Economics is the science of choice in the face of scarcity and different consumption options. Limited resources, time, labor supply, energy, knowledge—such factors as these define the boundaries of possibilities and require human beings and societies to make choices. Economic theory is an attempt to capture the essence of that decision-making process, free of the details of particular situations.
Students in the economics major learn to use this theoretical foundation to analyze decision-making throughout society, from an individual’s decision to purchase a car to a state’s decision to raise or lower taxes. In the classic sense of a liberal arts education, students learn to use the tools of economics as a key to understanding the human experience and as a guide to individual, business, and societal action. This understanding of the forces underlying our economy—and, to a great degree, our society—provides a strong foundation for a range of professions and business careers. The economics major is a solid preparation for graduate studies in economics, business administration, finance, law, and public policy.