to illustrate them. This course combines calculus, linear (matrix) algebra, graphs and verbal or written explanations to explain how mathematical optimization theory works and how it is applied to economics. As part of the course, students learn how to construct graphs using Excel, and how to identify or derive and use the equations and/or functions that provide the basis for these graphs.
Preparatory courses: M119 or the equivalent strongly recommended

E406 Senior Seminar

This is the capstone course for an Economics major. It is intended to help you review and assess the usefulness of the things you have learned as an economics major, and to acquaint you with some of the economic questions and issues you’ll confront after you graduate. The precise nature of the curriculum for the course depends on the instructor: different instructors often teach very different versions of the course.
Preparatory courses: E321 and E322 are required.

E408 Readings in Economics

This is an independent study course. You may register for 1-3 credits. In order to register for this course you need to obtain the permission of a Economics faculty member who will serve as your course supervisor. You and your supervisor will work out a plan of study. Typically, a student begins the process by proposing a topic area, and we try to connect him with a member of our faculty who has expertise and interest in that area. If you are interested in registering for this course please contact Professor Patrick Meister, the Economics faculty mentor, or Professor Steven Russell, the Economics department chair.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are recommended.

E410/E583 Topics in U.S. Economic History

As offered in recent years, this course focuses on monetary history, beginning with the European coin-money origins of the U.S. monetary system, moving on to the diverse and innovative commodity-, coin- and (especially) paper-money practices of the American colonies, and finishing up with the monetary history of the American Revolution and the period immediately following it. The course concludes with an examination of the nature, causes and consequences of the monetary clauses of the U.S. Constitution. Links between monetary history and political history are emphasized, as are links between monetary history and unresolved issues in monetary theory.
This course is offered concurrently with E583, a course in our master’s program.
Preparatory courses: E201 and E202 are recommended.

E450 Business Conditions Analysis and Forecasting

This course is designed to acquaint students with a variety of econometric topics in the areas of forecasting and time series analysis. Its primary goal is to provide hands-on experience with different forecasting techniques. Students learn why businesses need to construct forecasts and how to develop appropriate forecasting models for particular business purposes. They become familiar with the main sources of macroeconomic data. Since economic instability is a major complicating factor in business forecasting, the course examines the sources of economic instability in industrialized economies. It studies different theories of the business cycle and the empirical determinants of aggregate demand, prices, and interest rates. The course is quite technical in nature, and it requires students to become familiar with the Stata statistical package accessible through IUAnyware. They should already be familiar with the fundamentals of statistics, basic regression techniques and basic principles of economics.
This course is offered concurrently with E574, a course in our master’s program.
Preparatory courses: E270 is required. E470 is recommended, as are E201, E202 and M119.

E470 Introduction to Econometrics

Econometrics is the statistical analysis of economic data, although the same techniques are commonly used to study business data, medical data, political data, etc. The foundations for econometrics are statistical theory and (in particular) regression analysis, which students should have been introduced to in E270. Topics include estimation of linear and nonlinear regression models, hypothesis testing, properties of parameter estimates, and techniques for handling problems with the data being analyzed – problems that include serial correlation or heteroskedasticity of the regression residuals, correlation among explanatory variables or between those variables and the residuals, errors or missing observations in the data, etc. Another common topic is simultaneous-equations models in which relationships between many independent and dependent variables are estimated jointly.
Preparatory courses: E270 and M119 are required.

Graduate Courses

  • ECON-E 504 Mathematics for Economists
  • ECON-E 513 Special Topics in Economic History
  • ECON-E 514 The Nonprofit Economy and Public Policy
  • ECON-E 515 Institutional Setting for Health Economics in the U.S.
  • ECON-E 516 Institutional Setting for Nonprofit/Philanthropic Economics
  • ECON-E 519 Regional Economics
  • ECON-E 520 Optimization Theory in Economic Analysis
  • ECON-E 521 Theory of Prices and Markets
  • ECON-E 522 Macroeconomic Theory 1
  • ECON-E 528 Economic Analysis of Health Care
  • ECON-E 545 Applied Labor Economics
  • ECON-E 568 Public Finance I
  • ECON-E 569 Public Finance II
  • ECON-E 570 Fundamentals of Statistics and Econometrics
  • ECON-E 571 Econometrics I-Statistical Foundations
  • ECON-E 573 Econometrics II
  • ECON-E 574 Applied Econometrics and Forecasting
  • ECON-E 577 Computer Methods and Data Analysis
  • ECON-E 578 Advanced Computer Methods and Complex Datasets
  • ECON-E 581 Topics in Applied Microeconomics I
  • ECON-E 582 Topics in Applied Microeconomics II
  • ECON-E 583 Topics in Applied Macroeconomics
  • ECON-E 600 Research in Economics
  • ECON-E 611 Information Economics and Theories of Incentives and Contracts
  • ECON-E 621 Theories of Prices and Market
  • ECON-E 643 Health Economics I
  • ECON-E 644 Health Economics II
  • ECON-E 670 Econometrics 3-System and Panel Econometric Models
  • ECON-E 673 Econometrics 4-Microeconometrics
  • ECON-E 744 Seminar/Workshop in Health Economics
  • ECON-E 800 Research in Economics
  • ECON-E 808 Thesis (M.A.)
  • ECON-E 809 Thesis (PhD)


More Info

Contact the Office of Student Affairs at the IU School of Liberal Arts

For courses offered in a specific semester, see the Schedule of Classes at Student Central.