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MSc (T) Economics

Academic Year 2017/18

A programme specification is required for any programme on which a student may be registered. All programmes of the University are subject to the University's Quality Assurance and Enhancement processes as set out in the DASA Policies and Procedures Manual.

Programme Title

MSc (T) Economics

Final Award
(exit route if applicable for Postgraduate Taught Programmes)

Master of Science

Programme Code

ECO-MSC-E

UCAS Code

JACS Code

L100 (DESCR) 100

Criteria for Admissions

Normally a 1st or 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in Economics or a closely related subject (e.g. Business Economics, Finance, joint degrees with substantial economics component). We welcome applications from a diverse range of applicants so will also consider those with a 1st or 2.1 Honours degree, or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in other quantitative subjects (e.g. Mathematics) and those with relevant previous work experience alongside academic qualifications. We encourage applicants to submit a detailed CV.
INTO Queen’s Graduate Diploma in Finance, with a final composite average mark of at least 60%, with no individual academic module mark below 50%, and a result of 60% or greater (comparable to IELTS 6.5 with minimum on 5.5 in each component) in the English for Academic Purposes module (NTO3001) is also acceptable.
Candidates who do not satisfy the above but who are holders of an equivalent approved professional qualification or work experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
In addition, international applicants will be required to demonstrate evidence of language proficiency by one of the following:
• An IELTS score of 6.5 with not less than 5.5 in each of the four component elements of listening, reading, speaking and writing taken within the last 2 years
• A TOEFL score of 90+ (internet based is the only acceptable form of this test); with at least the following scores in each of the four component parts of listening (17), reading (18), speaking (20) and writing (17) taken within the last 2 years.
• A first or good second class honours degree from a university based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or other suitably quality assured location where the medium of instruction is English
• A language assessment conducted by Queen’s University Belfast or approved provider

An alternative English Language qualification recognised by Queen’s University Belfast.

ATAS Clearance Required

No

Health Check Required

No

Portfolio Required

Interview Required

Mode of Study

Full Time

Type of Programme

Postgraduate

Length of Programme

1 Academic Year(s)

Total Credits for Programme

180

Exit Awards available

INSTITUTE INFORMATION

Awarding Institution/Body

Queen's University Belfast

Teaching Institution

Queen's University Belfast

School/Department

Queen's Management School

Framework for Higher Education Qualification Level 
http://www.qaa.ac.uk/publications/information-and-guidance

Level 7

QAA Benchmark Group
http://www.qaa.ac.uk/assuring-standards-and-quality/the-quality-code/subject-benchmark-statements

Accreditations (PSRB)

External Examiner Name:

External Examiner Institution/Organisation

Dr Duncan Watson

University of East Anglia

REGULATION INFORMATION

Does the Programme have any approved exemptions from the University General Regulations
(Please see General Regulations)

N/A

Programme Specific Regulations

The MSc Economics is based on the University wide modular framework. The class of degree awarded to the student (Fail, Pass, Commendation and Distinction) is based on his or her performance in 7 modules plus the dissertation or consultancy based report. Module marks are combined over the first and second semesters that together with the dissertation or consultancy based report and are used to produce an aggregate mark. Marking is based on the University’s agreed marking scale.


Level Information

Students will be assessed by coursework, class tests and a dissertation or consultancy based report.

Students with protected characteristics

N/A

Are students subject to Fitness to Practise Regulations

(Please see General Regulations)

No

EDUCATIONAL AIMS OF PROGRAMME

Within the context of the University’s Vision Statement, the MSc in Economics aims to:

(i) provide effective systems of learning, academic guidance and pastoral support to encourage the academic, intellectual and personal development of students;

(ii) provide students with the opportunity to pursue a leading-edge programme of study focused on micro and macroeconomics, applied econometrics, economic history, economic behaviour, and labour economics and social policy, and on how these subjects can be used to help inform critical policy choices facing society;

(iii) provide students with the opportunity to undertake an independent piece of research (dissertation or consultancy based report) which draws on and extends the knowledge and skills acquired in the taught modules,

(iv) develop students’ knowledge and skills base in ways which inter alia will enhance their employment opportunities;

(v) help to develop the next generation of academic and research economists;

(vi) maintain a supportive working environment in which there is respect for social and cultural differences and openness, fairness, and equality of opportunity in relation to selection, learning assessment and support.

LEARNING OUTCOMES

Learning Outcomes: Cognitive Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Problem solve.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Modules are conducted via lectures, tutorials, directed reading, student presentations, group projects, peer review, and private study. Cognitive skills are developed across all the modules within the degree programme, although the precise balance will vary across modules.

All modules have some quantitative component and help to develop problem solving and logical reasoning skills.

Methods of Assessment

Both summative and formative assessment methods are used throughout the degree.

Formative assessment takes a number of different forms, including in-class discussion, in-class exercises, weekly homework assignments and peer review.

Summative assessment also takes a variety of forms as part of continuous assessment, which themselves also contribute to formative assessment, including in-class tests, assessed homework assignments, presentations, individual and group project reports (including the dissertation or consultancy based report), research plans, and peer reviews of project reports and research plans.

Assessment of cognitive skills, both summative and formative, occurs across these assessment methods, across all modules.

Reason logically.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

The classroom time will be made up of formal lecturing time whereby key concepts will be introduced. This will be accompanied by interactive tasks which will help the students to sharpen their skills and ability to reason logically when presented with a range of scenarios. The tutorial and workshop time will focus predominately on skills development including logical reasoning

All modules have some quantitative component and help to develop problem solving and logical reasoning skills.

Methods of Assessment

Each coursework component and formal class test will test the students’ ability to reason logically and select the most appropriate solution from a range of alternatives.

Conduct independent enquiry.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Independent enquiry is a key element in all modules. Students will be presented with a range of complex issues, ideas and theories and expected to undertake independent enquiry to better understand these. Class time will be devoted to discussing these ideas from a variety of different perspectives.
Key concepts and ideas will be explored and developed in the formal lecture and more interactive tutorial/workshop environment. Students will be trained to evaluate the concepts using a range of frameworks (both qualitatively and quantitatively) and to interpret the findings.

Methods of Assessment

Several forms of assessment both nightly homework assignments, essays, the dissertation or consultancy based report module etc will require the student to undertake independent research

Critically evaluate and interpret.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Key concepts and ideas will be explored and developed in the formal lecture and more interactive tutorial/workshop environment. Students will be trained to evaluate the concepts using a range of frameworks (both qualitatively and quantitatively) and to interpret the findings.

Methods of Assessment

All forms of CA whether these are in-class tests, take home papers, short homework exercises, essays and the extended dissertation or consultancy based report will require the students to use their judgement and to evaluate and interpret a range of results and information.

Self-assess and reflect.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Self-assessment and reflection are developed by formative feedback across all of the modules, e.g. on presentations, assignments, and through peer review.

Methods of Assessment

Students will have opportunities to reflect on their own performance both formatively and summatively.

Learning Outcomes: Transferable Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Synthesise information/data from a variety of sources including from databases, books, journal articles and the internet.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Transferable skills development permeates the teaching and learning on the degree programme. All modules will help to develop all skills listed here, although the balance will vary across modules.

Methods of Assessment

Both formative and summative assessments, across modules, will require students to demonstrate all of the listed transferable skills.

All modules will require all skills, although the balance will vary across modules. For example, Applied Econometrics and the Dissertation or consultancy based report modules will emphasise IT skills among others. Labour Economics and Social Policy will include summative assessment of group working.

Reason and evaluate and recommend on the basis of such reasoning.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

There will be many opportunities in the scheduled teaching time for students to work, in conjunction with the lecturer to evaluate a range of potential solutions to economics questions.

Methods of Assessment

This skill will be assessed both formatively and summatively in take home papers, weekly and nightly homework assignments, longer reports and extended essays.

Organise their work and time manage.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Students will have some time in the scheduled teaching sessions to undertake short time-based tasks. Other more complex tasks which are summatively assessed will be distributed to students throughout each module for students to plan their workload accordingly.

Methods of Assessment

The assessment strategy is such that students will have summative assessment to complete on a weekly basis. Some of these are short tasks to test for knowledge synthesis and understanding. Other more complex tasks assess a range of composite skills and will require the student to manage his/her time effectively.

Problem solve and critically analyse.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

These are integral to all of the modules on this programme. Students will be given opportunities to enhance and develop their ability to problem solve and critically analyse using appropriate econometric and qualitative tools. Training will be provided in the scheduled class time and tutorials will also support this skill development.

Methods of Assessment

All forms of continuous assessment and the formal class tests will test the student’s ability to problem solve and critically analyse information.

Use work-based IT, including word-processing and statistics/econometric packages.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Students may have to interrogate datasets and use a variety of statistical packages (for example STATA) to derive solutions to complex problems. Other IT packages including word processing and presentation packages will be used when students are submitting their assessed work for consideration.

Methods of Assessment

Students will have significant opportunities to develop and enhance their use of a wide range of IT packages.

Work both independently and in groups.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Students will have various opportunities both within and beyond the classroom to work in a range of different learning environments. This may involve independently analysing data and problem solving or completing a more complex problem (for both formative and summative assessment purposes) in a small group.

Methods of Assessment

Group work has been specifically integrated into the assessment methods in some modules whilst working independent is an integral feature in others. There is a very sound balance between both forms of working.

Communicate complex information in written and presentation form.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Short interactive class sessions allow students to discuss complex ideas and present their findings and analysis in a non-threatening environment.

Methods of Assessment

Students have been given both formative and summative opportunities to present ideas, discuss complex and ambiguous information in both written and oral forms.

Learning Outcomes: Knowledge & Understanding

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Understand the theoretical and conceptual underpinnings of economics, including the economic modelling toolkits of micro and macroeconomics.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

The MSc in Economics follows a structured curriculum based upon the modules studied. Acquisition of knowledge and understanding, across modules, is through structured exposition based on lectures, tutorials, seminars and master classes, directed reading, student presentations, group projects, peer review, and private study.

Methods of Assessment

Formative assessment takes a number of different forms, including in-class discussion, in-class exercises, in-class tests, weekly homework assignments and peer review of student work.

Summative assessment also takes a variety of forms including class tests and a range of continuous assessment elements (which themselves also contribute to formative assessment), including assessed homework assignments, presentations, individual and group project reports (including the dissertation or consultancy based report) and research plans.

Understand the main research methods that have been used in economic research, including relevant quantitative and statistical techniques.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

In each of the modules, students will become familiar with a wide range of research methods that are used in economics. More specifically, the elective modules in Current Issues will expose students to leading edge thinking and research in practice

Methods of Assessment

Students will have opportunities to engage with a wide range of research methods both formatively and summatively.

Students completing the dissertation or consultancy based report will be able to use at least one or a combination of these methods in much more detail to solve a specific economics problem.

Understand how relevant theory and methods have been applied to a variety of current and historical economic and social policy issues and contexts.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

The teaching material in each of the modules has been specifically developed to expose students to the application of theory and methods in a wide range of historical and contemporary settings.

Methods of Assessment

Students will have many opportunities to apply these methods to a range of historical and contemporary economic problems.

Understand the academic research process from inception to publication.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

All modules are very heavily focused on leading edge research. The elective modules in Topics in Economics will focus specifically on the research process from idea to final publication and dissemination of results.

Methods of Assessment

Students will have opportunities to develop their ideas into more structured research in the Topics in Economics module.
Students completing the dissertation or consultancy based report will have a clear insight into the research process.

Learning Outcomes: Subject Specific

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Construct, interpret and critically evaluate models of behaviour in economics.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Abstraction, quantitative and evaluation skills, through model building, manipulation, application and evaluation, are at the core of economics. Consequently, these skills are core elements in each semester of the degree and are built across modules and throughout the duration of the programme.

Methods of Assessment

Both summative and formative assessment methods, as described above, are used throughout all modules to assess subject specific skills.

Apply economic models and concepts to real world questions.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

This is an integral part of all modules and worked examples and classroom discussion will be used to introduce the students to the application of economic models and concepts.

Methods of Assessment

This skill will be tested in a variety of different ways in all taught modules. Short take home papers, group work and longer reports and essays will form the basis for continuous assessment. All in-class tests and exercises will also require students to be able to apply a range of economic models and concepts and discuss their significance or otherwise to real world questions.

Use statistical software (e.g. STATA) to analyse a wide range of economic data for relevant analytical purposes.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

The ability to use statistical software to analyse data is crucial for both professional and academic economists. Consequently, these skills are developed across modules in both semesters, in particular in the Applied Econometrics and Labour Economics and Social Policy modules. These will also be critical skills for the dissertation or consultancy based report.

Methods of Assessment

Assessments for Applied Econometrics and Labour Economics and Social Policy are particularly relevant here.

Plan and execute independent research.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

These skills will be stressed across modules, but are particularly integral to the Topics and dissertation or consultancy based report modules.

Methods of Assessment

Assessment for the topics modules and the dissertation or consultancy based report module are particularly (but not exclusively) relevant here.

Draw parallels between historical and contemporary economic issues and processes.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

These skills will also be stressed across modules, but are particularly integral to the global economy and topics in economic history modules.

Methods of Assessment

This skill will be tested in all modules but the Assessment for the economic history modules are particularly relevant here.

Understand, evaluate and commentate on economic and social policy.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

These skills are integral to all modules. Students will have many opportunities to comment on and evaluate economic and social policy in interactive workshops and tutorials as well as in the formal lecture time.

Methods of Assessment

These skills are tested in the continuous assessment components of all modules.

Construct arguments and exercise problem solving skills in the context of economic theory and its application.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

These skills are integral to all modules.

Methods of Assessment

Students will be presented with a range of contemporary and historical economic questions and problems and will have to draw upon a range of problem solving skills to present and discuss solutions.

Comprehend and evaluate academic literature in economics.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Up-to-date economic literature is integrated throughout the programme, and emphasis is placed on the ongoing development of the students’ ability to communicate, debate and critique this literature

Methods of Assessment

This is central to the programme in Economics. In all modules, students will be encouraged to engage with the most current literature in the area. Several modules will test this skill specifically and require the students to formally analyse and evaluate a range of contemporary and historical literature.

MODULE INFORMATION

Programme Requirements

Module Title

Module Code

Level/ stage

Credits

Availability

Duration

Pre-requisite

 

Assessment

 

 

 

 

S1

S2

 

 

Core

Option

Coursework %

Practical %

Examination %

Microeconomic Theory

ECO7009

70

20

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

40%

60%

0%

Macroeconomics

ECO7010

70

20

YES

11 weeks

N

YES

40%

60%

0%

Applied Econometrics

ECO7011

70

20

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

Economic Behaviour

ECO7012

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

30%

70%

0%

The Global Economy in Historical Perspective

ECO7013

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

40%

60%

0%

Labour Economics & Social Policy

ECO7014

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

20%

80%

0%

Topics in Economic Theory

ECO7015

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

Topics in Economic History

ECO7016

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

Topics in Policy & Institutions

ECO7017

70

15

YES

12 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

MSc Economics Dissertation

ECO7018

70

60

14 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

Consultancy Based Report

ECO7020

70

60

14 weeks

N

YES

100%

0%

0%

Notes

ECO7018 prerequisite: Students must pass modules worth at least 100 CAT points, including one of Topics in Economic Theory, Topics in Economic History, or Topics in Policy and Institutions before they can begin either ECO7020 or ECO7018