The course

UCAS code
3 years
Delivery type

Economics at Heriot-Watt University was ranked 3rd in the UK by the National Student Survey 2019. This accelerated 3-year degree is most suited to those who have completed A-Level qualifications and applies modern economic theory to the real world.



Economics at the Edinburgh Business School

At Heriot-Watt University, the study of Economics is conducted in the Edinburgh Business School and is underpinned by the work of globally active researchers. This accelerated 3-year degree focuses on making a difference in the real world and has the 3rd highest level of Student Satisfaction in the UK (NSS2019).

Ask the big questions

Economics is the study of how individuals, firms and governments make choices, and how these choices determine the way in which resources are distributed across society. It helps us understand and improve decision-making for ourselves, organisations and societies, and it throws light on issues as diverse as the environment, unemployment, inflation, poverty, globalisation and trade. This degree will give you the skills to investigate, analyse and answer such questions.

Real-world focus

Your learning will be underpinned by the knowledge of highly respected economists who design and teach our courses with a global outlook and real-world focus, stemming directly from their research into global economic issues. Study begins at an introductory level so you do not need to have previous knowledge of economics in order to study the programme.

Rankings and employability

Edinburgh Business School was ranked as the Number 1 place in Scotland, and 3rd in the United Kingdom, to study Economics in the Guardian University League Tables 2018, behind only Oxford and Cambridge. It also achieved the highest level of overall student satisfaction in Scotland, and 3rd highest in the UK, in the National Student Survey 2019.

Economics is a subject in demand and UniStats2019 found that 90% of our recent Economics graduates from Heriot-Watt University were in work or further study 6 months after graduating.

As your studies progress through Years 1, 2 and 3 of this accelerated MA (Hons) programme you will study an increasing number of specialist economics courses.  Our flexible degree structure lets you tailor your studies and follow your own particular area of interest. It will equip you with a wide range of quantitative, analytical and communication skills to prepare you for career paths business, management, marketing, banking, finance, policy analysis, civil service, academia and more.  

Course content

Year 1

Semester 1

  • Intermediate Economics 1 (30 credits)
  • Quantitative Methods
  • Elective

Semester 2

  • Contemporary Economic Policy and Institutions
  • Intermediate Economics 2
  • Statistical Techniques
  • Elective

Year 2

Semester 1

  • Advanced Economics 1
  • Introductory Econometrics
  • Elective
  • Option

Semester 2

  • Advanced Econometrics 2
  • Econometrics Project
  • Elective
  • Option

Year 3

Semester 1

  • Advanced Economic Policy 1
  • Dissertation Project 1
  • Option
  • Option

Semester 2

  • Advanced Economic Policy 2
  • Dissertation Project 2
  • Option
  • Option

Entry requirements

Year 1

  • A-level  ABB with at least one of the following preferred: Accounting, Business or Economics.
  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016)  DDD in relevant subject (Accountancy, Business, Economics, Finance preferred).
  • Advanced Higher  BB with AABB at Higher to include Maths
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme  34 points  including Maths or Economics at Higher Level 5.
  • Scottish HND  Pass HND (Accounting or Business) with BB in graded units.

We operate contextual admissions defined by our Fair Access Policy which may mean entry requirements are flexible. We accept a wide range of other qualifications from the UK, Europe and International countries. Please contact the Admissions Officer for the programme for further information on the entry requirements for these.


Tuition fees for 2020 entry (by residency status)
Status* Scotland / EU** England / Northern Ireland / Wales*** International
Fee Paid by SAAS £9,250 £15,080

* Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.

** European Union countries (not including England, Northern Ireland or Wales).

*** 'Rest of the UK' (RUK) students entering at Level 1 receive a fee waiver of one year's tuition fee. Normally this will be the final year, or a year during which students study abroad (either at a partnership institution, or at one of Heriot-Watt's overseas campuses).

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your studies at Heriot-Watt over and above tuition fees in an academic year. Depending on your programme of study, these may include: protective equipment, field trips, professional memberships, studio fees, required course texts or other study resources.

Scholarships and bursaries

Featured scholarships

Bursaries for students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales starting undergraduate degree courses in 2020

In addition to government loans and grants towards the costs of fees and living costs, we are offering generous financial support to attract and support eligible students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales:

View our full range of undergraduate scholarships.