The Department of Economics, where over 25% of majors come from countries other than the USA, already has a decidedly international vision. Economics is a field that transcends national boundaries.
As an economics major, you can study abroad during almost any term in your college career, including winter or summer, but there are some important factors to consider. If you begin your planning early, you can find a way to include an international experience into the heart of your work in economics. The information below will help in your planning and conversations with an economics advisor.
Prospective Economics Students
If you plan to major in economics, it is preferred that you complete your introductory microeconomics and macroeconomics courses (or two intermediate courses), as well as a college-level calculus course at UW-Madison. At that point the economics department can assess the likelihood of you entering the major, which means they can help you plan your study abroad as a student of economics. Attend the Study Abroad Fair or visit the Program Search on the International Academic Programs (IAP) website to have an idea of what programs are available to you. Schedule a meeting with advisors at IAP to learn more about your study abroad program options.
Once you have some clear program ideas, consult with the economics advisors. The more complex or ambitious your economics undergraduate program is (the number of additional majors or certificates, athletic or other heavy extracurricular involvement, etc.), the more you will need to plan in advance to fit study abroad in your academic career.
Economics Course Considerations Abroad
Almost all economics courses taken abroad will equate to a UW-Madison economics elective; very few will equate to Advanced Electives in Economics – of which at least two are required – and which must be taken on the UW-Madison campus.
The Economics Department highly encourages you to take an economics course or two in any study abroad program you may choose to learn how other places study economics. It’s a great enhancement and addition to the cultural immersion of a study abroad program.
Mapping Your Study Abroad Experience as an Economics Major
If you’re considering declaring an economics major, this may be a good time to earn some electives outside of the major. Freshmen can study abroad during winter intersession or summer terms.
Second semester of your sophomore year could be a good time to go abroad if you declare your economics major early.
This is the best and most popular year to do a study abroad as an economics major. You’ve most likely done the major theoretical work, and you’ve begun to explore electives and define your interests.
Economics majors can still study abroad during their senior year, although you will need to choose your location carefully to ensure that you can take specific classes you need for graduation. You’ll need to watch your Senior Residency Requirement closely with your Economics Advisor. You will need to be particularly mindful of the Economics Department’s stipulation that a minimum of two of your Advanced Electives in Economics be taken on the UW-Madison campus.
Questions to Ask
Your Academic Advisor
- What classes must I complete for my degree (breadth/depth, major requirements, etc.)?
- Do I need to be on UW-Madison’s campus for any courses in my major?
- How many electives do I have outside of my major?
Your Study Abroad Advisor
- What classes can I take abroad?
- How and when do I select courses for my program?
- When will I know course equivalents for my program?
- What is the class structure like abroad?
Identifying Programs That are Right for You
The Department of Economics has reviewed IAP programs and identified programs that are the best fit for students who want to earn Economics credit abroad below. However, courses offered as part of these programs may not be guaranteed to be the best fit for you depending on where you are in the major.
Australia: Monash University
China: Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
China: University of Hong Kong
Denmark: University of Copenhagen
England: London School of Economics
England: University of Southampton, England
Italy: Bocconi University Exchange
South Korea: Korea University
Turkey: Bogazici University
Search all IAP programs
Research all programs using the IAP Program Search page. The above is not an exhaustive list of all programs that offer Economics courses. There may be other programs that are a better fit for your individual needs or interests.