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Thread: UCL or BGSE better for MSc Economics and to go on to Top-Phd?

  1. #1
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Cool UCL or BGSE better for MSc Economics and to go on to Top-Phd?

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    Hi All,

    I recently graduated with a BSc in economics degrees and have been applying to Master programs for the terms 20/21. As of now I hold offers from UCL and BGSE (BGSE incl. 50% tuition waiver and havent heart back of LSE as of now), however, I am very unsure which program I should choose. I initially had a preference for the UCL programm for the following reasons:

    • I am more interested in Micro-/Labour-economics and BGSE seems to be better for Macroeconomics.
    • I also heard that the quality of the courses at UCL is supposedly better than at the GSE and that it seems to be easier to graduate with distinction from UCL because the cohorts are more consistent.
    • Regarding reputation, both programs seem to be more or less equally well regarded, however, I heard/read everything from UCL >> BGSE to BGSE >>> UCL.

    Most of these issues are of course very subjective so I am happy to hear your thoughts!
    I now received the offer from BGSE with a 50% tuition waiver (making it approx. 60% cheaper than UCL) and I am now wondering whether going to UCL for the reasons above outweights the difference in tuition fees. I am planning on going on to a "good" PhD program afterwards and potentially staying in academia so scoring well in the masters and also obtaining a degree of a well-regarded university seems to be quite important.

    So is UCL better than BGSE or is BGSE the better choice?

    Thank you a lot for taking the time to read through my question! Any recommendations or opinions would be much appreciated!

    Quick facts on my profile (since helpful for reference for future info seekers):
    * Graduated with an equivalent of a first class degree (Top 5%) from a "Top 3 University" in Germany (according to rankings at least).
    * GRE - Quant 165
    * Worked as a RA and did a few internships at banks, insurances, economic consulting firms etc. (in hinsight found that to be helpful for master applications)

  2. #2
    Trying to make mom and pop proud
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    Re: UCL or BGSE better for MSc Economics and to go on to Top-Phd?


    First of all, I don't like London as a city very much which is why UCL was never really on the map for me. I have applied for LSE, but it'll take a lot (i.e. funding/scholarships) for me to actually choose LSE, even if I am accepted.

    So I guess the only input I have for you is that you really should consider how much more expensive London will be compared to Barcelona. You're probably looking at as much as €700-1000 extra per month to live in London compared to Barcelona.

    Second of all, I'm almost in the same situation as you are. I got an offer for the master's in economics at BGSE (100% tuition fee waiver, to my surprise). The generous offer, however, makes the choice between BGSE and TSE very hard. I also hold an offer for the M1 Econometrics and Statistics at Toulouse School of Economics.

    How do BGSE and TSE stack up when it comes to reputation (given my goal of doing a PhD)?

    Profile for future reference (following your example):
    * Highest grade in almost every economics module I've taken, top 3 university in my country
    * Top grade (as of now) linear algebra and analysis in one variable
    * Exchange year at top-5 US econ department, straight A's Econ upper division courses
    * RA work during exchange and after returning to home university
    * GRE Q166, V164, AWA 5.0
    * Waiting for decisions: LSE Economics & Philosophy, LSE Economics Oxford MPhil Economics, Oxford MPhil Economic and Social history, PSE M1 APE
    Last edited by wastra; 03-07-2020 at 11:10 PM.

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    Re: UCL or BGSE better for MSc Economics and to go on to Top-Phd?

    How is it?

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