ECO375F, Summer 2011

This is the public “front end” for the more detailed course website that will be accessible through the University of Toronto Portal (Blackboard).

Contact Information

Professor Dwayne Benjamin
150 St. George Street, #168
Office hours: Mondays and Wednesdays, 3:00 to 4:00, by appointment only.
Appointments available through:

TA: Josh Lewis

Course Description

This is an introductory course in applied econometrics. The primary objective is to provide students with a solid theoretical and practical foundation for the interpretation of empirical evidence in economics. As such there is a dual focus on econometric theory and “hands-on” experience working with economic data. The course focuses on the multiple regression model applied to cross-section data. Throughout the course we will focus on the challenges of attributing "causality" to estimated empirical relationships.

A word of caution: This is a fast-paced, demanding course when offered over the normal twelve weeks. Like all summer courses, compressed as it is into six weeks, it demands even more the full attention and commitment of students who take it.


Please note that the course prerequisites are enforced rigorously, and without exception:

  1. Intermediate Microeconomics ( ECO200Y1/ ECO204Y1/ ECO206Y1)
  2. Statistics ( ECO220Y1(with minimum 70%)/ ECO227Y1/ ( STA257H1, STA261H1)

Note that a course in linear algebra (e.g., MAT223H1 or MAT240H1) is also recommended. My version of ECO375 is plenty mathematical: we make occasional, though limited, use of both calculus and linear algebra, and the discourse is mathematical in nature. Students with weak math backgrounds may benefit from having taken more than MAT133Y1. But while more math background always helps, we do not make sufficient use of linear algebra to require any specific courses in linear (matrix) algebra. If you plan on taking more econometrics (e.g., ECO376H, or any econometrics at the graduate level), then I recommend you eventually take some linear algebra.

I want to underscore that this is an economics course, not a statistics course. We frequently use examples from micro- and macroeconomic theory. This includes the assigned topics that form the core of the term paper. Accordingly, I assume proficiency in at least intermediate microeconomics (ECO 200Y/204Y/206Y).

For students who have not taken their courses on the St. George campus, please note that course prerequisites demand full-year versions of micro and statistics. It is also redundant, but I will note that "prerequisite" means that the course must be successfully completed before enrolment is permitted.

Student Evaluation

The grading scheme has three elements:

  1. Midterm exam (25%), June 6th, 4:00-6:00pm
  2. Term paper (40%), Due June 22nd
  3. Final exam (35%), June 28thm 4:00-6:00pm

There will also be problem sets that form the basis of the regularly scheduled tutorials. The problems sets will not be graded, but serve to prepare students for the graded components of the course (mid-term, term paper, and final exam).


The class is scheduled MTW4-6 (six hours per week). We will be using all of these available time slots, whether for lectures or tutorials. In addition, we may add a couple hours worth of tutorial time (e.g., for STATA) outside MTW4-6.

At the present time, all classes meet in ES B142 (Earth Sciences, room B142).


Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, Introductory Econometrics: A Modern Approach, Fourth Edition, 2009, SouthWestern / Cengage Learning


The course involves a considerable amount of computing, and students must learn and use STATA, the only package that will be supported.

Stata can be purchased through our "GradPlan." The procedure is described by the Licensed Software Office. For ECO375F, you should buy "Stata/IC 11" -- I do not think that "Small Stata" will suffice. Unless you plan on using Stata in the future (e.g., in ECO376S), a six month license should be good enough.


The course syllabus is now available.