First Semester Schedule for a Prospective Econ/Govt Double Major

<p>I've been a regular on this forum for some time now and as some of you may know, I plan on double majoring in Economics and Government with a significant amount of mathematics thrown into the mix. Since I'm pretty set on this, I'd like to start out in a focused manner. For the record, I've formally taken neither economics nor government in high school, but my self-study in microeconomics is more or less equivalent to the offerings of the AP Micro curriculum. On the mathematics front, I have a 5 in AP Calc BC and AP Stats as well as one semester's worth of game theory background.</p>

<p>Also, depending on how difficult the Hindi placement is (if anyone has taken it before, please do comment), there is a good chance I'll place out of the language requirement. I've taken the subject for eleven years and consider myself fluent. </p>

<p>So, the classes I'm planning to take are:</p>

<p>1. GOVT1817: Introduction to International Relations (Katzenstein) - I've heard this class is one of Cornell's best offerings, especially when taken with Peter Katzenstein. IR is also an area that I'm keenly interested in, so I'm pretty certain this class is going to stay on my schedule. I'm also aware of its reputation for being difficult and having a heavy workload. </p>

<p>2. ECON1120: Introduction to Macroeconomics (Wissinik)</p>

<p>3. ECON 3010: Microeconomics (Benjamin) - I feel that the introductory course might be a little unstimulating. I also have a reasonably good background in math and would like to try and kill two birds with one stone instead of taking the 1110-3130 sequence. I've also heard pretty good things about Benjamin. </p>

<p>4. MATH 2210: Linear Algebra (Sjamaar) - An email exchange with the Math department advisor suggests that this is the place to start. I decided against Calc 3, because it causes a scheduling clash and it is described as appropriate for students who're in majors that are not math-intensive. </p>

<p>*5. FWS *</p>

<p>6. PE: Introduction to Bowling</p>

<p>Please take a stab at this schedule and let me know what you think about the workload, professors, etc.</p>

<p>Good list. Second semester, however, I would encourage you to take a course or two outside of your major -- religion, evolution, etc.</p>

<p>Thanks CayugaRed2005. I do hope to take a couple of courses across the disciplines when I have the opportunity, but for now, I'd like to finish most of the prerequisites in each of my majors so that I'll have access to the upper-level Economics and Government classes as soon as possible.</p>

<p>Katzenstein was well-known for being a great young prof way, way back in the day when I attended Cornell--now he must be a great old prof!</p>

<p>Also back in the day, the most serious econ students often skipped the freshman sequence and went straight to the 300-level, as you're proposing to do here, even without AP or similar prior study. Taking both micro and macro in the same semester is an awful lot of econ. You might want just to take one of these next semester, and diversify a bit. How about, say, classics, or linguistics, or art history? One of the great features of the American university system in general, and Cornell A & S in particular, is the opportunities it gives you to broaden and branch out.</p>

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Katzenstein was well-known for being a great young prof way, way back in the day when I attended Cornell--now he must be a great old prof!

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<p>Well, he definitely does have the reputation of one.</p>

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You might want just to take one of these next semester, and diversify a bit. How about, say, classics, or linguistics, or art history? One of the great features of the American university system in general, and Cornell A & S in particular, is the opportunities it gives you to broaden and branch out.

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</p>

<p>Government and economics are actually steps towards diversification. I went to one of those math/science high schools and as a result was heavily deprived of exposure to the social sciences, at least beyond what I learned through self-study or internships.</p>

<p>I would recommend that you take the 101 - 3130 sequence if you're a Govt/Econ major, as it gives you a basis in the theory rather than the math. I've heard that 3010 and 3020 are more math intensive. </p>

<p>With that said, I don't think you'll go wrong either way.</p>

<p>@cornell2011: I don't believe that 3010's intensive focus on mathematics necessarily means a decreased emphasis on theory. From what I've seen of the course, it seems to be concerned with optimization problems and the usage of calculus in proving economic results. In any case, I do hope to do a significant amount of math at Cornell, probably equivalent to a math minor (which isn't offered by Cornell).</p>

<p>if you want to be an econ major you shouldnt do 3010/3020 but 3130/3140 because 3010/3020 are meant for nonmajors.</p>

<p>The reason that the courses are listed as "for non-majors" is because of a reduced emphasis on economic theory. I've been to lectures for 301-302, and there is much less theory in this class than its 3130 - 3140 counterparts. This makes sense if you think about it. Fitting two semesters of economic theory into one will inevitably require some cutbacks.</p>

<p>In addition, you'll be doing math problems for the most part, which unfortunately isn't economics.</p>

<p>
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The reason that the courses are listed as "for non-majors" is because of a reduced emphasis on economic theory. I've been to lectures for 301-302, and there is much less theory in this class than its 3130 - 3140 counterparts. This makes sense if you think about it. Fitting two semesters of economic theory into one will inevitably require some cutbacks.

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<p>Your point doesn't seem intuitive to me. 301 does combines two 3 credit courses into one 4 credit course, but in so doing, it removes some of the repetition that will naturally be involved in the 101-313 series (some of which arises from having to reintroduce concepts with more mathematical sophistication in 313). </p>

<p>Both 313 and 301 use the same textbooks (Varian's Intermediate Macroeconomics) and the course outlines cover roughly the same chapters. The course syllabi for 3010 written by both Wissinik (Econ</a> 301 Wissink) and Benjamin (emailed to me by the professor) say the following:</p>

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The sequence is designed for mathematics, natural science or engineering students who want a more analytically oriented course sequence than Economics 101, 102 and for potential economics majors with strong analytical skills who can not place out of 101 and 102 from high school or elsewhere.

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<p>My primary concern with 301 is that I can't decide if I have 'strong analytical skills', not so much that I'll be deprived of an adequate background in economic theory.</p>

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In addition, you'll be doing math problems for the most part, which unfortunately isn't economics.

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<p>Most upper-level economics and graduate programs in economics are actually heavily mathematical. As long as I'm not being given a problem in number theory in a class called Microeconomics, I don't think learning economics from a mathematical perspective is a bad idea for the long-term.</p>