Economists study how societies allocate limited resources to achieve competing ends. They employ empirical and deductive methods to analyze incentives, constraints, organizational forms, and market forces.



Economists study how societies allocate limited resources to achieve competing ends. They employ empirical and deductive methods to analyze incentives, constraints, organizational forms, and market forces.

Economists also draw on the disciplines of mathematics, law, statistics, philosophy, psychology, and history in their efforts to solve problems and address issues such as unemployment, inflation, interest rates, health care, education, and crime.

Why Iowa?

An economics degree from Iowa will open the door to many career possibilities and will help you understand what’s going on in the world, make better business and personal decisions, and take an informed role in social debates.

Students majoring in economics earn a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences or a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree from the Tippie College of Business.

Each degree program provides options to tailor the major to your interests by choosing one of three tracks of study:

  • The Business Economics track will prepare you for work in the private sector and/or to earn a Master of Business Administration degree after you gain the necessary experience.
  • The Policy Economics track will prepare you to earn a law or graduate degree in a moderately quantitative area or to find a decision-making position in the public or private sector.
  • The Analytical Economics track will prepare you to earn a graduate degree in a strongly quantitative area or to find a technical and/or analytical position in the public or private sector.
Admission Requirements

Students may be admitted to the Tippie College of Business either through Direct Admission or Standard Admission.

Direct Admission is for first-year students with a 3.60 high school grade-point average and an ACT composite score of 26 or higher. Applicants who meet the high school course requirements and either the GPA or test score requirement will be carefully considered for Direct Admission.

Standard Admission is for current UI pre-business students who meet the established admission criteria, typically after their first year.

 Information

Major(s)
Economics
BBA
Economics
BA
Economics
BS
Minor(s)
Business Administration
Economics
Tracks
Business Economics
Policy Economics
Analytical Economics
  Teaching Licensure
in Social Science (BA, BS students)
  Honors Courses
  Four-Year Graduation Plan
  Selective Admission
for the BBA
Admission Process

Careers and Outcomes

Iowa graduates have a 95 percent job/grad school placement rate within six months of graduation. Our Pomerantz Career Center offers multiple resources to help students find internships and jobs.

For information about careers, visit What Can I Do with a Major in Economics.

Student Opportunities

In addition to more than 500 student organizations, Iowa students choose from more than 100 study abroad programs and multiple undergraduate research opportunities

There are dozens of business-related student organizations at Iowa, including the Business Student Ambassadors, Economics Forum, Financial Management Association, Leadership Council, HawkTrade, and Women in Business.

  Scholarships

The University of Iowa provides a variety of scholarships to eligible undergraduate students through the Iowa Scholarship Portal. Scholarships are available to first-year, transfer, and currently enrolled students. For additional details on scholarships for your program of study, check directly with the department or college. Over 300 scholarships are available to business students, some designed specifically for first-year students.

The Office of Admissions and the Office of Student Financial Aid are great resources for students seeking scholarships. 

Course Work

No matter which degree program (BA, BS, or BBA) and track you choose, you’ll complete foundation courses on economic theory, supporting mathematics and statistics courses, and a set of applied field courses in your track. You’ll work closely with your adviser to construct a plan of study and to be sure that you’re taking courses in the right order.

BBA program

The BBA program in the Tippie College of Business emphasizes economics as a foundation for other business areas, such as accounting, finance, marketing, business law, and management. In addition to the core courses that every business major must take, you will complete the college's General Education Requirements and these courses:

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Four applied field courses in one of the three tracks (business, policy, or analytical)

Economics is one of six majors that lead to the BBA degree through the Tippie College of Business, in addition to business analytics & information systems, marketing, accounting, management, and finance.

Review the information for all BBA Programs at Iowa to learn more about the admission requirements, student opportunities, and scholarships for students in a BBA program.

Tippie RISE

All Tippie College of Business students must successfully complete at least one Tippie RISE experience in the form of research, internship, study abroad, or experiential learning.  

BA Program

The economics BA program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is considered “all-purpose” for economics students because of how it balances economic theory, mathematical tools, and field applications. You'll take these courses:

  • Statistics for Business
  • Introduction to Econometrics
  • Calculus and Matrix Algebra for Business
  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Five applied field courses in one of the three tracks (business, policy, or analytical)

See Economics in the UI General Catalog to learn more about this major, including graduating with honors.

BS Program

The economics BS program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has a more analytical emphasis than the BA program, requiring more mathematics and statistics course work. You'll take these courses:

  • Calculus I-II
  • One or two courses in statistics
  • Econometric Analysis
  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Four applied field courses in one of the three tracks (business, policy, or analytical)

See Economics in the UI General Catalog to learn more about this major, including graduating with honors.

Minor in Economics

Visit Economics in the UI General Catalog for more information.