What can I do with my degree in Economics?
More and more students are following their first degree with further academic or professional study: over 20% of Economics graduates are engaged in some form of further study, either full or part-time, six months after graduation. Other graduates, who are working or taking time out at this stage, will begin their postgraduate study later on.
If you are interested in a career as an economist, a postgraduate degree is almost essential. Approximately 3% of graduates from Economics BA/BSc degrees begin their career in a specialised economics position each year; however, this proportion rises to over a third of those completing Master's degrees in Economics. A few employers which recruit undergraduates into economics-related posts will sponsor you to obtain a postgraduate qualification, often on a part-time basis. These include the Bank of England, the Financial Conduct Authority and the Government Economic Service.
Many employers of interest to Economics graduates, particularly those in the finance sector, target their graduate recruitment on undergraduates rather than postgraduates. This does not mean that they will not recruit postgraduates, but you may find that you are entering the organisation at the same level that you would have done with your first degree. These employers will provide on-the-job training and study leave if there are relevant professional qualifications to be gained (such as chartered accountancy) which are of value to them.
If you are interested in other careers, some, such as teaching or law, will require study for a relevant professional qualification. In other careers, such as journalism, a postgraduate degree is not a requirement, but may be an advantage, while there are many careers that will put more emphasis on personal skills than on academic qualifications. The “Types of Jobs” section of the Prospects website will tell you whether postgraduate study is essential, useful or not needed for a specific career.
There are many reasons for choosing to continue into postgraduate study. You may wish to obtain a higher degree purely for interest rather than for career reasons. Whatever your motivation, you need to consider issues such as your suitability for further study, the options available to you and the costs involved.
For more information on these issues, and on postgraduate study generally, see here