»Course Descriptions

ECON 309: Advanced Experimental Design and Statistics
Prerequisite: MGSC 209, or MATH 203, or equivalent. Advanced statistics as employed in the construction and optimization of experimental designs and subsequent analysis of data. One and two-way ANOVA in detail from a linear modeling and least squares perspective (to match basic econometrics), contrasts, orthogonal contrasts, and power planning.

Course objectives:
(1) Understand experimental design, philosophically, statistically and scientifically (2) Understand statistical methods for creating good experimental designs (3) Know how to use statistics to analyze data from well-designed experiments.

ECON 420: Foundations of Economic Exchange   
Classical and neoclassical theory of economic exchange. Philosophical critiques and commendations of market exchange. Human nature as self-regarding in market exchange and other-regarding in social exchange. Property right systems in economic exchange. 

Course Objectives:
From the perspectives of two forms of rational orders, constructivist and ecological, this course will study the foundations of economic exchange.  We will examine the extent to which reason and the deliberate action of a constructivist order and the undesigned principles of norms and traditions in an ecological order can inform our understanding of impersonal exchange in markets and personal social exchange with friends, neighbors, and family.

ECON 464/564: Game Theory
(Same as MATH 464) Prerequisites: MATH 210 or ECON 496. In this course we will study some of the basic elements of Game Theory.  Game Theory studies environments in which the payoffs from an individual's actions depend upon the actions of others.  Game Theory attempts to develop an understanding of such situations and to provide a formal mathematical framework and solution concepts to help students make better strategic choices in these environments.

Course Objective:
Provide a formal mathematical framework to help students make better strategic choices in these environments. To gain an understanding of the basic elements of Game Theory. To learn how to make better strategic choices in an environment in which the benefits from an action depend upon the actions of others.  

ECON 471: Experimental Economics 1
A course designed to engage the student as an economic actor in a wide variety of environments. The economies we will study will be ones in which students will participate and generate the data that will then be the subject of examination in the classroom. We will explore how these studies parallel important questions in the at large economy today. Special topics include Pit Markets, Trust, Double Auctions, Asset Markets and Price Bubbles, Information Cascades, and Prediction Markets.

Course Objectives:
To show the applicability of experiments to important economic questions and to foster in the students mind a fundamentally scientific approach to settling questions of economic debate.

ECON 481: Economic System Design I
This course will introduce you to the analytical and engineering principles used in developing exchange systems. Students will be required to become familiar with the literature on applied mechanism design and understand the behavioral aspects of auction systems, matching, assignment and transportation problems. In addition, students will be introduced to methods for testbedding systems using experimental economics. 

Course Objectives:
After taking this course students should have an understanding of (1) The information and incentive constraints that affect the design of allocation mechanisms, (2) The design principles required to develop allocation mechanisms for complex systems and (3) The literature and practice of mechanism design.

ECON 530: Computational Economics
(Same as CPSC 430 and CS 531) This course will introduce students to the computational tools required to understand electronic exchange systems and implement economic experiments. Students will be required to become familiar with numerical analysis, computer simulation and programming of experiments.

Course Objectives:
After taking this course students should be able to (1) Use computational methods in solving economic exchange problems, (2) Implement an electronic exchange systems.

ECON 582: Economic System Design II
Prerequisites: ECON 581.  This course is intended to involve students in designing specific allocation mechanisms for specific problems. Students will be required to design and develop a mechanism to a specific allocation problem. Students must develop an analytical model, literature review and testbed for their mechanism.

Course Objectives:
After taking this course students should have a complete model of a solution to a specific allocation problem. This includes a full description of the problem and related literature review, a set of instructions and testbed. This will become a foundation of doing research in systems design.

ECON 683: Economic System Design III
Prerequisites: ECON 581, 582.  Students will be required to synthesize their knowledge of Economic Systems Design and Experimental Economics and apply it to a real world problem. 

Course Objectives:
Students must demonstrate an in depth knowledge of an existing economic exchange environment; provide at least one viable alternative arrangement for reorganizing the current exchange institution or resource allocation mechanism; test the original and alternative mechanisms in a controlled laboratory environment; and present results in a professional manner with both oral and written reports.

ECON 685 Economic Systems Design Lab I
Prerequisite, ECON 482 or 582. Laboratory to design and test resource allocation mechanisms. (Offered every year.) 

Course Objectives:
(1) Develop the experimental software and conduct the thesis research. Conduct experiments on the thesis topic and analyze the data from the experiments, (2)  Design and develop the required software to undertake your experiments and to show that you can conduct original research and analysis.

ECON 686 Economic Systems Design Lab II
Prerequisite, ECON 685. Laboratory to implement and redesign allocation mechanisms. (Offered every year.) 

Course Objectives:
(1) Develop the experimental software and conduct the thesis research, (2) Conduct experiments on the thesis topic and analyze the data from the experiments, (3) Design and develop the required software to undertake your experiments and to show that you can conduct original research and analysis.

ECON 689:  Seminar in Economic Science
Students required to pre-read papers presented by various speakers, attend their seminars, ask intelligent questions and summarize the content and importance of the seminar. May be repeated up to three semesters for credit. (Offered every semester.) 2 credits.

Course Objectives: 
(1) To expose students to a variety of current topics en Economics, (2) To improve students’ abilities to engage in dialogue, (3) To improve students’ capacity to read and abstract 

ECON 691 Economic Systems Design Thesis I
Prerequisites, ECON 483 or 683. Laboratory to implement and redesign allocation mechanisms. (Offered every year.) 

Course Objective:
Analyze data from experiments and write thesis.

ECON 692 Economic Systems Design Thesis II
Prerequisites, ECON 483 or 683, and successful proposal defense of thesis. Laboratory to implement and redesign allocation mechanisms.  (Offered every year.) 

Course Objective:
Analyze data from experiments and write thesis.

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