Use our Major Checklist Behavioral Economics for detailed requirements.
The interdisciplinary major in behavioral economics examines social, emotional, and cognitive influences on economic decisions and behavior by modifying standard economic theory for greater psychological realism. The interdisciplinary approach of behavioral economics allows better understanding of why individuals’ economic decisions are often irrational, inconsistent, and against self-interest.
Behavioral economics is rooted in foundational theories of economics, particularly microeconomics, and the empirical work of social psychology, cognitive psychology, and experimental economics. For example, behavioral economics explores how framing a decision in terms of what may be lost can lead to logically opposite decisions than if the same choices are framed in terms of what may be gained. Behavioral economics acknowledges the human ways that people process information to make economic decisions.
Wagner College students who complete the major in behavioral economics will be uniquely prepared for graduate study focusing on behavioral economics, experimental economics, social psychology, or cognitive psychology. A growing number of graduate programs offer behavioral or experimental economics as a concentration. There also is considerable demand from many think tanks for interns and graduates with understanding of behavioral economics.
Students completing the major at Wagner College will have a strong quantitative background in statistics and calculus, skills reading primary literature, and remarkable experience designing, conducting, and reporting research. Graduating seniors will be able to demonstrate an unusual level of involvement in multiple empirical research projects.
Students may declare a major in Behavioral Economics in the Social Sciences Office, 211 Parker Hall.