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I'm debating between 2 Microeconometric classes at my college, (I realize I'm fortunate to have a choice). One class uses Wooldridge's "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data" the other uses Cameron and Trivedi' book "Microeconometrics: Methods and Applications".

The question is, will I learn mostly the same content from both of these book or is one much better than the other?

P.S. I've been told the class using Wooldridge's book is much harder which is somewhat scary and intriguing at the sametime. Tuition is a lot of money and I don't want to take a class that is more advanced that I can handle then fail/drop. However, I want to be a good economist and be very knowledgeable on all things econometrics.

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  • $\begingroup$ If it is not the same instructor giving the two classes, then the difference of the instruction quality might matter more than the choice of the textbook. As Alecos says, both books are good; given that, focus on which professor is better at teaching the class (ask around, talk to people who took these classes). $\endgroup$ – Richard Hardy Apr 3 '17 at 19:00
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Both books are very good, and they are not competitive but rather complementary. I would say that compared to $CT$, $W$ is a more "traditional" econometrics book, while $CT$ includes whole chapters in broader underlying statistical issues. At the same time, $CT$ are relatively more concerned with the dirty reality of doing applied econometrics with real-world data sets, and how this feeds back to the theoretical models.

Regarding your choice, it matters what each instructor does with each book. Ask them.

Learn which chapters are covered in each class and compare, to see if they cover the same subjects or not... there must be a reason why there exist two available classes.

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