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Business and Economics

Visit Department website


Departmental Mission Statement

Study Abroad

Requirements for Economics Major

Requirements for Economics Minor

Requirements for Business/Economics Major

Requirements for Business Minor (only offered occasionally at HoneyRock)

Honors Program


Business Economics Course Descriptions

Economics Course Descriptions


Chair, William Volkman Associate Professor of Business and Law, Stephen Bretsen

Carl R. Hendrickson Professor of Business, Bruce Howard

George F. Bennett Professor of Economics, Jason Long

Norris A. Aldeen Associate Professor of Business, Min-Dong Paul Lee

Professor Seth Norton

Associate Professors Winnie Fung, Annette Tomal

Assistant Professors Jeremy Cook, Enoch Hill, Hannah Stolze


The Department of Business and Economics offers majors in Economics and in Business/Economics and a minor in Economics. The Department periodically offers a minor in Business, which is explained below. Both programs build on an economic core consistent with a liberal arts foundation and are intentional about integrating the Christian faith and perspective with the study of economic life.

The Economics major is designed to help students develop skills in analysis and decision making by becoming thoroughly grounded in the principles of economic reasoning. At the same time, students also gain an understanding of the economic relationships, forces, and patterns that influence the economic order on both a national and global basis. An effort is made to apply economic analysis to a wide range of social and economic issues, such as poverty, inequality, growth, and development. The Economics major provides a broad and versatile base of preparation that is ideal for a lifelong career in business, government, law, public policy, or other professional tracks. It also provides excellent background for further graduate study in economics, public policy, business administration, or law.

The Business/Economics major focuses on economic life at the level of the firm. Any organization, whether it be a for-profit or not-for-profit endeavor, must deal with the issues of purpose, product/service creation, supply chains, human and financial resources, technology, and information. All of these issues must be considered in the context of a dynamic global economy. The Business/Economics major offers a range of courses which enable students to develop their understanding of these foundational issues as they relate to principles of accounting, finance, management, marketing, and information science.

Study Abroad: The department periodically offers an international studies program that focuses on visiting a specific region of the world. Credit hours and courses may vary, depending on the nature of the program. Students are also encouraged to learn about other study abroad programs from the Global and Experiential Learning Office or through the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (www.cccu.org).

Requirements for the Economics major are 36 hours in the department, including the following: 24 hours of core courses including ECON 211, 212, 325, 326, and 375, and B EC 321 and 494. In addition, a student must take a selection of 12 elective hours from those courses listed as Economics major electives (ECON) or B EC 496. Students must also take MATH 231. Additional math courses beyond MATH 231 are recommended. Seniors are required to take a comprehensive examination. A maximum of six hours of combined internship and independent study can be applied to the major.

Requirements for the Economics minor are 20 hours -- ECON 211, 212, either 325 or 326, and any ten hours of upper division Economics courses (ECON). Students must also take MATH 231. Additional math courses beyond MATH 231 are recommended.

Requirements for the Business/Economics major are 36 hours -- ECON 212, and B EC 226, 321, 341, 342, 367, 493 and 494; and 10 hours of department courses designated as either Business/Economics electives (B EC) or courses listed as Economics required or elective courses (ECON). Business/Economics majors must also take eight hours of supporting course work in economics: ECON 211 and either ECON 325 or 326. In addition, students must take MATH 221 or 231. Additional math courses beyond MATH 221 or 231 are recommended. Seniors are required to take a comprehensive examination. A maximum of six hours of combined internship and independent study can be applied to the major.

Requirements for the Business minor: The department periodically offers a minor in Business. The minor draws on course work offered both at the Wheaton (6-12 hours) and HoneyRock (8-14 hours) campuses. The minor is designed to complement the studies of students majoring in other disciplines by offering a concentrated course of study in the foundational concepts of business.

The requirements are 20 hours including: ECON 211, 212 (offered only at the Wheaton campus) and B EC 224, 241, 242, 267 (offered occasionally as part of HoneyRock’s summer program). And 6 hours of electives in business, economics, or leadership other than B EC 226, 341, 342 or 367 taken at either the Wheaton or HoneyRock campuses.

Honors Program: The Honors Program at Wheaton College offers eligible students advanced independent work, which culminates in a senior thesis and an Honors designation on the transcript. A total of 8 hours are designated as honors credit – 4 hours from a regular upper-division major course with additional requirements and 4 hours of research credit (B EC 495 or ECON 495) which includes the thesis.

Internships: Students may earn between 1 and 4 hours of academic credit for work experience. Students are responsible for obtaining their own internship in either the private or public sector. The internship work responsibilities must be either business or economics related and have educational value. The internship must be approved in advance, may be paid or unpaid, and must be supervised.

Business and Economics Courses (B EC)

B EC 224. Introduction to Accounting Systems and Information. This course is an introduction to basic accounting as an information system and covers the topics of double entry accounting, the accounting cycle, accrual accounting, financial statement preparation and analysis, and cost volume profit analysis. Students learn to operate an automated accounting package with a personal computer. Counts toward Business minor only. (2) Occasional Summers at HoneyRock.

B EC 225. Consumer Finance. Management and stewardship of consumer income and expenditures in the areas of budgeting, credit, housing and mortgages, insurance, savings and investment, and consumerism. Does not count toward a department major. (2)

B EC 226. Principles of Accounting I. An introduction to basic accounting theory, principles, and financial information systems. This first of a two-course sequence covers the double entry accrual system of accounting and addresses financial reporting issues related to accounting for current assets, liabilities, and long-lived assets.

B EC 227. Principles of Accounting II. This second of a two-course sequence covers financial accounting issues related to business organization, accounting for long-term debt and owner's equity, and financial analysis. Students are also introduced to an array of managerial accounting topics including cost-volume-profit analysis, job order, and process costing, budgeting, relevant costs and decision making. Students work with general ledger software that integrates spreadsheet and word processing applications. Prerequisite: B EC 226.

B EC 229. Management Information Systems. Provides an overview of current business office software and its application and implementation within a business framework. The use of spreadsheets, databases and presentation graphics are explored as students develop their own business. The creation of a financial business plan, an inventory tracking system, and a business promotional presentation are used to develop the student’s understanding of the software as it relates to everyday business practices. (2)

B EC 241. Introduction to Marketing. This course provides an introduction to the nature of the marketing process in organizations. The focus is on the role of product, pricing, promotion, advertising, distribution, and market segmentation decisions. Counts toward Business minor only. (2) Occasional Summers at HoneyRock.

B EC 242. Introduction to Management. This course is an introduction to the effective management of organizations through the application of planning, organizing, controlling, and leading. Specific attention will be given to designing organizations that will endure and make a meaningful contribution to society. Counts toward Business minor only. (2) Occasional Summers at HoneyRock.

B EC 267. Introduction to Finance. This is an introductory course in finance in which the student should attain a basic understanding of the essentials of financial decision making. Topics covered include discounted cash flow analysis, financing the firm, financial markets and institutions, and managing personal finances. Counts toward Business minor only. (2) Occasional Summers at HoneyRock.

B EC 321. Statistics. Foundational statistical principles including descriptive and inferential statistics, probability, hypothesis testing, and regression and correlation analyses. Statistical application with Excel is an integral part of the course.

B EC 328x. Business Ethics. See PHIL 328 Prerequisites: ECON 211 and PHIL 101 or 215. (2).

B EC 331. International Business. Examines international trade issues, investment flows, and foreign exchange concerns as they relate to the firm. The impact of legal, political, and cultural forces on the multination enterprise are examined in the context of the strategic management process. Case studies are heavily used.

B EC 334 Entrepreneurship. This course uses a multi-disciplined approach to examine the qualities of a new business venture. Students will gain knowledge of how to identify potential business opportunities, conduct market analysis and feasibility studies, write a business plan, and access their entrepreneurial acumen in the context of social responsibility. Prerequisites: B EC 226, 341. Majors only. (2)

B EC 341. Principles of Marketing. Role of marketing within an enterprise. Includes a survey of the impact of product, price, promotion, advertising, distribution channels, consumer behavior, and market segmentation on marketing decisions.

B EC 342. Principles of Management. Introduction to the effective management of organizations, including principles of strategizing, organizing, controlling, and leading. Special emphasis on the human side of management and the social responsibility of enterprise.

B EC 343. Consumer Behavior. This course explores the psychology of consumer thought and rationale, with a focus on theory and research, for the purpose of examining the social, cognitive, and cultural factors that influence individual consumer behavior. Prerequisite: B EC 341.

B EC 352. Business Law. An introduction to basic legal concepts and principles that apply to business transactions. The course will focus on the laws related to contracts, commercial transactions, and agency relationships. Ethical and other issues in business law are examined from a Christian perspective. (2)

B EC 355. Managerial Accounting. A study of accounting information for managerial reporting and decision making, including cost analysis, performance measurement, variance analysis, activity based/job order/process costing, allocation issues, information for decision making, and capital budgeting. Prerequisites: B EC 226, 227.

B EC 367. Principles of Finance. This course is a study of basic financial concepts underlying valuation of financial assets and managing the firm. Financial management issues covered in the course include financial analysis, capital budgeting, capital structure, long-term financing, financial planning, dividend policy, working capital management, and international finance. Prerequisite: B EC 226, 321.

B EC 382. Topics in Business. Selected topics designed to give added breadth and depth to the understanding of business. Prerequisite: Various depending on the topic. (2).

B EC 384. Topics in Business. Selected topics designed to give added breadth and depth to the understanding of business. Prerequisite: Various depending on the topic.

B EC 421. Organizational Behavior. Examination of human behavior in work organizations. Focuses on enhancing individual and organizational performance by understanding motivation, job attitudes, leadership, group dynamics, organizational culture, and organizational development. This highly interactive class is run as a self-managed work team. (2)

B EC 431. Investment Analysis and Capital Markets. This course analyzes the markets for investment of funds with special emphasis on debt and equity instruments, and the determination of asset prices. The theory and practices underlying investment portfolio management also are studied as they relate to these markets. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212. B EC 321, 367.

B EC 433. New Venture Strategy. The course is designed to provide tools that will help students develop and evaluate new business ideas. The course will discuss frameworks for understanding the entrepreneurial process, decision and behavioral sciences as they relate to business strategy, Biblical underpinnings of entrepreneurship, and financing and starting the new venture. Prerequisites: ECON 211. B EC 226, 341, 367.

B EC 493. Business Strategy. A capstone course for Business/Economics seniors that serves to highlight key principles and ideas from the business disciplines of accounting, finance, management, marketing, and information science. These will be considered in the context of the competitive business environment. Case analysis and/or simulations will be used to develop the conceptual material. A major goal of the course is to develop insights into the interrelatedness of business principles as they apply to business strategy and solving business problems. Prerequisite: senior standing; majors only. (2)

B EC 494. Seminar. An integrative capstone course examining the liberal arts, normative aspects of business and economics, the role of Christians at work and in the marketplace. Prerequisite: senior standing; majors only. (2)

B EC 495. Independent Study. Individual study on major issues for the advanced student with approval of the department chair. See Department guidelines. (1-4)

B EC 496. Internship. Credit given for pre-approved faculty-supervised involvement in the private or public sector of the economy. Open only to juniors and seniors who have completed ECON 211, 212 and any other courses deemed appropriate for the particular internship. Graded pass/fail. (1-4)

Economics Courses (ECON)

ECON 211. Principles of Microeconomics. An introduction to economic ways of thinking. Resource allocation, production, and distribution mechanisms are explored. Counts as one of the Studies in Society legacy general education options. SI

ECON 212. Principles of Macroeconomics. An examination of national income and product determination. Monetary and fiscal policy are analyzed as tools for dealing with inflation, unemployment, and economic growth. Prerequisite: ECON 211 (can be a co-requisite if ECON 212 taken during B quad). (2)

ECON 325. Intermediate Macroeconomics. A theoretical, institutional, and empirical study of national income distribution, inflation, unemployment, economic stability, and the rate of growth. Explores domestic and international macroeconomic policy issues. Examines the development of macroeconomic theories. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212, MATH 231 or 221.

ECON 326. Intermediate Microeconomics. This course helps students develop a sound understanding of microeconomic analysis. The primary objective of the course is to study consumer and producer behavior and analyze their interactions in the market system from three dimensions: economic intuition, math, and graphs. Two themes of the course are economic decisions and economic institutions. The course will explore how various economic agents make choices, and the implications of these choices for the overall allocation of resources for society. The course then studies various market imperfections and their consequences for welfare. Prerequisites: ECON 211 , 212, MATH 231 or 221.

ECON 345. Money and Banking. The course examines the nature of banks as financial intermediaries within the context of the financial services industry and the Federal Reserve System. The significance of money as an economic variable, and the relationship between money and banking are explored. The nature of a bank's portfolio of financial assets is studied from both a theoretical and applied perspective. Prerequisite: ECON 212. Majors only.

ECON 346. Public Finance. This course examines the public sector and its policy process including voting models, expenditure, priorities, insurance programs, and taxation principles. Special attention is given to Social Security, health care, and welfare issues. Prerequisite: ECON 211; recommended ECON 212.

ECON 347. Urban Economics. Examines issues relating to urban growth and public policy. Topics include urban housing, poverty, local government, labor market, transportation, education, crime, land-use controls and zoning, and economic development. Recommended: ECON 211. (2)

ECON 348. Economics of Competition. Examines the theoretical and empirical foundations of competition in economics. The course includes a review of the neoclassical economics of competition, introduces institutional and informational perspectives on competition. The course entails extensive readings of empirical studies highlighting the various forms of competition and addresses the strengths and weaknesses of alternative approaches to the study of competition. Prerequisites: ECON 211, B EC 321. (2)

ECON 361. Evolution of the Global Economy. This class explores the nature and historical origins of economic globalization. When and how did people, technology, goods, and capital begin to flow so extensively across national borders, and what has been the impact of these flows on international economic development? These questions are approached chronologically, beginning with the pre-history of modern globalization before turning to the beginning of true globalization during the long 19th century. The second half of the course is devoted to understanding the chaotic first half of the 20th century, with an emphasis on the international Great Depression, and the reintegration of the world economy from the postwar period to the present. Throughout, students will learn to think analytically and empirically about key issues in economics and history, largely through reading primary economic research in journal articles and book chapters. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212. B EC 321.

ECON 362. Wealth and Poverty of Nations. This course explores one of the most important, long-running questions in economics: Why are some places so rich while others are so poor? In this course, students examine the causes of economic growth in the very long run. Looking back over the last several hundred, and in some cases several thousand, years, we search for the “deep determinants” of growth – how the fundamentals of geography and environment, along with changes in institutions, technology, and economic integration have allowed some, but not all, societies to prosper and provide their members with remarkably high standards of living. This process has accelerated rapidly among the economically developed countries over the last two hundred years, in what has been termed modern economic growth. Only in a long-run historical context can we adequately address the stark divergence between these countries and those who have remained poor. Throughout, students will learn to think analytically and rigorously about economic growth and development, largely through reading, discussing, and critiquing books and journal articles. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212.

ECON 364. Health Economics. This course uses the tools of economics to gain insight into health and health care issues in both the developed and developing world. Topics covered include: health production and the demand for health; health insurance and insurance markets; the role of government in health care; health interventions and challenges of health improvement in developing countries. At the end of the class, students should be able to apply economic paradigms to global health policy issues, and critically evaluate empirical evidence of what “works” and what doesn’t. Prerequisites: ECON 326.

ECON 365. Economic Growth and Development. This course provides a theoretical, institutional, and empirical study of human needs and economic development in the two-thirds world. It addresses numerous issues including employment, health, education, agriculture, sustainability, population, and globalization. This course teaches a systematic approach to economic policy analysis and applies it to the study of development and poverty alleviation efforts in poor countries. Prerequisite: ECON 211; recommended ECON 212, ECON 326.

ECON 366. International Economics. Studies the theory of international trade and finance. Examines policy exchange rates issues including the balance of trade, economic integration, and international debt. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212.

ECON 375. Econometrics for Business and Economics. This is a course in applied econometrics. The course focuses on regression analysis as a research tool that economists and other social scientists use to estimate economic and social relationships and to test hypotheses about those relationships using real-world data. Topics include simple and multiple regression analysis, hypothesis testing, dummy variable techniques, specification tests, and instrumental variable analysis. Students will learn hands-on data analysis and model estimation, as well as the use of the econometric software STATA. Prerequisites: ECON 211, B EC 321; recommended ECON 326.

ECON 376. Game Theory. This course introduces the basic concepts of game theory. Game theory is the study of strategic decision-making—that is, making decisions when individuals’ actions affect each other. It is a powerful tool, applicable in a broad range of fields, from economics and business, to politics and law, and even biology. Firm competition, auctions, international conflict resolution, and animal mating behavior are all multi-agent decision problems; they are all games. Students learn how to recognize games, how to formally model their key properties, and how to predict outcomes based on concepts of equilibrium. Above all, students learn to think strategically with precision and rigor. Prerequisites: ECON 211, MATH 231 or 221.

ECON 378. The Economics of Labor & Poverty. A theoretical and empirical application of microeconomics to the socioeconomic issues related to labor markets. Students will learn to evaluate social policies and programs with the rigor provided by theory and the evidence from empirical research. Topics include labor supply and demand, human capital, wage differentials, mobility, and discrimination, with special emphasis on poverty. Prerequisites: B EC 321, ECON 326. DUS

ECON 392. Topics in Economics. Selected topics designed to give added breadth and depth to the understanding of economics. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212. (2).

ECON 394. Topics in Economics. Selected topics designed to give added breadth and depth to the understanding of economics. Prerequisites: ECON 211, 212.

ECON 495. Independent Study. Individual study on major issues for the advanced student with approval of the department chair. See Department guidelines. (1-4)

Revision Date: August 1, 2016



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