The Center for Economic Policy seeks to educate students and wider audiences about economic policy and markets, providing students with training in economic tools to analyze the regulatory and legal framework in which markets operate. Markets and government policies regulating them have always been central to economic growth, social welfare, and civil society, with policy decisions and legal frameworks inextricably tied to economic outcomes.

Whether it is the government debt consolidation undertaken by the South Sea Company (and Bank of England) in the early 1700s or the rise in mortgage debt and the 2008 financial crisis, financial markets and their functioning are inextricably linked with both household behavior and larger economic outcomes and policy decisions. The core Certificate courses teach basic finance tools necessary for understanding financial instruments and markets. Electives provide a broader range of topics related to household finance, international finance, and banking.

Learning Outcomes

Harris students earning the certificate often go into either the government financial sector (state & local government or central banking) or the private financial sector. Both place a high premium on the following skills and attributes:

  • Subject-area or field knowledge: Knowledge and familiarity with financial markets, financial instruments, and finance theory
  • Analytical and quantitative skills: Data analytics, statistics, programming
  • Practical application of the knowledge and skills to real-world situations

This certificate teaches the field knowledge but also builds on the substantive analytic training that all Harris students acquire in their core statistics and economics courses, while trying to focus on the practical applications.

Harris certificates function as areas of specialization within the degree. Certificates assume knowledge of the 6-course Harris Core and build upon that foundation with coursework in specific policy areas or technical skills.

Application Process

The certificate is open to any University of Chicago graduate student. Harris students please indicate your intent to pursue this certificate using the Harris Certificate Application Form. If you are a non-Harris student and intend to complete the requirements for the Finance and Policy certificate please submit the Harris Certificate Application for Non-Harris Students to indicate you are pursuing this certificate.

For certificate registration questions, please reach out to

Planning for the Certificate

For information on which quarter(s) each course will be offered see the Harris Courses page and filter by certificate. For courses offered by other divisions the typical quarter the class will be offered will vary. 

Certificate Requirements

The certificate requires completion of two required courses, along with one additional elective course. Students must achieve at least a B- grade in each course. No certificate course may be taken on a pass/fail grading basis. Students should complete the formal signup process to indicate their intention to pursue the certificate.

Required course

Students must complete one of the following courses to fulfill the requirement:

Required course

Students must complete one of the following courses to fulfill the requirement:

  • PPHA 34410 Corporate Finance 
  • BUSN 35200 Corporate Finance 
  • BUSN 35001 Introductory Finance (may be counted only once toward a requirement) 

Elective courses

Students must complete one of the following courses to fulfill the requirement:

Recommended Co-Curricular Activity

  • Students are recommended to attend two events in the “Harris Speakers on Economic Policy and Markets” or “History of Chicago Economics” speaker series during their second year.

Certificate Contact

Thomas Coleman, Certificate Director