Many Dartmouth students choose to major in Economics because they are interested in business and in going on to a career in investment banking or consulting. While it is true that an Economics major can prove to be lucrative in the world of work, it is really worth much more than monetary rewards. Students who take courses offered by Dartmouth’s Economics Department will be introduced to a unique way of asking questions and looking at problems that will be of lifetime value. Thus, Economics is really about learning a way of thinking and analyzing problems in the best tradition of the liberal arts.
The overall curriculum in the Dartmouth Economics Department is designed to help students analyze important social problems of current interest. The world is constantly confronted with important public policy issues that are essentially economic in character. Economic analysis provides a coherent and principled framework for examining these issues and understanding the tradeoffs involved in attempting to solve important social problems. Individuals who are not familiar with economics are at a serious disadvantage in the public debate over questions concerning government spending and social insurance, international trade policy, corporate governance and the stock market, and a host of other issues.
As the field of economics has changed, the Dartmouth curriculum has changed accordingly. Quantitative skills are increasingly used in the analysis and understanding of basic economic phenomena. Our curriculum aims to teach students quantitative analysis skills that will be useful in many contexts. Undergraduates are exposed to an up-to-date array of course offerings that are intellectually challenging and enhance students’ chances for success not only in professional work in economics, but also in business, law and public policy and at graduate and professional schools. In addition to the standard major, the economics minor and the modified major are intended to fit the needs of students who have an interest in economics but are primarily interested in another discipline or, in the case of a modified major, wish to study some specific problem or topic that falls partly in the field of economics and partly in a related field.
Last Updated: 1/24/12