Graduate Offer Holders' FAQs

Course and college information

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We aim for, at most, 80 students.


A wide number of colleges take Economics MPhil students. Please refer to the university webpage for all graduate colleges, and use the search function to query the Economics MPhil specifically:


Once you have an offer from the department it usually takes 8-10 weeks to receive your college place, sometimes longer:


This depends on the availability at your college, and there is some heterogeneity across colleges in the range of accommodation that they offer. Your college Bursar or accommodation team are best placed to advise you on your options.

Course content

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The first year of the Further Mathematical Methods programme starts with a non-examined preparatory course in mathematical methods. The first two terms of the academic year focus on three compulsory courses in the central areas of microeconomics, macroeconomics and econometrics. The three courses are offered on two levels. Most students will take the courses at the core level. However, you can apply to start directly at the advanced level, which is targeted at future DPhil students who already have had ample economics training before starting the MPhil. Students who take the core level courses in the first year can take any advanced level course in the second year. In the third term, you can choose from two entirely new courses in Empirical Research Methods and Further Mathematics Methods. These courses will provide the specialised skills needed for academic or non-academic careers in our data-rich world and the technical tools for research in economics.



In the second year, you will take four option courses. The option courses build on the first-year training and provide deeper and broader training in your areas of interest. You can take advanced-level courses in macroeconomics, microeconomics, econometrics and empirical research methods covering recent developments in theory and analytical techniques. Other option courses are designed to develop knowledge and understanding of theory, empirical techniques and debates within specialist fields of economics. These include behavioural economics, development economics, economic history, financial economics, international trade, labour economics and public economics.



It is possible to audit courses. The tradition in Oxford is that lectures are public within the University and that any member of the University is permitted to attend any lecture in any course.



DPhil students can normally be expected to take further courses in their “3rd year” (i.e. after having completed their MPhil). This is to ensure that they have all the necessary skills for their research. Precisely which courses students take depends on the student, their academic background and the type of research they are doing. This means that it is possible for DPhil students to pick up, for example, Advanced Maths in their 3rd year, after the MPhil. It is not therefore necessary for a prospective DPhil student do both papers during the MPhil.



Real analysis, linear algebra and probability and statistics.


Extracurricular and job opportunities

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Oxford has a lively city centre, and you can frequently find students studying in the cafes. Oxford students get free entry to all the museums, colleges, and gardens in the city, giving you plenty of options for entertainment. There are two main theatres plus the Oxford Uni and independent theatre scenes. There are also countless pubs you will get to know!



Additional work is dependent on your visa status (if any) and how much time you have. Many MPhils find they do not have time outside of their studies for additional work, however, there is nothing to say you are not allowed to pursue part-time work. The University recommends that full-time graduate students on a taught course should generally regard their studies as a full-time occupation of at least 40 hours per week and recommends that students do not undertake more than 8 hours paid work each week while studying. For more information:



We operate a scheme for Research Assistants which MPhil students are eligible to take part in. Through this scheme, Faculty staff hire students to help on research projects typically (but not exclusively) during the summer vacation. Note that students are paid for RA work – this is not an unpaid internship.



As part of the MPhil we focus on academic skills training in Trinity Term of Year 1. Two courses are offered, “Advanced Maths” and “Core Empirical Research Methods” and students can take either or both. The former focuses on mathematical skills (principally Real Analysis and Measure Theory) designed to help with the development of Economic and Econometric Theory, and the latter focusses on computational skills taught through practical exercises in “R” (a statistical computing environment). Outside of the Department students can take advantage of a wide range of not-for-credit courses, from modern languages to advanced research computing, as well as accessing a wide range of resources provided through the University’s Careers Service.


Graduate prospects and progressing to DPhil

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Each year around 10-20 MPhil students proceed to the DPhil in Economics at Oxford. Others go on to doctoral programmes elsewhere or embark on careers as professional economists in the private or public sector.

Examples from recent graduating cohorts include doctoral programmes at Cambridge, Harvard, MIT, EUI, NYU, Northwestern and Stanford University California; employment with the Bank of England, Bank of Japan, European Central Bank, ODI Fellow, Morgan Stanley London, Goldman Sachs, Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the UK Government.

We are in the process of collating further year-specific information.



Your application will be based on a portfolio which includes good performance on the MPhil, a sound research proposal and the strong commitment from prospective Doctoral Supervisors.



Whilst DPhil admissions fluctuate from year-to-year, normally around 20 students start the DPhil each year. Past cohort numbers are not indicative, as the MPhil has changed structure considerably. However, we expecting to see a continued trend where the vast majority of DPhil students were drawn from the MPhil, to continue.



Please refer to our webpage on graduate funding  Along with the changes in the MPhil program, we are also revamping and increasing DPhil funding, and the expectation is that the vast majority of starting DPhils will be fully-funded through a mix of bursaries and teaching assistantships.