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Degree Options

Pursuing Economics at Ohio State

High school economics course work is not a prerequisite for students interested in the economics major, but students should have a good high school background in math. Economics helps students develop good analytical skills, and for this, it is desirable to have a foundation in courses such as statistics and logic, which help develop analytical thinking.

All Ohio State freshman applicants are considered within a competitive admission process for the Columbus campus. The primary criteria for admission are the completion of the applicant’s high school college preparatory program, performance in that program as indicated by class rank and/or grade-point average, and performance on either the ACT or SAT. Upon admission to the university, students can declare a major in economics within the College of Arts and Sciences.


Economics Requirements

The Department of Economics offers two majors, a Bachelor of Arts (BA) and a Bachelor of Science (BS):
The BS program has a stronger quantitative component that is valuable preparation for graduate work in economics or for more analytical areas of government and business.
The BA is less quantitative and covers topics on a broader scope.
Both degrees provide an excellent base for graduate work in the social sciences or in professional programs, such as law or Master of Business Administration.


Co-Curricular Opportunities

There are many opportunities for economics students to work with faculty assisting with research. Many of our faculty hire undergraduate students to work on research projects by assisting with jobs such as data collection, information processing, and data analysis. Working with our renowned faculty provides a great experience for our undergraduate students to see economics in practice. Students also are able to develop one-on-one relationships with faculty members, which can prove especially beneficial when it is time to apply for that first job or to graduate school.

Our students have held numerous Washington Center internships, as well as internships at Federal Reserve banks and local companies such as American Electric Power and Nationwide Insurance. We have relationships with the National Association of Business Economists, Columbus Chamber of Commerce and several local law firms where our students have interned.


Career Prospects in Economics

The demand for people trained in economics has remained strong and a background in economics opens up a wide range of career options.  Our graduates are employed in banking as loan officers, account officers, credit investigators, and trust services. Economics majors also work in the insurance industry as agents, underwriters, claims adjusters, and brokers. Training in the field also leads to employment in industry as managers, buyers, economic analysts and consultants. Economics graduates work in the securities field as brokers, researchers, and managers. The government sector offers careers in tax, budget, and policy analysis as well as legislative support. The economics degree is a great stepping-stone to teaching positions in the social sciences. An undergraduate degree in economics provides an excellent base for graduate work in any of the social sciences. It also is excellent preparation for work in professional schools such as law and business administration.