Module description

In this module, you will write an academic dissertation. The academic dissertation allows you to demonstrate your ability at identifying and analysing an economic problem using economic models and/or econometric methods. You will come up with a topic of your own choice, which can be theoretical or empirical in nature, manage self-driven enquiry and write up a piece of research.

The supervision arrangement for the academic dissertation will consist of one member of faculty. You are encouraged to seek your own supervisor.

Additional Information:


The analytical skills developed and employed in this module will be applicable across institutions and countries and are multinational in nature.


By solving statistical mathematical problems and exercises, students are equipped with practical problem-solving skills, theoretical skills, and an understanding of mathematical relationships. All of these are highly valuable in both academic and non-academic jobs.


The resources for this module are available on the ELE (Exeter Learning Environment).

Full module specification

Module title:Dissertation
Module code:BEEM150
Module level:M
Academic year:2021/2
Module lecturers:
Module credit:60
ECTS value:



Only available to MRes Economics PhD pathway students



Duration of module: Duration (weeks) - term 3:


Module aims

The aim of the dissertation is to allow you to develop skills to identify and analyse an economic problem. You will acquire knowledge of the existing literature, identify the key economic trade-offs, acquire necessary tools to analyse these trade-offs, and analyse the economic problem using economic and/or econometric techniques.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Provide literature and awareness of state of knowledge in a specific area.
  • 2. Identify economic problems, show ability to provide mathematical representation and and or ability to collect and analyse data.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 3. Relate real-life problems to subject specific knowledge examined through previous and current modules.
  • 4. Assemble and synthesise a complex body of existing relevant research.
  • 5. Utilise appropriate analytical or statistical techniques to reach an answer to a previously defined research question.
  • 6. For empirical dissertations, utilise existing data sets or generate new ones through experiments/questionnaires.

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 7. Pursue, under supervision, a sustained program of individual work outside of a classroom setting.
  • 8. Evaluate critically existing ideas and perceive areas of weakness or areas which may be usefully analysed.
  • 9. Complete, as an individual, a multistage task within a defined period, as assisted by the supervision process.

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled Learning and Teaching12 (3 per week)Lectures
Contact hours2Initial preparatory sessions
Contact hours10Supervision
Guided Independent Study50Deciding on topic and initial research
Guided Independent Study50Preparing the dissertation proposal
Guided Independent Study350Reading, researching, experiments, data analysis (as appropriate)
Guided Independent Study138Writing up

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Discussion of research projects, identifying research question, explaining research papersVaries1,3,6Oral/Written

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Presentation3030 min + 10 Questions1-9Oral/Written
Thesis7020000 Words1-9Written

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
PresentationPresentation 30% (30min)1-9
Thesis20000 words 70% (1-8 problems)1-9

Syllabus plan

Step 1: Dissertation proposals as agreed with module convenor.

Step 2: Proposal submission and assessment.

Step 3: Writing, presentation and submission of dissertation in September (exact date TBA).

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Students will develop a bibliography/reference list relevant to their chosen topic, under the guidance of their supervisor. The specific literature varies from topic to topic and will include textbooks and recent research articles.

Module has an active ELE page?


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Last revision date