Modern economics is an increasingly rigorous discipline and advanced degrees are now essential for careers in international institutions, government, and industry. The Economics MSc at UCL will equip the professional economist with the powerful tools required to understand the rapidly changing, complex, and uncertain modern world economy.
Covid-19 programme updates
Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2020/21)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website.
A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in Economics with a significant quantitative component from a UK university, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with a qualification of an equivalent standard in another quantitative discipline, such as statistics, mathematics, engineering or physics, may also be considered.
Applicants whose studies for their undergraduate degree have been undertaken wholly or mainly at a university located outside the UK must supply GRE General Test scores. The quantitative GRE score must be 161 or above (post-August 2011 scores).
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.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
The programme aims to provide students with a sound and worthwhile education in modern economics and econometrics, developing important transferable skills of problem-definition, analysis, and self-motivation. Students will learn to use the formal tools that are necessary to understand and conduct cutting-edge research in both theoretical and applied economics.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MSc in Economics.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
Students take each of the following four modules:
- Research Methods
Students take four of the following options modules:
- Advanced Macroeconomic Theory
- Advanced Microeconometrics
- Advanced Microeconomic Theory
- Time Series Econometrics
- Public Microeconomics
- Economics of Development
- Health Economics
- Programme Evaluation for Users
- Behavioural Economics
- Macroeconomic Policy
- International Trade
- Ethics in Welfare Economics
- Empirical Industrial Organisation
- Topics in Labour Economics
- Topics in Money and Finance
- Environmental Economics: Principles and Policy
- Applied Policy Analysis
The dissertation of 10,000 words will be a piece of lightly supervised research, including a brief critical review of the literature in the relevant area.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials, and practical and problem classes. The MSc degree is awarded on the basis of written, final examination papers and the research dissertation.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- UK, EU, Overseas
- Based on academic merit
- This scheme is now closed for 2020/21
- £12,500 (1 year)
- UK, EU
- Based on financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
According to the Destination of Leavers of Higher Education Surveys (2015/16 and 2016/17), recent graduates go on to a variety of roles including those in the civil service (eg, HM Treasury), central banks (eg, Bank of England and European Central Bank), research (eg, Institute of Fiscal Studies), consultancy (eg, Accenture, KPMG, PWC, Frontier Economics and Charles River Associates), and the financial sector. Many of our students also continue with their studies, entering PhD programmes at world-renowned institutions including UCL, LSE, and Cambridge.
The UCL Economics MSc is a passport to a career in major national and international institutions that demand a deeper, more rigorous analytical reasoning in economics. In these roles, MSc graduates draw on a theoretical grounding and wealth of practical analytical tools to formulate relevant questions in economics and produce high-quality economic analysis valued by employers and prestigious PhD programmes. Students benefit from the international reputations of the programme’s academic staff and the academic excellence and international perspectives of their fellow MSc students. Major employers invite UCL MSc graduates to apply for roles.
Why study this degree at UCL?
UCL Economics has an outstanding international reputation in the areas of applied microeconomics, labour economics, development economics, economic theory, experimental economics, econometrics, and macroeconomics. The department is a global leader in policy-oriented research, with members actively involved in policy design and evaluation. The Research Excellence Framework 2014 ranked the UCL Department of Economics as the top department in the UK for economics and econometrics, as well as the top department in any field in terms of overall score. The high quality and policy impact of research undertaken by faculty are reflected in an excellent teaching and research environment for graduate students.
UCL is located in central London at the heart of the UK centre of government. Recognised as the world's best connected city, 75% of the Fortune 500 companies have offices in London.
What our students and staff say
"The UCL MSc provided exceptionally good teaching across all topics. There are many contact hours compared to other UK economics degrees, and teaching is done through several learning methods, lectures, small group tutorials where individual problem sets are marked weekly, and practical lectures. Lecturers were knowledgeable and passionate. I was impressed with the range of optional modules, all of which are taught by experts. The course is constantly evolving, keeping the dissertation opportunities and optional courses current.
The content is challenging and will push you, however there are many opportunities to ask questions and gain support from a range of approachable faculty members. I especially valued the help of teaching assistants, who were often UCL Economics PhD students, and were generous with their time. Above all I met other students who were passionate about economics, driven to succeed, communicative and friendly - UCL is a great opportunity to build your network."
Ella Johnson-WattsEconomics MSc
"The excellent reputation of UCL Economics and the quality of the research attracted me to take up my position at UCL. I work on macroeconomics with a focus on the role of household heterogeneity for the business cycle and monetary/fiscal policy. It was also important for me that UCL has a large and internationally renowned Macroeconomics Group, and that the department attracts numerous international visitors and organises many conferences every year. My research benefits as well from the very strong colleagues in other subfields like labour economics and econometrics. As I go from micro to macro in terms of modelling and data there is a lot of overlap with these colleagues, which helps me to push the boundaries of macroeconomics."
Dr Ralph LuettickeEconomics MSc
Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
Because of the focus on analytical rigour and research methods, the ideal candidate has a strong interest in and enthusiasm for economic theory. The ideal candidate may be a professional economist with research-oriented interests or someone interested in pursuing an Economics PhD.
- All applicants
- 6 April 2020
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to show whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Economics at graduate level
- why you want to study Economics at UCL: we want to see what you have found out about how we approach the study of economics at Master's level at UCL, and what specific skills and aptitudes you have that will help you succeed on our MSc programme.
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
- details of your skills in mathematics, calculus, probability and statistics, and linear algebra
- any skills you have with spreadsheets, statistical software, mathematical programming or working with data
Applicants must be comfortable with academically rigorous content, enjoy technical challenges in the discipline, and have an aptitude for applying sophisticated technical tools to topical questions in Economics.
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.