School of Economics and Finance

Economics

Please note: Information on this page relates to the 2014 academic year unless otherwise specified.

On this page:

This subject is taught by the School of Economics and Finance.

Overview

Students live in a complex and culturally diverse world. Their lives are affected by the economic decision-making of individuals, local communities and businesses, local and central government, and overseas businesses and governments.

By studying economics, students come to understand and learn how to use:

  • the ideas, concepts, and approaches needed to inform the decision-making involved in allocating scarce resources, producing goods and services, and deciding how to distribute these goods and services amongst individuals and communities;
  • models (both macro and micro) to simplify and/or explain the real world and make predictions about it;
  • tools that enable them to evaluate economic decisions made by others (in individual, business, governmental and global contexts) and to make informed, efficient, equitable decisions for the future.

Successful economic analysis is both an art, acquired gradually through practice, and a science, demanding quantitative skills. It is also an excellent complement to the study of various other disciplines including Law and social sciences.  The emphasis on mathematical skills varies with programmes of study: those studying law and economics, for example, have a very low mathematical requirement whereas advanced microeconomics requires some mathematical skill.

Victoria University offers economics as a major for a Bachelor of Arts (BA), and for a Bachelor of Commerce (BCom). It can be earned as a conjoint BCom/Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree that has a lower credit requirement than the two degrees taken separately.  Similary, Law can be studied in conjunction with a major in economics under a conjoint BCom/Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree. This is a natural combination often chosen by students.

An attractive option is to take Economics as a second major in a BSc which provides the opportunity to combine subjects that complement each other in nature and understanding, and in employment prospects.  There are many alternatives: for example, a BSc degree majoring in mathematics, or geography or even Physics with a second major in economics would have subject complementarities that would enhance learning and employment prospects. Other natural examples include:

  • Economics and Psychology: these come together in areas that include Behavioural and Experimental economics;
  • Economics, Biology and Environmental Science; and
  • Economics and Development Studies.

Such combinations give an education in rational thinking which is attractive to businesses and public sector organisations looking for graduates with a broad perspective.

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BCom major requirements

  1. ECON 130, 140, QUAN 102 (or MATH 177 or STAT 131/193), QUAN 111 (or MATH 141/142, 151)
  2. ECON 201, 202; one of (ECON 211, 212, FINA 201, MATH 277, QUAN 201, 203, STAT 231, 233)
  3. Any three courses from (ECON 301-399; FINA 304, 306; PUBL 303)

*The ECON 130 requirement will be waived for a student who has passed ECON 140
**FCOM 111 can be replaced by COML 203 and PUBL 113/201/202
***QUAN 102 can be replace with STAT 131/193

Pathways

The BCom core consists of seven courses: ACCY 111 (or 130), ECON 130, FCOM 111, INFO 101, MARK 101, MGMT 101 and QUAN 102.

Economics majors must take ECON 130 and ECON 140 in their first year. They are also very strongly encouraged to take both QUAN 102 and QUAN 111 (or Statistics and Mathematics equivalents). BCom students are required to take FCOM 111 in their first year for referencing and writing skills, as well as a general introduction to business in New Zealand. This means that three courses can be chosen from ACCY 111 (or 130), INFO 101, MARK 101 and MGMT 101, to take in their first year, with the remaining core course left till later years.

Previous NCEA study

ECON 130 is the first course introducing students to economic principles and is the prerequisite for ECON 140. However, any student who has attained Achievement with Excellence in NCEA Level 3 AS 90629, 90630 and 90632, may be exempt from ECON 130, and advance directly to ECON 140.

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BA major requirements

  1. ECON 130, 140, QUAN 102 (or MATH 177 or STAT 131/193), QUAN 111 (or MATH 141/142, 151)
  2. ECON 201, 202; one of (ECON 211, 212, FINA 201, MATH 277, QUAN 201, 203, STAT 231, 233)
  3. Any three courses from (ECON 301-399, FINA 304, 306, PUBL 303)

Pathways

Economics majors should take ECON 130 and ECON 140 in their first year. They are also very strongly encouraged to take both QUAN 102 and QUAN 111 (or Statistics and Mathematics equivalents).

Previous NCEA study

ECON 130 is the first course introducing students to economic principles and is the prerequisite for ECON 140. However, any student who has attained Achievement with Excellence in NCEA Level 3 AS 90629, 90630, 90631 and 90632, may be exempt from ECON 130, and advance directly to ECON 140.

Transitional arrangements for enrolled students prior to 2009

Students who started their BA before 2009 are able to complete the BA degree in accordance to the 2009 degree statute as long as they do so by the end of 2014.

The requirements for the Economics major, under the 2009 BA statute, were:

  1. ECON 130, ECON 140, QUAN 102 (or STAT 131 or 193) and QUAN 111 (or MATH 113 and 114)
  2. Three of ECON 201, 202, MOFI 202, QUAN 201 (or 203 or STAT 231)
  3. Two courses* from (ECON / MOFI / QUAN 300-399, PUBL 303 or approved 300-level ECHI courses)

* That means two 24-point courses; three 15-point courses would also be accepted.

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Economics major attributes

These are the attributes that we expect our ECON majors to have by the time they graduate. They will be able to:

  1. Use logical reasoning
  2. Comprehend and apply theories and practices of economics and finance
  3. Comprehend the basis and interpret the role of the key assumptions of micro-, macro-, and monetary economic theories
  4. Interpret and appraise the construction of economic data
  5. Instigate, describe and explain comparisons of economic theories with observed and measured relationships
  6. Describe, analyse and explain the reasons for key economic and monetary institutions
  7. Use theory and data to assess economic policies
  8. Structure for analysis unstructured issues in economics

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Postgraduate information

Postgraduate qualifications in Economics

How to find out more

You can order more information on this subject using our Request for Study Material form. The form enables you to join Victoria University's database.

Victoria's Student Recruitment and Course Advise Office offers a range of advice on courses and help with planning your degree.

Contact the Commerce Faculty Student Administration Office for information on Admission, qualifications and courses, course advice and selection criteria, exemptions and prerequisites and your Application to Study.

Economics courses are taught within the School of Economics and Finance, Rutherford House.

For further assistance you can contact the School.

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Related subjects and careers

Related subjects Careers

Accounting
Econometrics
Law
Management
Marketing
Mathematics
Statistics

Banking
Business
Economic analyst
Economic forecaster
Financial markets
Government
Insurance
International agencies
Investment manager
Multinational corporations
Policy analyst

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Course information

Course learning objectives 

Each course has specific learning objectives that we expect students to have attained by the time that they have successfully completed the course.

Download the course learning objectives below:

Document File size File type
PDF icon Economics—course learning objectives 134 KB PDF

List of courses

Please note: the list below shows undergraduate-level courses only. For a complete course listing, see the list of all Economics courses.


100 Level Courses

ECON 130 – Economic Principles and Issues

ECON 140 – Economics and Strategic Behaviour


200 Level Courses

ECON 201 – Intermediate Microeconomics

ECON 202 – Open-economy Macroeconomics

ECON 211 – Industrial Organisation

ECON 212 – Macroeconomics: Growth, Stability and Crises


300 Level Courses

ECON 301 – Econometrics

ECON 303 – Applied Econometrics

ECON 305 – Advanced Macroeconomics

ECON 307 – Public Sector Economics

ECON 309 – International Trade

ECON 314 – Game Theory

ECON 330 – Law and Economics

ECON 333 – Labour Economics

ECON 337 – The World Economy and New Zealand in the Twentieth Century

ECON 338 – Monetary Economics

ECON 339 – Information Economics

ECON 340 – Environmental and Resource Economics

ECON 341 – Public Choice and Social Welfare

ECON 350 – Special Topic: Topics in Health Economics

ECON 351 – Special Topic: Disasters and Economic Policy

ECON 352 – Special Topic: Banking