Course overview

What factors led to the cost-of-living crisis? What are the economic impacts of climate change? How can we address these issues? These are just some of the complex questions that economists are helping to answer. This course focuses on the competencies that are required for working as a professional economist, including the knowledge of relevant advanced economic theories and concepts and their application to real world problems such as inequality and climate change. Addressing those problems using sophisticated data analysis and effectively communicating findings to both economists and non-economists.

To ensure the employability of our graduates, the programme content has been informed by experts from the Office for National Statistics. This led to the creation of a core module that explores the measurement of economic data and its relevance for policy making. You will study Macroeconomics, Microeconomics and Behavioural Economics and will have the opportunity to explore areas such international trade and business finance. 

Why Economics at Aston University?

Designed in collaboration with economists
Aston University economists worked in collaboration with experts from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) to design this programme
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Recognised for quality
Aston Business School is proud to be among 1% of business schools worldwide with triple accreditation
Gain the advantage
Get ahead of the competition with the Aston Global Advantage professional development module
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Excellent prospects
Aston University was named runner-up in the University of the Year for Graduate Employment Award (Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide, 2024)
Strong industry connections
Our strong industry connections provide invaluable placement and internships opportunities at a range of companies
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66th in the world
We’ve been ranked as 66th in the world for business and management studies (QS World University Rankings By Subject 2024)

Course description

MSc Economics

Our MSc Economics programme offers a dynamic blend of theoretical grounding and real-world application to provide a course which directly enhances employability. 

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What we will provide
First-class teaching in the UK’s second-largest city, delivered by a diverse array of staff who will inspire and excite you. You will benefit from applied learning, research-informed teaching and constructive assessment. You will have access to professional software which enables you to apply your learning. 

We are also an Adobe Creative Campus meaning you will have access to top-notch software licenses, including Adobe and Solidworks, commonly used in industry.

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What you will provide
It is important you learn how to adapt a growth mindset to your studies – understanding that intelligence and success come from applying yourself, a willingness to learn and an ambition and drive to excel.

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What skills we teach
This programme will equip you with economic tools, and the knowledge of concept and theories to analyse and tackle real world issues. It will hone your quantitative skills for discerning trends and extracting insights from complex data. Additionally, you will develop a deeper understanding of economic data measurement, and what challenges must be overcome to produce reliable statistics. With this, you will develop into a concise and clear communicator, both verbally and in writing.

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Career prospects
Our Economics graduates are in high demand for specialist roles within the public, private and non-profit sectors including consultancy and data science. Having mastered critical-thinking and rigorous analytical skills, this programme will open numerous avenues for you.

How you will learn

Our programme is designed to give you a dynamic learning experience, through a range of innovative teaching methods from lectures and seminars to computer workshops and presentations. The key competencies of economic knowledge, application and communication will be honed through interactive classes and discussions where you will have the opportunity to discuss and reflect on ideas, gathering invaluable insights. This as well as other group work will enhance your communication as well as teamwork capabilities. You will have access to professional software packages which enable you to analyse large data sets, developing your critical analysis skills. Additionally, for each module you will have unlimited access to supporting materials via a virtual learning environment, aiding your learning. 

In the Aston Global Advantage module, you will enhance your employability and global citizenship through experiential learning and reflective practice. Dedicated employability support, skill-building workshops and diverse learning streams will prepare you for both academic and professional success.

At the start of your course, you will be allocated a personal tutor who can offer individual study advice and guidance. You will also benefit from access to the University Library's extensive collection of over 25,000 books and electronic journals.

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Gain the advantage

Our flagship professional development module provides a range of opportunities to apply your learning and increase your employability.

What you will learn

With your future career in mind, this course will develop you into a professional economist. During the taught phase of the programme, you will be introduced to advanced economic theories and their applications in the areas of microeconomics, macroeconomics and behavioural economics. You will use these theories to vigorously analyse real-world questions and policy applications. You will consider what impacts policy within businesses, exploring insights into how behavioural biases of humans can affect economic decision-making. You will develop as a strong communicator, perfecting your analytical skills as you manage large-scale data, delving into how economic data is measured and what the limitations are. 

With an array of elective modules which cover specialist areas of international trade and business finance, you can adapt the programme according to your interests and career aspirations. During the dissertation phase, you will also complete a research project on an economics topic of your choice.

This course offers an Exchange Partnership Second Degree Pathway, meaning you can spend an additional year at one of our international partner institutions. If successful, you will graduate with two masters degrees.

Exchange Partnership Second Degree Pathway

Sri Ramya Vadali MSc Business Analytics graduate

Making the right choice

Sri Ramya described her lecturers, who “consistently provided unwavering support”, as one of the things she enjoyed most about her course.

Postgraduate courses

Learn business, do business

Our classroom goes beyond traditional lectures, focusing instead on real-life projects and hands-on experiences.

Course objectives

  1. Equips you with the skills and knowledge to work as a professional economist. 
  2. Provides you with an intellectually rigorous and up-to-date education in economics and data analysis. 
  3. Enables you to critically evaluate economic policies, theories and data analysis. 
  4. Develops your ability to apply the concepts, theories and quantitative methods studied to business, individuals’ and policy decisions. 
  5. Develops your skills to communicate economic and quantitative analyses and their conclusions in a clear and precise manner to both specialist and non-specialist audiences. 


Modules and learning outcomes

Taught stage modules

In the taught stage you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
In this module, you will deepen your understanding of microeconomic foundations, focusing on consumer and producer theory, and apply these to real-world scenarios and policy. You will also explore the limitations of traditional microeconomic theory.
You will explore advanced macroeconomic theories and their applications, understanding the connection between these theories, sustainability and long-term growth. You will also learn to critically evaluate economic policies.
Behavioural Economics and Policy 
In this module, you will discover how human behavioural biases influence economic decision-making. You will examine a range of theoretical, experimental and empirical evidence on decision-making, exploring deviations from standard economic assumptions and their implications for business strategy and policy.
Applied Data Analysis 
This applied econometrics module uses large-scale contemporary data to engage you in a range of practical activities and accompanying discussions—providing a modern and effective portfolio of data management and analysis skills, supported by a solid conceptual understanding of key econometric techniques.
Measuring the Economy 
This module explores how economic activity is measured and what challenges we face in producing reliable economic statistics that take account of the characteristics of a modern economy. Furthermore, you will explore potential remedies on how to overcome these challenges.  
The Aston Global Advantage
The Aston Global Advantage is our professional development programme that runs throughout all MSc programmes at Aston Business School. Focusing on professional development and employability, this integrated module gives you the opportunity to identify, develop and apply the key transferrable skills you will gain throughout the year.
Ethics in Academic Practice
This module introduces the Academic Offence framework. By completing the resources you will understand the key principles underpinning the submission of academic assignments.

You will choose two of the following optional modules:*

Module TitleCredits
International Trade and Development 
In this module, you will explore the interconnected realms of international trade and economic development. This module covers how firms operate across borders and the stages societies undergo to transition from low to high income per capita.
Business Finance 
In this module, you will grasp key principles and challenges in financial management, understanding factors influencing various financing forms and their pros and cons. You will also use mathematical techniques for business decisions, like share valuation and investment opportunity evaluation.
Exploring Enterprise Experience
This module focuses on preparing you to start their own business and experience decisions taken at every stage of their business cycle. Through the virtual business simulation module, students will have the ability to apply knowledge gained from other modules into real life situations and experience in setting up their business.
Data Mining and Web Analytics 
We will explore data mining techniques and their use in business decision-making. You will also learn how to uncover patterns and trends hidden in data..
Software Analytics 
This module aims to teach you the programming skills required to carry out advanced data analysis on large datasets such as those found in many Big Data applications. These skills are now commonly expected by organisations seeking to employ data analysts, and the module aims to address this demand.

International Corporate Governance
The aims of the module are to provide an introduction to the key theories and empirical findings on current governance debates worldwide. The topics covered revolve around corporate governance, and include the institutional and organisational design underpinning economic performance of companies; that is, the design that protect both property rights of investors and other contracts, and facilitate collective action of stakeholders.


*Availability of any optional modules will be subject to staff availability and a minimum number of students who express an interest in studying the optional modules. 

Dissertation stage modules

In the dissertation stage you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Research Methods 15
MSc Economics Research Project
You will carry out an original piece of work applying material that you have learnt in the taught element of your degree. Specific requirements will be explained relating to different degree programmes but in summary you must demonstrate both theoretical and practical knowledge of your chosen area of specialism.

Programme outcomes

On successful completion of both the taught and dissertation stage, you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate a systematic understanding of advanced economics concepts, principles and tools.
  • Apply advanced economics concepts, principles and tools to analyse current economic problems, draw inferences from the analysis and suggest recommendations for policy development. 
  • Critically analyse the impact of institutional policies (e.g., governments, central banks) and various economic climates on economies, businesses, investment opportunities and human behaviours.
  • Understand how behavioural biases affect economic decision making. 
  • Recognise the strengths and weaknesses of economic and statistical models and to identify suitable models for analysis and evaluation.
  • Understand how economic data are measured, the challenges of using them and how those challenges are overcome. 
  • Demonstrate effective communication (oral and written) and presentation skills, taking a leadership role in problem-solving, negotiations and motivating others.
  • Communicate technical analysis and results to various non-specialist audiences through various means.
  • Demonstrate awareness of ethical and sustainability issues within the field of economics, as well as wider social and management issues and cultural diversity within a global context.
  • Undertake independent research by formulating a research question based on acquired knowledge, conducting literature searches for deeper understanding, and drawing inferences to suggest policy recommendations. 

We may update our courses to reflect best practices and academic developments. If we do, we’ll let you know of any changes at the earliest opportunity by updating our course webpages. If you have already received an offer, we’ll write to you directly to let you know of the changes.


Entry requirements

One of the following:

  • 2:2 (lower second-class honours) degree or equivalent
  • Equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University (see international students tab below for more information)

Subject specific requirements

Applicants must have taken two or more of the following modules, to at least intermediate level within their bachelor's degree:

  • Microeconomics
  • Macroeconomics
  • Econometrics or statistics
  • Mathematics or quantitative studies

You will also need to provide:

  • A professional reference
    • If you are a current student or recent graduate (within the last 2-3 years), we will ask for an academic reference
    • If you are currently employed and not a recent graduate, we will ask for a professional reference
  • An official academic transcript of your university grades to date
  • A completed application form.

Aston University is a diverse, close community and welcomes international students on many of our postgraduate programmes. Students from over 120 countries choose to study with us every year. Based in the centre of Birmingham, Aston is not only a great place to study but also a great place to live.

Qualifications in your country

For details of equivalent qualifications in your country, use our area pages below:

English language requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification.

English language requirements

How to apply

Aston University provides a range of opportunities for international students to join our community and study on our campus. A key part of our strategy is our relationships with teaching partners, providing multiple pathways to Aston.

Aston’s professional work placements can improve your chance of securing a graduate job. Placements give you experience, confidence and opportunities and, as an Aston student, you’ll be better prepared for your future career. One of the great things about Aston is our focus on employability. Our close links with businesses, industries and professions make this possible.

Find out more about applying

Post-study work visa

Aston University welcomed the creation of a new Graduate Immigration Route which enables international students to remain in the UK for two years after you complete your studies to find work. This new post-study work visa applies to international students completing full-time undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Graduate Immigration Route

Pathway programmes

If you don’t meet our entry requirements, we have a range of pathway programmes offered by our partner, ONCAMPUS Aston, which you can complete to progress onto one of our degrees.

We recognise the value of extensive professional experience. If you do not have the academic qualifications but have extensive and relevant professional experience and a proven ability to succeed, we would welcome your application.

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.


Speak to our Admissions Team

If you have any questions about the application process please get in touch with our postgraduate admissions team:


Call: 0121 204 3200 (Please note this line is open Monday-Friday between 09:30-16:30)

Dr Robert Riegler

Meet your programme director

Dr Robert Riegler
Programme Director, MSc Economics 

If you have any questions about the course or modules you will be studying, you can get in touch via email and I will be happy to answer your queries.

Fees and scholarships

Course fees

UK students

Annual tuition fees:£12,000

International students

Annual tuition fees:£23,500

More information on fees

The United Kingdom government has confirmed that European Union (EU), other European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals commencing academic courses in England from August 2021 will no longer be charged the same tuition rates as UK students.

Tuition fees for students are reviewed annually and may increase in subsequent years in line with inflation linked to the Retail Price Index (RPI) to take account of the University’s increased costs of delivering the Programme. Any such increase shall always be in accordance with the law. When undertaking a placement year, a placement year fee applies.


At Aston University we are committed to supporting the most talented and hardworking students to achieve their potential by providing a range of scholarships to help lower tuition and living costs.


This programme will be assessed through a combination of essays, reports, oral presentations, exams and group projects. You’ll also be required to conduct relevant and up-to-date research by finding a research question, writing a literature review, analysing data and developing policy recommendations based on your findings. Assessments are designed to equip you with the techniques needed for success in any workplace.

Career prospects

The transferable skills that our MSc Economics programme provides means that our graduates are successful in finding employment in a wide range of roles such as: 

  • Economist
  • Audit associate 
  • Management consultant 
  • Research analyst
  • Insight analyst 
  • Corporate finance assistant 
  • Marketing intelligence analyst  

Our graduates have gone on to work in sectors such as consultancy, financial and professional services, education, teaching and research, government, public sector and policy, advertising, marketing, PR media, entertainment, publishing and journalism.  

Ben Muriuki Maina

Making an impact

Ben Muriuki Maina, working as an investor relations and strategy analyst within the banking industry, found that his masters enabled him to maximise his time effectively. 

Our graduates achieve amazing things all over the world – whether it’s setting up their own businesses, landing jobs with high profile organisations, or making real differences within their communities.

Hear from our graduates



Be part of our community

Once you have joined us at Aston University, you’ll always be part of our community, even beyond graduation.

Frequently asked questions

Why study Economics at Aston University?

This programme has been created in collaboration with the Office for National Statistics (ONS) with employability at its core. You will explore advanced economic theories and master how to apply these theories to current issues. Additionally, you will develop the ability to organise and interpret large-scale data, communicating your findings concisely. 

The course is dynamic, offering learning opportunities through a variety of teaching methods focused on practical application of knowledge. By the time you graduate, you will be equipped for a range of roles across the private, public and non-profit sectors. You will be taught by expert economists at the triple-accredited Aston Business School.

What is the ‘Aston Global Advantage’?

Embedded in all our masters degrees, this assessed, year-long credit-bearing module aims to develop professional and personal transferrable skills relevant to any workplace and create a bridge between the degree and the world of work.

The Aston Global Advantage

Why should I study my postgraduate degree at Aston University?

There are lots of benefits of studying a postgraduate degree at Aston University.

Watch this video from MBA student, Monique, who talks about just a few of them:

Is Birmingham a good place to study?

Our campus is based in the centre of Birmingham, the youngest major city in Europe and a great place to live, work and study.

  • Great music and entertainment with a vibrant nightlife. Bars, clubs, pubs, live music, festivals, concerts. Whatever your tastes, there's something here for everyone.
  • Fantastic food. Birmingham's diverse community means you can try anything from the famous Balti triangle, the Chinese Quarter, high street chains, halal and vegan food, and Michelin-star dining.
  • World-class shopping. The Bullring and Grand Central is a shopper's paradise. From the world's biggest Primark to luxury brands at the Mailbox.
  • Arts and culture. Museums, galleries, theatres, concerts and Birmingham's art collection is as wide as it is impressive - not to be missed.
  • Green, open spaces. One of the greenest cities in Europe, Birmingham has hundreds of publicly accessible parks and green spaces across the city.
  • Sporting action. Birmingham has some of the most exciting venues for watching or participating in sport in the UK.

Discover Birmingham

What will my timetable look like?

We understand how important it is to know your timetable in advance for planning around work, childcare, or other responsibilities. Here's some basic guidance on what to expect regarding your student timetable.

Full-time programmes
As a rough estimate, full-time postgraduate students in the College of Business and Social Sciences should expect to spend about 12-15 hours per week in lectures and on-campus seminars. This is in addition to independent study, and there may be additional guided learning activities during certain weeks. The exact distribution of these hours will vary depending on your course and module choices.
Part-time programmes
Part-time students will have fewer weekly on-campus hours compared to full-time students. This reduction is proportional to the number of modules you're enrolled in.
Timetable availability
Complete timetables are usually released shortly before the start of your programme. This timing is necessary to ensure that we accommodate all course requirements and that rooms are allocated based on the number of students likely to enrol on each programme. We aim to provide these timetables as early as possible, to assist you in your planning.

As your induction week approaches, you will be sent more information about your timetable via email, and you will be able to access your timetable by logging into MyAstonPortal. For any further queries or information regarding your timetable, you can reach out to your programme director or the Student Support team.

Online/distance learning programmes
The above information also applies to students enrolled in online/distance learning programmes. Please note that both full-time and part-time distance learning students are still required to attend scheduled synchronous learning sessions.


What can I get involved in at Aston Business School?

At Aston Business School, you will dive into a dynamic blend of innovative learning and hands-on experiences. With our acclaimed triple-crown accreditation, we offer you academic excellence and a track record of producing successful graduates.

Located in Birmingham, the UK's vibrant second city, Aston Business School provides you with a culturally rich environment and superb connectivity. You will benefit from real-world business engagements, international study opportunities and entrepreneur support programmes like BSEEN and Pitchfest.

You can also engage in practical consultancy at the Aston Business Clinic and collaborate with global peers in events such as the Maastricht Case Competition or the Universities Business Challenge. Our partnership with The Prince’s Trust, alongside a range of student clubs including TEDx and Enactus further enriches your learning experience.

Discover more

Say Hello to students at Aston University

Hello, what would you like to ask us?

Hello! We are a team of current Aston University students from various parts of the world, studying a wide range of postgraduate subjects.

Feel free to ask us anything about studying at Aston University.

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