The Department of Economics has always been one of the prominent departments in the history of Rajshahi College. The history of this department commenced in 1878 when an F.A. (undergraduate degree) programme in economics was introduced under the name of ‘Economics and Political Philosophy’. Thereafter, in the early 1913 Economics was taught as a subject in B.A. degree (pass) course under the affiliation of the then Calcutta University. It is notable that an eminent economist Mr. Kausiki Nath Bhattacharyya served as a faculty of Economics during that time. In 1936 the Department of Economics came into being as a full-fledged honours department under the same affiliation. After separation of Indo-Pak subcontinent in 1947 it received its new affiliation under Dhaka University. Again in 1953, when Rajshahi University started its activities, the department started to be regulated by the University of Rajshahi. In this connection it might be mentioned that some teachers of Rajshahi College ornamented the Department of Economics of Rajshahi University in the very beginning. It is notable that Economics Department of Rajshahi University propelled from the Department of Economics of Rajshahi College activities and classes were held in Rajshahi College Compus.
Presently, the Department of Economics, Rajshahi College has been offering a graduate degree programme leading to Bachelor of Social Science (BSS) and a postgraduate programme leading to Master of Social Science (MSS) in Economics under the affiliation of National University of Bangladesh since 1993. The BSS (honours) programme spans four years and the MSS spans one year. Besides, the department offers Masters (preliminary) in Economics and courses of different branches of Economics for B.A. and BSS (pass) programmes. Masters Courses were introduced here in the year 1998. At present the Department has 13 Teachers specialized in a range of areas of economic interests. About 1600 students are studying in Honours and Masters Courses at different stages. A good number of students study Economics at the intermediate level. The BSS and MSS programmes have strong theoretical and quantitative orientation. All students of Economics are required to take the core courses like Microeconomics, Macroeco-nomics, Mathematics for Economists, Statics for Economics, Bangladesh Economy, Agricultural Economics and Public Finance. Beyond these, there are several optional courses such as Development Economics, History of Economic Thought, Islamic Economics, Bangladesh Studies, International Economics, Industrial Economics, Demography, Finance, Banking and Econometrics etc, are taught here. Strong emphasis on economic methods and models rooted in economic theories are given in designing courses of the subject. Students are also encouraged to engage in various additional works such as writing term paper, seminar paper, research paper, and assignments etc.
The central library of the college serves as the main source of academic literatures for the students. The students of the Department have the privilege to use both the central library and the Seminar library of the Department. Classes of this department are well-equipped with multi-media facilities. All the computers of the Department have got broad-band internet connections. The Department organizes seminars and workshops for the students. In addition to all of these facilities, students of this department are privileged to use ICT lab facilities managed by ICT Department of this college.
Honours and Masters results of this department have been quite satisfactory since the inception of the subject. The department boasts of a legacy of outstanding scholarly activities of the teachers in various extra-curricular activities like music, drama, recitation, excursion, debate, seminar, sports etc. A good number of students have acquired first class in graduation and post graduation levels from this department and they are employed in various responsible posts at different capacities in different government and non-government organizations both home and abroad.