Politics and Economics BA

   
   
  

Fact file - 2018 entry

Qualification
Politics and Economics | BA Jt Hons
UCAS code
LL21
Duration
3 years full-time
A level offer
AAA
Required subjects
GCSE maths, 7 or above
IB score
36
Course location
Course places
25
 

Overview

Run jointly by the School of Politics and International Relations and the School of Economics, this course covers political thinking and behaviour alongside economic principles and practice.
Read full overview

Politics and economics are about understanding modern life, or the political and economic foundations of the contemporary world.

You will gain a thorough knowledge of a wide range of concepts and will also have the opportunity to study abroad at one of our international partner institutions in America, Asia and Europe.

Year one

In year one, you will take modules in political theory and comparative politics. Comparing political institutions and behaviour in western liberal democracies, you will gain a thorough understanding of the history of political ideas. You can choose to take modules within the area of international relations as part of your optional modules within the school.

In economics you will benefit from a Writing Economics module and you will be introduced to macro and microeconomics. You will have the opportunity to choose between two further fields of study for your remaining modules in the School of Economics and will also take a careers and employability module.

Year two

In politics you will choose one core module and will then have free choice of two additional modules from the school so that you can begin to tailor your degree to your interests. In economics you will study macro and microeconomics.

You also have the opportunity to study abroad for a semester or a full year at the University’s campuses in China or Malaysia or at one of our international partner institutions in America, Asia and Europe.

Year three

In your final year, you will have the opportunity to undertake a politics dissertation under the supervision of a member of our academic staff, and will also choose optional modules in both politics and economics from the full range of options offered by both schools.

You need to choose at least three modules from the international relations stream in your third year and can either choose to specialise further by adding more of the same, or broaden your knowledge base by taking modules from comparative politics and political theory.

Key facts

  • We are one of 18 institutions in the UK to have been selected to participate in the Q-Step programme, in recognition of our commitment to developing students' quantitative expertise
  • The school has a dedicated Placement and Employability Officer who organises work placement and internship opportunities for students, providing valuable work experience and a practical application of your studies
  • You'll learn from academic experts who are regularly quoted in the media, with The Independent, the LA Times and Le Monde asking for their comments on topical issues
  • We are in the top 100 worldwide for politics and international relations in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017
 

Entry requirements

A levels: AAA excluding general studies and critical thinking

GCSEs: GCSE maths, 7 or above

Understand how we show GCSE grades

English language requirements

IELTS: 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element)

If you require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you can attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education (CELE), which is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English. Successful students can progress onto their chosen degree course without taking IELTS again.

International applicants

We welcome students from all over the world and have a dedicated International Office that offers guidance and advice for international applicants.

Mature students

At the University of Nottingham we have a valuable community of mature students and we appreciate their contribution to the wider student population. You can find lots of useful information in our guide for mature students.

Alternative qualifications

View the alternative qualifications page for details.

Flexible admissions policy

In recognition of our applicants’ varied experience and educational pathways, The University of Nottingham employs a flexible admissions policy. We may make some applicants an offer lower than advertised, depending on their personal and educational circumstances. Please see the University’s admissions policies and procedures for more information.

Notes for applicants

We are looking for students who have the ability and motivation to benefit from our courses, and who will make a valued contribution to the department and the University. Candidates are considered on the basis of their UCAS application.

All applications are considered equally on merit; students are usually selected on the basis of academic excellence and personal qualities, as evidenced in your personal statement and reference.

Applicants are not typically interviewed. If you are offered a place on a course with the School of Politics and International Relations, you will be invited to attend an offer holder event.

 
 

Modules

Typical year one modules

Core politics modules

Introduction to Comparative Politics

This module seeks to compare and contrast the decision-making structures of modern democratic states. Topics to be covered will include: 

  • politics
  • government and the state
  • the comparative approach
  • constitutions and the legal framework
  • democratic and authoritarian rule
  • political culture
  • the political executive
  • legislatures
  • political parties and party systems
  • electoral systems and voting behaviour
  • the crisis of democracy
 
Modern Political Theory

This module introduces you to the ideas of some of the canonical thinkers in the history of political thought, such as Burke, Rousseau, Kant, Mill, and Marx. The module considers the impact of these thinkers on modern political thought and practice, with reference to key political ideas and historical developments (such as liberty and equality, and the Enlightenment). The module will be text based.  

 

Plus two modules from a list provided by politics.


Core economics modules

Foundations of Economics

This year-long introductory module covers microeconomics in semester one and macroeconomics in semester two. There is no assumption of any prior knowledge of economics.

You will begin by analysing how the economic choices of households and firms can be understood using consumer and producer theory. You will then look at how these individual choices are aggregated into market demand and supply to be mediated through the price mechanism. A variety of market settings are considered, ranging from the paradigm of perfect competition to strategic interactions in oligopolistic markets.

The microeconomics part of the module concludes by providing an introduction to the normative evaluation of economic outcomes in terms of individuals' welfare, covering market and government failures.

The macroeconomics part of the module focuses on the aggregate economy, considering the determinants of aggregate output, addressing cyclical movements of booms and busts in the short run, and providing an introduction to economic growth in the long run. A running theme will be debates over the role of the government in macroeconomic management, covering fiscal and monetary policy.

 
Writing Economics

This module aims to introduce you to the essential skills required for writing as an economist. It will be delivered in conjunction with Libraries, Research and Learning Resources (LRLR), who will cover content on key information skills relating to the library and learning resources.

It will give an introduction to the language of economics and basic research skills and how to write essays and exams. Among the topics covered will be:

  • academic integrity and plagiarism
  • time management
  • writing essays
  • writing quantitative projects
  • presentation skills
  • referencing and using the internet
  • revision and examinations
 
Careers and Employability for Economists

This module aims to provide a means for enabling students to reflect on their personal development and the implications this might have for their future career paths. It will include:

  • guidance on recording and evaluating skills
  • guidance on careers from the Careers and Employability Service
  • information, guidance and advice form a range of graduate employers and alumni
 

Plus one of:

Mathematical Economics and Econometrics

The first half of the module provides an introduction to the mathematical methods required for economic modelling, focusing on linear algebra, optimization and their role in formulating and solving economic problems.

The second half introduces the statistical methods required for data analysis in economics. We concentrate on statistical distribution theory and statistical inference before applying these concepts to the study of the linear regression model, whose extensions will be analysed in detail in subsequent econometrics modules.

 
Mathematical Economics and Statistical Methods

The first half of the module provides an introduction to the mathematical methods required for economic modelling, focusing on linear algebra, optimisation and their role in formulating and solving economic problems. The second half introduces the statistical methods and concepts most applicable in economics.

The analysis of economic data necessarily proceeds in an environment where there is uncertainty about the processes that generated the data. Statistical methods provide a framework for understanding and characterising this uncertainty. These concepts are most conveniently introduced through the analysis of single-variable problems. However, economists are most often concerned about relationships among variables.

The module builds towards the study of regression analysis, which is often applied by economists in studying such relationships.

 
Quantitative Economics

The first half of the module provides an introduction to the mathematical methods required for economic modelling, focusing on

  • mathematical finance
  • analysis of functions
  • supply and demand
  • matrix algebra
  • differentiation
  • elasticities
  • maximisation/minimisation
  • optimisation subject to constraints
  • Lagrange multipliers
  • integration

The second half introduces the statistical methods and concepts most applicable in economics. The analysis of economic data necessarily proceeds in an environment where there is uncertainty about the processes that generated the data. Statistical methods provide a framework for understanding and characterising this uncertainty.

These concepts are most conveniently introduced through the analysis of single-variable problems. However, economists are most often concerned about relationships among variables. The module builds towards the study of regression analysis, which is often applied by economists in studying such relationships.

 
Quantitative Methods

The first half of the module provides an introduction to the mathematical methods required for economic modelling, focusing on:

  • mathematical finance
  • analysis of functions
  • supply and demand
  • matrix algebra
  • differentiation
  • elasticities, maximisation/minimisation
  • optimisation subject to constraints

The second half introduces the statistical methods and concepts most applicable in economics. The analysis of economic data necessarily proceeds in an environment where there is uncertainty about the processes that generated the data. Statistical methods provide a framework for understanding and characterising this uncertainty.

These concepts are most conveniently introduced through the analysis of single-variable problems. However, economists are most often concerned about relationships among variables. The module builds towards the study of regression analysis, which is often applied by economists in studying such relationships.

 

Optional politics modules

British Political History Since 1945

This module will introduce and interrogate British political history since 1945. The module will take students through key issues and controversies in post-war British politics and as they relate to leaders and governments and key debates over controversies. 

The module will explore a range of issues relating to:

  • economic policy
  • social policy and the welfare state
  • industrial relations
  • foreign and defence policy
  • Europe
  • local government
  • nuclear deterrence

Seminars will employ a range of activity-based scenarios to develop student understanding of key crises experienced by leaders and governments since 1945.  

 
Culture and Values in a Changing World

This module explores the shift from modern to postmodern values, looking at questions like levels of trust in democracies, religion and secularisation, and nationalism. While exploring these themes, you will learn the principles of research design and data analysis using Microsoft Excel.

Using the World Values Survey and a questionnaire designed yourself, you will learn how to compare countries and assess the role of culture in politics.

 
Problems in Global Politics

This module explores some of the major problems that exist in contemporary global politics. It introduces you to a wide range of challenges faced by states and non-state actors in the international system and engages with topics ranging from security concerns to economic issues. 

The module draws on a wide range of ideas and examples from around the world to help you to better understand global politics.

 
Understanding Global Politics

This module introduces global politics through the major theoretical, historical and empirical ways of seeing international relations. We consider how different approaches understand global politics, the role of different actors in global politics and different approaches to organising international relations. In particular, the module highlights the major issues of war and peace, and global poverty.  

 

Optional economics modules

Current Economic Issues

This module focuses on a range of current issues facing the world economy, seeks to illustrate how economists model such issues, and examines potential policy responses. Example topics to be covered are:

  • globalisation
  • economic growth
  • the global financial crisis
  • the world economy
  • emerging economic superpowers
  • consequences of rising economic nationalism
 
Economic Integration I

This module introduces you to the economics of integration. The module analyses the consequences for countries seeking closer economic integration through successively more ambitious forms. This begins with a limited trade arrangement, followed by a common market, which also allows free movement of capital and migrant workers, and a Single Market.

The final part of the module examines monetary integration, beginning with exchange rate stabilisation and then considering Monetary Union. The module aims to combine principles of economic analysis with an assessment of the impact of such measures on the member economies.

 
Economic Integration II

This module introduces you to the economics of integration. It analyses the economic rationale for, and practice of, policy co-ordination and harmonisation both at the European and at a global level. An examination of the economic rationale for common EU policies is followed by an analysis of such examples as the common agricultural, trade and regional policies, and the operation of the European Budget.

At the global level cooperation in trade, finance and development policies is reviewed in relation to the operation of institutions such as the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. The module aims to combine principles of economic analysis with an assessment of the impact of international policy coordination.

 
Economic Perspectives

This module is intended as a foundation for the understanding of modern economic theories and policies. It is concerned with the:

  • different characters and workings of economies of the past
  • changing ways in which economic questions have been interpreted and answered over time

As will be discovered, the 21st century Western views of everyday economic concepts such as ownership, money, exchange, work, poverty, industrialisation, economic growth and government are quite different from those expressed at other times and in other places.

 
Growth and Development in Long-Run Historical Perspective

In this module we will explore the long-run, historical determinants of the wealth of nations. We will begin by taking a long-run view on modern economic growth, showing how this has led to dramatic changes in the relative wealth of nations over the last 500 years.

We will then ask two key questions: why have modern economic growth started in some places rather than others? And while have some countries been able to catch up, while others have not? These investigations will improve our understanding of why are some countries much richer than others, and will give us some important insights on how to promote sustained growth in developing countries.

The module draws on a vibrant new literature in economics that looks at comparative development as the outcome of a long historical process, and uses techniques originally developed in economics to improve our understanding of history. Without going into the technical details, the module reviews the main findings of this literature, discusses their implications for modern development experiences, and lays out the main challenges for future research.

By providing an historical perspective on growth and development, the module will endow you with a better understanding ofcontemporary economic issues. It will also give you some exciting examples of how the economic techniques you will learn in later modules can be used to understand the world better.

 
 

Typical year two modules

Core politics modules

Approaches to Politics and International Relations

The module introduces you to alternative theoretical approaches to the study of political phenomena.

We consider the different forms of analysing, explaining, and understanding politics associated with approaches such as:

  • behaviouralism
  • rational choice theory
  • institutionalism
  • Marxism
  • feminism
  • interpretive theory 
  • post-modernism

The module shows that the different approaches are based upon contrasting 'ontological' suppositions about the nature of politics, and they invoke alternative 'epistemological' assumptions about how we acquire valid knowledge of politics and international relations. 

 

or

How Voters Decide

Elections are the foundation of representative democracy. The act of voting creates a link between citizens' preferences and government policy. This means that the choices voters make have important consequences.

But, how do voters make these choices? Are they based on the policies that parties promise to enact in the future, or is it more about the policy successes (or failures) that parties have experienced in the past? Does the party's leader make a difference? Can campaigns or the media's coverage change how voters see their electoral choices? Finally, given the importance of elections, why do many citizens choose to abstain from the process altogether?

How Voters Decide will explore the choices that citizens make when they participate in elections and it will provide students with the skills necessary to evaluate arguments about electoral behaviour in Britain and beyond.

 

Core economics modules

Principles of Macroeconomics

This module will address both the fundamental and applied aspects of macroeconomic theory. In particular, the module will focus on:

  • introducing the modern theory of expectations and economic dynamics
  • using this approach to think about short run fluctuations
  • studying the role of macro policy on short run fluctuations

The module will review the so-called modern approach to aggregate demand and aggregate supply. This entails incorporating into the classical approach to aggregate supply and aggregate demand insights from Keynesian economics. This will serve as a base to discuss the role of macro-policy in controlling for fluctuations in output and employment. 

 
Principles of Microeconomics

This module covers intermediate microeconomics including general equilibrium analysis, welfare economics, elementary game theory, and strategic behaviour of firms.

 

Optional politics modules

Crises and Controversies in European Politics

This module aims to provide you with a systematic introduction to current debates in the comparative analysis of European politics.

The module adopts a thematic approach and focuses on both traditional fields of comparative enquiry, such as the study of party systems and representation, elections and voting behaviour, party competition and government formation, executive-legislative relations, as well as emerging fields of interest, such as political participation, extreme right politics, immigration, political corruption and the political and social challenges of globalisation and European integration.

The diverse experiences of liberal democracy in European countries and the political and social changes that they have undergone are discussed thematically in the seminars. In the seminars, a country-expert system is used whereby you are assigned a particular country to cover. The module covers both long-established democracies in Western Europe and newer democracies in Central and Eastern Europe.

 
Global Security

This module explores issues in global security since the end of the Cold War. It focuses on security in a broad sense, from issues relating to the use of force by states, through to violence by non-state actors, such as terrorist groups, and on to the concept of human security. 

The module builds on the first year modules, Understanding Global Politics and Problems in Global Politics, challenging you to deepen your theoretical as well as empirical knowledge in international security. It is also a preparation for the research-led third year modules that require a much more developed capacity of analysing empirical developments from a range of different theoretical perspectives.  

 
Political Parties and Party Systems around the Globe

This module will offer an overview of political party development and the functioning of party systems in democratic states around the world, with a special focus on post-transitional democracies in Eastern Europe, Latin America and Asia.

Applying a variety of analytical concepts, theoretical approaches and empirical indicators to the study of party politics, the module will highlight the institutional and sociological determinants of party organisation development and system stability as well as the consequences of party failure and party system collapse.

 
Social and Global Justice

'Justice' has been one of the key themes of political theory at least from the time of Plato, as questions of who gets what, when, and why are absolutely central to political discourse. Should people be able to keep what they earn with their talents, or is it only fair to take wealth away from those who have it to give to those who have little? Do different cultures deserve equal 'recognition'? 

Recently these questions of distributive and social justice have taken on a global dimension. Does the developed world have obligations to distant others, and do they have rights against it?

This module will look at these questions from a contemporary perspective, looking at ideas about justice from thinkers such as the utilitarians, John Rawls, Thomas Pogge, Susan Moller Okin, and Bhikhu Parekh.

 

Optional economics modules

Development Economics

This module is a general introduction to the economic problems of developing countries. The module will cover such topics as:

  • the implications of history and expectation
  • poverty, income distribution and growth
  • fertility and population
  • employment, migration and urbanisation
  • markets in agriculture
  • agricultural household models
  • risk and insurance
  • famines
 
Environmental and Resource Economics

This modules will look at:

  • market failure and the need for environmental policy - the Coase theorem
  • instruments of environmental policy - efficiency advantages of market instruments
  • applications of market instruments, especially the EU Emission Trading Scheme
  • fisheries - the open access problem and rights-based policies
  • valuation of the benefits of environmental policy
  • biodiversity and its benefits
  • international trade in polluting goods
  • mobile capital: race to the bottom?
 
Experimental and Behavioural Economics

This module provides a foundation in behavioural economics and the role of experimental methods in economics. The traditional approach in economics is to explain market outcomes and economic decision-making using simple theoretical models based on perfectly rational, self-interested agents who maximise their well-being by carefully weighing up the costs and benefits of different alternatives. Behavioural economics, on the other hand, aspires to relax these stringent assumptions and develop an understanding of how real people actually make decisions.

The module will introduce you to behavioural and experimental economics, discuss these fields from a methodological perspective and examine several areas of economic analysis in which they are applied. This will include individual choice under risk and uncertainty, decision-making in strategic situations and competition in markets.

 
Financial Economics

This module will offer an introduction to some theoretical concepts related to the allocation of risk by financial institutions. Then it will apply these concepts to the analysis of financial and banking crises.

 
International Trade

This module is an introduction to international trade theory and policy. It covers the core trade theories under perfect and imperfect competition and applies them to understanding the pattern of trade, gains from trade and modern topics like foreign outsourcing. On the policy side, it examines the effects of different government trade policy instruments and the role of international trade agreements.

 
Introduction to Political Economy

This module is concerned with the effect of political and institutional factors on economic variables as well as with the study of politics using the techniques of economics.

 
Labour Economics

This module provides an introduction to the economics of the labour market. We will look at some basic theories of how labour markets work and examine evidence to see how well these theories explain the facts.

Particular attention will be given to the relationship between the theory, empirical evidence and government policy. The module will refer especially to the UK labour market, but reference will also be made to other developed economies.

 
Monetary Economics

This course will provide a foundation for the monetary economics modules in the third year and is a complement to financial economics for the second and third years. It will cover topics such as the definitions and role of money, portfolio choice, financial markets and banks, central banks and monetary policy, and the monetary transmission mechanism. 

Under these headings the module will address issues of theory, policy and practice relating to recent experience in the UK and other countries. The module will feature some current debates and controversies based on recent events.

 
Public Sector Economics

This module looks at:

  • public finances in the uk
  • market failures
  • fundamental theorems of welfare economics
  • social welfare functions
  • externalities
  • public goods
  • natural monopolies
  • public choice
  • social insurance: social security, taxation and equity
  • excess burden of taxation and tax incidence
 
 

Typical year three modules

Optional politics modules

Airpower and Modern Warfare

The invention of the aircraft fundamentally changed the ways in which wars are fought and won. Over the course of only a century airpower developed into an indispensable instrument of warfare. Today, war without airpower is an unlikely prospect and major military operations, as a rule, are launched with overwhelming air attacks.

In recent years, however, the utility of 'strategic' airpower has increasingly come under question. Whilst technological innovation continues to strengthen airpower's capabilities, the relevance of these capabilities in contemporary conflicts cannot be taken for granted.

This module critically assesses the role of air power in modern conflict within the broader framework of strategic and security studies. It will assess the evolution of air power theory since the First World War and examine the limits of its practical application with reference to specific air campaigns.

 
Brexit: British Foreign Policy and the Withdrawal from Europe

This module interprets Brexit as the latest manifestation of a prolonged, vexed national debate about Britain's role in the world. It will build on and develop your understanding of material taught at year one and year two.

You will cover a wide variety of topics, all unified by analysis of the question that motivated policy-makers facing these dilemmas at the time: 'in or out of Europe?'

The module content unfolds around the debates that surrounded major foreign policy-related events such as the Cold War, Suez, the end of Empire and decolonisation, the turn to Europe in the 1960s and 1970s, the 1975 EEC membership referendum, the Single European Act and the Maastricht Treaty, EU enlargement and the Eurozone crisis.

 
Dissertation

This module enables you to undertake a sustained piece of research and analysis into a subject within the discipline of politic and international relations.

 
Gender and Development

This module examines major themes, debates and issues in the field of Gender and Development. We will focus on the relationship between ideas and concerns of gender (in)equality and processes, policies, and practices of economic, social and political development.

We will explore the key literature and major debates in the field of feminist political economy, linking academic, policy-related and practitioner/activist debates. We will cover theoretical and conceptual frameworks as well as key contemporary issues explored through thematic and sector/policy case studies. We will explore how political, economic and social processes of globalisation and development intersect, impact, and are in turn influenced by gender relations in the South.

 
Government and Politics in the USA

This module will offer an overview of the main political institutions and the behaviour of political actors in the United States, applying a variety of analytic concepts and empirical tools to the study of American politics.

It will in particular focus on rational choice theories of voters and politicians' behaviours addressing the incentives and constraints faced by politicians when choosing public policies. By employing theoretical and empirical tools to study public decision making at the federal and state level, the module will highlight the impact of different institutional arrangements on electoral accountability and policies in the United States.

 
Immigration and Citizenship

This module will introduce you to the current issues around migration. You will learn to differentiate between different types of immigration such as asylum, labour, family, and irregular as well as different aspects, such as integration and citizenship. The module will identify and analyse political responses to immigration at both national and supranational levels.  

 
Intervention in Africa

This module analyses political, economic, cultural and especially military intervention in Africa. It focuses on the role of external actors such as international organisations, regional organisations, and NGOs, with a special emphasis on the role of France, the UK and the European Union. We will examine theories, concepts and case studies to explain the nature of contemporary intervention.

Themes include:

  • the types and evolution of intervention
  • the growing connection betweensecurity and development
  • ethics of intervention
  • the new landscape of internal conflicts and insecurity
  • the role of the International Criminal Court
  • EU policies towards Africa
  • the difficult relationship between European actors on African issues

Case studies include Rwanda, DRC, Somalia, Sudan, Sierra Leone, Ivory Coast, Libya.

 
Nature, Ecology and Political Thought

This module considers the development of environmental and ecological political thought and how these relate to different forms of politics. It explores the relationship between deep ecology, environmental politics and different forms of anarchism, such as anarcho-primitivism and social ecology.

In addition it examines the 'ecological turn' as it has impacted upon feminism, Marxism, and right-wing thought. It also looks at the tensions between ecological politics and democracy, and at justifications for forms of environmental direct action. These strands of thought will be illustrated through application to specific policy areas such as climate change and species loss.

 
Politics and Drugs

This module studies the implications of the growing abuse of narcotics for the political system from both a national and international perspective. It will examine the production, consumption and trade in drugs as an international problem. 

The development of and issues associated with contemporary British drug policy will be explored and the theoretical questions raised by drug control policy will be examined.  

 
The Politics of Ethnic Conflict

Questions relating to nationalism and ethnic conflict have become more prominent in political debate since the end of the Cold War, and the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan demonstrated the continuing importance of constitutional crafting as a means to manage ethnic diversity within states. 

This module evaluates differing definitions of the 'nation' and 'ethnic group', examines different state strategies to manage diversity such as multiculturalism, assimilation and integration, and considers different explanations of conflict between different ethnic groups. 

It then examines in more detail strategies adopted by particular states to manage their diversity. The countries of India, America, France, Afghanistan, the UK, and Germany are focused upon, but students are encouraged to use material relating to other countries if they have particular knowledge of these cases.

 
Politics Placement

This module involves part-time placement (one day a week) in an external organisation, and is aimed at developing hands-on work experience and employability skills in a workplace relevant to students of politics. Pre-placement training will be provided via three half-day workshops at the beginning of the module.

Each placement will be arranged by the work placement officer. Placements will be provided by organisations involved in private, public and third sector organisations, such as the civil service, charities and political parties.

Departmental mentoring will take the form of a weekly drop-in tutorial with the module convenor, in which experiences are shared and work is undertaken on the assessment tasks. Group presentations will occur during the final four hour workshop, at which time each group will critically reflect on their experiences of the ethos and goals of their host organisation.

 

Optional economics modules

Optional modules covering advanced topics such as:

Development Economics

This module adopts a broad focus on factors influencing growth and development. Topics covered include macroeconomic policies, aid, debt, trade; growth experiences in East Asia, China and Africa.

 
Econometric Theory

This module generalises and builds upon the econometric techniques applied to the multivariate linear regression model covered in the year two module, Econometrics I. This will involve introducing a number of new statistical and econometric concepts.

In particular, we study large sample, or asymptotic, theory. This is needed in order to obtain tractable results about the behaviour of estimators when the standard modelling assumptions - which frequently cannot be verified in practice - are relaxed. 

 
Experimental and Behavioural Economics

This module provides a window on three important sub-areas of experimental and behavioural economics. The first focuses on design issues and individual decision-making, the next two sections focus on applications to the study of strategic behaviour and market behaviour.

You do not need to have studied experimental or behavioural economics before because all topics will be introduced at a level that will be accessible to the newcomer. The module is, nevertheless, suitable as a sequel to the year two module Experimental and Behavioural Economics because the contents of the two modules cover distinct, but complementary, topics.

 
Financial Economics

The module covers:

  • saving, focusing on how agents make intertemporal decisions about their savings and wealth accumulation
  • saving puzzles and household portfolios, focusing on credit markets and credit markets imperfections, and why do households hold different kinds of assets
  • asset allocation and asset pricing, focusing on intertemporal portfolio selection, asset pricing and the equity premium puzzle
  • the role of behavioural finance in explaining stock market puzzles
 
International Trade Theory

The module covers:

  • models of intra-industry trade
  • trade policy in oligopolistic industries
  • mathematical enterprises
  • testing trade theories
  • the WTO and "new issues"
 
Labour Economics

The module covers an economic analysis of the labour market, with an emphasis on policy implications and institutional arrangements.

 
Macroeconomics

This module covers:

  • dynamic general equilibrium models, focusing on how the time path of consumption, and saving, is determined by optimising agents and firms that interact on competitive markets
  • growth in dynamic general equilibrium, focusing on the Solow model and the data, and the role played by accumulation of knowledge (endogenous innovation) in explaining long run growth
  • Real Business Cycles (RBC), focusing on how the RBC approach accounts for business cycle fluctuations, and what links short run fluctuations and growth processes
 
Mathematical Economics

The module is intended to provide an introduction to mathematical techniques used in economics. In particular, examples of economic issues that can be analysed using mathematical models will be discussed in detail.

Particular attention will be given to providing an intuitive understanding of the logic behind the formal results presented. Students who wish to pursue a higher degree in economics will find the module particularly useful.

 
Microeconomics

The module will cover topics in advanced microeconomics and decision theory. The precise content may vary from year to year, but the module will start from the basis established by the Microeconomic Theory module.

 
Monetary Economics

This module will provide an outline of the elements of monetary theory and of theoretical policy issues. 

 
Public Economics I

The module will introduce some major themes of public economics, using microeconomic tools to analyse public policy. The equity and efficiency implications of policies will be examined within an economic framework.

 
Time Series Econometrics

This module is a continuation of the module on time series analysis. While the earlier module was devoted to basic time series model building methodology, this module concentrates on those developments which can be applied in the subject of economics. 

In particular, the emphasis will be on aspects of the behaviour of typical economic time series, and the implications of that behaviour in practical analysis, such as the construction of models linking economic time series.

The key issues addressed will be the identification of non-stationarity through the construction of formal tests and the implications for modelling with non-stationary data. Particular attention will be paid to the contributions of Sir Clive Granger to the spurious regression problem and to cointegration analysis, for which he was ultimately awarded the Nobel Prize.

 
Industrial Organisation

This module provides an advanced economic analysis of the theory of organisation of firms and industries. It will analyse a variety of market structures related to the degree of market competition with a special emphasis on imperfectly competitive markets. It will also analyse issues related to the internal organisation of firms.

 
International Money and Macroeconomics

This module will provide an introduction to international monetary issues, including the determination of exchange rates, and the functioning of the international monetary system.

 
International Trade Policy

This module looks at:

  • trade policy - theory and evidence
  • trade policy and imperfect competition
  • trade and distortions
  • the political economy of protection
  • trade policy reform
 
Numerical Methods in Economics

This module covers the following:

Static numerical methods

  • Numerical solution methods
  • Numerical static optimisation methods
  • Applications: resource allocation, computable general equilibrium

Dynamic numerical optimisation

  • Discrete dynamic programming
  • Implementation of the methods
  • Applications: optimal growth, rational expectations, asset management

Agent-based economic modelling

  • Foundations of agent-based modelling
  • Basics of computer programming
  • Applications: evolutionary games, markets   
 
Political Economy

The module will cover the following:

Foundations

  • The rational political individual?
  • Voter participation
  • Collective action and the role of the state

Core political economy

  • The economic approach to politics
  • Political aspects of economics: rights and the limits of the state
  • Political aspects of economics: inequality and the duties of the state

Political economy in action

  • Political economy in action: some current issues in applied political economy
 
Topics in Econometrics

This module focuses on a range of econometric methods used in policy evaluation and in the identification and estimation of causal effects. Topics to be covered include:

  • potential outcomes framework
  • regression analysis and matching
  • instrumental variables
  • difference-in-differences
  • regression discontinuity
 
 

Listen to our lecturers talking about some of the modules on offer in our virtual module fair.

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. The above list is a sample of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.

 
 

Study abroad

The University of Nottingham has one of the most extensive and diverse study abroad programmes in the UK, and those who have studied abroad often say that it was the highlight of their time as a student.

On this course you can apply to spend one semester or a full year at the University's campuses in China or Malaysia or at one of our partner institutions in locations such as Australia, Canada, Europe, Japan, Mexico and the USA.

You'll get the opportunity to broaden your horizons and enhance your employability by experiencing another culture and will study similar modules to your counterparts back in Nottingham (teaching is in English).

 

Careers

At Nottingham you will acquire a strong academic foundation and a range of excellent transferable skills, such as the ability to study independently and communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing. You will leave us with specialist knowledge of international issues and political systems that will enhance your global career prospects. You will also have the capacity to grasp complicated economic concepts, whether they are mathematical or philosophical in nature.

Our graduates develop careers across the private, public and charitable sectors. Private sector destinations include print and television journalism, broadcasting, television and film production, advertising, marketing and personnel as well as the commercial and financial sectors. Some go into party politics as parliamentary assistants, councillors in local government and even MPs; others work for the civil service and in research and data analysis.

Third-sector careers include working for non-governmental organisations, charities and development agencies. Some graduates opt for further study or take vocational qualifications in postgraduate law or teaching.

We recognise that graduates often need more than just a great degree to stand out from the crowd. As such, we help provide valuable placement and internship opportunities for politics and international relations students. We currently have over 25 placement partners providing 100+ placements a year, including internship opportunities in Westminster and even overseas.

Average starting salary and career progression

93% of undergraduates from the School of Politics and International Relations who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £23,763 with the highest being £40,000.*

93.3% of undergraduates from the School of Economics who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £29,568 with the highest being £55,000.*

* Known destinations of full-time home undergraduates 2015/16. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Careers support and advice

Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take. For the last three years Nottingham has been one of the two most targeted universities in the country by employers.

Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is the best university in the UK for graduate employment, according to the 2017 The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide.

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Fees and funding

Scholarships and bursaries

The University of Nottingham offers a wide range of bursaries and scholarships. These funds can provide you with an additional source of non-repayable financial help. For up to date information regarding tuition fees, visit our fees and finance pages.

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £2,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.

International/EU students

Our International Baccalaureate Diploma Excellence Scholarship is available for select students paying overseas fees who achieve 40 points or above in the International Baccalaureate Diploma. We also offer a range of High Achiever Prizes for students from selected countries, schools and colleges to help with the cost of tuition fees. Find out more about scholarships, fees and finance for international students.

 
 
 

Key Information Sets (KIS)


KIS is an initiative that the government has introduced to allow you to compare different courses and universities.

Assessment

There is assessment associated with this programme that is not attached to a specific module. During first year students complete two assessed, non credit bearing courses on Writing Economics and Careers and Employability for Economists. Writing Economics help students adapt to university study, as well as providing information and support for effective study.  

Careers & Employability for Economists allows reflection on personal development and implications on students' future careers. It will include workshops on work experience, interviews and job application in sessions led by leading employers, graduates and the careers Service. 

How to use the data

Disclaimer
This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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