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MSc in Behavioural Economics

MSc in Behavioural Economics

Applications for the 2024/25 intake open on 1st October 2023 and will close on 31st of August 2024.  For information on fees and how to apply, please click here.

This is an exciting relatively new course devoted to providing an in-depth training in the area of behavioural economics. Students will take a range of rigorous economic modules but will specialise in understanding a range of new models that incorporate the latest evidence on human decision making. As well as being trained in the core concepts and theories of behavioural economics, students will also learn about the range of empirical methods used to test ideas in this area in lab and field settings. The MSc also covers the ethical, legal, and regulatory context for the ideas of behavioural economics. Thus, the students will be equipped to apply these ideas in a wide range of academic, business, and policy settings.

This programme features small group teaching from leading economists and a supportive environment. Masters students are an integral part of our School community, attending research seminars and receiving a wide range of supports to help them prepare for their research thesis.

UCD School of Economics is Ireland’s leading economics department. Our staff are experts with international reputations in a wide range of topics such as macroeconomics, econometrics, applied microeconomics, behavioural economics, health economics, international trade, and economic history. School members play a significant role in debating economic policy issues and in contributing to the formulation of economic policy. This is the only MSc in this area in Ireland and it is one of the few worldwide with a strong policy and regulatory focus.

  • For scholarships/fee waivers please check here.

Course content and structure

90 credits taught masters 60 credits taught modules 30 credits dissertation or internship

In the first trimester, you will take the following 5 credit modules:
Core modules

  • Maths and Stats (ECON42620)
  • Microeconomics (ECON41840)
  • Econometrics (ECON41820)
  • Behavioural Economics (ECON42560)
  • Experiments in Economics (ECON42590)
  • Research & Career Skills 1 (ECON42020)

In your second trimester, you take the following modules:
Core modules

  • Behavioural Economics: Policy Applications (ECON42570) – 5 credits
  • Topics in Psychological Science (PSY40750) – 5 credits
  • Research & Career Skills 2 (ECON42300) – 5 credits

You will also take three other modules from the list of 5 credit modules below:

  • Advanced Macroeconomics (ECON41620)
  • Advanced Microeconomics (ECON41810)
  • Advanced Econometrics: Micro (ECON42700)
  • Advanced Econometrics: Time Series (ECON42710)
  • Causal Inference & Policy Evaluation (ECON42720)
  • Aviation Economics (ECON42610)
  • Health and Welfare Economics (ECON42190)
  • Energy Economics and Policy (ECON42360)
  • Economics of Competition Policy (ECON42580)
  • Behavioural Economics: Policy Applications (ECON42570)
  • Decision Theory (ECON42630)
  • Global Economic History (ECON42730)
  • Banking & Financial Stability (ECON42740)

In your third trimester (Summer), you will do either a supervised research thesis (ECON40090) or
a 12 week Internship (ECON42200) – 30 credits.

Students that have taken LAW40360 in trimester 1, have a choice of at most one further module.

Part-time schedule details

Career Opportunities
Many graduates of our masters programmes have gone on to complete PhDs in economics and pursue successful careers as academic or research economists.  Many others have moved directly to employment in central banks, think-tanks, government departments, regulatory agencies, financial sector institutions and consultancy firms.

Entry Requirements

  • A primary degree with at least an upper second class honours or international equivalent in Economics or in a degree in which Economics is a major component.
  • An upper second class honours in a Higher Diploma in Economics or in the MSc Qualifier.
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must also demonstrate English language proficiency of IELTS 6.5 (no band less than 6.0 in each element), or equivalent.

Graduate Profile

MSc Behavioural Economics

Caitlyn Parsons

Through the MSc in Behavioural Economics at UCD, I gained a deep grounding in economics, psychology, and public policy, along with a broad range of practical skills. My lecturers brought clear enthusiasm, world-class expertise, and moral character to their lessons, making me look forward to lectures. My cohort was made up of supportive students from all over the world, bringing unique perspectives to each conversation and cheering for each other’s accomplishments. The degree also provided the opportunity to design and conduct an online experiment from start to finish. This experience served as a great talking point in job interviews and a source of practical skills for real-world projects. 

I was also extremely grateful for the opportunity, as part of the MSc in Behavioural Economics, to intern with SCOR Global Life Reinsurance. In this internship, I learned to apply the skills I’d gained in my degree to create better experiences for insurance applicants and more value for insurance companies. This internship led directly to my current position as a Behavioural Science Analyst at SCOR. 

I would be happy to recommend UCD’s MSc in Behavioural Economics to anyone interested in this exciting field.

 MSc in Behavioural Economics

Applications for 2023/24 are open here until August 31, 2023.   

Programme Coordinator Dr Oana Peia

Contact UCD School of Economics

Newman Building (Room D201) University College Dublin Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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