2020 applicants
Department of Economics

Undergraduate study

Two students sitting talking on a bench

How do decisions affect our economy and society?

How do you weigh up decisions and decide which option to take? How does that decision effect consumers, producers, families and business owners? At Essex, we teach you how to use data to answer these types of questions, and look at how your decisions impact others.

Your degree is informed by our research – we’re top 5 in the UK for research excellence (REF 2014, mainstream universities, THE 2014). That means that what you learn is applicable to challenges facing our economy and society today, and is valuable to many careers. We'll train you to carry out your own research, from finding a research question to gathering and analysing data, reviewing literature, designing the right modelling and testing, and producing a final report to answer your question.

You can tailor your course to match your interests and choose between either our Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree. Maths modules are optional after the first year for our BA, and compulsory for our BSc.

We won’t tell you what to think but we’ll provide you with the tools to think clearly. So, if you’re ingenious, industrious and independent, you’ll succeed at Essex.


Explore our undergraduate courses


Why choose us?
  • Economics was ranked 9th in the UK for overall student satisfaction (NSS 2020)
  • We connect our research with our teaching so what you learn about is relevant today
  • Learn from the best - your lecturers are research stars in economics
"I chose Essex as it was among the best universities for economics in the UK. The skills I gained prepared me well for the job market. The fact that my course included working extensively with data played a huge part in securing my role as a marketing executive."
Gabriele Gudonaviciute BSc Economics

Develop your skills

You learn skills in demand by employers:

  • logical reasoning
  • analysis of data
  • quantitative methods
  • writing skills
  • improve your project management skills by conducting independent research on economic topics
  • use specialist software and advanced methods in statistical analysis (STATA, Eviews, SPSS software)
  • understand and critically assess empirical findings
  • develop skills to advise government, employers or trade unions on the economic implications of policy options
  • understand economic concepts and modelling approaches
  • assess optimal design of policy implementation.


How will teaching in the Department of Economics be delivered in 2020?

Will COVID-19 change the way my course is taught?

If for any reason you are unable to travel to campus to start the academic year, all teaching will be available virtually. This means that you can start, or continue, your programme off-campus, wherever you are, with full flexibility to transfer to on-campus learning as soon as you are able to.

What will this mean for my learning experience?

For the 2020 academic year, we are focusing on ensuring that we are able to deliver a quality education and that your teaching and learning can continue if there is further disruption. That’s why we’ve been working hard to ensure that our students are able to start with us in October – in whatever way possible. The changes we have made to support you and protect your health and wellbeing mean that, for most of our courses, this will include blended learning – with lectures, classes and other teaching taking place both online and face to face. Much of this teaching will be offered “live” (even if online / virtual) but will also be available to access at times that suit you.

We know that your learning experience is about more than just attending classes, and our campuses can provide you with all you need to make the most of your studies. This includes private space to study, in your on-campus study bedrooms as well as in PC labs and other spaces on our three campuses for self-study. We can also offer you access to laptops on loan and access to our library services; as well as enhanced wifi provision across our campuses.

Alongside your academic programme of study, the Department of Economics host regular employability events in which former alumni give talks about their careers and experiences after Essex. This gives you a unique insight into how to build your career paths and to start networking with potential future employers. We are also home to a very active Economics Society, supervised by a team of academics and run by undergraduate students. The society organises regular events, such as debates on current economic issues and economic seminars.

What happens if the situation changes before I start or during my time at Essex?

We recognise that some students may have difficulty travelling to campus in time to start the academic year. If for any reason you are unable to travel to campus to start the academic year, all teaching will be available virtually. This means that you can start, or continue, your programme off-campus, wherever you are, with full flexibility to transfer to on-campus learning as soon as you are able to. All of our modules are designed to support you to continue learning and still be able to access one-to-one consultation and guidance that you would normally get from the lecturers on your course, if further outbreaks of infection occur during the year. This means you can join us in full confidence that you can continue and complete your programme of study.

There is lots of helpful information about starting at Essex in our guide for applicants should you have any questions, feel uncertain about something in particular, or, would like up to date information on specific topics if your situation changes. In this guide you will also find specific information which relates to non-UK nationals planning to travel to Essex from abroad.

What will my broader student experience be like?

When you join the Department of Economics, you join a Department that really cares about you. We know that your Essex life is not just about the learning, but the experience of being a member of our campus community. We are committed to making sure we get to know each and every one of you, whilst ensuring you enjoy a safe environment which allows you to get to know each other.

There will be plenty of opportunities for you to interact online or face-to-face, with members of the Department and with your peers. In addition to your academic programme, we will also be hosting exciting career talks from industry experts, extra-curricular socials and plenty of events organised by our Economics Society.

We have been working in partnership with our Students’ Union to ensure that you can enjoy our clubs, societies, activities and services. We have built in flexibility to enable you to access support and activities, and to shape your experience around your life.

To learn more about the range of events Essex will be hosting, please visit our events calendar. To stay up to date with the very latest guidance on how to visit your campus, view our coming onto campus guide.

How will the University support me during this time?

The health and wellbeing of our students is our priority, and this has been one of the focuses to ensure students can start on campus – safely – in October.

This means we are constantly monitoring advice from the UK Government, Public Health England, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, and the World Health Organisation.

To protect our community on campus once the academic year starts again in October, we will be looking to introduce safety measures including:

  • Enhanced cleaning and sterilising regimes
  • Social distancing inline with international guidance
  • Signage and floor markings in key locations to help you move around our campuses safely

We’re asking you to wear face coverings in all public campus areas where social distancing is difficult to maintain or in specifically designated locations. We’ll be supporting you by giving two washable face coverings to all students.

There are a number of support systems available to you whilst you are at Essex, for whenever you need them and for however long you wish to use them.

These include:

The University also runs a variety of online events throughout the year including at-home yoga and mindfulness sessions. To find out more about the network of support you will benefit from during your time at Essex, please visit the Student Directory.

As we can't meet face to face...

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