Broadening Perceptions of Economics in a New Introductory Economics Sequence

41 Pages Posted: 3 Nov 2020

See all articles by Ann L. Owen

Ann L. Owen

Hamilton College - Economics Department

Paul Hagstrom

Hamilton College

Date Written: August 2020

Abstract

We report on a comprehensive curricular reform aimed at communicating to students early in their study of economics the broad range of social issues that economists study while engaging them in active learning strategies. Overall, we find that the curricular reform increased interest in taking additional economics courses and majoring in economics, broadened students’ views of what economists do, imparted more content to students, but did not have a differential impact on interest in majoring in economics of female students, students of color, or first generation college students. A curriculum that engages students in empirical work on important social issues early in the major appeals to all students, resulting in more majors from both under and overrepresented groups, but generating little impact on the percentage of students who major in economics from underrepresented groups.

Keywords: active learning, perceptions of economics, underrepresented students

JEL Classification: A22

Suggested Citation

Owen, Ann L. and Hagstrom, Paul, Broadening Perceptions of Economics in a New Introductory Economics Sequence (August 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3693400 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3693400

Ann L. Owen (Contact Author)

Hamilton College - Economics Department ( email )

198 College Hill Road
Clinton, NY 13323
United States
315-859-4419 (Phone)
303-859-4477 (Fax)

Paul Hagstrom

Hamilton College ( email )

198 College Hill Road
Clinton, NY 13323
United States

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