All the courses offered by the Department of Economics approach the subject matter from a development perspective. Students on the MSc Development Economics will complete courses on Macroeconomics, Microeconomics, Econometrics and Growth and Development. In addition, students must take three optional courses and complete a dissertation in an area of applied economics.
The objectives of the programme are:
- To enable students to apply the principles of economic analysis to the design of economic policy
- To teach postgraduates the technical and analytical skills to qualify them to practice as professional economists
- To enable practicing professional economists to improve and update their skills and knowledge
- To impart the skills and knowledge that enable students to progress towards PhD research
Students will benefit from studying with experts in development economics within the Department. More broadly, students will benefit from the Department's Political Economy of Development seminar series and other open lectures offered in the School.
All students are required to complete the compulsory preliminary course in Mathematics and Statistics (including Computing) to begin studying on this programme. This course is taught over a three week period from the beginning of September covering mathematics, statistics and computing. For further information about this course including a timetable please see here: Preliminary maths and Statistics Course
Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings
Start of programme: September intake only
Mode of Attendance: Full-time or Part-time
- Minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in Economics
- One calendar year (full-time)
Two years(part-time, daytime only)
Three Years (part-time, daytime only)
We recommend that part-time students have between two and a half and three days free in the week to pursue their course of study.
- UK/EU fees:
- Overseas fees:
Fees for 2020/21 entrants. This is a Band 3 fee. The fees are per academic year. Please note that fees go up each year. Further details can be found in the Fees and Funding tab on this page or in the Registry Postgraduate Tuition Fees page
The MSc Development Economics is a taught Masters degree, taught within a structures programme being obtained mainly by research and dissertation. It consists of eight course modules delivered through lectures, classes, and tutorials and an 10,000-word dissertation. The degree is awarded on the basis of examinations written in May and a dissertation which is submitted in September. All students must complete and pass the Basic Mathematics and Statistics course which is taught over three weeks in August/ September before the start of the core courses of the MSc.
The structure of the modules for this programme is similar to the MSc Economics with reference to a certain area courses except that students have three modules for their options. A complete list of courses in the programme is listed below, not all of which are offered in any single year. Please note that some courses may be taught in other departments of the School. CORE All students need to choose eight courses from the list below. A 10,000-word dissertation on an approved topic is compulsory and is in addition to the taught courses.
Students with strong econometrics background may follow an alternative combination of quantitative modules allowing them to take both Advanced Econometrics A and Advanced Econometrics B without having to complete Econometrics first. Students who wish to apply for this alternative quantitative structure must contact the convenor of Econometrics prior to taking the Preliminary examination. Applicants will undertake an assessment during the Welcome week based on examination papers of previous years' Econometrics.
All students will take the following five core modules:
All students will take EITHER Advanced Macroeconometrics (previously Advanced Econometrics A) OR Advanced Microeconometrics (previously Advanced Econometrics B)
All students will take the modules to the value of 45 credits from list of modules (below)
Taught Component for students with a strong background in Econometrics
For students with a strong background in Econometrics, the following alternative combination of modules is available; they will take both Advanced Econometrics A and Advanced Econometrics B without having to complete Econometrics first and will take all the core modules listed above.
All students will take the modules to the value of 45 credits from list of modules (below)
List of Modules (subject to availability)
Note: Advanced Macroeconometrics and Advanced Microconometrics can be chosen as an option if not taken as a core module.
The information on the programme page reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session. If you are a current student you can find structure information on the previous year link at the top of the page or through your Department. Please read the important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules.
Teaching & LearningThe MSc includes eight taught modules plus a preliminary course in Mathematics and Statistics and an 10,000-word dissertation.
The courses are taught in seminar groups and lectures. The degrees are awarded on the basis of assessed coursework, examinations and the dissertation.
The MSc degrees are taught over a period of twelve months of full-time study within a structured programme. In the case of part-time study, the degrees will be taught over two or three years. Four modules are studied each year, with the dissertation normally being completed in the second year.
All Masters programmes consist of 180 credits, made up of taught modules of 30 or 15 credits, taught over 10 or 20 weeks, and a dissertation of 60 credits. The programme structure shows which modules are compulsory and which optional.
As a rough guide, 1 credit equals approximately 10 hours of work. Most of this will be independent study, including reading and research, preparing coursework, revising for examinations and so on. It will also include class time, which may include lectures, seminars and other classes. Some subjects, such as learning a language, have more class time than others. In the Department of Economics, most postgraduate modules have a two hour lecture and a one hour seminar every week, but this does vary.
More information is on the page for each module.
Most modules involve a 2-hour lecture as a key component with linked seminar or tutorial classes.
At Masters level there is particular emphasis on seminar work. Students make full-scale presentations and are expected to write papers that often require significant independent work.
Students are required to complete a 10,000-word dissertation in applied economics.
SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.
Pre Entry Reading
Preliminary Mathematics and Statistics Course
Our MSc programmes attract students with a wide range of backgrounds including many who have worked for a few years before coming to SOAS. Our popular quantitative courses are designed to be accessible to all of our students including those with a relatively small quantitative component in their first degree. Our well-received quantitative courses focus on applying basic methods used in empirical research. They equip students to carry out their own high quality empirical work and critically evaluate research, with relatively little emphasis on advanced econometric theory and mathematical proofs.
Our econometrics teaching begins with a three-week preliminary course in mathematics, statistics and computing. The objective of the course is to review the basic quantitative skills assumed once formal teaching commences. This course is compulsory. Further details.
Full details of postgraduate tuition fees can be found on the Registry's Postgraduate Tuition Fees page.
This is a Band 3 tuition fee.
Fees for 2020/21 entrants. The fees below are per academic year. Fees go up each year, therefore, your tuition fee in your second & subsequent years of study will be higher. Our continuing students, on the same degree programme, are protected from annual increases higher than 5%.
||Part-time 2 Years
||Part-time 3 Years
For further details and information on external scholarships visit the Scholarships section
A postgraduate degree in Development Economics from SOAS equips students with a range of important skills to continue in the field of research as well as a portfolio of widely transferable employability skills valued by a wide range of employers. These include numeracy, analytical thinking and general skills such as organisation and effective communication skills. In addition the study of Economics gives students particular problem solving skills including: abstraction, analysis, quantification, strategic thinking and adaptability.
Postgraduate students from the SOAS MSc in Development Economics have followed successful have followed successful careers in both academic work and also in international banking and financial analysis, in national governments in many parts of the world, in international development agencies and in a range of non-government
organisations. A postgraduate degree is a valuable experience that provides students with a body of work and a diverse range of skills that they can use to market themselves with when they graduate.
Graduates have gone on to work for a range of organisations including:
|African Development Bank
Cabinet of the Deputy Prime Minister
Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)
Department For Communities And Local Government
Department for International Development
Department of Foreign Affairs
Emerging Markets Direct
Federation of the Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry
Ghana Education Service
Government of Pakistan
Institute for Social and Economic Studies (IESE)
International Climate Change Economics
Ministry of East African Community Affairs
National Bank of Bahrain
Overseas Development Institute
Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia
The National Economics University
United Nations Development Programme
Types of roles that graduates have gone on to do include:
Fair Trade Producer Support Manager
Latin America Country Risk Analyst
Senior Policy Officer
Consultant - Development Sector Practice
Senior Policy Economist
Communications and Knowledge Management Specialist
Web Writer & Founder
For more information about Graduate Destinations from this department, please visit the Careers Service website.
A Student's Perspective
Tamara Bah, American University, Washington
Before I came to SOAS, I knew that my grade would depend on either one or two large assignments and I was apprehensive about that—almost scared, however I am glad as I got to learn a lot about myself as a student. I became more independent academically and got to see what I can really accomplished without teachers “coddling” me along the way. Extremely refreshing!