Teaching Economics with Excel


While the content of the typical undergraduate economics course has remained stable in recent decades, computers have become more powerful, easier to use, and as common as pencil and paper. In spite of these developments, teaching methods in the classroom remain virtually unchanged, with chalk-and-talk the dominant mode of delivery. This workshop will demonstrate how to utilize computer-based, active learning techniques to teach economics in a variety of subfields and different levels.

On the first day, we will work intensively with several Excel add-ins that have wide application, including: running Monte Carlo simulations, performing comparative statics analyses, downloading data directly into Excel from the St. Louis Fed's FRED database, and exploring long-run, global trends in real GDP per person with Maddison's World Economy data. The second day is devoted to working with prepared, macro-enabled workbooks for Econometrics, Intermediate Micro, Intermediate Macro, and Introductory Economics. We will work with lecture, lab, and flipped classroom deliveries.

This professional development will enable participants to create new course materials and content. Individual lectures, lab components, or entire courses can be reworked and enhanced, including flipping the classroom. Each day concludes with time for participants to explore workbooks and ideas on their own, with consultation if needed.

Dates and Location


Previous Workshops

Click on a date below to see a list of participants, comments, photos, and a description of that year's workshop:

May 27 - 28, 2016

May 28 - 29, 2015

June 13 - 14, 2014

June 12 - 14, 2013

June 13 - 15, 2012

June 22 - 24, 2011

June 16 - 18, 2010

You can also view a map of all Econ Excel Workshop Home Institutions. Faculty from small liberal arts colleges to large state universities and a few international institutions have attended.


Dr. Barreto is interested in using computers (especially Microsoft Excel) to improve the teaching and learning of economics. He is the Q. G. Noblitt Professor of Economics and Management at DePauw University and author, with Frank M. Howland, of Introductory Econometrics using Monte Carlo Simulation with Microsoft Excel (Cambridge University Press, 2006) and Intermediate Microeconomics with Microsoft Excel (Cambridge University Press, 2009). He has been a Fulbright Scholar, won several teaching awards, and has presented the materials used in this workshop at many colleges and universities around the world.  His current project is Teaching Macroeconomics with Excel, forthcoming in the spring of 2016.

Costs and Funding

This workshop is made possible by generous support from DePauw University. There is no fee to attend. Participants are responsible for all lodging and transportation costs.

Questions and Registration

Email hbarreto@depauw.edu if you have questions or would like further information.

Space is limited. Participants will be accepted on a first-come-first-served basis.

Last Updated: 7 June 2016