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School of Geography

Economics and Geography BA
(Full time) 2017 start


Key facts

  • UCAS code: LL17
  • Duration/Mode: 3 years full time
  • Typical A level offer: AAA
    (specific subjects required)
  • UK/EU fees: See fees section below
  • International fees: £17,750 (per year)
  • Study abroad option: Yes
  • Work placement option: Yes
  • Course terms and conditions

This degree allows you to study key specialisms in human geography alongside the economic issues arising in business, public policy and society at large.

You’ll be able to explore urban, economic, social, political and development geographies, and environmental sustainability. You will also examine the ideas and methods that underpin research in human geography, and learn skills in mapping and the use of Geographical Information Systems. In parallel, economics modules will consider the factors that influence income, wealth and wellbeing, how scarce resources are allocated, distributed and used today, and how they might change in the future.

A wide range of optional modules will allow you to shape your degree to suit your own interests and career intentions, from economic development to citizenship and identity via environmental economics and migration. Fieldwork offered in every year will also allow you to put your geographical knowledge and skills into practice beyond the University.

Extending this degree

You can convert your 3-year degree into a 4-year degree by spending an additional year on an industrial placement or overseas, before returning to Leeds to complete your final year of study. Read "Study abroad and work placements".

Real world learning

We give you a £500 allowance to cover the costs of optional field trips across Levels 2 and 3.

Student profile

A joint honours degree here really is your degree- you get choice! As you progress through your three (or four) years, you will be presented with more flexibility over which modules you study.Rebecca Fry, BA Economics and Geography IndustrialRead more


Course terms and conditions

Course content

Each year of this programme has a series of compulsory core modules, but you will also choose from a range of optional modules in your two main subjects. Additionally, you can opt to study Leeds discovery modules. These offer an exciting range of study opportunities drawn from across the University – including languages, enterprise, sustainability, ethics, technology and politics.

Modules at Level 1 introduce key themes in human geography and economics, focusing on topics including the economic and social importance of cities; past and present international development; the unequal distribution of power and opportunity in national and international systems; geographical and economic perspectives on production, consumption and exchange.

At Level 2 you will choose from a larger number of optional modules – including those focusing on economic geography, political and development geographies, social geography, urban geography, transport economics, health economics and labour economics – so that you can begin to specialise in the ideas and issues that interest you most. Module choices in geography include a range of week-long fieldtrips to European cities. We will also help you to develop your own skills as a researcher, with modules that show you how to access, analyse and present information; how to pose your own research questions; and how to identify the best methods to answer your research questions.

At Level 3 you will have the chance to put your research training into practice, by undertaking your own final year project. You can choose whether your project has a geographical or economic focus, and there are opportunities to pursue applied projects with outside companies and other partners. You will also choose from a range of advanced optional modules, allowing you to deepen your specialist interest in particular aspects of human geography and economics. Module choices in geography include a range of international fieldtrips.

The programme includes the option to spend a year studying abroad, or on an industrial placement between Levels 2 and 3. The programme is also available to study part-time – this means that it will take a little longer and you will study fewer modules each year.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

You will study the following compulsory modules:
  • Local to Global: Geographies of a Changing World (Joint Honours) 20 credits
  • People, Place and Politics (Joint Honours) 20 credits
  • Mathematical Economics 10 credits
  • Economics and Global History 10 credits
  • Economic Theory and Applications 1 20 credits
  • Studying in a digital age 5 credits

Optional modules

Depending on whether you have GCSE or A-level maths you will study one or both of: Mathematics for Economics and Business and/or Statistics for Economics and Business. You may choose to study other modules below.
  • Mathematics for Economics and Business 1 10 credits
  • Statistics for Economics and Business 1 10 credits
  • Nature, Society and Environment 20 credits
  • Economic Controversies 10 credits
  • Analytical Methods 20 credits

Year 2

Compulsory modules

You will study the following compulsory modules:
  • Intermediate Microeconomics 10 credits
  • Introduction to Econometrics 10 credits
  • Intermediate Macroeconomics 10 credits

Optional modules

Optional modules include:
  • Research Methods: Ideas and Practice in Human Geography 30 credits
  • Research Methods in Human Geography 20 credits
  • Career Skills in Geography 10 credits
  • Political and Development Geographies 20 credits
  • Service analysis and planning 20 credits
  • Geographies of Economies 20 credits
  • Inside European Cities 20 credits
  • The Making of the Modern City 20 credits
  • Citizenship and Identity: Comparative Perspectives 20 credits
  • Living within limits: natural resource management for sustainable development 20 credits
  • Introduction to Health Economics 10 credits
  • From Study to Work 10 credits
  • Theories of Growth, Value and Distribution 10 credits
  • Industrial Economics 10 credits
  • Mathematics for Business and Economics 2 10 credits
  • Macroeconomic Policy and Performance in Britain 10 credits
  • Explanation in Economics 10 credits
  • The International Economic Environment 10 credits
  • Business Economics 10 credits
  • Applied Economics 10 credits
  • Labour Economics 10 credits
  • Economics of Innovation 10 credits
  • Statistics for Business and Economics 2 10 credits
  • How to be a Successful Policy Economist 10 credits
  • Ethics and Economics 10 credits
  • Transport Economics 10 credits
  • Project Appraisal 10 credits

Year 3

Optional modules

Optional modules include:
  • Urban and Regional Development: A Case Study of Athens 20 credits
  • Contested Cities 20 credits
  • Creating Alternative Futures 20 credits
  • Advanced Population & Health Geographies 20 credits
  • Geocomputation and Location Analysis 20 credits
  • Geographies of Global Insecurities 20 credits
  • Workplace Co-operative Project 20 credits
  • Geographers into Teaching: School Placements 20 credits
  • Global Cities: Miami 20 credits
  • Dissertation 40 credits
  • Dissertation (Concise) 20 credits
  • Research Placement 20 credits
  • Spaces of Migration and Encounter 20 credits
  • Introduction to the Economic Evaluation of Health 10 credits
  • Advanced Microeconomics 10 credits
  • International Trade 10 credits
  • Contemporary Issues in Economic Growth 10 credits
  • International Banking and Finance 10 credits
  • Transnational Corporations in the World Economy 10 credits
  • Economics Project 20 credits
  • Economic Development 20 credits
  • Economics of Famines 20 credits
  • Environmental Economics 10 credits
  • Applied Econometrics 10 credits
  • Modern Theories of Money and Monetary Policy 10 credits
  • Public Enterprise and Regulation 10 credits
  • Advanced Macroeconomics 10 credits
  • Global Economic Coordination and Governance 10 credits
  • Current Topics in European Integration 10 credits
  • Economics of Labour-Managed Firms 10 credits
  • The Economics of Unions 10 credits
  • The Political Economy of Work 10 credits
  • Economics of Business and Corporate Strategy 20 credits
  • Travel Activity and Social Analysis 20 credits
For more information on typical modules, read Economics and Geography BA in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

You’ll learn through a mixture of lectures, tutorials (groups of six), seminars (groups of approximately 30), computer classes, lab practical classes, group-work, online exercises and fieldwork, depending on the modules you study.

Opportunities for extra help, including “drop-in” workshops, one-to-one assistance, and an extensive programme of generic skills training.

Part of studying at university is that you will take increasing responsibility for your own learning as you progress through your degree. Developing the skills to think and work independently is crucial to your success both at university and in your future career. Independent study involves a lot of reading around the subject, and although this may seem daunting at first, we will guide and support you.


Assessment methods vary from module to module, giving you the flexibility to choose modules based on the assessment criteria that suits your particular strengths. Types of assessment include: examinations, individual or group reports and presentations, practical exercises, essays, posters, projects (such as the dissertation) and reflective logs.

Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: AAA preferably including geography

If geography is not included, we would expect two A-levels from history, English, economics, sociology, a modern language, psychology, maths and biology.

GCSE:A*-B English and A*-A Maths

Alternative qualifications

  • BTEC: We accept BTEC qualifications in a relevant subject area but only in combination with other A-levels.
  • International Baccalaureate: 35 overall (18 higher)

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

Access to Leeds entry requirements for this course: ABB


We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For information contact the School of Geography Undergraduate Admissions Team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

Read advice on how to apply on the School’s website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

Faculty of Environment Undergraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: See fees section below

International: £17,750 (per year)

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2017, the fee for 2017/18 will be £9,250. 

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% for 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students starting in 2017 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans for the duration of their course. Read the full government statement

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Additional cost information

Field classes are optional for BA students. We currently allocate £500 per student towards the cost of optional field trips across levels 2 and 3. Additional costs may be incurred.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.

Career opportunities

Industry links

To find out more about our links with industry, read Study abroad and work placements.

Graduate destinations

Up to 80% of our undergraduates secure appropriate graduate employment within six months of graduating; others go on to do further study.

Here is a snapshot of the kinds of careers our graduates pursue:

Environmental Management

  • Conservation
  • Land and water management
  • Public utilities
Management and consultancy
  • Transport planning and consultancy
  • Graduate training schemes in multinational companies
  • IT and business consultancy
Using GIS
  • Retail Planning
  • Direct marketing
  • GIS companies
Government and NGOs
  • Local government administration
  • Civil service (police, armed forces)
  • Regional and overseas development
  • Banking
  • Insurance
  • Financial services
Further study and training
  • Vocational Masters courses
  • PhD study
  • Teacher training/conservation courses
Find out about your career prospects first-hand from employers and graduates of the School in our employability video!

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

In the School of Geography we take your future very seriously and know that employability is uppermost in many students’ minds. If you choose to study geography at Leeds, you can be confident that you’re not only joining a university whose graduates are targeted by top employers, but that as geography graduates, your employment opportunities couldn’t be more exciting and wide-ranging.

We structure this programme to ensure you develop the key transferable skills sought by graduate recruiters, skills such as: team-working, commercial awareness, report-writing, fluency in oral communication and presentation, numerical analysis, IT expertise and investigative skills.

Placement opportunities

Study abroad

You can convert your 3-year degree into a 4-year study abroad degree by spending an additional year overseas, before returning to Leeds to complete your final year of study. You don’t apply directly to this course, instead you can register your interest with us once you’ve enrolled on the 3-year degree.

To be eligible for Study Abroad you’ll need to maintain a good average in your assessments in years 1 and 2 and, for some destinations, you may have to show you have the necessary language skills. Read more about eligibility on the Study Abroad website.

The Study Abroad Office and the School provide guidance to help you set up a study place at one of the University's partner institutions from around the world. Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

School of Geography partnerships

The School of Geography has long-established partnerships with a number of overseas universities who reserve places each year specifically for Leeds geographers.

European (Erasmus) destinations

The University of Grenoble, France
The University of Utrecht, Netherlands
The University of Valencia, Spain

Worldwide destinations

Teaching takes place in English at all these universities:

The University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
The University of McMaster, Ontario, Canada
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
The University of Adelaide, Australia
The National University of Singapore
The Chinese University of Hong Kong

Find out more from staff and students in our study abroad video

Work placements

“Recruiters have confirmed that a record 32% of this year’s entry-level positions are expected to be filled by graduates who have already worked for their organisations – either through paid internships, industrial placements or vacation work.”

(The Graduate Market in 2016, High Fliers Research)

At Leeds our aim is to ensure our students thrive in their academic studies and leave us as highly employable graduates with a wide range of skills and attributes sought after in today’s job market. Leeds is one of the few geography departments in the UK to offer a year in industry scheme which allows you to extend your three-year programme to a four-year industrial degree.

This is a fantastic opportunity to add value to your CV, experience the “real world” first-hand and, in many cases, be offered a permanent job with the placement company on graduating. With staff dedicated to helping you to secure a placement that is right for you, and by keeping in close contact with you throughout your placement year, we ensure you get the most out of your time with your chosen company.

You don't have to decide to do a placement year before you start your course, you can register your interest with us once you’ve enrolled on the 3-year degree.

Find out first-hand from employers and year in industry students about your options!


Ask any of our students and they will tell you that taking part in field trips is one of the most enjoyable and memorable aspects of the geography programmes at Leeds.

We offer BA field trips at each level of study and they provide a great opportunity to study a fascinating subject in contrasting environments away from the University. During the field trips you will learn essential fieldwork and team working skills, transferable skills that will prove invaluable to your future career. Field trips are also a fantastic way to travel and see new places and to get to know your tutors and other students better.

On this course the fieldtrips offered are:

Level 1 – Leeds

Level 2 – Belgrade, Montpellier, Helsinki

Level 3 – Athens, Miami

Watch our field trip video to Montpellier!