ECON 430 Econometrics Course Guide

Course Description

This course introduces the theory and applications of econometrics: the application of statistical methods to economic data. Many of the methods introduced in this course are also used in business, finance, and many other disciplines. The course includes a review of probability theory, mathematical expectation, and theoretical probability distributions. Modeling techniques are also utilized for hypothesis testing and economic forecasting. We will learn how to construct econometric models, estimate the parameters of those models, and interpret the parameter estimates.

Assessable Learning Objectives

Students will:

       1. demonstrate an understanding of the basic concepts in econometrics;

       2. relate economic questions to empirical observations and try to deal with those using
           econometric models based on sound hypotheses;

       3. have a working knowledge of a statistical software and use it to address empirical

       4. demonstrate the ability to apply econometric principles by writing a quality paper and
           giving oral presentations of the findings of the paper.


Course Outline

  • A Review of Statistics
  • The Linear Regression Mode
                   - Basic Ideas
                   - Hypothesis Testing
  • Multiple Regression
  • Functional Forms
  • Dummy Variables
  • Model Selection
  • Multicollinearity
  • Heteroscedasticity
  • Autocorrelation
  • Some Advanced Topics in Econometrics


Recommended Teaching Methodology

A primary objective in teaching this class is to engage students in active learning and critical thinking about econometrics concepts.

The primary method of teaching will likely stress interactive lecture and class discussion. Presentations should clarify and amplify text material, providing students with the opportunity to engage in discussion regarding course topics.

Secondary methods include the discussion of empirical articles. Articles may be assigned for oral and/or written presentation and discussion.


Recommended Assessment Measures

Regular assessment serves to provide feedback in several ways. First, assessment provides feedback to students on their achievement and on areas of weakness. Second, assessment provides one kind of incentive for students to actively engage and study course material. Third, assessment is a necessary component in the process by which student evaluation is quantified for purposes of course grades. Finally, assessment provides feedback to the faculty on how well or poorly students’ performance lines up with course objectives. Design of assessment measures for the course should satisfy each of these objectives. 

  1. The primary method for assessing the attainment of knowledge is expected to be the final paper. The quality of the paper is an indicator of the knowledge (both theoretical and applied) acquired throughout the semester. There will also be oral presentations of the findings of the final paper. The criteria for evaluating the final paper (project) should be clearly identified and explained by the professor.
  2. The secondary method for assessing the attainment of knowledge is expected to be periodic exams. Exams must be designed to assess the student’s level of understanding and ability to discuss material, from the text and class discussions, that is directly related to the learning objectives.
  3. Problem sets and quizzes will also be utilized to achieve and assess the attainment of learning objectives.

Statement of Expectations

Students should expect that the average weekly workload in this course would be three hours in class plus a minimum of seven hours of studying and assignment preparation. They should be able to discuss the core ideas contained in the readings. Some of the ideas are relatively easy while others are very difficult. Econometrics (economics in general) is a relatively esoteric subject with a very specialized vocabulary. Students are expected to learn the vocabulary of econometrics. Most of the learning that will take place will not happen in the classroom. Students should understand that most learning takes place when they are working on the material outside of class, when they are reading, thinking critically, analyzing, and applying concepts and techniques. The amount that students learn and the level of skill that is developed will be directly related to the amount of effort that is expended. Classes are opportunities to discuss and apply the material. They are also opportunities for professors to provide insight, to help students attain understanding, and for the evaluation of performance.

Prerequisite Knowledge and Skills

The most important prerequisites are an interest in the subject, a willingness to commit the necessary resources in terms of time and intellectual effort, and a desire to actively participate in the learning process. Formally, ECON 101, ECON 102, and QBUS 200 (or ATDV 110) are prerequisites. This course will require a challenging mix of analytic, quantitative, and communication skills. Students should be prepared to deal extensively with the graphs, algebraic concepts, and detailed technical language. Students having concerns about their level of preparation should see their instructor.

Institutional Mechanism for Providing Feedback for Continuous Quality Improvement

Individual professors teaching this course will evaluate each student based on course objectives. Performance assessments will be summarized and reported to the department head or a designate, with separate assessments for relevant learning outcomes. Performance assessments from multiple sections and professors will be compiled into a single comparative report. This report will be utilized for periodic evaluation of the course. The fundamental objective of reviewing student outcomes across course sections is to provide regular feedback for improving instructional effectiveness