Undergraduate Course

BSc Psychology with Economics

BSc Psychology with Economics

Overview

The details
Psychology with Economics
C814
October 2024
Full-time
3 years
Colchester Campus
Psychology

Why do people get into debt? How do interest rates, tax and government spending affect us? How does human psychology guide people to make economic decisions? At Essex you understand how and why individuals make economic decisions and errors.

Satisfy your curiosity by learning from innovative researchers at the cutting edge of psychological science. At Essex we take a multi-method approach, working beyond traditional boundaries to combine different expertise and share fascinating techniques and intriguing theories.

You study both psychology and economics, developing parallel methods of analysing decision making and cognition. Blending insights of psychology and economics provides valuable knowledge as to why individuals are not always behaving in their own best interests. Understanding this and the frameworks of behavioural economics can help policymakers create environments that nudge people towards making wiser decisions and healthier lives. Over the past 20 years, economics has developed a rich literature on human behaviour.

On our BSc Psychology with Economics, you will cover core areas of psychology and economics, including:

  • Personality and individual differences
  • Behavioural economics
  • Brain and behaviour
  • Social psychology
  • The science behind human behaviour

We provide one of the most immersive and exciting experiences of studying the human mind in the UK. Learn from our researchers and work together in the same space via our Research Experience Scheme (RES) which gives you the opportunity to work one-on-one with a psychologist as their researching assistant. Our SHOUTS scheme allows you to use your skills and creativity to make our department a better place and promote what we do beyond Essex, through social media, activities and events.

Why we're great.
  • You have unparalleled access to research equipment such as EEG, TMS and eye tracking.
  • We have a vibrant Psychology Society offering student-led social events and activities.
  • We are 17th in UK for research power in psychology (Times Higher Education research power measure, Research Excellence Framework 2021).

Study abroad

Your education extends beyond the university campus. We support you in expanding your education through offering the opportunity to spend a year or a term studying abroad at one of our partner universities. The four-year version of our degree allows you to spend the third year abroad or employed on a placement abroad, while otherwise remaining identical to the three-year course.

Studying abroad allows you to experience other cultures and languages, to broaden your degree socially and academically, and to demonstrate to employers that you are mature, adaptable, and organised.

If you spend a full year abroad you'll only pay 15% of your usual tuition fee to Essex for that year. You won't pay any tuition fees to your host university.

Placement year

You can also undertake a placement year in which you gain relevant work experience with a business, giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market and providing you with key contacts within the industry. You will be responsible for finding your placement, but with support and guidance provided by both your department and our Employability and Careers Centre.

If you complete a placement year you'll only pay 20% of your usual tuition fee to Essex for that year.

Our expert staff

Our psychology lecturers include award-winning teachers and prize-winning researchers who are international experts in their own research areas.

Our staff carry out research into areas of psychology that fall under our three key themes: thinking about the world, interacting with the world, and experiencing the world. These three themes help tie your knowledge together as they directly feed into our modules, where you can study how we remember things, what captures out attention, how relationships work, what our emotions do with us, or the impact of culture on ourselves and others.

Our economics researchers are at the forefront of their field and have even received MBEs. Our department is a richly diverse home to staff and students from all over the world who have a strong sense of belonging and want to think, learn and change the world together.

Specialist facilities

We are committed to giving you access to state-of-the-art facilities in higher education, housed entirely within our purpose-built psychology building on our Colchester Campus:

  • Dedicated laboratories including a virtual reality suite and an observation suite
  • Specialist areas to study visual and auditory perception, developmental psychology and social psychology
  • Our Babylab is the leading infant lab in the east of England that explores perceptual, emotional, and cognitive processes in infants
  • Our multimillion pound Centre for Brain Science (CBS) allows staff to investigate brain activity, and to measure eye movements and other physiological responses

You will also benefit from the extensive learning resources within the Department of Economics:

  • Extensive software for quantitative analysis, available in all computer labs across the university
  • Access to a variety of economics databases and multiple copies of textbooks and e-books in the Albert Sloman Library

Your future

  • A psychology degree, especially one accredited by the British Psychology Society, will provide you with the foundations needed for specialising in diverse areas, including clinical and educational psychology.
  • Many of our psychology graduates choose careers outside traditional psychology fields. The skills you learn during your degree opens doors to careers in market research, human resources, and people-focussed careers such as a high-intensity therapist or special educational needs.
  • Our psychology graduates have progressed in diverse careers across the public, private and third sectors, including working for the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust, and Prison and Probation Service, mental health charity MIND, and organisations like the BBC.

Visit our psychology careers page to find out more about your career opportunities and discover the variety of career paths our recent graduates have taken.

We also work with our University's careers services to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

  • GCSE: Mathematics C/4.
  • A-levels: BBB - BBC or 120 - 112 UCAS tariff points from a minimum of 2 full A-levels.
  • BTEC: DDM - DMM or 120 - 112 UCAS tariff points from a minimum of the equivalent of 2 full A-levels. The acceptability of BTECs is dependent on subject studied and optional units taken - email ugquery@essex.ac.uk for advice.
  • Combined qualifications on the UCAS tariff: 120 - 112 UCAS tariff points from a minimum of 2 full A levels or equivalent. Tariff point offers may be made if you are taking a qualification, or mixture of qualifications, from the list on our undergraduate application information page.
  • IB: 30 - 29 points or three Higher Level certificates with 555-554. Our Maths requirement can be met with either: 4 in Standard level Maths; 3 in Higher level Maths; or 4 in IB Middle Years Maths.
  • IB Career-related Programme: We consider combinations of IB Diploma Programme courses with BTECs or other qualifications. Advice on acceptability can be provided, email Undergraduate Admissions.
  • QAA-approved Access to HE Diploma: 6 level 3 credits at Distinction and 39 level 3 credits at Merit, depending on subject studied - advice on acceptability can be provided, email Undergraduate Admissions.
  • T-levels: We consider T-levels on a case-by-case basis, depending on subject studied. The offer for most courses is Distinction overall. Depending on the course applied for there may be additional requirements, which may include a specific grade in the Core.

Contextual Offers:

We are committed to ensuring that all students with the merit and potential to benefit from an Essex education are supported to do so. For October 2024 entry, if you are a home fee paying student residing in the UK you may be eligible for a Contextual Offer of up to two A-level grades, or equivalent, below our standard conditional offer.
Factors we consider:

  • Applicants from underrepresented groups
  • Applicants progressing from University of Essex Schools Membership schools/colleges
  • Applicants who attend a compulsory admissions interview
  • Applicants who attend an Offer Holder Day at our Colchester or Southend campus

Our contextual offers policy outlines additional circumstances and eligibility criteria.

For further information about what a contextual offer may look like for your specific qualification profile, email ugquery@essex.ac.uk.

If you haven't got the grades you hoped for, have a non-traditional academic background, are a mature student, or have any questions about eligibility for your course, more information can be found on our undergraduate application information page or get in touch with our Undergraduate Admissions Team.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

English language requirements for applicants whose first language is not English: IELTS 6.0 overall, or specified score in another equivalent test that we accept.

Details of English language requirements, including component scores, and the tests we accept for applicants who require a Student visa (excluding Nationals of Majority English Speaking Countries) can be found here

If we accept the English component of an international qualification it will be included in the academic levels listed above for the relevant countries.

English language shelf-life

Most English language qualifications have a validity period of 5 years. The validity period of Pearson Test of English, TOEFL and CBSE or CISCE English is 2 years.

If you require a Student visa to study in the UK please see our immigration webpages for the latest Home Office guidance on English language qualifications.

Pre-sessional English courses

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Pending English language qualifications

You don’t need to achieve the required level before making your application, but it will be one of the conditions of your offer.

If you cannot find the qualification that you have achieved or are pending, then please email ugquery@essex.ac.uk .

Requirements for second and final year entry

Different requirements apply for second and final year entry, and specified component grades are also required for applicants who require a visa to study in the UK. Details of English language requirements, including UK Visas and Immigration minimum component scores, and the tests we accept for applicants who require a Student visa (excluding Nationals of Majority English Speaking Countries) can be found here

Additional Notes

If you’re an international student, but do not meet the English language or academic requirements for direct admission to this degree, you could prepare and gain entry through a pathway course. Find out more about opportunities available to you at the University of Essex International College

Structure

Course structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of core/compulsory modules, and optional modules chosen from lists.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field, therefore all modules listed as subject to change. To view the compulsory modules and full list of optional modules currently on offer, please view the programme specification via the link below.

We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision for you. We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities as described on our website. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to significant disruption, or in response to COVID-19, we’ll let our applicants and students know as soon as possible.

Components and modules explained

Components

Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
Core
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Optional
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.

Modules

Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms

COMPONENT 01: CORE

Understanding our place in the world
(15 CREDITS)

This module will explore questions such as: Is intelligence fixed? Is our memory reliable? How do we learn? By introducing a range of approaches from across psychology, you will address such questions from different perspectives and provide the foundations needed to become a successful Essex student. This module will also begin your training on designing and carrying out psychology experiments, and dealing with the information that those experiments provide.

View Understanding our place in the world on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 02: CORE

Growing in the world
(15 CREDITS)

New-borns are totally dependent on others. They are unable to move or sit up; they cannot reach out and pick up an object; their vision is poor; they cannot even express simple emotions. By the end of the developmental process, some 20 years later, humans have become the most psychologically complex things we know. How does this happen? This module will introduce you to how humans grow and develop in the world. The principal approaches to the study of human development will be discussed, with a particular focus on how infants take their first "psychological steps" in the social world. You will also develop the research and analysis skills that are needed to answer different questions about how humans grow in the world.

View Growing in the world on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 03: CORE

Experiencing Emotion
(15 CREDITS)

In this module you will discover answers to fundamental questions in the science of emotion: What are emotions and why do we have them? Is it possible to elicit specific emotions in people and measure them? How good are we at sensing how someone else is feeling? Why are some people more emotional than others? You'll untangle the complexities involved in studying human emotion by: exploring a variety of research methods and measurements, applying critical thinking to psychological concepts, and mastering the data analysis techniques that allow psychologists to draw conclusions about our experience of emotion.

View Experiencing Emotion on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 04: CORE

Thinking and the Mind
(15 CREDITS)

In this module, you'll study the internal mental processes that go on inside our brain that form the basis of our thoughts. We'll answer questions such as: what do visual illusions tell us about how we perceive the world? Are we really able to multi-task? How do we understand and produce speech, and is this different if you speak more than one language? You will learn the skills that psychologists use to conduct research to answer these questions, as well as core theories and knowledge about key topics in this area.

View Thinking and the Mind on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 05: CORE

The Social World
(15 CREDITS)

Do you behave differently when you are alone than with others? How do people interact with individuals? How do they behave in groups? How do people explain the social world and how do they explain the behaviour of others? What makes people attribute human characteristics to animals and inanimate objects? This module will examine how humans live in and interact with the social world. These questions will be explored, using social psychology theories, survey methods and research skills.

View The Social World on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 06: CORE

The Social Brain
(15 CREDITS)

How does your brain decide between good and bad? What is the neural basis of moral reasoning? What is the biological basis of anger and aggression? Can we explain psychopathy in terms of differences in brain structure and function? What can neuroscience tell us about whether people should be held accountable for their actions? These are the kinds of the questions that we will investigate in this module, which aims to understand the neural basis of (anti) social behaviour. These questions will be addressed by building knowledge and understanding whilst also developing the skills that psychologists use to research these aspects of human behaviour.

View The Social Brain on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 07: CORE

Introduction to Economics
(30 CREDITS)

How do consumers make decisions? Or firms conduct different market strategies? What impact does government policy have on inflation? Or unemployment? Develop your knowledge of economics in relation to a range of contemporary issues. Learn how to apply both micro and macroeconomic principles to the analysis of such problems.

View Introduction to Economics on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 08: COMPULSORY

Introduction to Personal Development and Employability
(0 CREDITS)

It’s important to plan your career. This is the one of three modules that will make sure you are career ready when you leave university. You will decide on your career aspirations and goals, plan how you will achieve them and identify the resources available to help you.

View Introduction to Personal Development and Employability on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 01: CORE

Statistics for Psychology
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 02: CORE

Developmental Psychology
(15 CREDITS)

Explore classical and contemporary themes of child development such as prenatal and perceptual development, early language acquisition, and cognitive and social development, whilst examining the research methods and designs employed in Developmental Psychology.

View Developmental Psychology on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 03: CORE

Social Psychology
(15 CREDITS)

Through exploring and addressing a range of theories and research on how people think and behave, you will gain a clear understanding of the topics social psychologists are interested in and their approaches to studying them.

View Social Psychology on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 04: CORE

Psychology of Health
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 05: CORE

Cognitive Psychology
(15 CREDITS)

This module explores the basic cognitive processes involved in thinking about the world, interacting with the world, and experiencing the world. Often as users of these processes they just work and the complexity of the underlying operations are hidden; a kind of "user illusion". You will learn about the emerging scientific picture of how these basic processes operate, thereby gaining a better appreciation of the underlying complexity, and a renewed appreciation of the brilliance of these operations. The module will consider examples of human talents; such as bilingualism, as well as human limitations, such as our working memory capacities. The module will cover core areas of cognition as defined by the British Psychological Society such as perception, mental imagery, attention, memory, language, and consciousness. These will be discussed both with reference to laboratory-based experiments, and also how these processes may be disrupted and may breakdown in various conditions, such as dyslexia, amnesia, and other neuropsychological conditions. Finally, the lectures will address how basic cognitive processes apply to complex real-world behaviours.

View Cognitive Psychology on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 06: COMPULSORY

Microeconomics (Intermediate)
(15 CREDITS)

How do consumers behave in a competitive market? And what about producers? How do various imperfections affect the outcome of decentralised markets? Study the fundamental concepts and methods in microeconomics. Understand the tools and methods of analysis for economic reasoning, and develop your critical approach to economic issues and policies.

View Microeconomics (Intermediate) on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 07: CORE

Brain and Behaviour
(15 CREDITS)

The brain is an extremely complex organ, and there is much that we still have to learn about its processes and functions. This module will detail the psychological mechanisms that underlie human behaviour and highlight the possibility that even our deepest thoughts and feelings arise from electrical and chemical activity in our brains.

View Brain and Behaviour on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 08: CORE

Personality and Individual Differences
(15 CREDITS)

An in-depth look into cognitive, trait and biological theories and approaches to personality, individual differences and intelligence. This module will also give you the opportunity to cover and debate contemporary topics in individual intelligence (such as how individual differences explain behaviours, feelings and thinking).

View Personality and Individual Differences on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 09: COMPULSORY

Enhancing employability and career planning
(0 CREDITS)

It’s important to plan your career. This is the one of three modules that will make sure you are career ready when you leave university. You will decide on your career aspirations and goals, plan how you will achieve them and identify the resources available to help you.

View Enhancing employability and career planning on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 01: CORE

Psychology Project
(30 CREDITS)

This module gives you the chance to utilise the statistical and research methodology which you gained during your first two years and apply it to your own original research project. You’ll submit a written report and a supporting poster which will be assessed.

View Psychology Project on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 02: OPTIONAL

Psychology option(s) from list
(30 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 03: OPTIONAL

Psychology option from list
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 04: OPTIONAL

Economics option from list
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 05: COMPULSORY

Advanced employability skills and career progression
(0 CREDITS)

It’s important to plan your career. This is the one of three modules that will make sure you are career ready when you leave university. You will decide on your career aspirations and goals, plan how you will achieve them and identify the resources available to help you.

View Advanced employability skills and career progression on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 06: COMPULSORY

Introduction to Behavioural Economics
(15 CREDITS)

This module introduces students to the field of behavioural economics which combines economic analysis with insights from psychology to understand human behaviour. This module is offered at second year undergraduate, and at third year undergraduate. While the content is the same for both levels, the learning outcomes assessed in the modules are slightly different.

View Introduction to Behavioural Economics on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 07: COMPULSORY

Experimental Methods in Economics
(15 CREDITS)

Experimental Economics has become a very popular method to address questions that are hard to answer with field data. Laboratory experiments are used to investigate individual choice behaviours such as giving to charities, or behaviour in strategic interactions such as financial markets and collective decision making. The experiments are also used to analyse firm behaviour and assess policies such as anti-trust legislation or even monetary policy. In this module, we will critically evaluate whether these experimental methods provide answers for policy makers and private sector decision makers.

View Experimental Methods in Economics on our Module Directory

Placement

On a placement year you gain relevant work experience within an external business or organisation, giving you a competitive edge in the graduate job market and providing you with key contacts within the industry. The rest of your course remains identical to the three-year degree.

Year abroad

On your year abroad, you have the opportunity to experience other cultures and languages, to broaden your degree socially and academically, and to demonstrate to employers that you are mature, adaptable, and organised. The rest of your course remains identical to the three-year degree.

Teaching

  • A typical timetable for undergraduate students in the Department of Psychology involves a two-hour lecture for each module every week. Some modules offer shorter lectures with additional seminars and/or lab classes, while some modules use a flipped classroom approach to allow for further discussion in class.
  • We combine small and large-group teaching with regular laboratory-based research exercises

Assessment

  • Your assessment is based on written essays, practical lab reports, and examinations

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee

£9,250 per year

International fee

£22,100 per year

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

Home/UK fees and funding information

International fees and funding information

What's next

Open Days

Our events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex. We run a number of Open Days throughout the year which enable you to discover what our campus has to offer. You have the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

Check out our Visit Us pages to find out more information about booking onto one of our events. And if the dates aren’t suitable for you, feel free to book a campus tour here.

2024 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Wednesday, April 3, 2024

Applying

Applications for our full-time undergraduate courses should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). Full details on how to apply can be found on the filling in your UCAS undergraduate application web page.

Our UK students, and some of our EU and international students, who are still at school or college, can apply through their school. Your school will be able to check and then submit your completed application to UCAS. Our other international applicants (EU or worldwide) or independent applicants in the UK can also apply online through UCAS Apply.

The UCAS code for our University of Essex is ESSEX E70. The individual campus codes for our Loughton and Southend Campuses are 'L' and 'S' respectively.

You can find further information on how to apply, including information on transferring from another university, applying if you are not currently at a school or college, and applying for readmission on our How to apply and entry requirements page.

Offer Holder Days

If you receive an undergraduate offer to study with us in October 2024 and live in the UK, you will receive an email invitation to book onto one of our Offer Holder Days. Our Colchester Campus Offer Holder Days run from February to May 2024 on various Wednesdays and Saturdays, and our Southend Campus events run in April and May. These events provide the opportunity to meet your department, tour our campus and accommodation, and chat to current students. To support your attendance, we are offering a travel bursary, allowing you to claim up to £150 as reimbursement for travel expenses. For further information about Offer Holder Days, including terms and conditions and eligibility criteria for our travel bursary, please visit our webpage.

If you are an overseas offer-holder, you will be invited to attend one of our virtual events. However, you are more than welcome to join us at one of our in-person Offer Holder Days if you are able to - we will let you know in your invite email how you can do this.

A sunny day with banners flying on Colchester Campus Square 4.

Visit Colchester Campus

Set within 200 acres of award-winning parkland - Wivenhoe Park and located two miles from the historic city centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded development. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.


View from Square 2 outside the Rab Butler Building looking towards Square 3

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tours allows you to explore our University from the comfort of your home. Check out our Colchester virtual tour and Southend virtual tour to see accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.

Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications. The University would inform and engage with you if your course was to be discontinued, and would provide you with options, where appropriate, in line with our Compensation and Refund Policy.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

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