Trends in U.S. economics majors: Why the decline in the 1990s?
This paper identifies factors that are important in explaining recent trends in undergraduate economics majors. The decline in economics majors during the 1990s has caused concern in the profession because the declining trend had been attributed to a general decrease in student interest in the economics major. This study uses least squares regression techniques to explain trends in economics bechelor degrees granted by 20 New Jersey colleges and universities during the 1979–2000 period, with implications for the national level. The results show that trends in economics majors are primarily a function of demographic trends, business cycle conditions, and the desire to attend post-graduate professional school. None-the-less, the authors conclude that the declining trend in economics majors in the 1990s is still cause for concern because understanding economic principles is important in the development of a globally competitive workforce. Copyright International Atlantic Economic Society 2003
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Volume (Year): 31 (2003)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
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- William E. Becker, 1997. "Teaching Economics to Undergraduates," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 1347-1373, September.
- Michael P. Keane, 2002. "Financial Aid, Borrowing Constraints, and College Attendance: Evidence from Structural Estimates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 293-297, May.
- Siegfried, John J & Raymond, Jennie E, 1984. "A Profile of Senior Economics Majors in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 19-25, May.
- David Colander, 2000. "Telling Better Stories in Introductory Macro," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 76-80, May.
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