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Education Bachelor's degree programmes Economics and Business Economics - Economics
Header image Economics and Business Economics - Economics

Economics and Business Economics - Economics

Study economics in Groningen and explore how inequality, the role of the state, and other big societal issues can be affected by economics – and how you can impact them for the better.

How do periods of higher interest rates affect the economy? And, how can monetary and fiscal policy be used to combat inflation? Can we predict whether a proposed government programme is likely to improve the welfare of its citizens and future generations? Can taxes and subsidies stimulate firms to care for the environment?

In the Economics profile of the BSc Economics and Business Economics in Groningen, you analyze big societal problems equipped with rigorous analytical tools from economics. The courses taught focus not only on macroeconomic and microeconomic theory and policy but also on the current and historical debates on topics such as inequality and limits to growth.

You will get insights into a wide range of topics like banking, fiscal and monetary policy, economic development, political economy, economic theory, decisions made by consumers on labour and other markets, and strategic behaviour between firms on markets. By studying economic problems with real-life data, you will gain the necessary knowledge to analyze complex economic issues, interpret data, and make informed decisions. As such, along with solid communication and presentation skills, you will develop valuable analytical and data skills.

The focus is on both theoretical and practical knowledge which prepares you for your professional life. Our programme is designed to shape students into future economists with a solid and strong analytical foundation. An economist who can understand historical trends and interpret today’s policies and economic data is able to make predictions about the future.

Do you want to learn more about the other profiles in Business Economics or Economic Development and Globalization ?

Facts & Figures
Degree
BSc in B Economics and Business Economics
Course type
Bachelor
Duration
36 months (180 ECTS)
Croho code
50950
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Economics and Business
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • The Economics profile in Groningen develops you into a future economist with a solid and strong analytical foundation. You will be equipped to use economics to engage with current societal challenges, such as inequality, pollution, poverty, and climate impact – and to help solve them.
  • During the programme, there are many opportunities to work on professional skills that are highly valued in the job market, such as analytical, data, team, and communication skills.
  • In the course “History of Economic Thought” you analyze big societal problems via the lenses of philosophy, politics, economics, and history. Issues covered are for example inequality and limits to growth.
  • In the course “Intermediate Microeconomics" you answer questions such as: do higher gasoline prices shift auto-purchases towards more fuel-efficient vehicles, and are tax incentives for charitable giving efficient?
  • The program has good connections with potential future employers and invites governmental officials, experts from the policy institutes, and renowned researchers for guest lectures. This gives you the opportunity to network and engage with professionals in this field.
  • Pursue your own learning path by choosing from an exciting range of options and electives in your 3rd year – either at the faculty, the university, or abroad with one of our many international partners in Europe, Latin America, Australia, Canada, China, the USA, to name a few.
  • The programme ensures high-quality education. It has been internationally accredited by the AACSB and EQUIS, ensuring a high-quality education, which only 1% of universities reach worldwide.
Programme

Year one offers a solid introduction to economics and business economics. In your first course "Introduction to E&BE" you will explore how institutional contexts (such as democracy and capitalism) affect people's wealth and well-being and how societal challenges like inequality, poverty, ethics in business, and climate impact can be evaluated from an economic point of view. You will also dig into the fundamentals of corporate finance and financial markets, micro-, macro-, and international economics as well as accounting and marketing. Also, you will get to know the basics of mathematics and statistics applied in an economic context.
You will develop important skills in research and data analysis, working in teams, and communication – think, for example, of the writing and presentation skills that today's labour market demands.

Semesters
CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Introduction to E&BE (5 EC)
Mathematics for E&BE (5 EC)
Microeconomics for E&BE: Consumers&Firms (5 EC)
Financial Accounting for E&BE (5 EC)
Macroeconomics for E&BE (5 EC)
Mathematics and Data Analysis for E&BE (5 EC)
Marketing for E&BE (5 EC)
Statistics for E&BE (5 EC)
Academic English for E&BE (5 EC)
Research Paper for E&BE (5 EC)
Asset Pricing and Capital Budgeting (5 EC)
International Economics for E&BE (5 EC)

In year two, you will launch into the Economics profile, discuss monetary and fiscal policies, the impact of government debt, the economics of banking, and the main determinants of economic growth. You will learn how to use game theory to analyze strategic interactions between firms, which contemporary macroeconomic challenges faced by European economies, and what are the main advantages and disadvantages of the increasing economic integration in the EU.

You will also focus on the current and historical key contemporary debates in economics. Think, for example, of inequality, protectionism, limits to growth, and the role of the state. You will analyze these big societal problems through the lenses of philosophy, politics, economics, and history. The tutorials consist of debates, in which you get to practice your debating skills and give presentations. You also delve into public finance issues. You learn about the welfare implications of government spending, the equity and fairness aspects of taxation, and the burden of government debt for future generations.

The economics profile is the most analytical of our 3 profiles. Year two is therefore also about improving your analytical skills with courses such as Matrix Analysis and Optimization, Intermediate Mathematics, and Econometrics. One of your many team projects will be an empirical research paper where you will answer a socially relevant research question with real-life data. Year two also adds an extra layer on top of your 1st-year courses in finance and international trade.

Semesters
CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Matrix Analysis and Optimization (5 EC)
Monetary Macroeconomics (5 EC)
Trade Policy and Economic Integration (5 EC)
Intermediate Mathematics (5 EC)
Microeconomics - Industrial Organization (5 EC)
Public Finance (5 EC)
Capital Structure and Financial Planning (5 EC)
Econometrics for E&BE (5 EC)
Growth, Institutions and Business (5 EC)
Economics of Banking (5 EC)
Empirical Research Paper for E&BE (5 EC)
History of Economic Thought (5 EC)

In the third year, you choose a minor. Some students choose courses offered within our own degree programme (with more courses on economic topics) or follow a faculty minor (such as Data Analytics in Economics & Business or Entrepreneurship), while others take a minor from a different faculty of the University of Groningen (such as psychology, law or neuroscience) or one that involves studying abroad for a full semester – in Europe, Latin America, Australia, Canada, China, the USA or elsewhere i

After your minor, you continue with your economics specialization and you will write your empirical Bachelor's thesis on a current topic.

In terms of courses, the second half of the 3rd year focuses on gaining a deeper understanding of microeconomic and macroeconomic theory. You will learn how these theoretical insights can be translated into government policy that leads to sustainable growth and helps people live better lives. In addition, you will study the labor market, in particular the causes of unemployment how wages are determined, and how national politics shapes economic outcomes.

Check the list of electives below that you will be able to choose from.

At the end of Year 3, you will write your Bachelor's thesis.

Semesters
CoursesCourse Catalog >1a1b2a2b
Minor (30 EC)
Elective BSc E&BE-Economics (5 EC)
Intermediate Macroeconomics (5 EC)
Bachelor's Thesis E&BE-Economics (10 EC)
Elective BSc E&BE-Economics (5 EC)
Intermediate Microeconomics (5 EC)

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional

In this programme, you have the option of studying abroad for one semester in Year 3 (30 EC). You can do this at one of our many international exchange partners in Europe, North America, Latin America, Australia, or Asia.

Check this overview of our partner universities around the world: https://www.rug.nl/feb/education/exchange/partners/.

Entry requirements

Admissible Dutch diploma profiles

  • VWO Natuur & Techniek
  • VWO Natuur & Gezondheid
  • VWO Economie & Maatschappij
  • VWO Cultuur & Maatschappij

    Wiskunde A of wiskunde B.

  • HBO propedeuse

    It is also possible to enter the programme with an HBO propaedeutic certificate, on condition that you meet the required level of mathematics and the English language skills. For mathematics, you must at least have completed A or B (previously mathematics A12 or B1) at Dutch VWO level. For English, you must also have completed this at VWO level or obtained one of the English certificates: IELTS Academic overall score 6 (Speaking 6, Writing 5.5); TOEFL internet-based overall score 90 (Speaking 20, Writing 20); C1 Advanced (with minimum score 169).

  • academic propedeuse

    You can enroll, as long as you have finished VWO-degree with mathematics A or B.

Choice of degree programme check

The degree programme will organize a choice of degree programme check. Attendance is optional. The advice is not binding.

Explanatory notes

Matching is a way for first year students of a Bachelor's degree programme without a selection procedure to find out whether their chosen degree programme matches with what they want.

If you want to register as a first year student for a Bachelor's degree programme without a selection procedure, you must do so no later than 1 May. That is a statutory requirement. When you have applied via Studielink on time, you are entitled to participate in a matching activity. Through matching you can find out whether your chosen Bachelor's degree programme matches with what you want. Every Bachelor's degree programme has a different matching procedure. After you have registered for a degree programme via Studielink, you will automatically receive a message explaining the procedure for the degree programme of your choice.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025

Choice of degree programme check

If you intend to start with a bachelor degree programme at the University of Groningen in September, make sure to apply before May 1 in Studielink. The degree programme will give you the option to participate in a matching activity to see if you and the degree programme are a match. Which matchings activity they provide depends on the faculty and programme.

Any questions about matching? Check www.rug.nl/matching

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

To meet the general entry-level requirements, you will need an educational background equivalent to the Dutch pre-university education (VWO). For an overview of VWO-equivalent qualifications, please check https://www.rug.nl/vwo-equivalent-qualifications. If you have any questions concerning admission to the programme, please contact our Admissions Office: https://www.rug.nl/admissions.

additional subject

Mathematics should have been passed as a standard/methods level subject in your secondary school education. Please note that the level of mathematics will need to be assessed by the Admissions Board.

language test

IELTS Academic overall score 6 (Speaking 6, Writing 5.5); TOEFL internet-based overall score 80 (Speaking 20, Writing 20); Cambridge C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency (overall score 169, Speaking 169, Writing 162).

Registration procedure

Students have to apply via Studielink and the Progress Portal (replacing the previous system, Online Application System OAS) of the University of Groningen. After you apply for the programme of your choice, the Admissions Office will evaluate your educational background and assess your eligibility. Your application will be assessed on an individual basis.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202501 September 2025
EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202501 September 2025
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2024-2025€ 2530full-time
non-EU/EEA2024-2025€ 13100full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Most of our graduates continue their studies with a Master's degree. There are many related Master's programmes you can immediately access after completing this profile.

A Master's degree in Economics grants you access to the world of banking or the government sector, where you could help develop economic policy. After completing these degrees, you can find yourself in positions in which you contribute as an economist to decision-making in (inter)national government bodies, public organizations, and private corporations such as financial institutions, multinationals, and consultancy firms. If you choose the Research Master's degree programme you could move into academia and perhaps decide to go further and earn a PhD at a university in the Netherlands or abroad.

Job examples

  • Policy-maker in a large organization (e.g. municipality of Groningen)
  • Corporate manager (e.g. ASML)
  • Lecturer at a HBO (e.g. Hanzehogeschool)
  • Journalist
  • Policy advisor at a ministry (e.g. Ministry of Finance)
  • Scientific or policy-oriented researcher at a central bank or university (e.g. ECB)
  • Consultant at a consultancy firm (e.g. Deloitte)
  • Economic analyst at a commercial bank (e.g. Rabobank)
  • Applied researcher (e.g. NEI, TNO and research bureaus)
Research

Linking education to research and career preparation

Our research-driven education is strongly rooted in business practice and society. Our lecturers are active researchers and experts in their field. They study societally relevant topics in areas such as a healthy society, inequality, governance, sustainable finance, business ethics, sustainable development, energy policies, and much more. They conduct their research in collaboration with external partners and students and use their state-of-the-art knowledge in the classroom. Every year you will conduct a research project yourself.

Read more about the research conducted at the Faculty of Economics and Business.

You can build a good understanding of the foundations of economics (Jelte Tirion)

I wanted to study in Groningen because of the city, it is young and full of students, a perfect place to live during your study. The BSc Economics and Business Economics appealed to me because it offers great opportunities for choosing interesting courses after you have completed the first year.

In my second year, I chose the Economics profile because I am mostly interested in the theoretical foundations of economics. Within this profile, there are many courses that help build a good understanding of the foundations of economics, both on a mathematical and intuitive level. You also follow tutorials where you make sure you fully understand the theory. The teachers in this programme are always helpful and approachable for questions or to further talk about the study topics. Besides theory, there are interesting applications, mostly in policy areas that you work on. If you are interested in policy issues, this profile may be the right one for you.

My advice for new students is to work hard from the beginning. Although it is challenging at first, it will definitely help as you go further in your study because the courses become more and more interesting.

Read more

Study associations

EBF

The Economics and Business Faculty association (EBF) is the faculty association for all students studying at the faculty of Economics and Business of the University of Groningen.
The EBF is your partner during your time in Groningen by organising events that support you with your studies and help you prepare for your future career.
https://www.ebfgroningen.nl/
Read more
(Binding) study advice
  • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months (binding)

You will be offered study advice after the first year of study. You can expect a positive result if you have earned more than 45 ECTS credit points (out of a total of 60 ECTS). If you have earned fewer than 45 ECTS and are issued a negative result, you will not be allowed to continue with your degree programme.

You will receive preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you stand. Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system. N.B. Some degree programmes use a tutoring system; please check with your study advisor.

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