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Calculus or Statistics or both for 4th high school math if heading into Economics?

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#1 teeterbunch


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Posted 06 December 2014 - 03:32 PM

My son is a junior this year and is taking pre-calculus/trig.  He is planning to major in Economics.  I think he would most enjoy a year long AP Statistics class next year, however, I don't know if he "needs" calculus on his transcript.  Another option is to take a semester of Calculus followed by a semester of Statistics at our local community college.  Advice??



#2 wapiti


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Posted 06 December 2014 - 04:27 PM

Whether he "needs" calc for his transcript depends on whether he is interested in applying to selective and/or highly-selective colleges.


In the long run, he will need calc in order to take calc-based statistics or econometrics in college.  Calc is a prerequisite for econometrics.  He could take calc when he gets to college, of course, preferably freshman year.

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#3 The Accidental Coach

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Posted 06 December 2014 - 05:10 PM

No direct experience here but a couple of DS's friends are entertaining econ and/or actuarial science as college majors.  They opted for both AP Calc and AP Prob and Stats.


I agree with Wapiti.  Many selective schools are looking for calc on the transcripts.

#4 Peach


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Posted 06 December 2014 - 06:35 PM

I was an Econ major the first time around :) If he can do both, do it. Unless the CC courses will transfer, he'll have to take them in college and having some knowledge under his belt will be a huge help. I'd never done stat and it was an absolute beast for me at the college level. 

#5 Pawz4me


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Posted 06 December 2014 - 08:31 PM

DS will major in business if he can get accepted to the (extremely competitive) business school at UNC next year.  If not, economics will be his major.  He took both AP statistics and AP calculus in high school.  If you can only get one in I'd go with calculus.

#6 jdahlquist


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Posted 06 December 2014 - 11:54 PM

Do you know if he wants to do an economics degree in a business school or through a liberal arts/humanities school?  He will need calculus at some point for economics.  How much he needs it on his transcript for college admission will depend on where he aims to go to school.  Some economics programs and specialties are highly mathematical and others are not.  Having a good, solid math background is important. Generally, I think calculus will provide a stronger background than statistics will at this point (but, of course, it always depends on the teacher, etc. for any given class).  

#7 cjzimmer1


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Posted 07 December 2014 - 06:09 PM

While we haven't been looking at economics majors, when looking at colleges in general I've seen more than 1 as specifying 4 years of math but stats doesn't count as math.  So I would say take calc to ensure 4 years of math but take stats too if he can handle the load.

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