Online Programs

Online Education is a convenient way to meet continuing education requirements from home and on your own schedule.  FTE online courses are flexibly-paced, asynchronous courses designed to accommodate the working professionals.

FTE Online participants receive:

  • Economics curriculum, including background content outlines, classroom activities, and teacher guides
  • Lecture (PowerPoint with audio) and video demonstrations of classroom activities
  • Instruction by nationally-acclaimed instructors
  • Online interaction (asynchronous) with teachers throughout the United States and around the world
  • Graduate credit and “clock hour” confirmation (Optional graduate credit from University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, $122/sem. hr. additional fee)

The stimulating mix of academic rigor, research-based content, experiential learning simulations, and emphasis on interactive (asynchronous) discourse among professional educators make the Online offerings among FTE’s most popular courses.

Online Course Descriptions*

*The FTE offers all courses described below at some point in the year. Check the Current Course Offerings link to the left for schedule and (tentative) list of future courses.

Economics Online for Teachers, Parts 1 & 2   (EOFT1 & EOFT2)

Based on the 10-topic curriculum of the FTE’s flagship Economics for Leaders program, the two Economics Online for Teachers courses are designed to reinforce understanding of basic concepts.  Both courses emphasize use of the tools of economics reasoning as the foundation for a standards-based, semester-long secondary course in economics. A combination of practice problems (with individual feedback from outstanding instructors experienced in both online and classroom teaching), stimulating discussions with teacher participants from all over the U.S. and around the world, and video demonstrations of classroom activities that address a variety of learning styles, EOFT is designed to increase teacher confidence in both the content and pedagogy of dynamic, engaging economic education.

  • EOFT-1 topics:  scarcity and choice, opportunity cost, incentives, supply and demand, labor markets
  • EOFT-2 topics:  environment, entrepreneuship and innovation, money & banking, government and the economy, international trade

Fees: $175 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 2 semester hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $244, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

EOFT-1 and EOFT-2 prerequisites: none     Courses need not be taken in order.

The Economic Demise of the Soviet Union Online for Teachers (EDSUO)

With generous grants from the Calvin K. Kazanjian Economics Foundation, FTE first created The Economic Demise of the Soviet Union curriculum materials, and then incorporated the 6 lessons in a graduate-level teacher-education course designed to answer the question of why the economy of the Soviet Union collapsed when it did? Both the curriculum materials and the online instruction focus on the fatal flaw of central planning – the innate inability to get the incentives right. Using online research to enhance and supplement the background information provided in the curriculum outlines, EDSUO helps teachers understand and explain to their own students the weaknesses that undermined the Soviet economy. Video demonstrations of classroom activities simulate common features of Soviet daily life and  illustrate the application of economic reasoning to historical inquiry.

Fee: $175 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 2 semester hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $244, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

Pre-requisites: None

Economic History Online for Teachers

EHOFT is the online version of the FTE’s popular Economic Forces in American History course.  Lessons demonstrate how to use the economic way of thinking and FTE’s 5 Economic Reasoning Propositions to enhance students’ understanding of how social phenomena emerge from the choices individual people make in anticipation of costs and benefits to themselves.  Topics include:

  • The Economic Way of Thinking:  Economic Reasoning as a tool of historical inquiry
  • Choice and Opportunity Cost:  Economic Reasoning Propositions 1 & 2  (Indentured Servitude, Immigration)
  • Incentives:  Economic Reasoning Proposition 3   (Frontier, Settling the West, Cattle Drives)
  • Institutions:  Economic Reasoning Proposition 4  (The Great Migration, Civil Rights)

Note:  textbook purchase required:  Common Sense Economics  by Gwartney and Stroup.

Fees: $175 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 2 sem. hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $244, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

prerequisites: none

The Economics of Disasters Online for Teachers (EODO)

The Calvin K. Kazanjian Economics Foundation supported the creation of an online course for teachers based on the content and pedagogy of the high school curriculum unit and the wealth of supplementary sources available on the Internet. This is an intensive, in-depth examination of how institutional analysis helps us evaluate the responses of individuals, organizations, and governments to natural disasters. This set of lessons looks at a variety of natural disasters – from the Black Death of the Middle Ages to Hurricane Katrina in our too-recent memory, to fear of pandemics that haunt the future – through the lens of economic analysis.

  • Are Disasters Good for the Economy?
  • When Disaster Strikes, What Can Markets Do?
  • When Disaster Strikes, What Can Government Do?
  • When Disaster Strikes, What Can We Do?
  • Teaching About the Next Disaster

Fee: $225 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 3 semester hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $366, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

Prerequisite: successful completion of EOFT1, 2, EDSUO, or EHOFT.  (Prerequisite may be waived for students who have successfully completed other graduate level online instruction. To request a waiver, please contact kratte@fte.org and provide information about your economics and online background, and familiarity with computer-based interaction.)

Teacher Economics – World Development (TE-WD)

This course is a virtual recreation of FTE’s PTA-Members-Only conference on World Development held March, 2014, at the World Bank in Washington D.C.   The course consists of 4 lessons and a term project.

Term project:  Guided small group online book discussion.  (Choices:  Nina Munk, The Idealist – Jeffrey Sachs and the Quest to End Poverty; Christopher Coyne, Doing Bad by Doing Good:  Why Humanitarian Action Fails; or William Easterly, The Tyranny of Experts:  Economists, Dictators, and the Forgotten Rights of the Poor)

Fee: $150 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 1.5 semester hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $183, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

Pre-requisites: None.  (Note that this course assumes knowledge of vocabulary, concepts and principles in a high school level economics course.  Not recommended for those new to the discipline.)

Teacher Economics – The Federal Reserve System (TE-FR)

This course is a virtual recreation of FTE’s 2015 PTA-Members-Only Conference,  “Perspectives From and On the Federal Reserve System,” held at the Fed Board of Governors, Washington D.C., April 23-25, 2015.  The course consists of 5 lessons, including written and/or discussion assignments, term project, and pre and post tests

  • Introduction:  Overview of the Fed
  • Lesson 1:  Historical Perspective  (including address by Prof. Lawrence White, George Mason University
  • Lesson 2:  The Fed’s Record
  • Lesson 3:  Tinkering with the Fed?  (including address by Dr. James Dorn, Cato Institute)
  • Lesson 4:  Restructuring the Fed – A Monetary Constitution?  (including EconTalk interview podcast with Lawrence White)
  • Lesson 5:  The Fed and the Future
  • See readings at http://www.fte.org/teacher-resources/professional-teachers-association/2015-fed-lectures-and-readings/

Note well:  While expertise on the Federal Reserve is not a requirement, this course assumes participants have the  basic knowledge of FED operations and powers appropriate to a high school economics course. (Participants must earn a 75% on the pretest offered during the first week of the course before being allowed to proceed with the lessons.)  For a review of  money, banking, and the Federal Reserve System, please see the sources linked on the conference webpage below the required readings.

Fees: $175 FTE registration

(optional) Credit: 2 semester hrs. graduate credit, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.  (Fee:  $244, payable directly to UCCS online after course start)

Prerequisite: successful completion of EOFT1, 2, EDSUO, or EHOFT (Prerequisite may be waived for students who have successfully completed other graduate level online instruction. To request a waiver, please contact kratte@fte.org and provide information about your economics and online background, and familiarity with computer-based interaction.)  Not recommended for those new to economics.