About the Undergraduate Program
The strong mathematical background of UC San Diego undergraduates allows the Department of Economics to offer a rigorous undergraduate program that provides a strong foundation in quantitative data analysis (econometrics), and microeconomic theory to all our majors.
The faculty, whose research has led the Department to be ranked the 14th best department by the most recent US World and News Report, all teach undergraduate courses. Additionally, several faculty have written undergraduate textbooks including Kate Antonovics (with Robert Frank & Ben Bernanke) on the next edition of "Principles of Economics;" James Rauch (with Gerald Meier), "Leading Issues in Economic Development;" Ross Starr, "General Equilibrium Theory: An Introduction;" and Joel Watson, "Strategy."
Valerie Ramey, a leading researcher in macroeconomics, Chair of the Department (2011-13), and winner of the Chancellors' Associates Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching explains:
"I teach introductory macroeconomics.One of the skills I teach is how to evaluate the current data to see how the economy is doing and where it is expected to go. I am able to do this because of years of research using macroeconomic data. Also, since it usually takes years for the latest research findings to make their way to undergraduate textbooks, I keep students up-to-date on the latest research findings. I also give them insight into why policy-makers are pursuing particular policies. For example, I have known the Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke since I was a graduate student and am well-acquainted with his research. Thus, I can explain to students why the Fed responds so vigorously to credit problems. In a nutshell, the advantage of having active researchers teach undergraduates is that they can take the students far 'beyond the textbook'."