Studying economics jointly with other subjects can be very beneficial. The subjects have numerous overlapping areas, and by studying the same or similar issues from different perspectives, or with different approaches, helps understand them more deeply and completely. Other parts may be very different from economics, which helps develop a flexible and eclectic mind.
The Economics courses are the same for each degree programme. All degrees are structured in such a way that in the second and third year there is considerable scope for students to decide to specialise more or less in Economics. Within Economics, students can choose from a fairly broad portfolio of options, allowing them to specialise more on theoretical, quantitative or applied economics.
The course at St Peter’s
St Peter’s offers all three main degrees involving economics: Economics and Management, PPE, and History and Economics, taking around 15 students each year. We are also open to applications to study economics for one academic year as a visiting student (for further information on the visiting student programme click here).
During the first (and most) of the second year, students can expect to be taught mostly in college by the college tutors. Upon choosing their optional courses, students may be taught again by one of the college tutors or by an external tutor, depending on whether the course falls within one of their areas of specialisation. External tuition is arranged through a well-established swapping arrangement administered by the Department, which ensures that you are always taught by a specialist in the topics covered by the course.
Economics teaching consists of a combination of lectures (organised by the Department), tutorials (usually in groups of 3 students) and classes (usually not more than 6 students) for quantitative courses or quantitative part of certain courses. For both tutorials and classes students are given reading material, on which they are expected either to write an essay or prepare solutions to a set problem. In tutorials and classes students will receive detailed feedback on their work, and will discuss and debate in further detail the most interesting and/or challenging parts of that week’s material with the tutor and other students. Students are also able to ask questions that may have arisen from the reading.
The combination of independent work and continuous feedback is the key advantage of tutorial teaching at Oxford. The objective of the tutorial is to learn through a constructive scholarly exchange. Tutorials are not adversarial nor an exam. Both Economics tutors and fellow students at St Peter’s are supportive, friendly, and willing to engage with each other’s questions and ideas.
The college Library has a very good Economics collection, including all the main textbooks, access to all the main Economics journal, and generally provides easy access to most items you are likely to require for your weekly work over the years.