About the Economics Program
The field of Economics analyzes how society governs the production and distribution
of goods and services, decisionmaking by members of the economy, and relevant contemporary
economic issues. Through a process of informed and critical investigation of contemporary
society, our faculty utilize both conventional and alternative perspectives in the
field to explain how markets function, address the many unresolved problems of economic
policy, and evaluate potential shortcomings of the traditional explanations of economic
The study of Economics provides students with the knowledge required to be actively
engaged participants in economic affairs. It also provides students with an analytical
and critical thinking skill set necessary to address persistent social problems such
as economic inequality, climate change, racial injustice, pandemics, and poverty.
The study of Economics also prepares students for a variety of interesting career
paths in business, finance, banking, and government, as well as politics, international
relations, education, law, and health and human services. Governments at all levels,
as well as international organizations, are significant employers of Economics majors.
Economic consulting is also a rapidly growing area of employment for majors, as are
both commercial and investment banking.
A Career in Economics
Information from the American Economic Association (AEA):
“A career in Economics…it’s much more than you think. These four individuals offer
their insights on how a background in Economics can be a tool for solving very human
A career in Economics…it’s much more than you think
- Marcella Alsan, a physician of infectious disease, discusses why she needed to pursue
a degree in Economics to improve the lives of her patients.
- Randall Lewis, a research scientist at Google, uses Economics and "big data" as tools
to improve the functioning of markets.
- Britni Wilcher, a PhD student of Economics, offers insight on some misconceptions
about economists, and factors influencing her career path decision.
- Peter Henry, dean at the NYU Stern School of Business, points to the true nature of
Economics and the importance of diverse voices informing the field."
Many colleges and universities offer baccalaureate degrees in this field. Students
planning to transfer to a four-year college or university need to know which courses
completed at Santa Monica College will be accepted at the specific college/university.
Please consult a Counselor. SMC has transfer articulation agreements with the many UC and CSU campuses, as well as many private and out-of-state institutions.
Degrees and Certificates
Associate in Arts for Transfer - Economics
18 units + General Education Requirements
Microeconomics and Macroeconomics involve the study of how society can best use scarce
resources such as land, raw materials, capital, and labor. The course of study analyzes
the relationships between the supply of goods and services and the demand for them,
as well as how these goods and services are produced, distributed, and consumed. Some
economists work on public issues such as the control of inflation, business cycles,
unemployment, wage, tax, and tariff policies.
Program Level Outcomes
Upon completion of the program, students will:
- Exhibit strong academic behaviors, evidenced by their timeliness, regular attendance,
participation in class activities, adherence to the College Honor Code, and awareness
of their opportunities and obligations as students.
- Demonstrate through oral and/or written work knowledge of how society can best use
scarce resources such as land, raw materials, capital, and labor.
Demonstrate the ability to evaluate evidence and make compelling arguments about the
relationships between the supply of goods and services and the demand for them, as
well as how these goods and services are produced, distributed, and consumed.
Potential Career Options
Need help planning for your major?
Our counselors are here to help you plan your academic classes, goals, and needs.
See an Academic Counselor
Special Departmental Programs