Introductory Course in Mathematics and Statistics

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Francesco Nava 32L.3.20, Dr Marcia Schafgans 32L.4.12 and Dr Shengxing Zhang 32L.1.16


This course is compulsory on the MRes/PhD in Accounting (EoA) (Economics of Accounting Track) , MRes/PhD in Economics, MRes/PhD in Finance, MRes/PhD in Quantitative Economic History, MSc in Economics, MSc in Economics (2 Year Programme), MSc in Economics and Management, MSc in Economics and Philosophy, MSc in Finance and Economics, MSc in Finance and Economics (Work Placement Pathway) and MSc in Quantitative Economic History. This course is available on the MPA in International Development, MPA in Public Policy and Management, MPA in Public and Economic Policy, MPA in Public and Social Policy, MPA in Social Impact, MPhil/PhD in Economic Geography, MPhil/PhD in Environmental Economics, MRes/PhD in International Development, MSc in Political Science and Political Economy and Master of Public Administration. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Students on the MRes/PhD in Economics may be exempted from EC400 at the Department's discretion. 

Master of Public Administration students may only apply to take EC400 at the beginning of their second year.

Outside applications for EC400 must be made to the Department of Economics by the end of June. This applies to offer holders/students who do not have any EC4XX courses listed in their programme regulations for which EC400 is a pre-requisite. Please contact for more information. 

Students not on the compulsory programmes listed above who wish to continue studying Economics MSc-level courses must achieve an overall grade of 50% in EC400 with no one subject exam less than 40%. Non-MRes students wishing to study MRes-level courses must achieve an overall grade of 70% with no one subject exam less than 60%.


EC400 is an introduction to MSc level concepts in mathematics and statistics, and an undergraduate level understanding is assumed. EC400 is not intended as an introduction for students with little or no economics/mathematics background.

Course content

The aim of this introductory course is to provide students with the essential mathematical, statistical, economic and econometric background for the core Economics courses of these programmes. The course starts with Mathematics Revision sessions and progresses to sections covering Static Optimization & Fixed Points, Dynamic Optimization & Differential Equations, and Probability & Statistical Inference. All MSc Finance and Economics students are required to take mathematics for macroeconomics. MSc Economics and Management students attend lectures on literacy in accounting instead of the mathematics for macroeconomics component.


Approximately: 27.5 hours of lectures (delivered online through a mix of interactive live sessions and pre-recorded content) and 27.5 hours of online interactive live classes.

Formative coursework

Students will be required to complete daily sets of self-testing exercises during the course.

Indicative reading

Students will be advised of recommended readings and prepartion materials in the summer.


Students will be required to complete a set of self-testing exercises during the course. At the end of the course, students on MSc Management and Economics are examined on: Static Optimization & Fixed Points; Probability & Statistical Inference; but not on Dynamic Optimization & Differential Equations. All other students are examined on:Static Optimization & Fixed Points; Dynamic Optimization & Differential Equations; and Probability & Statistical Inference.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Economics

Total students 2019/20: 293

Average class size 2019/20: Unavailable

Controlled access 2019/20: No

Value: Non-credit bearing

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information