College of Arts and Sciences

Economics studies the institutions and arrangements that are used to create, protect and allocate scarce resources, and advances our understanding of the behavior of individuals, firms, governments and other organizations. The BA is for students who are intrigued by economic problems and are attracted to an analytical approach to explaining social phenomena. The BA provides an excellent preparation for employment in the private and public sectors and for graduate study in a variety of fields, such as public policy, law and business. The BS requires a more intensive background in math and statistics, reflecting the quantitative character of modern economics. It is especially suitable for students interested in graduate study in economics and in such fields as computational finance and data science.

Major category: Capacity-constrained

Curricular options: B.A., B.S.

Topic: Business, Social sciences

Applicant type


Freshmen can apply to the UW to begin autumn quarter or winter quarter (U.S. applicants only)

Read more about applying to the UW as a freshman, including details for programs that provide high school students with college credit (like Running Start).


Quarters of general admisson to UW: autumn / winter (U.S. applicants only) / spring / summer

Preparation for the major is a factor in transfer admission.

  • Use the information below to help you prepare for this degree
  • Visit MyPlan to run a degree audit.
  • Use the UW Equivalency Guide to find out how courses taken at a Washington state community or technical college will transfer to the UW.
  • UW college and school graduation requirements

Department admission information

  • Departmental application deadline: Second Friday of Spring Quarter for Autumn/Summer, Second Friday of Autumn Quarter for Winter
  • Please contact the department for details about the application process.

Read more about applying to the UW as a transfer student.

Career outcomes