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Programme convener: Dr Katherine Eyal

Course Administrator : Yasmina Charles

Entrance requirements:

  • A Bachelor degree or equivalent qualification with a major in Economics. 
  • An average of at least 65% in their final year undergraduate economics courses.
  • Students completing Economics-based programmes at UCT will require at least ECO3020F (Advanced macroeconomics and microeconomics), ECO3021S (Quantitative methods in Economics) and another third year level economics course to be considered for a place in the Honours Programme.Prospective Economics Honours students from outside UCT are required to have taken third year Econometrics or equivalent and sufficient  Maths (typically a full first year course) to gain admission to the Honours Programme.
  • Foreign students may need to provide assurance of their competence in the English language.
  • Recommendation of acceptance is at the discretion of the Director of the School of Economics.

Programme outline:

The programme is designed to expose good graduates to a range of specialised topics and to refine the skills needed to pursue a successful research and professional career.

Duration of the programme:

Offered over one year full-time.  The programme begins in January.

Prescribed curriculum/programme structure:

The programme comprises three core (compulsory) courses and one core non-credit-bearing pre-course in the first semester, four elective courses in the second semester, and a research paper.
The total credits for the standard programme is 134 HEQF credits.

HEQF credits
Non-credit bearing pre-course
ECO4112F  Mathematics and Statistics for Economists  0

Core (compulsory) courses (totalling 78 HEQF credits):
ECO4021W  Research and Writing (Long Paper)   30
ECO4006F  Macroeconomics   16
ECO4007F  Microeconomics   16
ECO4016F  Econometrics   16

Elective courses:
Four special topics in advanced economics selected from the following options  for a total of 56 HEQF credits.  Business Science (Economics stream) students are required to take three options in addition to BUS4050W.

ECO4051S  Development Economics                                  14
ECO4052S  Environmental Economics                                14
ECO4053S  Financial Economics                                         14
ECO4013S  International Finance                                        14
ECO4020S  Economic Challenges of Africa                         14
ECO4032S  Economics of Industry Regulation and Firms   14
ECO4026S The Economy and its Financial Markets            14
ECO4027S  Analysis of Survey Data                                    14
ECO4028S  Policy Analysis                                                  14
ECO4029S  Experiments in Economics                               14
ECO4113S  Labour Economics                                            14
ECO4114S  The Economics of Conflict                                14   
Total                                                                                     134  

In any year, elective course options may be added or withdrawn and course weights may be changed according to circumstances.

Subject to the approval of the Graduate Convener, students may substitute a maximum of one of the options with an NQF level 8 course of a similar credit value offered in another department.

ECO4112F is offered as a non-credit-bearing block course at the start of the first semester, and serves as a mathematical foundation course to subsequent courses. Students who obtain less than 40% for this course will not be allowed to continue with the programme.

Please consult the School of Economics section of this handbook for descriptions of the core and elective courses.


To qualify for the Honours degree, students must pass 134 NQF (level 8) credits with at least 50%.
Students must obtain at least 40% for ECO4112F in order to continue with the programme.
Students who do not pass all three first semester core courses will be excluded from the programme before the start of the second semester.

The Research and Writing course (ECO4021W) is examined by way of an 8,000 word research paper (long paper). 

Readmission rules:

Students who obtain less than 40% for ECO4112F will not be allowed to continue with the programme.
Supplementary exams will be offered for ECO4006F, ECO4007F and ECO4016F before the start of the second semester, but no other supplementary exams will be offered.

Students who do not pass all three first semester core courses will be excluded from the programme before the start of the second semester.Should a student fail one elective course, they will be allowed to register for the same course or another elective in the second semester of the following year. Should a student fail more than one elective, they will not be allowed to reregister.

Distinction rules:

The Honours degree may be awarded in “the First Class” if student has an overall average of at least 75%, with a subminimum of 70% for the coursework and the for research dissertation.

Further programme specific administrative requirements:

The closing date is 31 October.  BBusSc students intending to proceed to Economics Honours in their 4th year must please notify the Graduate Administrator before 31 October.  The programme commences in January.