Deciding which university is for you can be a tricky and daunting task, whatever course you decide to pursue. Even though it’s been almost two years since I made my choice, I still remember the feeling of uncertainty and unknown when deciding the university that I wanted to go to. Two years later and I’m happy to say that I definitely made the right choice! To help you decide, here are my top 3 (+1) things to look forward about studying Economics at the University of York!
Economics is a relatively contact-heavy course, especially in second year. However, the course is varied and flexible throughout the three or four years you’ll spend studying it. You can find out more in my other blog post, A Week in the Life of an Economics Student
Economics is a very diverse subject that links to many aspects of our everyday life and society, but also links in to geography and history. Everyone does the same seven modules in first year to get a sound knowledge of the subject. These modules are, however, very diverse in nature. They range from Mathematics and Statistics, to looking at the past in the Historical Perspectives on Economics Growth module, and analysing a range of data in Economic Data Analysis. In second year, you can begin to tailor modules to your interests and areas of possible future study. In the third year you’ll have total reign over your module options.
The Department of Economics also allows you to change your course up until the end of first year. This is because all Economics and Related Studies degrees do the same seven modules in first year! So don’t worry if you applied for a straight Economics degree but by June suddenly realise that you love finance or are much more interested in econometric theory instead. You can still specialise in these disciplines by switching to an Economics and Finance degree, or Economics and Econometrics!
Societies and extra-curricular
Societies are a brilliant way to make friends and meet your course mates. They can also provide opportunities to gain experience, acquire a new skills, enhance your CV and boost your employability.
At the University of York, there are a number of Economics related societies on offer to join:
The Economics Society, or ‘Econsoc’ as it is more commonly known, is one of the largest academic societies on campus. It organises both social and career events. Recently I attended their Spring Formal, held at the ASK Italian in town. It was a lovely evening filled with great food, many drinks and sophistication (before we all rolled up to Revs!). The Econsoc Facebook page also keeps its members in the loop with the latest internship opportunities and networking events.
Equilibrium magazine, published Econsoc, is another brilliant way to engage with your passions and interests outside of your degree. Published seasonally, the magazine accepts currently relevant articles from students from all disciplines and all years. For example, the latest included my article concerning Brexit and its effect on the NHS. For the coming Spring edition, I have sent in an article about the lack of women in economics, why this is the case, and its consequent impacts on society. Thus, each edition is very varied and undoubtedly has something in there for everyone’s taste.
Investment and Finance Society
The Investment and Finance Society represents the finance community at the University of York. It offers member support through a mentorship scheme aimed to help students get finance internships and ultimately into a career path in finance. Networking events organised by IFS allow members to engage with potential employers and provides the hands-on experience necessary.
York Community Consulting
York Community Consulting is a student-run pro-bono consultancy organisation that gives its members real-life experiences within the consultancy industry, which is a very popular career with Economics graduates. They offer a social opportunities to engage with the local communities. In addition, you can meet York alumni and mentors from major firms and potential future employers.
Teaching happens in many different ways at the University of York. Lectures are the main method, and all Economics at York are recorded. However, I wouldn’t recommend skipping lectures just because they are recorded. Technology doesn’t always work in our favour! This feature is really helpful, however, if you get confused during the lecture and need to go back over it at your own pace. It’s particularly helpful during revision to go back over particular topics you might be struggling with.
Lectures are only half the story in terms of teaching formats at the University of York. Seminars are compulsory and consist of smaller classes of around 15-20 students. Usually, you must prepare some work in advance to go through as a group and discuss in the seminar. This is a great opportunity to ask questions about things you struggle with, or engage in conversations and group discussions with a range of new and diverse opinions. It is a brilliant opportunity to put forward your own thoughts and learn from your peers.
Lastly, Economics at UoY also consists of “practicals” (or workshops), which are similar to lectures but are not recorded and often consist of working through problem sheets and questions that are similar to those that end up on the final exam.
This last one is not strictly to do with Economics, but I felt was necessary to include as it is another big reason as to why I have really enjoyed my time at York so far. York itself has so much going for it, despite its reputation as a quiet and perhaps boring city. There is always so much to do. It could be going out for food or drinks, shopping in town or York Designer Outlet. Or, there are many events throughout the year, such as the Chocolate Festival or the more recent York Ice Trail. I have loved living in York, and the city life is another major part of what has made my time here so enjoyable. You can find out more about life in York in my other blog post: City life – a student’s guide.
You need to keep in mind many things when considering where you might want to go for university. These are just some things that I have loved about Economics at the University of York and hopefully I might have swayed you to pick it too! Whatever your final decision, I hope it is the right one for you and that you enjoy you university years just as much 🙂