Best Online Bachelor’s in Economics

Best Online Bachelor’s in Economics

Find top-ranked online bachelor’s in economics degree programs that have rich histories of hiring and producing influential economists. A great online bachelor’s in economics can prepare you for a rewarding career or for graduate studies.

Key Takeaways

  • Economics as a discipline has a personal and professional impact on students, as well as on society. The continued interest in economics among college students is partly due to the varied applications in daily life that its study brings.
  • An online bachelor’s in economics degree paves the way for diverse career opportunities, from business and finance to education. The hard and soft skills learned makes it possible to enjoy flexibility in career options. Career options include finance analysts, business reporters, and cost estimators.
  • Students who are economics majors can have a positive impact by contributing to economic thought via research and other activities.

An online bachelor’s degree in economics is an excellent starting point for a career in finance, policy development, marketing, and a host of other highly lucrative fields. As an economics major, you’ll study production, consumption, wealth transfer, and the way these activities relate to policy and governance. Your economics degree will also incorporate such core principles of monetary policy, budget planning, and cost analysis. The best schools for economics are those which are regionally accredited, which offer a full array of economics concentrations, and which give you the chance to work with the best and most influential professors and classmates.

Degree popularity: Economics bachelor’s degrees are the 35th most popular undergraduate degrees across all student demographics. It’s most popular among Asian men and women, for whom it ranks as the 17th most desired degree, according to the number of degree earners reported by the National Center for Educational Statistics

All About the Economics Online Bachelor’s Program

The enduring popularity of online bachelor’s in economics degrees isn’t surprising considering that the United States has produced 57 Nobel Prize laureates in Economic Sciences! Economics majors have plenty of inspiration to look up to and, thus, become inspired to make their mark in the social sciences.

Definition of Economics

Economics majors focus on the study of scarcity of resources and its implications on the allocation of resources in relation to the production of goods and services. Economics students also study modern economic thought, economic history, and economic development in the context of scarcity.

The best online bachelor’s in economics degree programs adopt a multidisciplinary approach, as befits economics being part of the social sciences. In fact, all economics degrees regardless of their degree type (e.g., Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science) are social science degrees!

But the study of economics itself is a distinct discipline with its own set of principles, procedures, and practices albeit with borrowings from other social sciences.

Student Learning Outcomes

 

Students develop a robust liberal arts foundation during the entirety of their online education and then gain effective technical skills through upper-division courses in economics.

Aside from economics courses, students are also introduced to topics in business administration, sociology, and psychology. Math skills, particularly in statistics and data analysis, are also emphasized. Keep in mind that economic analysis is at the heart of what economists do for a living and as a profession.

The best online economics programs tackle macroeconomics, microeconomics, and international economics. Such comprehensive coverage reinforces the fact that economics isn’t just about the national and international economy—it’s also personal and, thus, has a profound impact on our lives.

Impact of Economics Majors on Society?

Students of online bachelor’s in economics programs also prepare for their future roles as economists and other related professions. While economists have a reputation for being armchair professionals, their profound impact on the economy and society cannot be dismissed!

Economists provide valuable services through research, data analysis, and ideas that are instrumental in shaping national and international economic growth and development. Nearly everything in our modern lives, from our consumer spending habits to international trade agreements, even regional wars, are influenced by economics!

Pursuing a bachelor’s in economics degree will also have an impact on your daily life, including your personal views. Your financial values and spending habits will change with your insights into economics. You can educate your family and friends about the impact of decisions made by the government on their lives.

On a professional scale, a bachelor’s in economics degree is a versatile credential because it opens doors of opportunities in business, finance, and governance. You can also use it as a stepping stone toward graduate studies, such as a master’s degree in economics or business administration. You can also dive into research projects and make contributions to modern economic thought.

Your online bachelor’s in economics degree will also strengthen your soft skills and, thus, contribute to your personal growth. Analysis, critical thinking, and communication skills are par for the course among economics graduates.

Other Important Aspects of Economics Programs

The average time-to-completion for online bachelor’s in economics programs is 4-5 years of full-time studies. Accelerated and 4+1 programs have different durations ranging from three to five years.

Aside from the didactic economics courses, students may also have to complete other graduation requirements. The common ones are an internship, which can be a paid or unpaid experience, a capstone project, and a thesis.

Prospective students of online bachelor’s in economics programs must be prepared for the challenges of meeting the standards of academic excellence.

Admission itself is on a competitive basis with requirements like a high school diploma or associate degree with minimum GPA; standardized test scores and placement tests; and letters of recommendation, personal statements, and resume.

Frequently Asked Questions About Economics Bachelor’s Degrees

Earning a bachelor’s degree in economics can open numerous professional doors. You could work as an internal financial consultant for a big company, as a stock trade for a brokerage firm, or as an analyst for a government think tank. In fact, the skills and knowledge you’ll acquire in your degree program are highly transferable. This means that your understanding of concepts such as local market behavior, small business enterprising, and investment banking could land you a role in any sector that interests you. The best schools for economics will put you in a position to become a leader in an array of fast-paced and well-paying fields.

Today, top influencers in economics are illuminating topics such as new economic geography, information asymmetry theory, wealth and income inequality, and much more.

Back to Top

Economics is an excellent major because it can provide a pathway into countless fields and career opportunities. If you’re looking for a well-paying and secure job, an economics degree is a great place to start. Students who major in economics gain skills that are in high demand across a wide range of professional sectors. Abilities such as budget analysis, cost estimation, and market analysis make economics majors highly employable. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of job opportunities for economists is expected to grow by a robust 14% by 2029.

Back to Top

Once you’ve declared your major in economics, you will likely be required to complete a set of core courses in a number of related subject areas. While your concentration will give you a chance to choose from a wide range of highly-specialized economics electives, there are a number of common courses that most economics majors will be required to take, including:

  • Principles of Economics
  • Money and Banking
  • Economics of Healthcare
  • Globalization
  • Econometrics
  • Labor Studies
  • Economics and the Developing Sphere
  • Gender and Economy
  • Financial Markets
  • Sustainability and Development

Back to Top

Earning a degree in economics can qualify you for a number of well-paying jobs. Your specialized knowledge qualifies you to work in one of the better-paying professional fields. According to the BLS, financial analysts earned a median salary of $81,590 in 2019, while personal financial advisors earned $87,850, and economists pulled in $105,020.

With a degree in economics, you’ll have a chance to pursue an array of high-paying opportunities, including these top jobs:

Back to Top

Learn more about how to major in economics.

Best Online Bachelor's in Economics Degrees Programs Back to Top

Online Bachelor’s in Economics: Deciding on Our Top Picks

The online bachelor’s in economics degree programs in this listing were chosen primarily for their academic excellence. The world-class quality of instruction ensures that students develop their knowledge and skills in a progressive manner. Students engage in continuous skills development via a well-rounded curriculum consisting of general education, elective, and major economics courses.

The quality of instruction also depends on the professional credentials, teaching approach, and even the personality of the faculty members. These online economics bachelor’s degree programs are known for the topnotch competence of the professors. Many of the faculty members are also engaged in economics research projects, thus, economics majors have the opportunity to participate in research.

The learning management systems (LMS) used in these online economics bachelor’s degree programs also contribute to excellent student experiences. Economics students have 24/7 access to their course materials, collaboration, and productivity tools, and other LMS features.

Their online learning experiences enrich their academic lives, too, through access to a wide range of resources in digital libraries.

Each online bachelor in economics program provides exceptional student support services that make it easier for online students to succeed. These services include virtual one-on-one and group tutoring, 24/7 IT help desk, and writing services, as well as career services for graduating students.

Back to Top

Ranking: Best Online Bachelor’s in Economics Degree Programs

  1. #4

    Missouri State University

    Springfield , MO

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    87%

    Graduation

    58%

    Student body

    17K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1140/24

    Online Degrees

    BS in General Business

    Concentrations

    • Markets and Economies
    • Business Relationships
    • Financial and Quantitative Analysis
    • International Business Environment
    • Project and Technology Management
    • Risk Management and Compliance
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  2. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $9K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    39%

    Student body

    5K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1155/21

    Online Degrees

    BBA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Economics
    • Finance
    • General Business
    • Leadership
    • Marketing
    • Sport Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  3. #6

    Elon University

    Elon , NC

    Tuition + fees

    $39K

    Acceptance

    72%

    Graduation

    83%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1240/27

    Online Degrees

    BSBA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Economics & Finance
    • Required Credits: 147
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  4. #7

    Empire State College

    Saratoga Springs , NY

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Graduation

    27%

    Student body

    7K

    Online Degrees

    BS in Business, Management and Economics
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
    BA in Professional Studies

    Concentrations

    • Business
    • Management and Economics
    • Required Credits: 124
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  5. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    93%

    Graduation

    51%

    Student body

    9K

    Online Degrees

    BA in Social Science

    Concentrations

    • Economics
    • Anthropology
    • Criminal Justice
    • History (any prefix)
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • or Sociology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  6. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    57%

    Graduation

    52%

    Student body

    12K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1060/19

    Online Degrees

    BS in Economics
    • Required Credits: 179
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  7. Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    76%

    Graduation

    52%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1090/21

    Online Degrees

    BA in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  8. Tuition + fees

    $14K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    46%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1050/21

    Online Degrees

    BA in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 Years
    • Format: Online
    BB in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 Years
    • Format: Online
  9. Tuition + fees

    $8K

    Acceptance

    58%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    8K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1040/20

    Online Degrees

    BBA in Economics

    Concentrations

    • Law and Economics Specialization
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
    BS in Economics

    Concentrations

    • Digital Collaboration and Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
    BAAS in Applied Arts and Sciences

    Concentrations

    • Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  10. #13

    Ottawa University

    Ottawa , KS
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $37K

    Acceptance

    70%

    Graduation

    37%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    975/19

    Online Degrees

    BA in Business Economics

    Concentrations

    • Finance Concentration
    • Human Resources Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 49
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS/BA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Actuarial Science Concentration
    • Economics Concentration
    • Educational Business Services Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Health Care Management Concentration
    • Human Resources Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 52
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Strategic Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Actuarial Science Concentration
    • Economics Concentration
    • Educational Business Services Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Health Care Management Concentration
    • Human Resources Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 50
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Accounting

    Concentrations

    • Actuarial Science Concentration
    • Economics Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 39
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Health Care Management

    Concentrations

    • Economics Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Human Resources Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 48-52
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Human Resources

    Concentrations

    • Economics Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Health Care Management Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 54
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BA in Leadership & Management

    Concentrations

    • Economics Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • Human Resources Concentration
    • Required Credits: 59
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS/BA in Management Information Systems

    Concentrations

    • Economics Concentration
    • Finance Concentration
    • ITS - Information Technology Systems Concentration
    • Leadership and Management Concentration
    • Required Credits: 51
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  11. #14

    Regent University

    Virginia Beach , VA

    Tuition + fees

    $19K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1105/22

    Online Degrees

    BS in Business Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  12. Tuition + fees

    $7K

    Acceptance

    67%

    Graduation

    19%

    Student body

    3K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1009/18

    Online Degrees

    BBA in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4-5 years
    • Format: Online
  13. Tuition + fees

    $11K

    Acceptance

    83%

    Graduation

    50%

    Student body

    6K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1097/23

    Online Degrees

    BA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Accounting
    • Computer Information Systems
    • Economics
    • Finance
    • Professional Management
    • Professsional Marketing
    • Computer Science
    • Information Technology
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  14. Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Acceptance

    91%

    Graduation

    42%

    Student body

    7K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1005/19

    Online Degrees

    BS in Business Administration (Economics Track)
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 24-36 months
    • Format: Online
  15. #18

    Park University

    Parkville , MO

    Tuition + fees

    $12K

    Graduation

    28%

    Student body

    8K

    Online Degrees

    BS in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
    BS in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Accounting
    • Business Economics
    • International Business and Economic Development
    • Labor Economics
    • Computer Information Management
    • Corporate Financial Management
    • Digital Marketing
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Health Care
    • Human Resource Management
    • International Business
    • Logistics
    • Management
    • Marketing
    • Personal Financial Planning
    • Professional Sales
    • Project Management
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  16. Tuition + fees

    $18K

    Graduation

    61%

    Student body

    9K

    Online Degrees

    BS in Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  17. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    77%

    Graduation

    53%

    Student body

    1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1055/20

    Online Degrees

    BS in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Economics and Accounting
    • Introduction to Business
    • Advanced Business Principles
    • Human Resources and Marketing
    • International Business
    • Introduction Sport and Recreation Business
    • Advanced Sport and Recreation Business
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  18. Tuition + fees

    $35K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    57%

    Student body

    2K

    Online Degrees

    BA in Professional Psychology; Organizational Psychology

    Concentrations

    • Business Law
    • Microeconomics
    • Macroeconomics
    • Organization and Management
    • International Business
    • Human Resources Management
    • Marketing
    • Industrial and Organizational Psychology
    • Required Credits: None Reported
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  19. #22

    Elizabeth City State University

    Elizabeth City , NC

    Tuition + fees

    $3K

    Acceptance

    75%

    Graduation

    43%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    962/18

    Online Degrees

    BSBA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Economics & Finance
    • Required Credits: 147
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  20. #23

    Limestone University

    Gaffney , SC

    Tuition + fees

    $26K

    Acceptance

    68%

    Graduation

    33%

    Student body

    2K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1065/21

    Online Degrees

    BS in Business

    Concentrations

    • Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 4 years
    • Format: Online
  21. Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $31K

    Acceptance

    71%

    Graduation

    44%

    Student body

    <1K

    Median SAT/ACT

    985/18

    Online Degrees

    BA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Accounting
    • Economics
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Finance
    • Marketing
    • Management
    • Non-Profit Management
    • Sports Management
    • Required Credits: 30
    • Completion time: None Reported
    • Format: Online
  22. #25

    Liberty University

    Lynchburg , VA
    Other Rankings

    Tuition + fees

    $23K

    Acceptance

    50%

    Graduation

    54%

    Student body

    75K

    Median SAT/ACT

    1150/24

    Online Degrees

    BSBA in Business Administration

    Concentrations

    • Economics
    • Required Credits: 120
    • Completion time: 3.5 years
    • Format: Online
Back to Top

Online Degree Frequently Asked Questions

If this is your first time taking an online course, the experience may require a time of adjustment. Although you’ll typically learn the same material and take the same exams as your on-campus peers, going online will require greater independence and responsibility than going in person. You’ll be accountable for your own time management, for harnessing the online educational technology that you’ll need to use, and for completing the course requirements, such as listening to lectures, learning lessons, reading texts, and handing in assignments. This means you’ll need to create a suitable workspace for yourself, maintain a realistic schedule, and take the initiative in building relationships with your instructors and classmates. With online college, your goal is to find a balance between independence and engagement.

No. The only part of online education that’s easier than campus-based education is ease of access: all you need is a computer and an internet connection for online education. But even this seeming advantage of online education can be misleading: what’s easier, studying online with your computer and internet connection from your home where you need to cook, clean, pay rent, and maintain a job? Or studying on campus in a dorm where all your living needs are handled by the school, and college staff are there to help you every step of the way?

If you take the commute to campus out of the equation, campus-based education is easier. All the support structures available on campus for students, especially with real people to help you in person, are not there online. The demands on you as an online student will largely be the same as for your campus-based counterpart, but without the same helps.

In general, your online courses will present the same material and test you in the same way as traditional in-person courses. In many cases, you’ll even have the same instructors as your on-campus counterparts. In fact, if you are adjusting to the experience of independent learning with remote educational technology for the first time, online college may be considerably more challenging than campus-based college. For a few insights on how to manage this new online experience, check out our 10 Tips for Adjusting to School Online.

Accreditation is especially important when it comes to online college. This is because the online education landscape is a mix of highly-reputable non-profit institutions on the one end and less-than-reputable for-profit institutions on the other end. Accreditation gives you the power to identify the more reputable actors in online education. Accreditation is a stamp of approval from an independent accrediting agency indicating that a college or university is meeting standards of quality and credibility. School-wide accreditation falls into two major categories: regional and national accreditation. Regional accreditors generally hold jurisdiction only over schools in the states comprising their region, whereas national accreditors hold jurisdiction over schools in all states. Regional accreditation is widely regarded as a more rigorous standard of quality and credibility than national accreditation.

Attending a college or university that is not regionally accredited could limit your opportunities. For students seeking an online education, we strongly recommend that they opt for regionally accredited schools. Regional accreditation ensures eligibility for federal loans and grants, ensures your college credits can be transferred between schools, and ensures that your degree credits can be accepted if you wish to earn an advanced degree. For more on this important topic, check out our What is Accreditation and Why Does It Matter? College & University Accreditation Guide.

As long as your online college degree is regionally accredited (see the previous point), you should have little difficulty transferring most of your credits or credentials to another regionally accredited undergraduate school. Every school carries its own standards and procedures for granting a transfer of credits. In many cases, you will encounter some bureaucratic haggling in which some of your credits will be transferred and others may be refused. However, provided that you have attended an online school with recognized regional accreditation, you should be in good shape in transferring your credits earned online.

In most cases, as long you graduate from a well-regarded, regionally-accredited online college, prospective employers won’t look sideways at your degree. In fact, unless you attend an exclusively online college or university, there will likely be no specific indicator on your degree, transcript, or resumé differentiating your school from its brick-and-mortar counterpart. This means that your employer will likely only differentiate between an online and in-person degree if you mention this distinction.

Some employers may express the concern that because you did your degree online, you may need to transition from an online education experience to in-person workplace experience. But in an age of Covid, that concern seems much diminished. The fact is that much employment these days is remote. And collaboration increasingly happens online over Zoom. Many employers will therefore view your online degree as evidence of valuable 21st century professional skills such as independence, self-motivation, time management, and tech savvy.

If you are a student who thrives on the dynamic energy of in-person discussion, who requires the physical surroundings of a classroom to feel engaged, or who considers the social aspects of education to be of equal importance to the actual content of your courses, online education will be less than ideal for you (though depending on your circumstances, it may also be the only viable option).

While there is much in traditional campus-based education that can be substituted or simulated through the online medium, some students may find that there is nothing that can replace the conversation, collaboration, and motivation that occur in an actual in-person classroom setting. As you transition to online education, one of the biggest challenges you will likely face in getting the most out of your online classes is overcoming this difference between “real reality” and “virtual reality.” Fortunately, we’ve got some great Tips for Online Education Beginners.

The advantages of online classes are many. Above all, online courses give you the freedom and flexibility to attend class from anywhere that works for you, whether you’re at home, in a coffee shop, or in a quiet conference room at work. In many cases, you’ll also enjoy the convenience of asynchronous learning opportunities-educational experiences that you can complete at your own pace and on your own schedule. This may include pre-taped lectures, ongoing chat-board discussions, and 24/7 access to digital materials. And of course, just as there are some learners who prefer the energy of a live classroom, there are those who learn best when working in their own personal space, free from distractions. If this sounds like you, you might find the solitude of online learning to be a major advantage.

Resources for Online College-Bound Students

Whether you’re just getting started on your college search, you’re looking for survival tips on your way to a bachelor’s degree, or you’re preparing for the transition into grad school, we’ve got guides, how to’s and tons of other valuable resources to keep you moving forward in your educational journey.