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About Economics

The tools of economic analysis can lead to powerful insights in numerous real world applications.  The diversity of the research studies authored by Economics Department faculty members helps illustrate the many ways economic analysis can be used.  Whether studying the effects of the “three-strikes law” on criminal behavior, examining how star athletes affect NBA gate revenues, or evaluating the effect of U.S. agriculture policies on developing countries, researchers in the field of economics can make valuable contributions to our knowledge of the world around us.

The insights and tools of economics provide excellent preparation for a wide array of careers, from those in private sector consulting, banking, and brokerage firms, to those in public sector agencies in local, state, or federal governments.  Many economics graduates attend law school or obtain graduate degrees in Business, Public Policy, Public Health, and Urban and Regional Planning.  Compared to graduates from comparable institutions, more William and Mary economics majors go on to obtain Economics Ph.D.s  and ultimately pursue careers in colleges and universities, in government, and in the private sector.  

Because an economics degree has so many uses, the undergraduate economics curriculum at William and Mary is highly flexible.  With a relatively small number of required courses and a large and diverse set of electives, our curriculum prepares students for a host of possible jobs after graduation.  Course offerings range from introductory to advanced economic theory, and include specialized topics courses on the economics of sports, international trade, law, or health care, to name just a few.

Courses are taught by faculty members who are both dedicated teachers and active researchers.  Members of the faculty frequently publish in top general and field-specific economics journals, and often communicate to general audiences through books and the popular press.  Many have been recognized with international awards and fellowships, and several have received grants from funding agencies such as the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.