Undergraduate study - 2022 entry
Open to the world

MA Economics and Statistics

UCAS code: LG13

Duration: 4 years

Delivery: Full-time

School: Economics

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Study abroad

Introducing MA Economics and Statistics

Statistical techniques act as an important tool if you are interested in economic theory (e.g. risk management and finance) or applied economic analysis (econometrics).

This joint programme will provide you with a more thorough and rigorous development of statistical principles. This complements the basic grounding in (and applications of) statistical techniques, which is provided within the economics program.

Who is the programme for?

The programme is suitable if you are interested in pursuing a relatively technical career in areas such as finance and insurance (including actuarial work). It may also appeal if you would like to proceed to graduate study of economics.

Year 1

You will study:

  • Economics 1
  • Introduction to Linear Algebra
  • Calculus and its Applications
  • Proofs and Problem Solving

You will also take one option course.

The School of Mathematics offers the optional course, Introduction to Data Science. You will learn to collect and explore data, before using models and predictions in order to make rigorous conclusions.

In addition to these courses, some students will also take our online course, Fundamentals of Algebra and Calculus. This introductory course provides extra preparation in key topics from advanced mathematics and supports the transition to university.

During this year you will have access to mathematics support from the MathsBase, our popular walk-in help centre.

Year 2

You will study:

  • Economics 2
  • Statistics (Year 2)
  • Several Variable Calculus and Differential Equations
  • Fundamentals of Pure Mathematics
  • Probability

You will also take one option course.

From this year onwards you can use the MathsHub, a student-run facility in the James Clerk Maxwell Building which is both a social centre and a work space.

Year 3

You will study:

  • Topics in Microeconomics
  • Essentials of Econometrics
  • Statistical Methodology
  • Stochastic Modelling
  • Statistical Computing

Plus either:

  • Applications of Econometrics
  • Topics in Macroeconomics

and one of:

  • Theory of Statistical Inference
  • Multivariate Data Analysis
  • Statistical Learning
  • Applied Statistics

You will choose one honours option course from economics or two from statistics.

Year 4

You will undertake an Economics honours dissertation or a project in mathematics (double); two economics honours option courses and two mathematics option courses.

You will have a wide range of optional courses to choose from, influenced by the varied research specialisms in each School.

The School of Mathematics offers a large selection of courses, such as:

  • Pure and Applied Mathematics
  • Statistics
  • Operational Research
  • Financial Mathematics
  • Mathematical Biology and Mathematical Education

You will be able to tailor your programme to meet your specific statistical (and mathematical) interests.

Current mathematics courses include:

  • General Topology
  • Essentials in Analysis and Probability
  • The Analysis of Survival Data
  • Entrepreneurship in the Mathematical Sciences

Programme structure

Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.

To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.

Programme structure (2021/22)

Our facilities

For economics courses, teaching takes place in the Central Area.

In Year 1, mathematics classes typically take place in the University's Central Area. In subsequent years, mathematics teaching will take place at the King's Buildings campus, often in the James Clerk Maxwell Building where the School of Mathematics is located.

Please note that your subjects will be taught on different campuses from Year 2 onwards, and so you may need to travel between campuses for classes.

In addition to the University's extensive libraries and computer facilities, you will have access to the School of Mathematics’ facilities, MathsBase and MathsHub.

Take a closer look at all our facilities on the University’s Virtual Visit site

Study abroad

The School of Economics exchange programme offers opportunities to study in locations such as:

  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Hong Kong
  • USA
  • Canada
  • Argentina
  • Mexico
  • Europe

What are my options for going abroad?

How will I learn?

Courses are taught through a combination of:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • workshops
  • web-based learning

Mathematics lectures

Year 1 mathematics lectures are usually interactive. Our lecturers use online voting systems and encourage small group discussion to improve your understanding of core material.

Lectures in later years follow a more 'traditional' lecturing style, but do occasionally incorporate the voting system.

Mathematics lectures are also supported by workshops, our small-group teaching sessions. These sessions are to give you an opportunity to practise applying the concepts learnt in lectures, and develop your understanding further. You will work with 5-6 other students, and a tutor will be on hand to answer questions and support you.

Support facilities

The Economics Help Desk offers students help and support throughout their programme. The peer assisted learning scheme, EconPALS, aims to help first year students develop their learning and study strategies.

You will also have access to support from the MathsBase, our popular walk-in help centre, and from our Mathematics Student Support Team. Year 1 students will also have the option of taking part in the mathematics peer-assisted learning scheme, MathPALS.

Hybrid teaching

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, both Schools are currently operating a hybrid teaching model which includes a mixture of in-person teaching (subject to health and safety guidance from the Scottish Government) and digital teaching.

It is likely that our hybrid teaching model will change. However, with our expertise (for example, the School of Mathematics is home to some of the world’s leading experts in technology-enhanced mathematical education), we are well prepared for many situations and will adapt quickly and effectively when the time comes.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed by exams and coursework, including:

  • problems sets
  • essays
  • project reports
  • presentations

In Year 4 you will complete an honours dissertation.

In the first and second year, mathematics has mainly ‘open book’ exams where you can use a textbook and your notes. This is because we want you to concentrate on understanding and using the ideas and concepts involved, instead of just memorising procedures.

In most maths courses you will have regular assessments (both written and online) so that you can get feedback on your progress. These typically count for a small part of the course grade so that your grade is not only based on the exam. There are a small number of courses offered which are entirely assessed by coursework.

Our graduates are highly regarded by employers. Studying a joint honours degree enables you to develop a wider range of transferable skills, and opens up more varied employment opportunities.

Many of our graduates have entered the finance sector and some large financial firms actively recruit Edinburgh graduates.

The skills you will develop through the study of both subjects will equip you for a broad range of careers, including but not limited to:

  • accountancy
  • business
  • management and consultancy
  • working for aid agencies
  • not-for-profit organisations
  • government departments
  • software engineering
  • logistics
  • education

Development opportunities

There are many opportunities within the University for you to develop additional skills and enhance your CV. You can:

  • become a Student Ambassador to enthuse prospective students
  • work with the wider community as a member of the Mathematics Outreach Team
  • Apply for a project scholarship to work with a university lecturer during the summer

The School of Mathematics regularly invites alumni back to the School to share their experiences with students and to showcase the breadth of careers available to graduates with a maths background.

Standard entry requirement

The standard entry requirement is:

  • SQA Highers: AAAAA-AAAA (achievement by end of S5 preferred). BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S5.
  • A Levels: A*AB - A*BB.
  • IB: 39 points with 666 at HL - 34 points with 655 at HL.

Minimum entry requirement

The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:

  • SQA Highers: AABB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S5.
  • A Levels: A*BB.
  • IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.

More information for widening access applicants

Required subjects

The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:

  • SQA: Highers: Mathematics at A or Advanced Higher Mathematics at B. Higher Applications of Mathematics is not accepted in place of Higher Mathematics. Sixth-year work in Mathematics is recommended. National 5s: English at C.
  • A Levels: Mathematics at A*. GCSEs: English at C or 4.
  • IB: HL: Mathematics (from 2021, Mathematics: analysis and approaches only) at 6. SL: English at 5.

Find out more about entry requirements

International applicants

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.

Entry requirements by country

Mature applicants

We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.

Mature applicant qualifications

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.


For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:

  • SQA National 5 at C
  • SQA Standard Grade at 3
  • SQA Intermediate 1 at A
  • SQA Intermediate 2 at C
  • GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
  • Level 2 Certificate Grade C
  • IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.

We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.

English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

English language requirements

This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.

It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.

Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for MA Economics and Statistics

Additional costs

Textbooks are required, which cost about £100.

Due to the current adoption of a hybrid teaching model, you may also require access to a laptop and a digital writing device to participate in online mathematics workshops.


For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.

Fees and funding

More information

How to apply

School: Economics

College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences