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MSc International Business Economics

MSc

Oxford Brookes Business School

The MSc in International Business Economics enables you to study a combination of business and economic subjects. You will develop the ability to understand causal relationships between various economic variables, critically evaluate the strategic decision-making process in business, and have an insight into global business policy issues. 

This course aims to provide you with the quantitative and economic analysis skills to understand underlying economic principles and gain insight into the way institutions and business practices operate in an international context.

There are excellent employment prospects for economists with these skills in business and finance, government agencies and management consultancy.

Come to our Postgraduate Open Days

Available start dates

September 2018 / September 2019

Teaching location

Headington Campus

Course length

  • Full time: 12 months
  • Part time: 2 years

UCAS Postgraduate code

33331

For full application details, please see the 'How to apply / Entry requirements' section.

  • Programme focus: This programme is designed for those who have not formally studied for a degree in economics or business who would like to increase their understanding in both those subjects. However, the programme will equally appeal to you if you have a general background in economics, business and management studies and want to specialise further in international business and financial economics.
  • Employability: In an increasingly competitive job market, a globally focused qualification such as the MSc in International Business and Economics is highly desirable. This programme provides you with the quantitative skills and economic analysis skills, together with a multicultural learning environment in order to prepare you for a career as a professional business analyst or manager in the private sector, government agencies, multinational corporations and international institutions. On the practical side, our Careers Centre offers support in developing CV and interview skills, and provides regularly updated job vacancy information.
  • Teaching and Learning: Oxford Brookes University Business School offers a great environment for studying Business and Economics. We have a track record of excellence in teaching, learning and research and you will be supported in your studies and beyond. Our Business School has received the top award from the Higher Education Funding council for England to become a Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning.
  • Oxford Location: Oxford offers everything you could want as a student and more. As one of the world’s great centres of learning, it is a bustling city. Located just over an hour from the hub of business life in London with easy access to international airports, you'll be at the heart of the UK's most successful economic region. Oxford will provide you with a host of learning and employment opportunities with a range of internships and graduate jobs available 
  • Expert academics: You will be taught by experts in the fields of economics, business and finance. They are renowned researchers and teachers who bring a global perspective from their experiences all round the world. On this course you will be taught or supervised by Dr Dimitrios Asteriou, Dr Anna Rita Bennato,  Dr Yoko Nagase, and Dr Gabor Lukacs, as well as other leading members of staff.
  • Student support: You will be assigned to an Academic Adviser who will provide both academic and personal support. Student Support Co-ordinators provide guidance for your course and university-wide administrative issues. They organise a range of events to help you adjust to postgraduate studies and are able to help you get advice about any issues you may have during your studies. 
For more information about postgraduate study at the Business School, come to one of our Business School Open Days, or visit our web pages.

This MSc is based on the completion of the following compulsory modules.

Please see the course structure chart for more information.

Principles of International Business Economics: This module introduces you to the key concepts of economics. Subsequently, you will focus on the topics of economics that are essential in understanding how businesses function internationally and how they interact with the external environment. You will examine the strategic pricing-output decisions of a firm in different market structures as well as the characteristics and the institutions of international markets.

Quantitative Methods for Business and Economics: In this module we provide you with a foundation in the essential statistical and quantitative techniques for the study of economics and business. It covers basic and advanced statistical methods, both descriptive and analytical, including applications from business, accounting & financial economics. You will also become familiar with statistical software used for such analysis.

Operations and Process Management: In this module you develop your understanding of an organisation’s ability to deliver goods and services of the quality, quantity and cost that will satisfy customers’ needs, while making efficient use of resources. The key principles introduced in this module can be applied to any business sector and function. You will explore the complex relationships between functional areas and the real world of business. Your studies will develop your understanding about how business operations can be most effectively managed. This includes issues of ethics, environmental sustainability, global business, complexity and uncertainty, and continuing professional development.

Global Strategic Management: Strategic management is the process by which managers formulate and implement strategies to generate high performance. In this module you will develop your understanding of the managerial strategic challenge; how to deliver sustainable competitive advantage. You will engage in critical evaluation of the key strategic issues. You will consider the wider economic environment and explore why strategy is important, how organisations make strategic decisions through the processes of analysis, choice and responsible and ethical management and leadership.

International Trade and Globalisation: Increasingly, businesses have to operate in an environment where commodity and capital markets are highly integrated. Awareness of the issues surrounding globalisation allows you to make informed decisions in a business context. You will explore the theoretical and empirical framework, which will enhance your awareness of the issues of globalisation. You will study international trade theory and recent patterns in international trade.

Research Methods: This module will prepare you to undertake effective research drawing upon a range of secondary and primary data sources in preparation for your coursework. You will be introduced to a range of tools required for research including methodological issues, data collection techniques and study skills. This module prepares you for completing high quality, systematic business and management research.

You can choose between taking a Consultancy Project module or the International Management in Practice: Study Trip module

Consultancy Project: You will gain practical international project experience by working in a cross-cultural team on a real problem for a client organisation. You will develop problem solving and communication skills as well as the ability to work in cross-cultural teams. Your team will work virtually, face-to-face and with help from tutors.

International Management in Practice: Study Trip: You can go to Budapest to experience a hands-on week, learning about the processes within international management. Students meet with leaders of global firms and international organisations, receive presentations from global academic experts, and tour facilities. This module is included in your programme fees, but you are responsible for paying for all travel and accommodation costs and some meals. This is a 10-credit module, which will be formally assessed.

You should choose one of the following three alternative options:

Dissertation: The dissertation is an opportunity for you to carry out an in-depth investigation into a topic of International Business Economics which is of particular interest to you. It should have an appropriately clear focus and be an investigation based on primary and/or secondary data, allowing you to specialise in the area that you find the most interesting. On this module you will be allocated a supervisor who will work very closely with you, providing guidance and advice throughout the process.

Client Project: You have the opportunity to link theory to practice by analysing a real organisational issue. Having identified a project (with the approval of both the client company and the Module Leader) you investigate a particular issue, one that can be supported through the relevant literature and by conducting primary research with the client. This module is not an internship but can be taken in conjunction with an internship you have identified and are participating in. The ‘issue’ in question may be current management problem for the client organisation or related to future strategic choices. The Client Project provides you with a significant learning and personal development experience.

Saunders, M., Lewis, P. & Thornhill, A. (2016) Research Methods for Business Students (7th ed.). Harlow: Pearson.

Synoptic Research Project: You will integrate, apply and extend your knowledge and skills gained within the core modules. You will learn more about the complexity of the Business and Management by emphasising, synthesising, and applying the learning gained in other modules.

As well as these compulsory modules a range of optional modules is available. The choice is made in consultation with the Programme Director and in accordance with the rules laid down for the award.

Elective modules

Corporate Governance and Social Responsibility: In this module you will learn about alternative perspectives on strategic management and corporate governance. This will encompass stakeholder issues including ethics, sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR). You will develop your understanding of approaches to solving problems when governing in the corporate sector. Your studies will consider current issues and consider the social implications of governance. You will also focus on the impact of globalisation on international management practices. You will be equipped with the knowledge to enhance management decisions involving ethical choices. Finally, you will consider your assumptions about the role of managers and organisations in a complex and challenging context through the exploration of contemporary issues in CSR.

International Finance: This module aims to focus on the systematic and comprehensive understanding of international financial system. In particular, the module examines the operation of foreign exchange markets and derivative markets, the main theories of exchange rate determination and speculative attacks, and issues on currency risk management with modern instruments of hedging. The approach taken involves critical evaluation and practical application of theoretical and empirical developments in the field of international finance.

Planning for New Business Ventures: This module develops your business planning skills and is essential for those students who intend to start and run their own businesses. At the heart of the module is an evaluation of a firm's business model. You will prepare a business plan in groups for a new or existing venture, which will be assessed by a panel. You will be evaluated on its economic logic, value to customer and return on investment for its owners.

Procurement and Supply Chain Management : Supply Chain Management (SCM) is ‘the management of upstream and downstream relationships with suppliers and customers to deliver superior value at less cost to the supply chain as a whole’ (Christopher, 2016). In a global business environment, how well organisations identify and manage supply networks and individual chains of supply, is a key enabler of successful international trade.

In this module you focus the important commercial aspects of SCM, centred around how the procurement cycle operates in an international context. You explore the range of relationships between trading partners (i.e. purchasers and suppliers), as well as the techniques that are used to source products and services, select and appraise suppliers, and develop and manage supply contracts.

Lysons K & Farrington B (2016), Procurement and Supply Chain Management, 9th edition, Pearson

Mangan J & Lalwani C (2016), Global Logistics & Supply Chain Management, 3rd edition, Wiley

Physical Logistics and Distribution:
The topic of physical logistics is concerned with managing the activities along a supply chain, from procuring materials to delivering goods that satisfy customers. In today's global economy, both suppliers and customers can be spread all over the world. Customers are more demanding, wanting more for less and with greater added value. The new era of customer ‘pull' has led to the concept of ‘total supply chain management'. This involves customised products and services, quick response deliveries, and state-of-the-art information systems.

In this module you will study the processes required to manage the flow of materials and products from suppliers to customers in order to achieve a competitive advantage. You will evaluate how effective logistics and procurement systems can become key business enablers. You will learn how the management of international supply chains should form a significant element of the strategy of any organisation operating on a global basis.

Chopra S & Meindl P (2015), Supply Chain Management – Strategy, Planning, & Operation, 6th edition, Pearson

Christopher M (2016), Logistics and Supply Chain Management, 5th edition, Pearson Financial Times Press

In this module you will study the processes required to manage the flow of materials and products from suppliers to customers in order to achieve a competitive advantage. You will evaluate how effective logistics and procurement systems can become key business supporters. You will learn how the management of international supply chains should form a significant element of the strategy of any organisation operating on a global basis.

Please note: as our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those listed here. 

Teaching and learning

Learning methods include lectures, directed reading, workshops, seminars, and practical and project work. Some modules include group work and teamwork activities.

Each module is assessed individually, generally on the quality of written or visual presentation work, and to some extent on verbal presentations. 

Approach to assessment

Assessment methods may include reports, seminar papers, formal written examinations, in-class tests, project work, visual and verbal presentations, workshops, simulations, and practical exercises. The majority of assessments are based on individual assignments but there is some assessed group work.

Specialist facilities

At Headington we have developed outstanding facilities. Our John Henry Brookes Building is the most significant project in the history of Oxford Brookes University. Set at the heart of our Headington campus, it has been designed for the future of higher education and has transformed the experiences of our students and the entire University community. Find out more about the John Henry Brookes Building.

A new fresh space on the Headington Campus is being created specifically for the Business School and our business students.The Clerici building is being refurbished to accommodate new teaching rooms, a lecture theatre, new social learning spaces, offices and a clear glazed new entrance.

At the current Wheatley campus our Business School Postgraduate Centre offers a state-of-the-art lecture theatre, well equipped seminar rooms and a postgraduate lounge and private study area.

The Wheatley Campus library provides specialist business resources including UK and overseas companies' annual reports, statistics on all aspects of business and management, postgraduate MA, MBA, MSc and PhD theses in marketing and marketing examination papers.

Field trips

We offer an International Business in Practice Study Trip module. The purpose of this study trip is to give postgraduate students a hands-on, intensive experience with the ideas and practices of global business. The programme will include presentations from local management executives and experts. Students will have direct interaction with management executives and practices through site visits to major corporations and agencies.

This study trip is voluntary and all costs associated with the trip will need to be funded by you. It is not linked to university assessments in any way. If you successfully complete this module you will have the following non-credit bearing module recorded on your transcript: P58335 International Business in Practice: Study Trip.

Attendance pattern

Attendance is compulsory. Modules run from Monday to Friday.

Programme changes

On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.

Tuition fees

Home/EU - full time fee: 2017/18: £5,450 2018/19: £5,560

International - full time: 2017/18: £13,200 2018/19: £13,460

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed in the 'This course in detail' window above.

Questions about fees?
Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088
finance-fees@brookes.ac.uk

Funding and scholarships

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second class honours degree (2:2) in any academic discipline, or equivalent overseas degree from a recognised institution or equivalent professional or other qualification.

Applicants who possess a diploma rather than a good degree may be eligible for entry provided they have compensatory work experience and can demonstrate career development.

This course attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds and nationalities. Applications are welcome from those in work and seeking continuing professional development.

Entry will also be subject to two satisfactory references (one of these must be an academic reference).

Please also see the university's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you will need to satisfy the university's English language requirements:

  • IELTS minimum level 6.0 (with a minimum of 6.0 in reading and writing and 5.5 in listening and speaking)
  • If you have completed your undergraduate degree in the UK (at least one full year of study) you will automatically meet our English language requirements

Please also see the university's standard English language requirements

Preparation courses for International and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you to meet the entry requirements for this course and also familiarise you with university life. You may also be able to apply for one student visa to cover both courses.

  • If you need to take a pre-master's course to help you to meet both the English language and academic entry requirements for your master's course, you can take our two year master’s course. This course combine the pre-master's diploma and your master's in one application. You can apply for one visa for the two years of study.
  • If you need to improve your English language, we have pre-sessional English language courses available to help you to meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s.

If you are studying outside the UK, for more details about your specific country entry requirements, translated information, local contacts and programmes within your country, please have a look at our country pages.

How to apply

You apply for this course through UCAS Postgraduate.

Through UCAS Postgraduate, you should use the UKPASS portal to make your application, which will then be forwarded directly to our Admissions Office. You should send supporting documentation to us directly using the email addresses on the UKPASS application form.

Please contact Business School enquiries if you need help with your application or require any further information.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

How this course helps you develop

  • Expert knowledge: You will be able to demonstrate your understanding of causal relationships between various economic variables. You will obtain strong insights into domestic, international and global issues using both quantitative skills and economic theory and analysis as an analytical framework. You will be able to critically evaluate the relevant policy issues.
  • Quantitative skills: You will become fluent in statistical analysis.  You will be trained to use software like Excel in order to analyse quantitative results from businesses and make practical business decisions, which is a real advantage in the job market.  
  • Networking: You will meet with economists, business and financial analysts and guest speakers through our internal seminar series, giving you the opportunity to network with industry professionals.

This MSc Economics programme prepares you for a career as an economist, analyst or consultant in non-governmental organisations (NGOs), such as the World Bank or International Monetary Fund (IMF), or private companies and public sector organisations. You will also be prepared to study at PhD level.

Free language courses for students - the Open Module

Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

Please note that the free language courses are not available if you are:

  • studying at a Brookes partner college
  • studying on any of our teacher education courses or postgraduate education courses.

How Brookes supports postgraduate students

We take great pride in the pastoral, academic and career development support provided to our postgraduate students. Our Student Support Co-ordinators ensure that whatever problem you may have it is addressed rapidly and effectively. Our dedicated careers centre provides advice and workshops to help develop those key skills needed to develop your career and get the right job. The Programme Lead and all academic staff provide open office hours where students can walk in without an appointment to discuss academic or pastoral concerns. A dedicated and skilled team of postgraduate programme administrators ensure the efficient and effective support of students in a friendly and approachable manner.

Postgraduate students can use the dedicated PG lounge which is equipped with computers, group work study rooms, sofas, armchairs and a kitchenette.

You will have a comprehensive induction programme which enables you to get to know your programme director, tutors and student support co-ordinator before you formally commence your studies. We will also be seeking to ensure all the students on the programme have an opportunity to get to know each other well in this week and so form some strong social networks.

Supporting your learning

From academic advisers and support co-ordinators to specialist subject librarians and other learning support staff, we want to ensure that you get the best out of your studies.

Personal support services

We want your time at Brookes to be as enjoyable and successful as possible. That's why we provide all the facilities you need to be relaxed, happy and healthy throughout your studies.

Research highlights

The Accounting, Finance and Economics departments comprises two main areas of research: Critical Perspectives on Accounting, Social Responsibility and Governance, and Applied Economics, Finance and Development. The Accounting cluster focuses on how accountability and responsibility is achieved, explored from a range of perspectives and methodological approaches. The Economics cluster comprises applied macro- and microeconomics as well as finance, environmental sustainability and development.

Research clusters