2022-2023 University Catalog 
    Jul 24, 2024  
2022-2023 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]


Professors Haines, Kato, Khanna, Simpson (Chair), Sparber
Associate Professors Castilla, Scrimgeour, Sharma, Song
Assistant Professors Aqeel, Brabant, Connolly, Globus-Harris, Higgins, Klotz, Lillethun, Makofske, Murphy, Park
Visiting Assistant Professors Chakraborty, Inoue, McFarlane 
Senior Lecturers Anderson, Owen
A. Lindsay O’Connor Chair Shin

The basic objective of the Department of Economics is the development of students’ understanding of economics as the social science that deals with production, consumption, and market exchange activities. All students begin with

 . Majors advance through a core of analytical courses and choose among a series of options in theoretical and applied economics. Students with an interest in graduate work leading to careers in such fields as economics, law, business, public administration, or the foreign service are asked to discuss these objectives early in their college careers in order to plan an adequate program in economics. While not an undergraduate business or professional school, the department provides essential background for a variety of career interests.

Course Information

  is a prerequisite for all courses numbered above 200.
  is a prerequisite for all courses numbered between 300 and 349.
  and   are prerequisites for all courses numbered between 350 and 374.
 ,  , and   are prerequisites for all courses above 375.

Courses numbered below ECON 150, including

 , cannot be counted as part of the major program.

Preparation for Graduate School

For students considering graduate school in business administration, at least two courses in mathematics (preferably

  and  ) and one computer science course (such as  ) are strongly recommended. Students considering graduate school in economics are strongly encouraged to take these courses, as well as additional courses in mathematics, including   and  . Students with these interests should also consider the mathematical economics major described here  and consult with their academic adviser as early as possible. Students considering graduate work in economics leading to a PhD should consider pursuing a double major in economics and mathematics.


The Chi-Ming Hou Award for Excellence in International Economics — established in honor of the late Chi-Ming Hou, who was a member of the Colgate economics department from 1956 to 1991, for outstanding achievement in international economics.

The Marshall-Keynes Award for Excellence in Economics — awarded by the department to the senior with the strongest, sustained performance in analytical economics.

The J. Melbourne Shortliffe Prizes — established in honor of the late J. Melbourne Shortliffe, chair of the economics department emeritus, and awarded to outstanding graduating seniors who have majored in economics.

Advanced Placement and Transfer Credits

A score of 4 or 5 on both the microeconomics and macroeconomics AP exams will exempt incoming students from ECON 151 ; no credit is given if only one AP exam is taken or if a score of 3 or lower is received on either exam. No transfer credit is given for

 . Except for students transferring from another college or university, no transfer credit will be given for  ,  , or  , and no more than two courses in economics taken elsewhere can be accepted for major credit. An exception may be made in cases when the student has pre-matriculation credit for ECON 151; students should contact the department chair. Courses taken elsewhere must be comparable to what is offered in a liberal arts economics program.

Students who hope to transfer course credit must consult with the department prior to enrolling elsewhere. Students returning from summer courses, study groups or approved programs are not entitled to retroactively seek major credit in the department. Students are eligible to transfer up to two economics electives towards the major (and one elective for the minor), pending pre-approval from the department. Major or minor credit is normally only granted for courses taken while participating in an approved program that is on the economics department list. 

All transfer courses must have a minimum prerequisite that is equivalent to Colgate’s

  course and the department recommends taking courses that have   and/or   as prerequisites. Students who transfer to Colgate from other institutions may be granted more than two course credits toward the major at the discretion of the department chair.

Honors and High Honors


To be invited to participate in the honors program, students need a minimum 3.33 GPA in the three core courses:

 ,  , and  . To qualify for departmental honors, a student must enroll in the year-long honors seminar (  and  ) in which each student writes an honors thesis. Students also present their projects to the seminar and act as discussants of other projects. Certification of honors and high honors will be based mainly on the quality of the honors paper. In addition, honors candidates must have, at graduation, a B+ average (A– for high honors) in the nine economics courses taken for major credit, and must receive a satisfactory grade in  .

Mathematical Economics

Special rules apply to honors in mathematical economics.

Since the major also includes the requirements for an economics program, special rules apply for honors. A mathematical economics major has two mutually exclusive options:

  1. qualifying for honors or high honors in economics by satisfying the honors criteria for the economics major. Under the first option the student will receive the honors certification in economics as a mathematical economics major, or
  2. qualifying for these honors in mathematical economics by satisfying the same criteria except that the departmental GPA is calculated for all 13 of the required courses.

Related Major

The London Economics Study Group

Based in London, the group studies selected economic problems and institutions of the United Kingdom and the European community. See Off-Campus Study .


Majors and Minors