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Academic Programs / Intercollegial Programs

Political Economy

William Lynn Holmes, Department of Economics

Richard Deeg, Department of Political Science

This is a joint program offered by the Department of Economics and the Department of Political Science leading to certificate of specialization in political economy.


The purpose of the Political Economy program is to provide undergraduate students with the opportunity to study more intensely the relationship between the political and economic spheres of society. The program is based on the belief that a focused examination of this relationship provides us with a better understanding of several social phenomena. Chief among these is a better understanding of public policy choices and the policy making process, as well as a better understanding of how government actions affect the process of economic change and vice versa.

For these reasons the Political Science and Economics departments offer an interdisciplinary certificate in Political Economy. The program is open to all matriculated undergraduate students. Applicants need not be declared majors in either economics or political science. The Political Economy program provides an excellent preparation for graduate study in the social sciences and for the study of law.

Program Requirements

The program consists of two components: required core courses at the lower-division level and elective courses at the upper-division level.

Department Course # Course Name Hours RCI
Core – All students must take the following core courses:    
ECON 1101 or 1901 Macroeconomic Principles 3 IN
ECON 1102 or 1902 Microeconomic Principles 3 IN
POL SCI 1101 or 1911 The American Political System 3 AC
And one of the following:      
POL SCI 1201 or 1921 Foreign Governments and Politics 3 IS
POL SCI 1301 or 1931 International Politics 3 IS

Elective Courses
All students must successfully complete (grade of C- or better) four courses from the following list. Two of the four courses must be in economics, and two courses must be in political science. Students should select courses that correspond to their own substantive interests and are encouraged to take cognate areas (e.g., if you choose international politics courses, also choose international economics courses). Students should plan their schedules well in advance, since many courses are not offered each semester.

Department Course # Course Name Hours RCI
Select two:     6  
ECON 3531 History of Economic Theory    
ECON 3547 Economics of Development and Growth    
ECON 3511 The Economics and Management of Privatization    
ECON 3512 Public Finance    
ECON 3513 Economics of State and Local Governments    
ECON 3563 International Trade    
ECON 3564 International Monetary Economics    
ECON 3506 (or 3596) Energy, Ecology, and Economy   WI*
ECON 3507 (or 3597) Health Economics   WI*
ECON 3545 Economics of Labor Markets    
ECON 3546 Women in the Economy    
ECON 3535 Public Control of Business: Antitrust    
ECON 3536 Economics of American Industry    
Select two:     6  
POL SCI 3131 (or 3196) Urban Politics and Problems   WR*
POL SCI 3134 The Politics of Inequality    
POL SCI 2102 American State and Local Politics    
POL SCI 2103 U.S. Public Policy Making    
POL SCI 3151 Public Policy Analysis    
POL SCI 3152 U.S. Environmental Policy    
POL SCI 3155 Business and Public Policy    
POL SCI 2201 Comparative Politics: Developing Nations    
POL SCI 3252 East Asia and the United States    
POL SCI 3296 Politics of Modern Capitalism   WI
POL SCI 2321 Politics of the Global Economy    
POL SCI 2441 Democracy, Capitalism, and Socialism    

A "*" denotes that the courses in parentheses are Writing Intensive courses.

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