Undergraduate prospectus 2022


Economics with a Placement Year BSc (Econ)

This programme combines a rigorous foundation in economic theories and quantitative tools with opportunities to consider real-world problems using evidenced-based economic analysis. 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.

Key Information

Programme starts

September 2022
UCAS code
Full-time: 4 years
Application deadline
26 January 2022
London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A Levels

Mathematics grade A* required, plus grade A in Economics if offered.
English Language and Mathematics at grade C or 5.

Contextual offer

A*AB (more about contextual offers)
A* in Mathematics
English Language and Mathematics at grade C or 5.

IB Diploma

A total 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. The programme will accept either 'Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches' or 'Mathematics: Applications and Interpretation' at higher level.

Contextual offer

38 (more about contextual offers)
A total of 18 points in three higher level subjects including grade 7 in Mathematics, with no score below 5. The programme will accept either 'Mathematics: Analysis and Approaches' or 'Mathematics: Applications and Interpretation' at higher level.

UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

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.

International applications

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

UCL 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: 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.

Degree benefits

  • You’ll learn from innovative educators, including creators of the CORE curriculum which provides the foundation for your first year, and from our Centre for Teaching and Learning Economics (CTaLE), who are at the forefront of ground-breaking teaching. A placement will enhance your employability and allow you to apply all you've learnt at the workplace.

  • Our professors are distinguished economists leading research centres, on Public Policy and Data Analysis Methods; Research Fellows at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and many advising governments and agencies, such as the Competition and Markets Authority, The Bank of England, and The World Bank.

  • You’ll become part of a leading research community, which received the highest percentage in the UK for research in Economics and Econometrics, 99% rated either 4* (world-leading) or 3* (internationally excellent), in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014.

  • Benefit from a range of events including the Gorman Lectures, the undergraduate student research conference, Explore Econ, and the activities of the Economist's Society which publishes The Economic Tribune magazine and the many UCLU societies.

Degree structure

In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 15 or 30 credits, adding up to a total of 120 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 30-credit module 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. Alongside credit-bearing modules you can get involved with our optional not-for-credit series of Skills Lab modules that run in each year and help you learn independent study and research skills.

In the first year you'll take compulsory modules in economics, applied economics, mathematics and statistics, as well as optional modules.

You can find an updated list of modules on the department's website

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. If you are not successful in obtaining a placement, having demonstrated efforts to apply, and you meet requirements for L100 you may be switched to the three-year degree. 

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 by submitting reflective learning logs, attending seminars and submitting a draft dissertation proposal.

In your final year you can choose from a wide range of optional modules. Most final-year modules introduce you to research papers and current research, including that of staff members, and require you to independently consider how to combine all that you have learnt across the degree to different areas of economics. Placement students will also complete a compulsory undergraduate dissertation linking their experience in the workplace with academic enquiry and embed employability skills in the Advanced Skills Lab module.

Upon successful completion of 360 credits, you will be awarded a BSc (Econ) (Hons) in Economics with a Placement Year.


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.

Compulsory module(s)

Applied Economics
Mathematics for Economics
Statistical Methods in Economics

Optional modules

You will select a total of 30 credits from a wide range of options.

Compulsory module(s)

Macroeconomic Theory and Policy
Quantitative Economics and Econometrics

Not-for-credit compulsory modules:
Economics Skills Lab
Preparation for Placement

Optional modules

You will select 30 credits from a wide range of options. Options may include:

  • Economic History
  • Economics of Development
  • Economics of Education
  • Economics of Labour
  • Economics of Regulation
  • Economics of Science
  • Economics of Tax Policy
  • Economics of Finance
  • Network Science for Economists
  • International Trade
  • Environmental Economics
  • Computational Methods for Economists 

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)

Compulsory module(s)

-Economics Undergraduate Research Dissertation (30 credits)

-At least 30 credits from the list of third-year economic modules.

Not-for-credit compulsory module:

  • Advanced Economics Skills Lab

Optional modules

You will select 60 credits from a wide range of optional modules, of which 30 credits must be taken from the list of second and third-year economics modules. Modules may include:

  • Advanced Economics of Finance
  • Advanced Macroeconomics
  • Behavioural Economics
  • Econometrics for Macroeconomics and Finance
  • Network Science for Economists
  • Economics of Information
  • Economics of Money and Banking
  • Economic Policy and Analysis
  • Experimental Economics
  • Game Theory
  • Gender and Ethnicity in the Economy
  • International Trade
  • Advanced Topics in International Economics 
  • Issues in Economic Development
  • Microeconometrics
  • Computational Methods for Economists 

Your learning

Each module is taught differently depending on the content and skills required, but in each, you are expected to read and watch assigned materials (texts, articles, and multimedia) independently, attend lectures and smaller group tutorials, actively participate in group discussions, and where appropriate, work in collaboration with your peers for formative and summative assessments.

The programme includes the opportunity to apply for a placement year in the UK.  Support in the search and application process will be provided, but a placement cannot be guaranteed.  The placement will be in a role that allows you to combine your economics expertise with work-based learning opportunities. 


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 a mix of methods including, written end of year assessments, term-time quizzes, essays, and group projects with written and video outputs and presentations.

Detailed module descriptions are available on the department website: Economics with a Placement Year BSc (Econ).


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team.


Many skills can be gained through the study of economics: including finding solutions to real-world problems, combining evidence, mathematical techniques, and quantitative tools to critically analyse questions robustly, and understanding the relevance of context, contemporary and historic, when considering economic and political events. On a placement you apply these skills in a workplace, developing your employability skills, including effective communication and successful team-working.

Recent students have obtained placements at the Government Economic Service, the Bank of England, economic consultancy, economic research institutes and in economics analysis roles in private companies such as HSBC Global Research and Aviva.

After graduation, about one third of students move onto graduate study in Economics, Data Science, Finance, Computing and Law for example. Students also entered US economics doctoral programmes including at Columbia, Yale and Chicago.

Graduates entering employment go into a range of areas including management, consultancy, accountancy, banking and public policy. Support for your careers and further study journey are provided by the Economics Careers Tutor, in conjunction with UCL Careers, and through various skills development, alumni and employer events run by the Economist’s Society and UCLU Societies.

UCL is committed 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

Tuition fees

The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2022/23 academic year. The UK fees shown are for the first year of the programme at UCL only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase. The Overseas fees shown are the fees that will be charged to 2022/23 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.

UK students
£9,250 (2022/23)
Overseas students
£26,600 (2022/23)

Full details of UCL's tuition fees, tuition fee policy and potential increases to fees can be found on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees.

Additional costs

Additional costs include the purchase of books and a UCL-approved calculator.  A computer is also required for online assessments. When on placement, students are required to pay a proportion of annual fees to UCL. There will be additional costs associated with your placement, such as accommodation, subsistence, purchasing work clothes and getting to and from work. Some organisations pay a salary but others only offer upaid placements.

A guide including rough estimates for these and other living expenses is included on the UCL Fees and funding pages. If you are concerned by potential additional costs for books, equipment, etc., please get in touch with the relevant departmental contact (details given on this page).


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.

Departmental scholarships

Funding opportunities relevant to the department may appear in this section when they are available. Please check carefully or confirm with the programme contact to ensure they apply to this degree programme.

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

Your application

Academic entry requirements reflect the strong competition for places. In addition to academic qualifications, you should demonstrate your passion for studying economics in a leading research Department, your interest in being creative about how to use economics to solve problems and demonstrate a recognition of the need, and value, of learning independently, and with peers, in their degrees. Applicants should also show interest in and enthusiasm for the placement aspect of this degree. 

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: 26 January 2022


Applicants who have been made an offer will be invited to attend an open day to find out more about the programme from the Admissions Tutor and other academics, ask questions and meet current students.

For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.

Page last modified on 13 January 2022