Economics

Off-Campus Studies Mission Statement

Off-Campus Studies at Whitman College aims to develop in our students intercultural skills and global understanding for a lifetime of leadership.  We endeavor to achieve this goal by:

  • Providing off-campus study opportunities worldwide that offer high-quality academic content, instruction and evaluation.
  • Expanding learning opportunities for students and integrating the learning off-campus into their academic program to the fullest extent possible.
  • Promoting programs that increase a student’s foreign language and intercultural fluency.
  • Offering programs that foster an ability to question assumptions and think critically in the context of other worldviews.
  • Ensuring that programs are well integrated into the host community and encourage immersion of the student into the host culture. 
  • Developing the means by which returning students can actively contribute to international awareness and programming on campus, as well as in the Walla Walla community.

Off-Campus Studies can help Economics students…

  • Learn first-hand about different economic and political institutions as well as economic issues in other regions of the world
  • Gain awareness of the economics from a different scholarly tradition
  • Improve foreign language skills and cross-cultural communication and problem-solving skills
  • Prepare for an increasingly diverse and international workplace
  • Gain research skills from field studies or work with primary sources

What are the types of OCS programs recommended by the Economics department?

  • Direct enrollment in a foreign university with local students or at a study center with other U.S. students.
  • Programs that offer an opportunity for an internship embedded in an academic course as part of a program
  • Programs that offer an opportunity for independent research

How does a semester or year of OCS help students in Economics prepare for graduate school or various career opportunities? 

  • Off-Campus studies can provide students with international, professional and scholarly contacts.
  • Research undertaken off campus can inspire and inform honors thesis
  • research and provide a focus for graduate studies

Which requirements can Economics majors fulfill while off campus?

  • Elective major credit in consultation with your Economics major adviser
  • General Studies distribution credit
  • General degree credit

Planning Tips

As a general rule of thumb, the Economics Department recommends the following for students who wish to study off campus.

  • Students should begin enrolling in economics courses as soon as possible.
  • Students should successfully complete ECON 307 Intermediate Microeconomics and ECON 308 Intermediate Macroeconomics prior to studying off campus.  Note that MATH 125 Calculus I is a prerequisite for both of these courses.
  • Discuss your graduation plan fully with your Economics major adviser in your second year if you plan to study abroad.
  • Transfer of upper-level economics credits to fulfill the 300-level or above major requirements needs the approval of the economics department.  Please note that to qualify as upper division, at a minimum, economics courses abroad must have a prerequisite of Intermediate Microeconomics or Intermediate Macroeconomics.

Credit Limitations

The maximum number of credits that can be applied to the Economics major from off campus studies (including AP credit, IB credit and credits from other U.S. institutions) is 8 credits with the approval of your major adviser.

Please be aware that business courses typically cannot be transferred to Whitman because they are vocational in nature and not considered liberal arts.

Which Partner Programs are recommended by the Economics department?

Economics majors may participate in a wide variety of off-campus studies programs.  Students seeking to fulfill major requirements should consider direct enrollment at a university in the English-speaking world where upper-division economics courses are more likely to be available.  Economics majors who do not need to fulfill major requirements and who wish to hone foreign language skills and learn about economic issues in another society may choose from a wide range of programs in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and Oceania.

Advising Support

Students interested in Off-Campus Studies should attend an OCS First Step meeting in the fall of their second year, discuss their interests with their major adviser, and schedule an appointment with an OCS adviser.