This programme combines a rigorous foundation in economic concepts and tools with an opportunity to apply for a year on placement, developing and applying those tools in a real-world context. Our highly regarded department will support you in your search for a placement. In the event you cannot secure a placement, you will be able to request to switch to the three-year Economics BSc (Econ), subject to meeting any progress requirements for that degree.
- UCAS code
- Full-time: 4 years
- Application deadline
- 15 January 2018
- London, Bloomsbury
- Applications per place
- 10 (2016 entry)*
- Total intake
- 261 (2018 entry)*
- Mathematics grade A* required, plus grade A in Economics if offered.
- English Language and Mathematics at grade C or 5. For UK-based students, a grade C or 5 or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at: www.ucl.ac.uk/ug-reqs
- A score of 19 points in three higher level subjects including grade 7 in Mathematics and grade 6 in Economics if offered with no score lower than 5.
UK applicants qualifications
For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:
Not acceptable for entrance to this programme
Not acceptable for entrance to this programme
D2,D3,D3 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects, to include Mathematics D2, plus D3 in Economics if offered.
A1,A,A at Advanced Highers (or A1,A at Advanced Higher and A,A,A at Higher), to include Mathematics at A1, plus A if Economics being offered at Advanced Higher.
Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A-Levels at grades A*AA. To include Mathematics A*, plus grade A in Economics if offered.
In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.
Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates
The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.
Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.
For more information see: www.ucl.ac.uk/upc.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.
You will develop core economics skills and be able to apply these first-hand during the placement year.
You will learn in one of Europe's leading centres for research in economics. Our research informs policy advice to international governments and agencies, such as the United Nations and the World Bank.
We are recognised for our internationally distinguished research. UCL Economics was ranked first in the UK in the most recent (2014) Research Excellence Framework.
You will benefit from our prestigious annual Gorman Lectures series presented by eminent economists, and from the activities of our two student societies, the Economist's Society and the Economics and Finance Society, which include the publication of The Drayton Tribune magazine.
Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Economics.
- 99% rated 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 0.5 or 1.0 credits, adding up to a total of 4.0 credits for the year. Modules are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional modules varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 1.0 credit is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).
The department's fundamental premise is that students should learn how to do economics themselves, rather than just learn how the academic staff or other economists do it. In the first year you take compulsory modules on the core concepts of economics, applied economics, mathematics and statistics, and have the opportunity to take optional modules.
In your second year, principles of model-building, problem-solving and quantitative techniques are emphasised, and you will take compulsory core modules. Students apply for placements in the second year. Support in applying and preparing for placements is available. A placement cannot be guaranteed.
Assuming you have been successful in securing an approved work placement, your third year will be in an organisation on a minimum 36-week placement. To connect your academic studies with the placement, you will need to demonstrate engagement and reflective learning via monthly logs, attendance at three seminars and submission of a draft dissertation proposal.
Most final-year modules introduce you to research papers and current research, including that of staff members. You will benefit from instruction by staff whose research impacts directly on the policy process, for example via contact with the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Students will also complete a compulsory undergraduate dissertation linking their experience in the workplace with academic enquiry.
An indicative guide to the structure of this programme, year by year.
Core or compulsory module(s)
Mathematics for Economics
Statistical Methods in Economics
You will select a total of 1.0 credit from a wide range of options.
Core or compulsory module(s)
Macroeconomic Theory and Policy
Quantitative Economics and Econometrics
Not-for-credit compulsory modules
Economics Skills Lab
Preparation for Placement
You will select 1.0 credit from a wide range of options.
Options may include:
Economics of Development
Economics of Education
Economics of Finance
Economics of Labour
Economics of Regulation
Economics of Science
Economics of Tax Policy
Economics of the Public Sector
Year on placement at an approved organisation for 36 weeks or more. A placement cannot be guaranteed.
Core or compulsory module(s)
?Engagement on Placement (Economics)
Core or compulsory module(s)
You will select a total of at least 2.0 credits from the list of third-year economics modules which must include:
Economics UG Thesis
Not-for-credit compulsory module
Advanced Economics Skills Lab
You will select 2.0 credits from a wide range of options, of which 1.0 credit must be taken from the list of second and third-year economics modules. Third-year economics modules may include:
Econometrics for Macroeconomics and Finance
Economics of Financial Markets
Economics of Information
Economics of Money and Banking
Economic Policy Analysis
Ethics in Applied Economics
Topics in Industrial Economics
Issues in Economic Development
The cornerstone of each module is a lecture series. Through demonstration classes and small-group work you will learn how to put economic models together, how to undertake quantitative analysis, and, potentially, formulate your own model to address a new problem. In the later parts of the programme, there is an increased emphasis on collaborative work and group presentations.
Your progress is monitored throughout the year on a module-by-module basis, which will provide feedback aimed at improving your understanding and technique. You will be assessed by year-end written examinations and other forms of term-time assessment including, for example, multiple-choice quizzes, in-course essays and research project work.
Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Economics with a Placement Year BSc (Econ).
Many useful skills can be gained through the study of economics, for example: finding solutions to real-world problems, mathematical skills and an enhanced understanding of contemporary political and economic events. The placement year provides the opportunity to apply core economics skills in a professional context and develop key work-place proficiencies, including the ability to communicate ideas effectively to others and work successfully in a team.
About one-third of our graduates move directly into graduate study, including MScs in Economics, MBA programmes and conversion courses in computing and law. Students have also proceeded to doctoral programmes including those in major US economics departments such as Columbia, Yale and Chicago.
Graduates entering employment predominantly move into management, banking and finance and the civil service.
Please see first destinations of recent graduates (2013-2015) from the Economics BSc (Econ) at UCL for a selection of representative careers.
- Investment Banker, UBS
- Full-time student, MSc in Financial Economics at University of Oxford
- Aerospace & Defence Equity Research Analyst, J.P. Morgan
- Equity Analyst, Morgan Stanley
- Assistant Economist, Civil Service Fast Stream - Ministry of Justice
Data taken from the 'Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education' survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013-2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.
Fees and funding
The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2018/19 academic year. The UK/EU fees shown are for the first year of the programme at UCL only. The Overseas fees shown are the fees that will be charged to 2018/19 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.
- UK/EU students
- £9,250 (2018/19)
- Overseas students
- £20,340 (2018/19)
Full details of UCL's tuition fees, tuition fee policy and potential increases to fees can be found on the UCL Students website.
Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.
The scholarships listed below are for 2017 entry. Funding opportunities for students applying for 2018 entry will be published when they are available.
- Applications open from February 2018
- Based on financial need
The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.
Application and next steps
Academic entry requirements reflect the strong competition for places. In addition to academic qualifications we seek candidates who can demonstrate that they have researched what an economics degree involves, and how it is different from a business or management degree. Evidence that you are interested in how economists in public and private sector organisations develop solutions to current real-world economic problems will be looked on favourably. Candidates should also show interest in and enthusiasm for the placement and research aspects of the programme.
How to apply
Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.
Application deadline: 15 January 2018
UK-based applicants who have been selected for an offer are required to attend an applicant open day before an offer is made. Each admissions cycle has open days with about 100 applicants attending on each occasion.
At our open days you will attend talks by the Admissions Tutor and, typically, a representative of the Economist's Society. You will then have the opportunity to meet informally with academic staff and students before taking a tour of UCL.
Our admissions selectors will assess your application to determine your academic potential and motivation for this degree programme, as well as the core skills it requires.
For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students.