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We at Reading believe in innovative teaching in economics. Not only do we want to produce the next generation of economists, but we want you to find a real passion for the subject.

The University of Reading is ranked 10th in the UK in Business and Economics subjects (Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject 2024, United Kingdom providers only).

100% of our students said teaching staff were very good or good at explaining things (National Student Survey 2023, 100% of respondents studying BSc Economics with a Placement).

Economics is built on strong theoretical foundations and we build on this by emphasising the application of economics to the real world and real-world issues and a equip you with the necessary tools to do so.


Research-led teaching

We are passionate about our research and many of our lecturers are active researchers in their field. Our research feeds directly into our teaching, so you will hear about up-to-date developments in economic theory and practice.

Much of our research involves economics experiments and the University has recently invested in an experimental laboratory and you may even be invited to take part in some of these experiments as a student at Reading.

Tailor your studies

We offer a wide range of optional modules throughout your degree to enable you to foster your specific interests and introduce you to a wide range of applications of Economics.

A number of our modules focus on topical issues and the most up-to-date methods used by economists such as behavioural and experimental economics, which complement more traditional economic analysis methods and there's been a growth in the use of big social data.


Economics at Reading opens a variety of doors for you. Destinations of our past graduates have included: Civil Service Fast Stream, Office for National Statistics, Goldman Sachs, Ministry of Defence, PwC and Deloitte. Our graduates enter fields such as finance, business, marketing, publishing, PR, media, and a wide range of other careers.

Overall, 92% of graduates from Economics are in work or further study within 15 months of graduation. (Graduate Outcomes Survey 2021/22; includes first degree Economics responders)

Our student experience

Find out from some of our students about what it's like to learn in the Department of Economics, including details about the courses, your learning experience and more.

Your future career

We prepare you for your future career by:

  • teaching you how to think analytically – skills that employers look for 
  • giving you opportunities to get professional experience that you can put on your CV
  • linking you in with professional contacts through our industry network
  • offering intensive career workshops that include advice on creating CVs and online portfolios, as well as mock interviews with employers.
Working as a Civil Service Fast Streamer showed me that an economics student at the University of Reading can compete with the very best in the country. My experiences within the Department of Economics, and at the University generally, have ultimately provided me with limitless opportunities. I have been able to develop many important skills, experience new cultures, become a leader, and even had a go at things I thought I would never do – like radio presenting! As a result of this, I know that once I leave Reading I will be in a very good position to compete with the best.
Freddy Farias-Arias, BA Politics and Economics Graduate

Develop new skills

In addition to expanding your knowledge of economics, our courses will also develop your presentation skills, enhance your ability to analyse and think critically, and develop your written and verbal communication.

100% of our students said teaching staff were good or very good at explaining things (National Student Survey 2023, 100% of respondents studying BSc Economics with a Placement Year).

Numeracy and IT skills

Numeracy and IT skills are increasingly important in the contemporary workplace. Through many of our modules, you will develop a strong knowledge of Microsoft Excel.

Skills in finding and evaluating online materials are also central to the research that you will do for your modules and your dissertation.

Analysis and problem solving

For every module you will read a lot (and sometimes also watch films or videos) and then analyse what you have found. This allows you develop convincing answers to particular questions.


Self-management skills refer to your abilities to work responsibly and flexibly, to manage your time well, to be self-starting, and to be appropriately assertive.

They also include resilience and your ability to improve your performance through feedback and reflective learning.

Team work

The ability to work in a team is a skill that employers often say recent graduates haven't developed as much as they would like.

Our focus on small-group teaching means you are often part of a small team of students working to resolve problems, working in a collaborative way.

Research methods

We provide extensive research training to our undergraduate students, including how to collect and make sense of various types of data.
Studying at Reading is everything I had hoped for and more. I have made some amazing friends, and the staff are simply excellent. There are unlimited opportunities to get involved and develop your skills - careers workshops, guest lecturers and society events...the list is endless!
Helen Bonney – BA Economics

More than a Degree

We recognise that university is more than just academic success. We actively encourage students to take on other opportunities available to them. All our degrees offer the chance of a placement year between the second and final year and opportunities for summer internships.

There is also the opportunity to study overseas but this is a full year abroad between your second and final year or a term abroad in your second year, typically in the springtime.

Given our passion for research, we encourage students to see research in action and there are various research-related opportunities including the University of Reading Research Opportunities Placement (UROP) scheme. This scheme offers paid research placements that take place over the summer.


Life in the Department

Be part of a highly collaborative environment where you are rewarded for your dedication to your studies. You'll have access to modern facilities and a open culture that encourages group learning. 


Our research

100% of our research impact has been classed 'outstanding' or 'very considerable' (Research Excellence Framework 2021, combining 4* and 3* submissions – Business and Management Studies, and Anthropology and Development Studies).

We concentrate primarily on applied research, but with strong theoretical and empirical foundations, and of direct relevance to economic policy formation at local, national and international levels.


Read Dr James Reade's story

Learn more about what Dr James Reade teaches on the innovative 'Economics of Sports' module.

Our staff

Learn from our active researchers and experts. Their research informs policy decisions for governments, multinational organisations and international agencies like the UN.


News and events

Find out more about what is happening at the  Department of Economics, including upcoming events and more.