It has been proposed by some social scientists that studying economics and economic models has a narrowing effect on students’ views. This thesis discusses how economics may influence a student’s views about development. As part of the investigation into this issue, one hundred and sixty-six economics students completed questionnaires and thirty-seven of these students were also interviewed.
The research has not uncovered much evidence to indicate that studying economic models has a narrowing effect on students’ views. But the findings do suggest that studying economics significantly influences students’ views about development. These research findings also show that studying economics may actually broaden rather than narrow a student’s views about development, and that economics students tend to approach development issues from a heterodox rather than from an orthodox economics perspective.