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Do Mind Your Mind

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Econometrics (Economics 360) Syllabus: Spring 2015 Instructor: Ben Van Kammen Office: Krannert 531 Office Hours: Friday, 10 a.m.-noon Email: bvankamm@purdue.edu Meeting Location: KRAN G010 Meeting Days/Times: TR 1:30-2:45 p.m. (001) TR 3-4:15 p.m. (002) TR 4:30-5:45 p.m. (003)

Course Description
This is an upper division economics course required for students pursuing a BS in economics. It is one of the few courses that explicitly covers empirical methods, i.e., the analysis of observed economic behavior in the form of data. Empirics stand in contrast to theory, e.g., micro and macro, about how agents behave. Despite this under-representation, empirical analysis comprises a large part of economists’ workload and is one of the most practical skills that an economics student can learn.

Course Objectives
In this class students will: 1. perform statistical and practical inference based on the results of empirical analysis, 2. identify useful characteristics of estimators, e.g., unbiasedness, consistency, efficiency, 3. state predictions of theoretical economic models in terms of testable hypotheses, 4. model economic relationships using classical methods, such as Ordinary Least Squares, derive the properties of estimators related to these methods, and 5. perform estimation using methods discussed in class using software, 6. perform diagnostic tests that infer whether a model’s assumptions are invalid, 7. evaluate empirical models based on whether their resulting estimators have desirable characteristics (see ii, above), 8. identify shortcomings of the empirical methods and data used in empirical analysis, 9. communicate the results of estimates clearly and concisely, in graphical, tabular and written form, 10. identify practical questions that can be answered using quantitative empirical methods and appropriate methods for answering them.

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