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Economics as a BA Major

The Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree is normally completed in three years

A BA requires a minimum of 360 points. At least 180 of these points must be for papers above 100-level, and at least 72 of these 180 points must be for 300-level papers.

Students may choose papers worth up to 90 points from outside Arts. Students must choose sufficient papers (usually 162 points worth) to meet the major subject requirements for at least one Arts subject.

The major subject requirement (BA)

In order to fulfil the requirements of the Economics major in the BA, you will need to complete the following papers:

100-level papers required

BSNS113 Economic Principles and Policy: (18 points)
Introduction to concepts central to understanding market economies, including allocation of scarce resources, consumer and business reactions to changing market conditions, and the application of economic principles to personal and business decision-making.
Have you ever stopped to wonder at how easy it is, given you have the cash or credit, to go out and buy almost anything you want? How is it that such a wide range of goods and services are produced in roughly the right amounts, often at surprisingly low cost, and then distributed to the people who want them? This paper builds an understanding of how, and how well, our market-oriented economy gets this done. We use a variety of simple yet revealing graphical models to study the mechanics of markets and the market system and to evaluate market outcomes. We identify factors that can inhibit markets functioning and evaluate public policies used to counteract these inhibitors, both in individual markets and in the macro economy. In particular, we study issues around international trade, business strategy, competition policy, the environment, taxation, and cycles in exchange, interest, unemployment and growth rates.

ECON112 Principles of Economics 2: (18 points)
Continues on from BSNS113, and extends the analysis of predominantly market economies and how they work as a whole, both in New Zealand and international contexts. Topics include: economic growth, business cycles, monetary policy and the role of the Reserve Bank, the global financial crisis (GFC), and fiscal policy and the appropriate role of government.
Specific questions analysed will include:
• Why are living standards higher in some countries than others?
• What causes economic booms and recessions?
• How and why does the Reserve Bank control interest rates?
• What can be done about inflation and unemployment?
• What caused the GFC?
• Did governments respond appropriately to the GFC?

Take a look at the complete list of Economics 100-level papers.

200-level papers required

ECON201 Microeconomics: (18 points)
Provides a working knowledge of microeconomic theories with an emphasis on their application to business and public sector decision making.


ECON271 Intermediate Microeconomic Theory: (18 points)
Presents an analytic approach to intermediate microeconomics. The emphasis is on the fundamental conceptual foundations of microeconomics, illustrating their application with concrete examples. *

* To take ECON271, you must have first passed FINQ102 or an equivalent 100-level MATH paper (e.g. MATH160).

ECON202 Macroeconomics: (18 points)
Provides a working knowledge of macroeconomic theory and policy.

One further ECON 200-level paper (18 points)

Take a look at the complete list of Economics 200-level papers.

300-level papers required

Any four ECON 300-level papers (18 points)

Take a look at the complete list of Economics 300-level papers.

Examples of BA programmes in Economics

Below are some examples of programme structures for a BA Economics major – but please note they are just suggestions that show how you might arrange your study. There are many ways you might structure your programme, and we will discuss your options with you during the course advising period at the start of the semester. (Papers shown in bold type are compulsory for the degree as described. All other papers have alternatives).

Take a look at some examples of programme structures for a BA Economics major (PDF, 271KB).

Find out more about studying for a major in Economics.

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