Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Science in Economics

Economists study how people make choices in life in response to the incentives that they face. It is the foundation for business decision-making. Economists examine all types of markets, the means and strategies for profit maximization, industrial and labor organizations, the distribution of income and ownership rights, governmental activities and political and economic philosophies, and analyze how these and other factors influence the production of goods and services.

Most economists are concerned with the practical applications of tools of economic decision-making and analysis as they relate to firm, industry and government operations. There are many types of economists, including business economists, labor economists, macroeconomists, public finance economists, behavioral economists and game theorists. Economics is a broad-ranging discipline that covers issues such as pricing and production, profit maximization, data analytics, forecasting, the effect of incentives on urban development, or how to counteract a terrorist organization.

Careers in Economics

Two students with laptops talk about homework while they sit outside.

In the private sector, economists use their understanding of economic relationships to help firms set prices, forecast growth and analyze the impact of government regulations and global economic trends.

An economics degree also is considered excellent preparation for law school or for pursuing an MBA. As a group, economics majors are known to score the highest on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT).

The University’s Career Center is an important resource for students pursuing their career. Licensed counselors are available to provide strategies for mastering job interviews, writing professional cover letters and resumes and help students connect with campus recruiters.

Economics at UT Dallas

UT Dallas offers two types of economic degrees: a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science.

  • The BA in economics degree requires 120 hours to graduate: 42 hours from the University’s core curriculum, 42 hours from the major and 36 hours of electives.
  • The BS in economics degree requires 120 hours to graduate: 42 hours from the University’s core curriculum, 51 hours from the major and 27 hours of electives.

The difference between the BA and BS is that the BS emphasizes quantitative skills, requiring more courses in mathematics, statistics and econometrics are part of the major. Both degrees are suitable for employment in the private and public sector.

Fast Track

The Fast Track program enables exceptionally gifted UT Dallas students to include master’s level courses in their undergraduate degree plans. Students who meet the requirements for admission to graduate school and the minimum GPA requirement for their major can take up to 15 hours of graduate level coursework that can apply toward their undergraduate and graduate level coursework. To take graduate courses in the Fast Track program upper-division undergraduates must have completed 90 semester credit hours and petition their associate dean for permission to take graduate courses.

About the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences

Every new generation inherits a world more complex than that of its predecessors, which prompts a need for new thinking about public policies that impact people’s daily lives. In the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (EPPS), we examine the implications of innovation and change for individuals and communities. The social sciences are where the world turns to for answers to the important issues of today and the future such as education and health policy, financial crises, globalization, policing, political polarization, public management, terrorism, and the application of geographical information sciences to study social, economic and environmental issues.

As an undergraduate in EPPS, you will have the opportunity to work with professors who are probing issues that will affect your future. You will develop the vital skills you need to thrive in a rapidly evolving, highly competitive job market. EPPS will prepare you for careers in government, non-profits and the private sector that enable you to make a real difference in the world of today and tomorrow. EPPS is at the forefront of leadership, ethics and innovation in the public and nonprofit sectors. Our students and faculty look forward to new opportunities to study and address the complex and evolving issues of the future. Research informs much of the instruction. The school has four centers of excellence:

  • Center for Global Collective Action
  • Texas Schools Project
  • Institute for Urban Policy Research
  • The Negotiations Center

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts: Criminology, economics, geospatial information sciences, international political economy, political science, public affairs, public policy, sociology

Master of Science: Applied sociology, criminology, economics, geospatial information sciences, international political economy, social data analytics and research

Master of Arts: Political science

Master of Public Affairs: Public affairs

Master of Public Policy: Public policy

Doctor of Philosophy: Criminology, economics, geospatial information sciences, political science, public affairs, public policy and political economy


EPPS offers the following 15-hour graduate certificates, which generally can be completed in one year of part-time evening classes:

  • Economic and Demographic Data Analysis: focusing on the understanding and application of quantitative analysis of demographic and economic data.
  • Geographic Information Sys tems (GIS): focusing on the application of GIS in government, private sector and scientific areas.
  • Geospatial Intelligence: focusing on the application of geospatial ideas and techniques to national security and other intelligence activity.
  • Local Government Management: designed to broaden knowledge of important issues and approaches employed by professional local public administrators.
  • Nonprofit Management: designed to provide an overview of the nature and context of nonprofit organizations and develop competencies needed by nonprofit managers.
  • Program Evaluation: designed to provide students the opportunity to gain competencies in the design and implementation of program evaluations in fields such as education, health care, human services, criminal justice and economic development.
  • Remote Sensing: focusing on remote sensing and digital image processing.