Economics (MSc) 2018 entry

The MSc in Economics provides advanced, rigorous training in essential elements of economics – microeconomics, macroeconomics and econometrics – plus a range of specialist options covering theoretical and empirical approaches that reflect the interests of the staff in the department.

Applications for 2018 entry for this course have now closed, see which courses are available for the upcoming academic year.

Course type

Postgraduate; leading to a Master of Science (MSc)

Course dates

  • Start date: 10 September 2018
  • End date: 30 September 2019

If you started this programme in 2017, you can find information about 2017 entry on the 2017 Economics MSc page. Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in the archive.

Course duration

One year full time

Entry requirements

A 2.1 degree classification from a recognised UK university in Economics or a 2.1 joint Honours in Economics and another subject that includes substantial training in mathematics, statistics, microeconomics, macroeconomics and econometrics.

If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.

English language proficiency. See English language tests and qualifications.

The qualifications listed are indicative minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.

Tuition fees

UK and EU: £8,500
Overseas: £17,600

Application deadline

Applications are accepted until shortly before teaching starts in September. Applicants should apply as early as possible to be eligible for certain scholarships and for international visa purposes.

Application requirements

  • CV
  • either a detailed personal statement including a list of current modules being undertaken (1,000 words) or a sample of academic written work (2,000 words)
  • two original signed academic references
  • academic transcripts and degree certificates 
  • evidence of English language proficiency (required if English is not your first language).

For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.

Course information

The MSc in Economics is a one year taught postgraduate programme run by the University of St Andrews' School of Economics and Finance.


  • In the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework exercise, the School was ranked joint tenth in the UK and second in Scotland on the basis of the quality of its research publications, with over 80% of the research publications being classified as internationally excellent or world-leading.
  • Small group teaching allows a high level of student-teacher interaction, encouraging a warm and friendly learning environment. 
  • The programme focus is to prepare students for jobs at a senior level in a wide range of areas: economics, finance, commerce, insurance, academia, diplomatic service and banking.
  • Supplementary lectures in mathematical and statistical methods are available.

Teaching format

The programme consists of traditional lectures, tutorials, seminars and computer lab work in small groups, plus a 15,000 word dissertation on a topic relevant and appropriate to the MSc of your choice. Courses are assessed both continuously and with end-of-semester exams. 

Every MSc student is assigned an adviser at the beginning of the year. Your adviser will provide you with individual guidance on essay planning and writing, module choice, dissertation topics and academic conduct.

Further particulars regarding curriculum development.


Each module typically comprises:

  • 20 lecture contact hours
  • 5 contact hours including seminars, workshops and tutorials 
  • intensive independent study
  • 50% continuous assessment
  • 50% by two-hour examination.

For more details about each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue, which is for the 2017–2018 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2018 entry.

All students taking an Economics MSc must take three compulsory modules in the first semester. These are:

  • Econometric Methods and Applications: advanced level training in econometric methods
  • Macroeconomics: advanced treatment of the core models and concepts used in modern macroeconomics
  • Microeconomics: advanced treatment of the core models and concepts used in modern microeconomics.

In your second semester, you will have the opportunity to choose three modules from a selection of topics.

The topics, and therefore module titles, vary year on year as they reflect staff research interests; in addition, optional modules require a minimum number of participants in order to be offered (see the University’s position on curriculum development).

Examples currently include:

  • Behavioural Finance: examines the effects of behavioural biases in financial markets
  • Corporate Governance and Risk: examines the relationship between corporate liabilities and corporate actions
  • Econometric Time Series Analysis: advanced treatment of the core theory and practice of time series econometrics
  • Experimental Economics and Finance: the methodology of experimental economics and the dialogue between theoretical and laboratory-based empirical work
  • Financial Intermediation: main theoretical issues involved in financial intermediation with a focus on analytical models
  • Game Theory: provides a thorough advanced treatment of the core models and concepts used in modern game theory
  • International Macroeconomics: provides a comprehensive treatment of selected aspects of international macroeconomics
  • International Trade and Migration: examines the causes and consequences of international trade and migration, combining theory with empirical applications
  • Mergers and Acquisitions: key issues in mergers and acquisitions literature
  • Monetary Policy: key issues in monetary policy
  • Portfolio Theory and Management: key issues in asset allocation and portfolio composition and management at an advanced level
  • Risk Management: classical techniques in risk and insurance. 

The final element of the MSc is a 15,000-word dissertation. The dissertation should be on an area of economics that you are interested in, chosen in discussion with your supervisor who will support you through the process. 

You will receive training in framing a hypothesis, conducting bibliographic research, writing a literature survey, and structuring a dissertation in Semester 1.

The modules listed here are indicative, and there is no guarantee they will run for 2018 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.


Recent Graduate Discount

The University of St Andrews offers a 10% discount in postgraduate tuition fees to students who are eligible to graduate or who have graduated from St Andrews within the last three academic years and are starting a postgraduate programme with the University of St Andrews.

Find out more about postgraduate scholarships. 

After the MSc


There is a long-standing tradition of Economics graduates working in a wide variety of challenging and rewarding posts including:

  • economics
  • finance
  • commerce
  • insurance
  • industry
  • academia
  • government
  • diplomatic service
  • banking.

They work in the UK, Europe, and North America, and more frequently in locations such as China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan and Thailand.

The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students on a taught postgraduate course and offers a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills.

Contact information

School of Economics and Finance
University of St Andrews
The Scores
University of St Andrews
KY16 9AR

Phone: +44 (0)1334 46 2439 

Economics website


Admission to the University of St Andrews is governed by our Admissions policy.

Curriculum development

As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online. (PDF, 72 KB).

Tuition fees

The University will clarify compulsory fees and charges it requires any student to pay at the time of offer. The offer will also clarify conditions for any variation of fees. The University’s approach to fee setting is described online. (PDF, 84 KB).