BSc International Business and Economics 

Alisha Patel International Business and Economics Aston University

The industrial placement year drew me to choose Aston as my place of study. It gave me lifelong experience that can be taken into any workplace.”

Alisha Patel
Assurance Associate, Ernst & Young

Entry requirements

A Level Entry: AAB/ABB*
(*variable offers are available)
BTEC Extended Diploma: DDD

In the drive for globalisation, companies are seeking out graduates who thrive in international settings. This course combines rigorous economics with real-world relevance and focus on international business.

This course offers a double degree option. Achieve two degrees for the price of one, and study abroad at one of our partner institutions.
Integrated placement year
93% satisfaction with 'teaching on my course' (National Student Survey, 2017)
On average, employed Aston business graduates see their wages increase by £11,700 (49%) over a five year period after graduating
Ranked Top 100 globally for Business and Economics, and top 15 in the UK (THE, 2016-17)

Course information 

4 year with integrated placement year / 3 year course without integrated placement year option only available for non-EU students


Typical offers:
A Levels: AAB - ABB 
IB: 32 points overall in the IB diploma with 6,6,5 - 6,5,5 at HL. Minimum scores of 5 in English and Maths at Standard level.
BTEC, Access & other: BTEC Extended Diploma DDD. Access to HE students are eligible to apply for this course.

Further requirements: 
5 GCSE grades A*- C to include:
GCSE Maths – grade B/5
GCSE English – grade C/4
Please note that General Studies does not contribute towards the UCAS points requirement but is welcomed as an additional qualification.

UCAS applicants who select this course as their Firm choice may be eligible for our lowered offer scheme. This means that the grades that you will need in order to be accepted on to the course will be reduced.
Whilst the grades listed here are our entry requirements, we understand that predicted grades are only an estimate. We will therefore consider applicants with predicted grades that fall below these entry requirements if the application is of a high standard (however, initial offers will not be lower than stated above).

Tuition fees: £9,250 (£1,250 during placement year) for UK/EU students. £14,950 for International students (£2,500 during placement year) (2018). More on fees.

The information contained on this website details the typical entry requirements for this course for the most commonly offered qualifications. Applicants with alternative qualifications may wish to enquire with the relevant admissions teams prior to application whether or not their qualifications are deemed acceptable. For less commonly encountered qualifications this will be judged on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the academic admissions tutor.

With the increasing globalisation of business and revolution in communications, no company can afford to ignore the international dimension.

The international business component of this course aims to develop the knowledge and skills required for assessing and developing international strategies and operations of businesses. The economics component develops the skills required to make an assessment of the economic environment of companies and their strategies within the context of national and international environments. 

The combination of international business and applied economics on this programme provides a strong introduction to the world of business and a solid foundation for a career in international commerce, or as an applied/business economist.

You will study a range of topics, designed to give you a solid foundation for your business degree.

Year 1

  • Introductory Accounting for Business
  • Introduction to Organisation Behaviour
  • Introduction to Marketing Management
  • Law for Business
  • Principles of Operations Management
  • Introduction to Business Analytics
  • Introduction to Micro Economics
  • Introduction to Macro Economics

Year 2

You will develop your understanding of economics, the international business environment and the international operations of business. Compulsory modules are:
  • International Business Environment
  • International Business Economics
  • Strategic Finance
  • Business Policy
  • Business Game
  • Business, Government & Society
  • Principles of Macroeconomics
  • Principles of Microeconomics
  • Introduction to Econometrics I
  • Introduction to Econometrics II
  • Emerging and Transitional Economies
  • Regional and Urban Economics

Year 3

You will spend this year in professional placement or you may choose to take up an international study opportunity at one of our partner institutions. This year is compulsory for all UK and EU students.

See placement year section or find out more about the Aston placement year.

Final Year

This year focuses on the implications of managing the major functions of finance and marketing within the international context, the application of economic theories in understanding international business, analysing policy and carrying out economic research.

All students take this core module:
  • Strategic Management

You will then choose from the following economics-oriented modules:
  • Economics of Business Organisations
  • Economics of Multinational Enterprise
  • Economics of Innovation
  • Competition Policy: Theory
  • Competition Policy: Practice 
  • Applied Econometrics and Forecasting
  • Macroeconomic Policy
In addition you will choose from the following international business oriented modules:
  • Derivatives
  • International Finance
  • International Marketing
  • International Operations
Further modules:
  • Innovation
  • Business Ethics
  • Fraud Bribery and Corruption
  • Managing Information Technology in a Global Context
  • Economics of Entrepreneurship
  • International Trade
  • Environmental Economics
  • Optional language modules at Intermediate or Advanced level 

Learning & teaching

You will experience a range of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, group-working, case studies and both individual and group presentations. Traditional teaching is supported by a virtual learning environment that is used to host a range of electronic supporting materials.

For example all business students undertake the Business Game module and compete in teams in a computer simulation exercise that culminates in a presentation to a panel of external employers.

Aston University has subscriptions to both the Financial Times and The Economist, which you can benefit from whilst studying here.


Assessment is provided by a mix of coursework and examination.

Students who are made an offer will receive a detailed programme specification which forms part of our terms and conditions. 

Course Director

Dr Matthew Olczak  

Telephone: +44(0)121 204 3107  
Email: m.olczak@aston.ac.uk

Matthew is an Industrial Economist with over ten years’ research and teaching experience. His primary research interest focuses on uncovering theoretical and empirical evidence on the sustainability of collusion between firms, making the key distinction between tacit and explicit collusion

Personal development 

Our business degrees are designed to also give you a range of transferable and practical skills to succeed within your chosen career. We make extensive use of group working and presentations to prepare you for the reality of working life. Such work develops your team working and negotiating skills.

Our placement year gives you the genuine practical work experience that is invaluable in developing an appreciation of issues such as office politics which cannot be replicated in the lecture room.

Graduates can claim exemptions from the examinations of a number of professional bodies. 

At present exemptions are available from:

  • Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • Association of International Accountants (AIA)
  • Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • Chartered Insurance Institute (CII)

Accreditation is a stamp of quality and prestige for a business school and its programmes. Aston is proud to be among 1% of business schools worldwide with triple accreditation. 

Our integrated placement year course allows you to undertake a professional paid placement, where you will  gain valuable, practical experience within your chosen subject area.

We have links to over 1000 different organisations and advertise around 3000 posts each year to our students. The opportunity to undertake a study placement with one of our international partner institutions is also available if you would prefer.

Find out more about the Aston placement year, and view the careers and placements page.

Our graduates are targeted by major global companies year after year. Many of our graduates are now working in organisations such as:

  • International Trainee, Procurement - Lidl UK
  • Chief Operating Officer - British Embassy Berlin, Department for International Trade (DIT)
  • Data Analyst - Mitie
  • Tax Consultant - Savills
  • Foreign Exchange and MoneyMarket Dealer - HSBC
  • Trade Fund Analyst And Finance Buisness Partner - GSK
  • Sales Executive For Datacentre And Infrastructure - Softcat
  • Graduate - Royal Bank of Scotland
  • Consultant - PriceWaterhouseCoopers
  • Policy Advisor - Civil Service Fast Stream

I'd love to hear from you.

International Business and Economics course director
Dr Matthew Olczak, Course Director

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