Online Economics Bachelor’s Degree

What You'll Learn & What You Can Do After Graduation

An online bachelor's degree in economics prepares graduates for lucrative and exciting careers in both public and private sectors. Economists work on everything from major governmental policy proposals -- such as climate change or healthcare -- to market analysis for businesses or hedge funds. Professionals with a background in economics are needed across virtually every industry and earn much higher salaries than workers in many other fields. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that business and financial occupations will grow at a faster-than-average 10% between 2016 and 2026, with the median salary in these professions around $67,700, much higher than the national average.

Why Earn an Online Degree in Economics?

Earning a bachelor's degree in economics online provides students with the benefits of higher education without the need to sacrifice their work or family responsibilities, or take on extensive debt. In many online programs, can students log in from anywhere at any time and complete assignments when it fits their schedule. Additionally, online learning can help students avoid paying for childcare, and those who hold full-time employment do not have to put their careers on hold to earn their degree.

Online degrees also tend to be more affordable than their on-campus counterparts. Students save money on room and board, as well as transportation costs and associated on-campus fees. Finally, students completing their online economics degree can choose between accelerated formats, full-time or part-time schedules, and synchronous or asynchronous coursework.

What Can I Do with an Online Economics Bachelor’s Degree?

A bachelor of science degree in economics is a versatile degree that prepares graduates for multiple careers and industries. An economics degree equips learners to research, compile data, analyze trends, and make forecasts that impact profit and loss. An online economics degree also lays a strong foundation for students who want to earn a master's degree or Ph.D. in economics, or work in fields such as business or marketing.

Skills & Knowledge Gained

An online economics degree prepares graduates for a diverse set of careers, such as government economist at the United Nations, or risk analyst at a bank or insurance firm. At most universities, the curriculum for a bachelor of science in economics includes courses in psychology, business, and political science. Additionally, numerous economics courses develop the broad spectrum of knowledge essential for their career. This includes general mathematics, such as calculus and statistics, and the principles of economics, like demand, supply, elasticity, macroeconomics, and microeconomics.

While earning an associate degree in economics, students generally pursue math-intensive knowledge in areas such as calculus, accounting, statistics, and business. Often, however, these two-year degrees launch students into a four-year program, such as an accredited online bachelor's degree in economics. Rarely do students leave an associate degree in economics prepared to assume a position as an analyst, economist, actuary, or researcher. Students pursuing a bachelor of economics, however, develop the critical-thinking, analytics, and research skills they need to succeed in the field and secure these positions.

Careers & Salary Potential

Careers in economics require professionals with an aptitude for math, a thorough grounding in the social sciences, and strong communication skills. Positions can be in settings as diverse as an international relations think tank, a state government office, or a major corporation. These diverse industries need economists who can understand the trends in order to mitigate risk and maximize profit for their company or the community at large.

  • Federal Government: The federal government's many responsibilities include taxation, managing commerce, and overseeing federal spending. Federal economists collect and analyze this data to help track and improve U.S. government policies. They earn a median salary of $113,950M.
  • Scientific Research and Development: Research and development professionals create new products and modify existing products for improved sales in the market. These economists analyze forecasts to make predictions about new product sales, and earn a median salary of $109,010.
  • Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services: Consultants work with firms to provide external assistance in strategic planning, marketing, financial planning, or other services. Economists in this field earn a median salary of $106,710.
  • State Government: State governments manage the public affairs of each state in the nation. Their economic responsibilities may include providing public goods and services, managing commerce, and stabilizing the state economy. State government economists earn a median salary of $70,390.
  • Finance and Insurance: These firms create, purchase, and sell financial instruments, such as bonds, securities, and insurance policies. Economists in this field often work as consultants on risk analysis and financial planning, and earn a median salary of $121,920.
Economist

Annual Median Salary: $102,490

By collecting, analyzing, and evaluating data, economists posit theories about economic trends relative to fields such as health, education, development, and the environment. Economists may work for companies to help them understand the impact of economic trends on their businesses. They may also work in government positions or at think tanks. These professionals may also apply their analysis to state or national economic policies and trends.

Actuary

Annual Median Salary: $101,560

Actuaries help companies by analyzing risks. Primarily working in the finance and insurance industries, actuaries use statistics, math, and financial theory to assess potential risk events and then develop plans to avoid or manage those events. Actuaries may specialize in health insurance, life insurance, property insurance, enterprise risk, or pensions and retirement.

Financial Analyst

Annual Median Salary: $84,300

Financial analysts help guide investors' decision-making, and usually work in securities or with financial investments and related contracts. Often called either securities analysts or investment analysts, these professionals study trends in business and economics, and evaluate data in order to make investment recommendations to their clients.

Management Analyst

Annual Median Salary: $82,450

Sometimes called management consultants, management analysts offer their skills in analysis, communication, and problem-solving to help companies identify areas for improvement. Often, management analysts look for ways to save on expenses or to increase revenue. They may also specialize in a specific industry, such as pharmaceutical production or banking.

Market Research Analyst

Annual Median Salary: $63,230

Market research analysts use their strong math and analytical skills to help companies determine what products people will want to purchase. They examine the public's interest in buying an item and at what price point. Many analysts work in the technical, scientific, finance, and insurance fields, although most industries can make use of their skills.