Why do we study economics?

An economics lecture at the International Study Centre

Economics is a branch of social science that focuses on the production, consumption and transfer of wealth. Broken into two classes, macroeconomics and microeconomics, economics directly affect everyday life.  

Macroeconomics is the branch of economics that focuses on large-scale factors, such as interest rates and national and international productivity. Whereas microeconomics focuses on the behaviour of individuals, businesses and organisations when it comes to using their wealth.  

Why studying economics is important

Why do we study economics? The simple answer is it affects our everyday lives through important areas such as tax, interest rates, wealth, and inflation.  

Economists provide the tools by which analysts can study the costs, benefits and effects of government policies in a range of areas that affect society. These can include healthcare and education. They help guide these decisions to work towards stable economic growth and a thriving society.   

5 reasons to study economics

High earning potential

Economics graduates have some of the highest starting salaries with plenty of opportunities for promotions (the Complete University Guide 2021). The average starter salary for an economist in the UK is £25,000 a year, which can increase to £75,000+ over time as you gain more experience (National Careers Service 2023).   

Great career prospects

Obtaining an economics degree will give you great job prospects and a variety of potential career paths. As economics are present in all sectors of business, job opportunities are not in short supply. This is one of the biggest reasons why we study economics. Some of the roles you could work in as an economics graduate are: 

  • Chartered accountant 
  • Compliance officer 
  • Data analyst 
  • Economist 
  • Financial risk analyst 
  • Investment analyst 
  • Risk manager 
  • Stockbroker. 

Economics graduates have high employability due to the varied subjects they have studied such as mathematics and research skills. The skills and knowledge developed during your study will make you a well-rounded and attractive candidate to future employers.   

One of the biggest advantages of studying economics is the academic knowledge and skills you gain that can be applied to work in many different sectors. These include:  

  • Business 
  • Banking 
  • Finance 
  • Government  
  • Consultancy.  

Within economics, there are plenty of opportunities for promotion and career progression. Gaining a masters degree in the subject will help you be a more favourable option for high-level positions as it shows your ability to commit and succeed in completing challenging work.  

Develop transferable skills

One of the best reasons of studying economics is the valuable transferable skills you will develop during your degree. These transferable skills are very attractive to employers and can be applied to work in any field of economics.   

Analytical thinking and complex problem solving, skills you will develop during an economics degree, are the most important skills to have when looking for job opportunities in 2025 (World Economic Forum 2020). Developing these skills will be invaluable when looking for a job once you have successfully graduated with an economics degree.   

Some of the transferable skills you will gain during your economics study are: 

  • Problem solving 
  • Communication 
  • Research 
  • Time management  
  • Analytical thinking.  

Have a direct impact on society

The importance of studying economics is the impact it has on society. If you want to do work that will have real meaning in the world, then economics is the perfect choice for you.    

As an economist you will research economic issues, interpret and forecast market trends, and recommend solutions to economic threats. The goal of economic science is to improve the everyday living conditions of society through increasing gross domestic product. This means higher wages, good housing, and hot water – the things a society needs to thrive.   

Gain international perspective 

Economies across the globe interact with each other and this will give you a better knowledge of how the world works from a financial standpoint. Understanding the world economy is the key for driving success for many national and international corporations.   

Having a greater understanding of international economies will also make you a standout candidate when applying for graduate jobs.   

Study economics in the UK 

If you want to study economics in the UK, choose Royal Holloway, University of London, a top 30 UK university. (The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023). The University offers a range of excellent economics degrees. These develop valuable knowledge and skills that will benefit your future career in economics. 

As an international student, you can begin your UK education journey at the International Study Centre. Here you will find pathway programmes expertly designed to develop your academic knowledge and English language skills in preparation for an economics degree at Royal Holloway. 


To begin your studies in economics as an international student, choose the International Foundation Year in Management and Economics. This pathway programme is expertly designed to develop your academic knowledge and English language skills in order to succeed at university. This is a great option for students who do not meet the direct entry requirements for university study, or those who want help transitioning to life in the UK. Successful completion of the programme will allow you to progress to an undergraduate degree in economics at Royal Holloway, University of London.  

Another option is the International Year One in Economics. This pathway is for students who meet the entry requirements of the university but would still benefit from additional English language tuition. The programme has core modules focusing on subject-specific skills and English language development. The successful completion of the International Year One pathway programme will allow you to join the second year of an undergraduate degree at Royal Holloway, University of London.   


If you want to continue your economics education journey in the UK and don’t yet meet the direct entry requirements for masters study, the Pre-Masters Programme in Economics will prepare you for a postgraduate degree in the UK. 

The programme consists of core and subject-specific modules. The core modules will improve your academic and English language skills and the subject-specific modules will develop your knowledge of economics.

Upon successful completion of the Pre-Masters Programme at the International Study Centre, you can progress to a postgraduate degree at Royal Holloway, University of London. 


How long does it take to study economics in the UK?

The typical undergraduate degree in economics takes three years to complete, however, if you wish to gain further knowledge and experience, you can study a postgraduate degree. This will take an additional year to complete.  

Is economics difficult to study?

As with any university degree, studying economics will come with its challenges, but the academic skills and knowledge gained from overcoming these will be invaluable when it comes to your future career.  

How can I become good at economics?

The best way to improve your academic skills and knowledge is to study an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in economics. Royal Holloway, University of London - International Study Centre has excellent pathway programmes to prepare you for an economics degree at the University.