Economics in the BA degree (and other Arts degrees)

The BA is a three year programme. In first year, you choose four subjects, and one of these can be economics. In Second Arts, you continue with two of the subjects taken in first year, and you complete them in third year.

The BA gives you the flexibility to take subjects in first year that are new to you, and also to combine both familiar and new subjects.

Why study economics?

Studying economics gives you:

  • An insight into the various economic relationships in the real world around you
  • An introduction to the analytical tools you need to help you to explore and understand these relationships
  • The opportunity to deepen your understanding of current affairs, the economics of the market place, economic factors influencing politics and how economic issues have influenced the course of history.

What will I be studying?

The study of economics at introductory level comprises two branches. First, microeconomics analyses the behaviours of individual people in markets as workers, consumers/savers and owners of capital. The second branch, macroeconomics, considers the economy at the aggregate level, combining all those individual people and their enterprises. At a national or international level, the state of an economy may be influenced by government policies and we study what impact different policies are likely to have on an economy. These first year courses in both microeconomics and macroeconomics can be taken as a satisfying complement to other degree subjects or as the start of a degree in economics.

In the second and final years of the degree, students delve deeper into these themes and explore other dimensions to economic life. Other upper-level courses range over Irish economic history, environmental economics, money and banking, public sector economics, development economics, and health economics. Throughout a course of study in economics, students encounter the interplay between theory to guide our thinking and the challenges of testing that theory against evidence. An ultimate aim is to use this knowledge to help design economic policy at micro and macro levels.

International options

You may have the option of spending your third year studying abroad, while you return to NUI Galway to complete your degree. This is BA (International) programme, and is open not just to language students, but to all BA students. So for example, you might study economics in your third year in Europe, in an university which teaches through English. (Some universities in Sweden or the Netherlands may be options here, for example.)

Other options for taking economics in Arts degrees

Many degrees in Arts apart from the core BA, require or permit some options in economics, including denominated degrees such as the BA (Public & Social Policy) and the range of BA(Connect) degrees.

Learn more about:

Return to undergraduate economics

Head of Economics

Prof Alan Ahearne

Contact Economics

t:+353 91 492501/492177

e: economics@nuigalway.ie