UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES)


Comparative Business Economics MA Handbook 2023/24

Welcome to UCL SSEES

We are very pleased to welcome you to UCL SSEES.

UCL SSEES, founded in 1915, is one of the world’s leading specialist institutions and the largest national centre in the UK for the study of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Over seventy academic staff work in the School, teaching and conducting research in economics, business, politics, history, sociology, anthropology, culture, literature and language.

As part of SSEES and UCL, you will now have unrivalled access to various resources, for example the excellent UCL and SSEES libraries. We also pride ourselves for what goes on outside the classroom – be it the rich programme of high-profile international speakers, conferences, and seminars or various extracurricular opportunities for UCL students. This document provides you with some of the most important information about your time at SSEES.  

Please take your time also to read the SSEES Student Handbook for more details and do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

Key Dates 

Term dates 2023-24

First term     Monday 25 September 2023 to Friday 15 December 2023
Second termMonday 8 January 2024 to Friday 22 March 2024
Third termMonday 22 April 2024 to Friday 7 June 2024

College Reading Weeks

Monday 6 November 2023 and Monday 12 February 2024

Closures and Bank Holidays

Christmas: 5:30pm on Friday 22 December 2023 to 9:00am on Tuesday 2 January 2024

Easter: 5:30pm on Wednesday 27 March 2024 to 9:00am on Thursday 4 April 2024

Bank Holidays: Monday 06 May 2024, Monday 27 May 2024 and Monday 26 August 2024

All Bank Holidays, and the College closure dates based on them, are the standard dates and may be subject to change by government.

Degree Structure

Information about all the modules below can be found on the Module Catalogue.

Compulsory Units and Course Options

ALL STUDENTS MUST TAKE AND COMPLETE 180 CREDITS FOR THE AWARD OF AN MA. Students should normally register for 60 credits of taught modules in Term 1 and 60 credits of taught modules in Term 2.

Compulsory Courses – 120 credits
Students on this programme MUST take the following courses (120 credits):

SEES0082 Political Economy of International Business (30 credits; Term 1)
SEES0083 Quantitative Methods (15 credits; Term 1)
SEES0095 Advanced Quantitative Methods (15 credits; Term 2)
SEES0092 MA Dissertation Preparation (0 credits)
SEES0123 MA Dissertation (60 credits)

Compulsory Options – 30 credits
Students on this programme MUST take at least TWO of the following modules (30 credits in total). NB: Students may choose to take more than two of these modules as an elective – see below.

SEES0097 Corporate Finance and Investment in Emerging Markets (15 credits; Term 1)
SEES0098 Financial Development (15 credits; Term 2)
SEES0113 The Economics of Property Rights (15 credits; Term 2)

Elective Modules – 30 credits
A further 30 credits must be selected from the following modules below.
Subject to approval by the Programme Co-ordinator, up to 30 credits of study may be taken from SSEES language courses or up to 15 credits may be taken from courses offered by other departments within SSEES or UCL. And any Compulsory Option modules listed above if not already selected.

Students can take language courses offered by SSEES only. Bulgarian, Czech, Finnish, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Serbian/Croatian/Bosnian, Ukrainian or Slovene – beginners or intermediate level are generally available. Check website or speak to SSEES student administration for more details. All courses are 30 credits and run for the whole year.

SEES0086 Trade and FDI Policy with Reference to Eastern Europe (15 credits; Term 2)
SEES0128 Qualitative Methods (15 credits; Term 2)
SEES0109 Public Choice – Private Interest (15 credits; Term 1)
SEES0114 International Macroeconomic Policy (30 credits; Term 2)
SEES0155 Inequality Dynamics in Moder Capitalism (15 credits, Term 1)

SEES0156 Comparative Economics (15 credits, Term 1) 

SESS0084 Industiral Dynamics: Theory and Empirical Applications (15 credits, Term 2) - not offered in 23-24

Examination Procedures

The examinations period is provisionally scheduled from the start of Term 3 until the second week of June. Students must be available to attend examinations throughout this entire period. 

All modules registrations (for Term 1 and Term 2) must be completed on Portico by the end of the second week of teaching and course timetable checked. From this point students must not change the registration of Term 1 modules. The registration of Term 2-only modules may be changed until the end of Reading Week of Term 1, but only in case of compelling reasons like a timetable clash (not realised earlier) or compelling academic reasons.

All students are required to reply to any request, whether from their department or from UCL Registry (via Portico) to confirm their module registration as correct.

The SSEES MA (Umbrella) Board of Examiners decides on the class of degree you receive.


Make sure you do not plagiarise anyone elses work, even accidentally, as the consequences can be severe. Plagiarism is defined as the presentation of another person's thoughts or words or artefacts or software as though they were your own. Any quotation from the published or unpublished works of other persons must, therefore, be clearly identified as such by being placed inside quotation marks, and you should identify your sources as accurately and fully as possible.

You can find more about plagiarism and how to avoid it on the Current Student pages.

Extenuating Circumstances and Reasonable Adjustments

UCL recognises that some students can experience serious difficulties and personal problems which affect their ability to complete an assessment such as a sudden, serious illness or the death of a close relative. Students need to make sure that they notify UCL of any circumstances which are unexpected, significantly disruptive and beyond their control, and which might have a significant impact on their performance at assessment. UCL can then put in place alternative arrangements, such as an extension or a deferral of assessment to a later date. The Extenuating Circumstances Panel will determine the nature and timing of the deferral, which may be offered with or without tuition/ attendance. 

More information can be found in the UCL Academic Manual.

You must notify SSEES, no matter which department teaches the module(s) concerned, You can make an EC claim through Portico. For intial enquiries regarding your EC requests should go to the Student Support Officer and sent to the email address ssees-extenuating-circumstances@ucl.ac.uk

You should attach appropriate supporting evidence. Forms of appropriate evidence are set out in the SSEES Documentary Evidence Requirements available on the Current Students website.

The same form should be used to apply for all forms of mitigation for short-term unexpected circumstances, including short extensions to coursework deadlines of up to one week, special assessment arrangements such as extra time in examinations, or other forms of mitigation, including longer extensions, or deferral of an examination to a later date.

Further information is available in the Grounds for Extenuating Circumstances.

Requests for extensions or other mitigations in examinations will only be considered where the circumstances meet the definition of an extenuating circumstance. Guidance is provided (Grounds for Extenuating Circumstances) to help you assess whether an EC claim might be considered – you are encouraged to review this guidance before submitting your claim. You will be contacted once a decision has been made about your request. Wherever possible such requests should be submitted well before the deadline. Please note that routine computer problems such as viruses, disk corruption, printer problems, and short term network problems are not acceptable grounds for an extension. You are expected to take proper precautions and make back-up copies of your work and allow enough time to produce your work in hard-copy.

If you do not present evidence your claim it is likely to be rejected.

Extensions cannot be granted retrospectively or by individual Course Tutors and must be submitted to ssees-extenuating-circumstances@ucl.ac.uk.

Reasonable Adjustments and Special Exam Arrangements. 

UCL will make Reasonable Adjustments to learning, teaching and assessment to ensure that students with a disability are not put at a disadvantage. UCL also provides Reasonable Adjustments for students who might not consider themselves to have a ‘disability’ but who nevertheless would benefit from additional support due to an ongoing medical or mental health condition. It is the responsibility of the student to request Reasonable Adjustments, and students are encouraged to make a request as early as possible. please see link above for more details. 

You can find further information about Reasonable Adjustments in the Academic Manual.

You should request Reasonable Adjustments via Disability Services. You can find futher information on Disability Services' website

Student Support 

Starting a course at a new university, possibly in a new city or even country can be a daunting experience for anyone, regardless of age or background. The most important thing to remember is that there are many sources of advice and support available for every aspect of your life at UCL from the moment you arrive until you graduate and beyond.

Full details of the support available to you can be found on the Support & Wellbeing pages.

You’ll also find some key links below. Your Personal Tutor will also be a key point of contact for you if you are experiencing any difficulties.

Students with physical or mental health concerns are encouraged to make contact with the available support services as early as possible so that UCL can put in place reasonable adjustments to support them throughout their studies. However there may be occasions when a student’s physical or mental health, wellbeing or behaviour is having a detrimental effect on their ability to meet the requirements of their programme, or is impacting on the wellbeing, rights, safety and security of other students and staff. In such cases UCL may need to take action under the Fitness to Study Procedure.

Further Information

Calculation of the Postgraduate Masters Degree

For all the above Masters Programmes the final Award is calculated using an Overall Average Mark.  Individual Modules are weighted according to their credited value and the overall mark represents the mean average of the 180 credits undertaken. (Credit-weighted mean average rounded to two decimals.)

Numerical Marking SchemeLetter Grade Marking Scheme 

A weighted mark greater or equal to 69.5% 


A weighted mark greater or equal to 68.5% AND Modules of at least 70.00% in at least 50% of the credits. 


A weighted mark greater or equal to 59.5% 


A weighted mark greater or equal to 58.5% AND Modules of at least 60.00% in at least 50% of the credits. 

PassMeets Award Requirements. 

In a Student does not meet the above requirements they will be considered for an interim Qualification if they meet the required learning outcomes and credits. Please see the Academic Manual for more details. 

Consequences of Failure of a Module

Students who obtain a mark below the condoned mark range will be required to re-enter that examination at the next normal occasion. Students with no (EC) Extenuating Circumstances will be permitted one re-assessment opportunity.

Students awarded the degree or who have passed a module will not be permitted to repeat assessment of that module.