GY428      Half Unit
Applied Quantitative Methods

This information is for the 2015/16 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Benjamin Groom (KGS 2.03) and Dr Dominik Hangartner (COL 8.03)

If at all possible, Dr Groom, would prefer to be called Dr Ben Groom.


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Environmental Economics and Climate Change. This course is available on the MSc in Local Economic Development and MSc in Real Estate Economics and Finance. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

This course will provide an introduction to quantitative methods in use in modern environmental and resource economics. Emphasis will be placed on the practical use of empirical tools. This applied focus will be complemented by the investigation of assumptions and proofs that can improve the understanding of empirical results. Students will apply the methods taught using statistical/econometric software and data documenting some topical public policy questions.  These applications will take place in ten seminars of one hour each. During the seminars the students will gain understanding of the software STATA. Additionally, in the lectures and sometimes seminars, selected papers in quantitative environmental economics will be critically discussed. In general the course will attempt to use examples from relevant and topical empirical papers published in the area of applied econometrics and environmental economics. The module will cover several estimators. We will start with the standard linear regression model, its assumptions, violations and testing procedures. Some non-Linear Models will also be presented, including Multivariate Probit and Logit Models (Maximum Likelihood). Extensions of the Linear regression model to incorporate panel data estimators and Instrumental Variables (IV) approaches (e.g. Two Stages Least Squares and Fixed and Random Effects models) will be also covered. The course will conclude with a discussion of programme evaluation methods and randomised control trials (RCTs).


20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the MT.

Formative coursework

A selection of seminar exercises will be marked for formative appraisal.

Indicative reading

Detailed reading lists will be provided to support each course component. The following texts will be particularly useful: a) Stock J.H. and M.W. Watson (2011). Introduction to Econometrics. Third Edition Pearson International Edition; b) J. Wooldridge (2006), Introductory Econometrics: A modern approach, Thomson; c) Angrist J and Pischke J.S. (2009) Mostly Harmless Econometrics, Princeton.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

Student performance results

(2011/12 - 2013/14 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 20.2
Merit 37.4
Pass 25.3
Fail 17.2

Key facts

Department: Geography & Environment

Total students 2014/15: 27

Average class size 2014/15: 13

Controlled access 2014/15: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills

Course survey results

(2011/12 - 2013/14 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 85.5%



Reading list (Q2.1)


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