About the Economics Major

three students participating in start up marathon

Economics is the study of how people choose to use resources and respond to incentives.

Economics is a way of thinking, and students can apply this way of thinking to nearly any aspect of the world. The undergraduate curriculum in economics is designed to:

  • provide a firm grounding in modern economic theory;
  • instill the capacity for independent thought about economic policies and problems; and
  • develop the capacity for quantitative data analysis and empirical research.

An undergraduate major in economics opens many possibilities for employment. Many large firms, including banks, other financial institutions, and manufacturing companies, accept economists in substantial numbers. There are also many opportunities for employment in government at the state, federal, or international levels, and also as a high school economics teacher. In addition, most research and consulting firms employ large numbers of economists in such areas as forecasting, data science, industry analysis, and litigation.

An undergraduate economics training also provides excellent preparation for business school, the study of law, or for pursuing doctoral studies in economics, business and public policy.

Students majoring in Economics at Cal Poly have the option to declare a concentration: Students may choose the Quantitative Analysis concentration offered by the Economics Area, or any of the concentrations available to the Business Administration majors.