ECON 109 and Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics

ECON 109 - Basic Writing in Economics I is a prerequisite for all ECON courses at the 300- and 400-level and ECON 225. ECON 109 will be waived as a prerequisite upon successful completion of the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics. ECON 109 will be waived as a prerequisite for all graduate students.

 

What does this mean?

Students from all Faculties/Departments taking ECON courses at the 300- or 400-level or ECON 225/226 must prepare to either:

  1. Take (and pass) the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics; or
  2. Enroll in ECON 109
Please note the deadlines for Assessment completion: 
Completion Deadlines
For Courses in: Assessment Completion Deadline:
Spring 2022 March 9, 2022
Summer 2022: June 24, 2022
Fall 2022:  September 2, 2022

 

About ECON 109

ECON 109 is a course in basic writing in Economics, with a focus on developing the ability to write clearly on economic concepts, and illustrate the results of data analysis. ECON 109 is not open to students who have successfully completed the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension and Writing in Economics. ECON 109 cannot be used to fulfill Junior English requirements from any Faculty.

Note that ECON 109 is not enforced as a prerequisite in Bear Tracks; this will be verified by the Department at the start of each term. It is your responsibility to check the prerequisite(s) for the classes you are taking, and ensure you are meeting them.

About the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics

Update: The Assessment will return to in-person delivery, beginning Summer 2022. (See Completing the Assessment.) Upon the return to an in-person Assessment, there will be no online option available.

The Assessment will measure students' ability to read, comprehend, and summarize a non-scholarly article on a broad economic topic. Exam results will be released on eClass within three weeks of writing. The Assessment will be graded on a Pass/Fail basis, there will be no exam review after the exam, and the grade cannot be appealed.

Students can attempt the Assessment at most twice. The first attempt will be paid for by the Department of Economics. Students who wish to attempt the Assessment a second time will be required to pay a fee to the LAC.

Students who pass the Assessment will have ECON 109 waived as a prerequisite for all ECON courses at the 300- and 400-level. Students who fail the assessment twice will be required to take ECON 109. Students who fail the Assessment once can choose to enroll in ECON 109 rather than attempting the Assessment a second time.

Sample Assessment and Resources

Completing the Assessment

The Assessment will take approximately one hour to complete. Students are responsible for booking a time to write during the scheduled exam windows. For further details regarding completion of the Assessment, including a link to the registration form, see:

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I required to take ECON 109?
Only students who do not pass the Assessment are required to take ECON 109.

I am a graduate student. Am I required to take ECON 109 or the Assessment?
No. This requirement is waived for all graduate students.


Am I required to take the Assessment?
No. You can skip the Assessment entirely, and enroll into ECON 109 directly if you prefer.

I'm not an Economics major; does this change apply to me?
Yes, this change affects all students (except graduate students), regardless of major or program, who take courses in Economics at the 300- or 400-level or ECON 225/226.

Do I need to complete the Assessment each year or term I'm registered in 300/400 courses?
No. You only need to pass the Assessment once.

I was able to enroll in a 300-level ECON class without taking ECON 109 or the Assessment. Do I meet the prerequisites?
Not necessarily. Bear Tracks does not check the ECON 109 prerequisite, since there is the option of a waiver. Prerequisites will be manually checked by the Department at the start of each term.

What do I do next?
You should register for the next available Assessment.

  • Courses require successful completion of the Assessment in a previous term in order for ECON 109 to be waived.
  • If you do not pass the Assessment after a maximum of two attempts, you must enroll in ECON 109.
  • If you do not want to attempt the Assessment, you can enroll directly in ECON 109. ECON 109 must be completed as a prerequisite to any 300- or 400-level ECON courses.

ECON 109 Course Description

ECON 109 - Basic Writing in Economics I The course will introduce students to basic writing in the economics discipline. The focus is on developing the ability to write clearly on economic concepts, as well as illustrating results of data analysis. ECON 109 is a prerequisite for all ECON courses at the 300- and 400-level. ECON 109 will be waived as a prerequisite upon completion of the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics. Students who have successfully completed the Assessment of Reading, Comprehension, and Writing in Economics will not be permitted to enroll/receive credit in ECON 109. Students can contact the Department of Economics for more information about the Assessment. Prerequisite: ECON 101.