PROGRAMME SPECIFICATION Programme title: Final award (BSc, MA etc):

Programme title:
Final award (BSc, MA etc):
MRes. Economics
(where stopping off points exist they should be
detailed here and defined later in the document)
UCAS code:
(where applicable)
Cohort(s) to which this programme
specification is applicable:
From 2014-2015
(e.g. from 2015 intake onwards)
Awarding institution/body:
University College London
Teaching institution:
University College London
Social and Historical Sciences
Parent Department:
(the department responsible for the administration of
the programme)
Departmental web page address:
(if applicable)
Method of study:
The programme can be taken either full-time or part-time.
Criteria for admission to the
Length of the programme:
One year full-time, two years part-time
(please note any periods spent away from UCL, such
as study abroad or placements in industry)
Level on Framework for Higher
Education Qualifications (FHEQ)
(see Guidance notes)
Relevant subject benchmark statement
Masters Level (Level 7)
At date of production – no relevant post-graduate benchmark
(see Guidance notes)
Brief outline of the structure of the
(see guidance notes)
Board of Examiners:
Name of Board of Examiners:
Board of Examiners in M.Res in Economics
Professional body accreditation
(if applicable):
Date of next scheduled
accreditation visit:
To provide education of the highest standard in all major aspects of economics in order to prepare students to
complete a research degree such as Ph.D. To introduce students to potential research topics and to equip them
with the skills to instigate research on these topics. To give students an opportunity to outline programme of
Students must complete the MRes Programme before they can progress on to the MPhil/PhD.
The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding,
qualities, skills and other attributes in the following areas:
A: Knowledge and understanding
Knowledge and understanding of:
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
1. The central ideas, concepts and
methods of modern economics.
2. Principles of model-building and
problem-solving techniques in
microeconomic and macroeconomic
3. Methods of quantitative empirical
economics, including relevant
mathematical and statistical principles
and analysis of real data.
4. The application of these concepts
and ideas to one or more specialised
areas of economics.
5. The place of economic knowledge in
the formation of public policy
The main teaching methods are conventional lectures
and classes. The course is organised with a rigorous
core element in Macro and Micro theory and
econometrics over two terms and a series of options in
the second term. The aim is to get the students familiar
with active research areas in Economics that best fit
their academic plans and to ensure they obtain an
understanding of both core subjects.
The dissertation over the summer is to allow the student
to think in an organised way about the topic they plan to
write a PhD thesis on. Survey the literature and to form a
plan of research. Students benefit by being taught by
faculty actively researching in the areas they will write a
thesis on.
Formative assessment by submission of class work and
mid-term exams. Summative assessment at the end of
the year by closed-book examinations and the
B: Skills and other attributes
Intellectual (thinking) skills:
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
1. Comprehension of complex
2. Confrontation of theory and evidence.
3. Analysis of numerical data.
4. Understanding of the role of evidence
in policy-making process.
5. Independent formulation and
demonstration of arguments and
6. Ability to assess the relevance and
importance of the ideas of others.
In all courses, lectures are supplemented with a heavy
diet of exercises and problems through which students
learn how to put economic models together and how to
undertake quantitative analysis. The summer
dissertation further helps develop the skills of
independent thinking and research.
Students are given feedback on their problem sets and
essays, via mid-term exams (formative assessment).
Summative assessment takes place via end-of-course
examinations and the dissertation. The exams in May
and June assess students’ ability to use quantitative
methods, to critically assess arguments, to apply
economic reasoning to policy analysis, and to
communicate effectively. Through their performance in
the dissertation, students may further demonstrate their
ability to work with quantitative models, think critically
and independently, and present arguments and
C: Skills and other attributes
Practical skills (able to):
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
1. Understand and criticise economic
arguments in media and professional
2. Research economic information in
books, periodicals, websites and
other sources.
3. Bring together information from
different sources and present it in a
coherent argument.
4. Access relevant sources of numerical
data relating to national economies,
companies and the economic
behaviour of households.
5. Analyse economic data using
standard statistical techniques,
implemented through widely used
6. Understand arguments phrased in
diagrammatic or algebraic terms, and
use these tools in communicating
with others.
Comprehensive reading lists and essay topics and/or
exercise sets, as appropriate, are provided at the start of
each course. Because it is rarely satisfactory to use a
single textbook for the material taught in courses at this
level, staff frequently develop their own handouts and
web-based material, drawing on a variety of textbooks
and the periodical literature. Many courses employ
explicit mathematical analysis and students are required
to solve problems mathematically. Students are also
taught statistical and econometric techniques and are
required to derive statistical results
Students are provided with feedback related to these
skills via class discussions, comments on their
coursework, and, for the dissertation, in meetings with
their dissertation supervisor. Summative assessment is
provided by exams in May and June and by the
The structure of each examination paper is carefully
tailored to the nature of the course with problem-based
D: Skills and other attributes
Transferable skills (able to):
1. Structure and communicate ideas
effectively both orally and in writing.
2. Work independently, use initiative,
manage time efficiently, meet
3. Learn from constructive criticism.
4. Use computer applications
appropriate to typical professional
5. Collaborate with colleagues.
Teaching/learning methods and strategies:
All courses require regular written work and problem
solving. The submission of coursework is formally
timetabled. Students get feedback from staff on all
aspects of performance. Students learn to use computer
packages to access and analyse data in some of the
econometrics courses and in the Macroeconomics
course. Students are encouraged to submit independent
work, but they are encouraged to work together on
isolating research questions.
These skills are mainly the focus of formative rather than
summative assessment with feedback provided in
classes. The dissertation provides a further opportunity
for students to demonstrate their ability to work
independently, manage their time efficiently, and
communicate effectively.
The following reference points were used in designing the programme:
 the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications:
 the relevant Subject Benchmark Statements:
 the programme specifications for UCL degree programmes in relevant subjects (where applicable);
 UCL teaching and learning policies;
 staff research.
Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the
learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if he/she takes
full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information on the learning outcomes,
content and teaching, learning and assessment methods of each course unit/module can be found in the
departmental course handbook. The accuracy of the information contained in this document is reviewed annually
by UCL and may be checked by the Quality Assurance Agency.
Programme Organiser(s)
Professor Antonio Cabrales
MRes/MPhil/PhD Economics Programme Director
Date of Production:
Date of Review:
15 July 2015
Date approved by Chair of
Departmental Teaching
Date approved by Faculty
Teaching Committee
22 July 2015
September 2015