B.A. in Economics

Economics offers a unique way of examining individual and social behavior, often called the “economic way of thinking.” The study of economics provides powerful and surprising insights into many social issues such as discrimination, crime, poverty, welfare, education, income inequality and environmental degradation. Economists study how markets work and analyze the behavior of organizations. They also investigate the forces and trends that influence our standard of living, the fraction of the population that cannot find work and the rate at which prices rise.

The Economics major at Otterbein balances theory and application. Real-life experience is integrated in all courses and comes from local, national and international scenes. The Otterbein Economics degree prepares you to pursue many excellent and rewarding employment opportunities in private, public and nonprofit sectors of the economy. Additionally, a bachelor’s degree in economics offers a solid preparation for graduate education – not only in economics, but also in law, political science, all areas of business, and disciplines with an international focus.

Careers in Economics

Careers in economics are varied and may include economic and business consulting, labor/trade organizations, banking, insurance, international business, financial planning and analysis, government (federal, state, and local), nonprofit organizations, Federal Reserve system, politics and education.

Many recent Otterbein University graduates who majored in economics are employed with private consulting companies and businesses in Ohio. Others have found employment in the public sector and with labor/trade organizations. Some of our recent graduates have pursued graduate degrees in economics and law at top-level institutions.


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Otterbein’s BAE program has provided a solid foundation for graduate education through balancing theory and application principles. The BAE program and its professors offer enough flexibility that I can pursue my dreams of attending medical school post-graduation. The study of economics has also opened my eyes to many real-life issues like income inequality and poverty; the program has taught me many lessons I will carry with me for life outside of college.

Lauren Gilbert ‘25

Economics major, Finance minor, with a pre-med focus
Anesthesia technician at Nationwide Children’s Hospital


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Throughout my business development internship, I was able to apply much of what I have learned in my classes to the real world but also expand on many topics through hands-on applications.

Colin White ’21

Economics major with minors in Finance and Political Science
Colin is a 2021 recipient of the Charles R. & Louise Bennett Prize, a BAE Department Award.


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Otterbein’s BAE department can be anything you make of it. One of its most valuable offerings is the unique opportunity to develop strong, lasting relationships with professors and peers while pursuing individual research and exploring a multitude of interests in a hands-on environment. The Economics curriculum can be challenging, but it encourages collaboration and the development of problem-solving skills that well-prepared me to take on a variety of different roles in my young career while rotating between departments (e.g., Finance, Logistics, and Marketing Analytics).

Ryan Karapas ‘19

Economics and Finance, double major
Digital Marketing Analyst at Bath & Body Works

Student Learning Outcomes University Learning Goals (KMERI*)
GOAL 1: Gain a deep understanding of economic theory and its applications.
1.1 Students will be able to explain and apply economic models that focus on the behavior and actions of individual units within an economy (ECON 2100 and ECON 3100). Knowledgeable, Inquisitive
1.2 Students will be able to explain and demonstrate how the economy works in the short-run, long-run, and very long-run in the context of the most influential macroeconomic models (ECON 2200 and 3200). Knowledgeable, Multi-literate
1.3 Students will be able to explain and assess the effects of fiscal, monetary, and trade policies on the economy in the short-run, long-run, and very long-run (ECON 2200, 3200, and 3300). Knowledgeable, Engaged
1.4 Students will be able to use economics knowledge to (i) gain insights on public issues and problems and (ii) formulate effective solutions to those problems (All ECON courses). Engaged, Responsible
GOAL 2: Gain a deep understanding of methods of data analysis used in economics.
2.1 Students will be able to estimate relationships between economic variables using appropriate econometric techniques (ECON 4500). Knowledgeable, Inquisitive
2.2 Students will be able to develop and test economic hypotheses using appropriate econometric tests (ECON 4500). Responsible, Inquisitive
GOAL 3: Gain a deep understanding of various fields of study in economics.
3.1 Students will be able to explain and apply the major concepts, theoretical perspectives, basic research findings and methods in at least four of these fields of economics: International Economics (ECON 3300), Public Finance (ECON 3500), Labor Economics (ECON 3600), Money and Banking (ECON 3800), Environmental Economics (ECON 4250), and/or Economic Development and Growth (ECON 4400). Multi-literate, Engaged
GOAL 4: Gain effective communication skills.
4.1 Students will be able to effectively communicate economic content and arguments in written and spoken forms (All ECON courses). Multi-literate, Responsible

*NOTE: KMERI refers to Otterbein's learning goals. It stands for KnowledgeableMulti-literateEngagedResponsible, and Inquisitive. To learn more about KMERI, visit our University Learning Goals page.