Online economics degrees can be a great option for those that enjoy working in a business environment and have a deeply analytical mind. A degree in economics can help you set the stage for a fast-paced, rewarding career.
Choosing a bachelor degree in economics online program can allow you the flexibility needed to keep up with your daily responsibilities or the ability to complete school work from any location.
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From working as an information analyst to managing sales or business consulting, an economics degree offers a valuable set of skills that are marketable across a variety of professional occupations.
Online Bachelor’s in Economics Degrees
The goal of an online bachelor’s degree in economics program is to help you develop the skillset necessary to describe society and businesses from an analytical point of view.
By studying society through the lens of mathematics and statistics, you will be able to help businesses become more efficient and contribute to the growing body of research surrounding the field of economics.
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During the course of various online degrees in economics, you will learn valuable skills that are useful in a variety of professional environments. The courses that you take will focus on many key learning objectives, including:
- Forecasting market trends
- Understanding pricing policies
- Evaluating the economic environment
- Advising management on strategic decisions
- Collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data
After successful completion of your online economics degree, you will have the opportunity to pursue entry-level employment in a variety of careers, including work as an economist, financial examiner, and operations research analyst.
If you enjoy crunching numbers and watching market trends, you may opt to become a market analyst. If you prefer to help people reach their financial goals, a personal financial advisor may be a good path for you. For those that enjoy working more on the business side, a business financial advisor may be a good option.
Common Online Degree in Economics Concentrations
While enrolled in a bachelors degree in economics online, you may get the chance to choose a concentration that fits your unique interests and skillset. The specialization options vary by school, but here are a few you may see.
- Financial Economics: You’ll learn in-depth about economic theories as they relate to financial markets in preparation to pursue roles in the finance industry.
- Behavioral Economics: This specialization looks at how economics meshes with psychology to get a better idea of how professionals in companies make strategic decisions.
- Agricultural Economics: You’ll learn about economic decision-making for farmers and agricultural organizations.
- International Economics: This concentration covers macroeconomics as it applies to businesses and markets internationally.
- Public Policy: You’ll learn about the relationship between public policy and the economy, and how professionals use economics to make decisions about policies.
In addition to these specializations, your school may also offer concentrations in industrial organization, healthcare, and the political economy.
Economics Careers & Salaries
A degree in economics prepares you for a wide range of professional careers, including work in market research, finances, and business operations.
In the table below, we have put together a short list of various job opportunities in the field of economics as well as their median annual salaries according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics:
|Careers||Annual Median Salary|
|Financial Risk Specialists||$100,000|
|Personal Investment Advisers||$94,170|
|Financial Examiners, Management Of Companies and Enterprises||$90,101|
With advanced skills in management, technology, and research, you may be able to work your way up the corporate ladder to top-paying positions within a company. While you may make more or less than the numbers listed above, all of the careers listed offer wages above the national average across all occupations.
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According to the BLS, economists can expect to see a 6% increase in employment over the next 10 years. However, operations research analysts are projected to grow 23% as technology advances and companies seek efficiency and cost savings. Market research analysts are projected to see 19% growth as the need for data and market research increases across many industries.
View our list of the top 40 Economics careers to compare jobs and salaries in this field.
Bachelor of Economics Curriculum & Courses
Different online economics bachelor’s degree programs have varying curriculums, but here are a few courses you may come across in yours.
- Consumer Economics: This class covers different ideologies about consumer economics and the history of how organizations have protected consumers.
- Public Economics: You’ll learn about the relationship between financial markets, the government, and corporations.
- Intermediate Microeconomics: This course looks at how economic resources are distributed in the market, and the different ideologies behind pricing.
- Money and Banking: You’ll learn about how the government affects banking in the U.S., including different regulations and the Federal Reserve.
- Labor and Industrial Organizations: This class delves into different aspects of labor economics, such as income distribution and policies related to labor.
- The Economics of Education: You’ll learn about the supply and demand of education, as well as government regulation in the U.S.
- Urban Economics: This course looks at city growth, urban development, and poverty from an economic perspective.
- Macroeconomics: You’ll learn about concepts like employment, fiscal policies, and economic output on a macro scale.
- Economics and Gender: This class looks at economic concepts from a gender perspective, which include human capital investment, marriage, and fertility.
- Investment Management: You’ll learn how institutional investors handle various issues related to choosing portfolios, managing risk, and more.
In addition to classes like these, you may get the chance to participate in internships, seminars, and capstone projects as part of your program.
Comparing Top Economics Degree Programs
Choosing a university is the first major decision many students have to make on their educational journey.
Below we will discuss some of the key areas to consider when making this important life decision.
- Accreditation: Accreditation is an essential aspect of a reputable online accounting degree program. Check to see if your chosen school is accredited.
- Student-to-Faculty Ratio: Small class sizes in economics courses benefit both the students and the instructors by increasing student engagement and allowing professors to provide more one on one support.
- Academic Advising and Student Services: College is more than just having your nose stuck in a textbook, even if you are doing classes online. Student services and academic advising support are important factors. Check to see if the school offers opportunities for internships and job-shadowing in a variety of economic fields and mentorship programs.
- Cost: The cost of each program is also an important factor as you may be on a strict budget. Compare various programs to see which one fits your budget.
- Degrees Offered: Be sure to check with each school you are considering to ensure they offer your chosen degree program. Also, compare the various programs’ coursework to ensure the coursework fits with your desired career goals.
While the majority of online economics degrees are offered through virtual programs out of accredited, traditional colleges, it is still important to consider the following factors when choosing a school that is right for you.
The admissions requirements for online degrees in economics may vary, but here are some of the most common ones you may encounter.
- High school diploma
- High school transcripts
- SAT or ACT scores (only some schools require them)
- Personal essay
Some schools may also ask for reference letters or want to conduct an interview before making a decision. Certain programs may also want to see a minimum high school GPA or verify that you have taken coursework in a specific subject, like math.
Online Economics Degrees Accreditation
Accreditation is the process in which a higher education institution has its curriculum independently reviewed by one of the recognized accrediting agencies. By choosing an economics degree program that is accredited, you have the peace of mind that your education is of high quality and respected within the professional arena.
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The U.S. Department of Education recognizes several national and regional accreditation agencies. For a full list of the agencies that are respected throughout the field of economics, take a look at the U.S. Department of Education’s website.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
If you’re considering applying for financial aid, you can explore all the options available to qualifying students on the Federal Student Aid website. You may be able to apply for loans, grants, scholarships, work-study jobs, and more.
Prospective undergraduate students may want to look into applying for direct subsidized loans. Your school will determine how much money you can borrow with these types of loans, but the U.S. Department of Education will pay the interest as long as certain requirements are met.
If you’re interested in working while in school, you may want to investigate the options for work-study programs. In these types of jobs, students are able to earn at least the current federal minimum wage.
Economics Professional Organizations
While enrolled in an economics bachelor’s degree, you may find benefit in joining an economics professional organization. Below are three major ones you may want to investigate.
- Agricultural & Applied Economics Association (AAEA)
- National Association for Business Economics (NABE)
- National Economic Association (NEA)
Organizations like these can be a beneficial way to start building your network while you’re in school, and you may get the chance to attend conferences to meet professionals in the industry. They can also provide resources for career assistance through webinars and seminars.
Should I Major in Economics?
There are many reasons why students choose to pursue their economics degrees online. For some, they enjoy the opportunity of taking accelerated courses to get on the fast track to graduation. For other students, having the convenience of flexible scheduling is essential to balancing their career or family obligations.
Regardless of your reason for pursuing your degree online, it is important to understand that economics degrees involve the same rigorous coursework whether you are a traditional or virtual student. Those who excel in online learning are typically students who are self-motivated and have strong organizational skills and a desire to learn.
While online degrees have their challenges, there are also many advantages to pursuing your economics degree online like increased flexibility and potential for lower costs.
What is an Economics Online Degree?
An economics online degree is a program that helps teach students necessary skills and knowledge to pursue roles that affect different aspects of the economy. For instance, professionals may work as financial risk analysts, forecasters, economic researchers, and more.
These degrees typically cover topics such as macro and microeconomics, consumer economics, investment management, and more. They may also cover policies and government regulations in a wide range of sectors, including healthcare, agriculture, banking, and politics.
Is Economics a Good Major?
Yes, economics is a good major for many undergraduate students. Students in these programs may get to choose a specialization that interests them, which may help them prepare for a career targeted toward their skillset.
Popular concentrations include agricultural economics, financial economics, and behavioral economics. Students may also get the chance to apply their knowledge to real-world situations through internships, capstone projects, and research while in school.
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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, professionals in economics-related roles work in a wide range of industries, from government to finance to healthcare.
What Can You Do With an Economics Degree?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, professionals with an economics degree may work as accounts and auditors, financial analysts, market research analysts, and personal financial advisors. They may also hold jobs as economists, financial examiners, and financial managers.
Because many types of organizations need professionals skilled with understanding the complex concepts that constitute economics, they may work in a wide range of industries. Some of these include nonprofits, political organizations, healthcare institutions, and corporations.
Is Economics a Hard Major?
The difficulty of an undergraduate economics program may depend on a variety of factors, including your interests, skillset, and passion for the field. Students typically study basic economic concepts, such as macro and microeconomics, math, and consumer economics.
They may also take courses such as The Economics of Education, Economics, and Gender, Investment Management, and Labor and Industrial Organizations. Students’ bachelor curriculum may also depend on the specialization they choose, which can also impact class difficulty.
How Long Does it Take to Get an Online Bachelor’s Degree in Economics?
The timeframe for graduating from an online bachelor’s program in economics varies, but there are a few different factors that can affect how long it takes. If you enroll in a 16-week semester program and attend full-time, taking summers off, it typically takes four years to graduate.
However, if you enroll in a program with 8-week long semesters, attend full-time and year-round, you may be able to finish in less time. Enrolling in the summer semester may also help you finish in less time.
What Are Some of the Highest Paying Jobs for Economics Majors?
The salary for any given role varies based on the candidate’s experience, education, skillset, and more. In general, financial managers are one of the highest paying jobs for professionals in the economics sector.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, their median annual salary is $131,710, and $158,820 for those who work in management of companies and enterprises. Actuaries are also typically high paying roles with an annual salary of $105,900. Personal financial advisors, financial analysts, and operations research analysts are also generally lucrative careers in the field.
What’s the Difference Between a Finance vs. Economics Major?
There is overlap between the subjects that finance and economics majors study, but there are also typically a few key differences in these curriculums.
Finance Majors generally focus on:
- Specific financial systems
- Banks, investments, loans, and more
While Economics Majors generally focus on:
- Broader economies and markets
- Human behavior in relation to the economy
Overall, finance majors usually study specific financial methods like asset pricing and investment appraisal, while economics majors look at the relationship between financial markets, corporations, and government regulations.
What’s the Difference Between an Online Bachelors in Economics vs. Business Degree?
If you’re interested in majoring in economics, you may also be curious about an undergraduate business degree. Here are a few differences between the two to keep in mind.
A Bachelors in Economics degree may cover:
- Data analysis
- Macro and microeconomics
While a Bachelors in Business degree may cover:
- Human resources
Bachelors degrees in business tend to be broader and may help prepare students to work in managerial roles in a corporation, while degrees in economics typically focus more on specific skills needed to work as an economist or related role.
What’s the Difference Between a BA vs. BS in Economics Degree?
Students enrolled in BA and BS economics degrees may take similar courses, but there are a few key differences between these two majors.
A BA in Economics typically:
- Is a social sciences degree
- Covers theories and concepts related to economics
While a BS in Economics typically:
- Is a science degree
- Covers math and quantitative analysis related to economics
Because a BA is a social sciences degree, you may learn broader ideologies in these types of programs, while BS degrees may focus more on analytical skills.
Is a Degree in Economics Worth It?
Yes, a degree in economics is worth it for many professionals. Professionals in the fieldwork in a wide range of industries and a bachelor’s in economics may help prepare you to pursue roles in a sector that interests you the most.
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Economists are expected to see steady job growth over the next 10 years, with the BLS predicting a 6% growth rate. Students with an undergraduate economics degree typically also get to choose a specialization. These classes are usually focused on a certain aspect of economics, so students may be able to study the topics that they enjoy the most.
Universities Offering Online Bachelors in Economics Degree Programs
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.
Arizona State University offers an online Bachelor of Science in Economics – Business. The program requires the completion of 41 classes for a total of 120 credit hours. Each class is 7.5 weeks long. Potential classes include Intermediate Microeconomic Theory, Intermediate Macroeconomic Theory, and Principles of Management and Leadership. Graduates may pursue a variety of careers in business and finance.
Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Ball State University offers both a BS and a BA in Economics. Either degree may be earned fully online or in a blended format. Courses emphasize hands-on learning and are taught by experienced professionals. They are asynchronous, and most students take just one or two at a time.
Ball State is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Colorado Christian University offers a BS in Economics that can be earned in a flexible online format. The curriculum teaches from a biblical perspective and explores how to apply economics to solve problems associated with poverty and social inequality. Students typically take one 5 week course at a time.
Colorado Christian University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Colorado State University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Economics online. The student-to-faculty ratio is just 17-to-1, and courses are taught by the same faculty who teach on campus. Faculty members typically have online office hours. Classmates can communicate with one another through video conferencing and discussion forums.
Colorado State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Eastern Oregon University offers a BS and a BA in Economics that can be earned online or on campus. Students have many of the same professors regardless of which degree they earn. Scheduling is flexible, but it typically takes 4 years to complete either degree. Potential courses include Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, and History of Economic Thought.
Eastern Oregon University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Florida International University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Economics that can be completed entirely online. It offers start dates in the fall, spring, and summer. Potential courses include Principles of Macroeconomics, Principles of Microeconomics, and Calculus for Business. The curriculum includes studies on the theories of economics and how to apply economics to solve contemporary problems.
Florida International University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Liberty University offers a BSBA in Economics that can be earned 100% online. Each course is 8 weeks long, and on average, the degree can be earned in 3.5 years. Liberty’s curriculum incorporates a strong emphasis on ethics and a biblical worldview. It explores both theory and real-world applications.
Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
North Carolina A&T State University offers a Bachelor of Science in Economics online. The program offers up to 9 free electives, which makes the program highly customizable to personal interests and career goals. Graduates may work in public or private sectors or continue their studies at the graduate level.
North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Oregon State University offers a program to earn a BS or a BA in Economics. This online program requires the completion of 180 quarter credits and offers four start dates every year. Graduates may pursue graduate study in economics or careers in related fields, such as law or public policy.
Oregon State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Ottawa University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Business Economics. Three concentrations are available within the program: Leadership and Management, Human Resources, and Finance. Potential courses include Accounting for Business Operations, Macroeconomics, and Microeconomics. The degree can be completed online or at Ottawa or Overland Park campuses.
Ottawa University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Pennsylvania State University offers a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics that can be earned online. The curriculums for both degrees are the same as their on-campus counterparts. Both programs teach practical skills, such as how to collect data for analysis, forecast market trends, and determine pricing policies.
Penn State is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
San Diego State University offers an online degree completion program to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. This program is designed for students who have already earned at least 60 college credit hours that may be transferred in. In addition to studies in economics, the program offers a versatile liberal arts education. The program is designed with working professionals in mind.
SDSU is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.
San Jose State University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Economics online. Courses are 8 weeks long, and there are five start dates offered every year. The program aims to offer a diverse community of students taught under the same expert faculty members who teach on campus.
San José State University is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.
The University of Maine offers a BA in Economics that can be earned 100% online. Class sizes are small to better provide direct engagement with faculty, and opportunities to participate in research with faculty members are available. Potential courses include Principles of Microeconomics, Principles of Macroeconomics, and Principles of Economic Data Analysis.
The University of Maine is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth offers an online Bachelor of Arts in Economics. Potential courses include Health Economics, Labor Economics, and State and Local Public Economics. The curriculum explores how to apply economic knowledge to make decisions. Online students have access to tutoring, a writing center, and one-on-one advising.
The University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
The University of Missouri offers a BA in Economics that can be earned 100% online. Potential courses include Statistics, Intermediate Econometrics, and Principles of Microeconomics. Each course lasts one full semester, and most students take 2 to 4 courses at a time.
The University of Missouri – Columbia is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of New Mexico offers an online degree completion program to earn a BA in Economics. The curriculum is designed to teach a highly analytical way of thinking and how to apply economics to solve real-world problems. Graduates may work in business, in government, or at nonprofits.
The University of New Mexico is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
The University of Wisconsin Whitewater offers an online program for a Bachelor’s in Economics with no on-campus requirements. The program is designed to allow students to learn at their own pace, while connecting with classmates through discussion boards. The curriculum emphasizes critical thinking and proficiency with statistics. Graduates have gone on to pursue academic, business, and government careers.
UW-Whitewater is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Utah State University offers a BS in Economics that can be earned 100% online. The curriculum is designed to provide research experience and teach how to apply theory to make business decisions. Emphasis options are available in International Economics and Trade, Pre-Law Economics, Managerial Economics, and Economic Theory.
Utah State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Washington State University offers a Bachelor of Science in Economic Sciences that can be earned 100% online. The curriculum is designed to teach advanced skills in data analysis, critical thinking, and communication. The program also offers practicum and internship opportunities. Concentrations are available in Agribusiness, Management, Marketing and Analytics, and Supply Chain Management.
Washington State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Getting Your Bachelor in Economics Online
If you are interested in learning about how economics can impact different organizations, markets, and industries, you may enjoy getting your bachelors degree in economics. An online program may provide additional flexibility in your schedule.
Graduates may pursue roles as economists, financial managers, market research analysts, and more. They may be able to participate in internships and capstone projects, and join organizations to gain access to resources, conferences, and professionals in the field.
You can take the first step toward an online bachelor’s degree in economics today. To get started, explore accredited universities, and see what stands out to you.