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Economics Honours Decoded: All You Need To Know About India's Hottest Degree!

Economics Honours Decoded: All You Need To Know About India's Hottest Degree!

This story was updated in January 2019.


What do Warren Buffet - the third richest man in the world, Cate Blanchett - two-time Oscar winner and Elon Musk - CEO of Tesla Inc. have in common? You’re right, they’re incredibly successful in their respective fields and are also among the smartest minds anywhere in the world right now. But did you know that all of them were Economics graduates as well?


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Economics as a career is highly rewarding in the current environment. We need economists to study agriculture in an increasingly changing global weather patterns, decode financial implications of economic plans as well as help the government formulates administrative policies. Economics Honours graduates are in high demand in almost every Fortune 500 company as well for top government jobs. The options with this degree are endless.


If you are among those thousands of students looking for a career as an Economics Honours graduate but have no idea how - don’t worry. We have got you covered! Read on to know all about one of India’s most preferred courses and what are the career prospects (some really fancy ones!) that open up for you with an Economics Honours degree.


What Is B.A. Honours In Economics 
Eligibility 
Admission Process 
Syllabus And Course Structure 
Top Colleges In India 
Career Options And Salary 
FAQ


What Is B.A. Honours In Economics?


B.A. Honours in Economics is the study of the scope, limitations, consumers, markets, production and distribution of goods and services in an economy. The field also studies the macro and micro aspects of an economy and the markets within it. Students are taught to develop analytical and problem-solving skills that prepare them for different commerce, scientific and economy-related jobs. Economics Honours (or Eco Honours as it also called) is also very helpful for young entrepreneurs looking to start their own business as they then have the knowledge of supply and demand of products in the economy.


The Perfect Base To Launch Future Careers


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Economics Honours is extremely helpful in building the perfect base for future studies as well. Since the course includes different aspects of the study of the economy and the environment, which is a topic of growing importance today. Students can apply the fundamentals of economics to different things like the study of population and the strain on the planet's resources, or something as micro as the impact of smartphones in business.


Since the course also focuses heavily on logical reasoning and critical thinking, students also have the option to opt for careers in social fields as well as politics. Students can seek a career in prestigious institutions in India like the Planning Commission, Planning Board, Reserve Bank, Ministry of Economic Affairs, and the most sought-after career option - The Indian Economic Service.
Candidates can also explore further studies in the field of economics and can pursue an M.A. in Economics.


Eligibility for Economics Honours


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Students need to secure at least 45 percent in their Higher Secondary Certificate or Class 12 examinations from a recognised board of education in the country to be eligible for any course. However, the cut-off marks for this particular course vary from institute to institute. The cut-off percentages are based on the overall performance of students that year as well as the seats available in the colleges.


Only students who have passed mathematics at the Class 12 level are eligible for admission according to the University Grants Commission (UGC) of India. It is easier for science students to opt for Economics Honours because their knowledge of science and physics make it easier for them. That said, even commerce students can apply, given that they have taken maths.


Admission process for Economics Honours


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While most colleges and universities offer admissions to students based on their performance in their Higher Secondary Certificate or Class 12 examinations, a select few may hold an entrance test. This is generally followed by a face-to-face interview to judge the ability of the students.


Some of the few institutes that hold entrance tests for admission for Economics Honours are Christ University, Bangalore, St Stephens College, Delhi University and St. Mira’ College for Girls, Pune.


Syllabus And Course Structure For Economics Honours


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There are a total of 14 economics core courses for students taking up Economics Honours spread across six semesters in three years. Apart from these core courses, B.A. Honours in Economics will also require you to choose four Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) courses. Here is the course structure as per the UGC guidelines in India:


Semester 1


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This semester is a general introduction to microeconomics and its principles. It brushes up on most of the concepts from the 12th standard syllabus while introducing students to applying these concepts in real-world scenarios.  


1. Economics Core Course 1: Introductory Microeconomics
2. Economics Core Course 2: Mathematical Methods for Economics-I
3. Ability Enhancement Compulsory Course (AECC)-I
4. Generic Elective (GE) Course-I


Semester 2


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This semester focuses on the principles of macroeconomics and the use of maths to apply the concepts.


1. Economics Core Course 3: Introductory Macroeconomics
2. Economics Core Course 4: Mathematical Methods for Economics-II
3. Ability Enhancement Compulsory Course (AECC)-II
4. Generic Elective (GE) Course-II


Semester 3


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Students in the third semester take a deep-dive into both micro and macroeconomics. Statistics is introduced in this semester as well.


1. Economics Core Course 5: Intermediate Microeconomics-I
2. Economics Core Course 6: Intermediate Macroeconomics-I
3. Economics Core Course 7: Statistical Methods for Economics
4. Skill Enhancement Course (SEC)-I
5. Generic Elective (GE) Course-III


Semester 4


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The fourth semester is very interesting for students with a knack for statistical analysis. It covers statistical concepts of hypothesis testing, estimation and diagnostic testing of simple and multiple regression models.


1. Economics Core Course 8: Intermediate Microeconomics-II
2. Economics Core Course 9: Intermediate Macroeconomics-II
3. Economics Core Course 10: Introductory Econometrics
4. Skill Enhancement Course (SEC)-II
5. Generic Elective (GE) Course-IV


Semester 5


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The students are introduced to apply economic concepts to Indian markets in this semester. Students are taught to review major trends in economic indicators and policy changes in India in the post-Independence period.


1. Economics Core Course 11: Indian Economy-I
2. Economics Core Course 12: Development Economics-I
3. Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Course-I (From List of Group-I)
4. Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Course-II (From List of Group-I)


Semester 6


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The sixth semester focuses on alternative conceptions of development and their justification. Students are taught to understand the role of the state in economic development and the problems that affect state governance.


1. Economics Core Course 13: Indian Economy-II
2. Economics Core Course 14: Development Economics-II
3. Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Course-III (From List of Group-II)
4. Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Course-IV (From List of Group-II)


Group-I (Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Courses)


These DSE courses are a part of the fifth and sixth semesters. Colleges are generally expected to offer at least three to four options for the DSE courses to give students the option to choose what they would want to pursue.


1. Economics of Health and Education
2. Applied Econometrics
3. Economic History of India (1857-1947)
4. Topics in Microeconomics-I
5. Political Economy-I
6. Money and Financial Markets


Group-II (Discipline Specific Elective (DSE) Courses)


1. Public Economics
2. Political Economy-II
3. Comparative Economic Development (1850-1950)
4. Financial Economics
5. Topics in Microeconomics-II
6. Environmental Economics
7. International Economics
8. Dissertation/Project


Top Colleges For B.A. In Economics Honours In India


There are a lot of different colleges and universities that offer an Economics Honours undergraduate degree. While the syllabus remains the same, the college environment, professors as well as the extra-curricular activities can impact how you go about your six semesters. Here is a look at some of the top institutes for Economics Honours in India:


1. St Stephens College, Delhi University, New Delhi


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The oldest college in Delhi has one of the best programs for Economics Honours in the country. St Stephens also has a renowned placement cell that attracts top dollar for most of the students in the college.


Total Course Fees: Rs 1.04 Lakh


2. Lady Shriram College (LSR), Delhi University, New Delhi


LSR consistently ranks among the top colleges for Economics Honours in India. The reasons - LSR has one of the best teaching faculties and a much-sought-after placement program.


Total Course Fees: Rs 49,170


3. Christ University, Bengaluru


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One advantage Christ University has over other institutes providing an Economics Honours degree is its location. Being in India’s Silicon Valley provides you with good exposure to global companies that regularly come to recruit for internships.


Total Course Fees: Rs 2.28 Lakh


4. Hindu College, Delhi University, Delhi


Hindu College has one of the best programs for Economics Honours and is the next best option to St Stephens. The two colleges are also just across the street from each other.


Total Course Fees: Rs 44,370


5. Miranda House, Delhi University, Delhi


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Image source: Instagram


Another college whose placement program is really efficient is Miranda House. The college is also known for its strong alumni program.


Total Course Fees: Rs 36,480


6. Hans Raj College, Delhi University, Delhi


Here’s another Delhi University college that offers an excellent faculty and internship programs. Hansraj’s cool vibe also makes for a great environment for studying and one of the more popular colleges on campus.


Total Course Fees: Rs. 54,600


7. Ramjas College, Delhi University, Delhi


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Ramjas has consistently ranked in the top ten for Economics Honours for quite some time now and should definitely be on your list if you are looking to study in the North Campus.


Total Course Fees: Rs 31,715


8. Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC), Delhi University, Delhi


Yes, SRCC ranks as the best commerce college in the country, but did you know that it has an equally appealing Economics Honours program? Additionally, the college also ranks among the best in terms of placements.


Total Course Fees: Rs 87,819


9. Indraprastha College for Women (IP), New Delhi


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One of the lesser known colleges from an economics program, IP college should definitely be on your list. This women’s college also has one of the lowest fees per semester.


Total Course Fees: Rs 19,989


10. Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce (SCAC), Pune


SCAC has the advantage of being in the heart of Maharashtra’s culture capital, Pune and therefore helps build all the practical knowledge required for an economics program.


Total Course Fees: Rs 1.12 Lakh


Career Options And Salary For Economics Honours Graduates


Just completed an undergraduate in Economics, but have no idea what to do right after doing Economics honours? Trust me, you’re not alone! Read on to know a host of options that you can pursue with your Economics degree.


1. Masters In Economics Or Finance/An MBA


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A masters degree or an MBA, right after an economics undergraduate is a great way to pave a path for a successful career. A higher education degree would enable you to get high paying jobs, particularly in MNCs and KPOs in the private sector.


The average starting salary for MBAs in India: Rs 19.61 lakhs per year.


2. Consultancy


Consultancy firms offer economic graduates various opportunities like working as an executive consultant, an economist or even an economic advisor. Plus, these jobs are considered amongst some of the highest paying jobs out there.


The average starting salary for Consultants in India: Rs 7 lakhs per year.


3. Government Jobs


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Various job positions open up after an Economics degree, in the government sector. The Indian Economic Services, the Reserve Bank of India and PSU’s offer jobs with social prestige and a brilliant start to your career.


The average starting salary for Union Public Service Commission: Rs 4.2 lakhs per year


4. Ph.D. And Research


A Ph.D. in Economics after your undergraduate can provide you with a wonderful platform to apply for high-level research and teaching jobs, not to forget the high pay scales that come along with them! And it makes perfect sense for you if you feel passionate about the subject or feels inspired by people like Amartya Sen.


The average starting salary for Research Scientist in India: Rs 6.1 lakhs per year


5. Corporate Law


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If Corporate Law is your area of passion, then it is not too late if you have an economics degree. A Bachelor in Economics followed by an LLB and you are set to become the next Harvey Specter from Suits! You know you've thought of it - well, it's actually attainable.


The average starting salary for Corporate Lawyers: Rs 7.5 lakhs per year


6. Economic Journalism


A flair for writing along with an Economics degree can take you places in the field of economic journalism. Basically, the job would involve studying and analyzing economic phenomenon world over and thereby drawing insights and inferences and have your ideas published in journals and magazines.


The average starting salary for Journalists in India: Rs 3.5 lakhs per year


7. Think Tanks


An undergraduate in economics gives you the perfect base for becoming a part of a think tank! These are bodies that primarily operate for the analysis of economic issues and offering recommendations. Niti Ayog, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion and Center of Policy Research are among the top think tanks of India where you could apply.


8. Analysis


Financial or Investment analysis is the typical job profiles for an economics graduate. And if you have a good score in your undergraduate then you have excellent chances of getting to work for a big MNC like Deloitte, Bain & Co. or McKinsey!


The average starting salary for Financial Analysts in India: Rs 3.3 lakhs per year


9. Statistician


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Loved statistics, figures and analysis during your undergraduate in Economics? Then applying to firms for the position of a statistician is the perfect career path for you to pick after graduation!


The average starting salary for Statistician: Rs 3.7 lakhs per year


10. Banking and Financial Services


There is always a dearth of economists in the banking and financial services industry, you just need to be smart while applying and showcase your skills and confidence at the interviews and the job shall be yours.


The average starting salary for Investment Bankers in India: Rs 9 lakhs per year


11. Professor


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An economics degree gives you the requisite background to apply for teaching jobs at schools and universities. Furthermore, a basic teaching course along with further education would be a definite plus for your career prospects as a teacher!


The average salary for Professors in India: Rs 9.1 lakhs per year


Frequently Asked Questions About Economics Honours


1. Is Economics Honours a good option after college?


Yes, a degree in Economics Honours is one the most sought-after courses in India right now. If you are interested in learning how the economy works as well as have a knack for mathematics and statistics, it is a good option.


2. What is the difference between a B.A. Honours in Economics and a B.A. honours in Business Economics?


B.A. Honours in Economics is an academic course while B.A. honours in Business Economics is a professional course. Economics Honours is based on the cut-off percentages of board exams, while admissions Business Economics is via a process of a two-hour written test conducted by the University of Delhi.


In Economics Honours, you can study only about the applied and abstract part of economics. In Business Economics, you study the economic applications, methods pertaining to finance logics and various other business aspects as well.


3. Is Maths compulsory for Economics Honours in Delhi University?


Yes, mathematics is compulsory for all colleges offering an Economics Honours degree. All students must secure at least 45 percent marks overall and have passing marks in mathematics to apply. 


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Published on Sep 2, 2016
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