International Bachelor Econometrics and Operations Research

Study programme

The International Bachelor Econometrics and Operations Research programme focuses on the application of mathematical and statistical techniques to answer economic questions. The academic year is divided into five eight-week blocks, in which you follow two or three courses. Your study load is measured in credits of 28 study hours each. Each academic year consists of 60 credits.

Year one: a diverse kick-off in every way

Your first-year courses contain topics in mathematics, statistics, and economics. You will also receive training in computer programming to learn how to build models and implement mathematical techniques. Your first experience with operational research will consist of analysing and solving optimisation problems by applying these mathematical models.

We work with tutorial groups of about thirty students, which allows for individual attention and intensive guidance. During many of the practical assignments, you will work in groups of around four students.

During your second year you will focus on more advanced courses in different areas like mathematics, statistics, econometrics and business economics. You will divide your time equally between theory and practice, in small groups during lectures and assignments.

The third year offers many choices. First you get to take a minor (elective courses within or outside the field of Economics, such as Law or Psychology), study abroad at a partner university, or take an internship. In the second half of the year, you will choose a specialisation in one of the following four majors:

  • Econometrics
  • Quantitative Logistics
  • Quantitative Finance
  • Business Analytics and Quantitative Marketing

Your major involves two specialisations courses and a seminar. You will complete your programme with a bachelor thesis.

In class
The current 100m world record is 9.58 for men (Usain Bolt) and 10.49 for women (Florence Griffith- Joyner). Can you predict the next world record? You will need a model for this purpose, using the following data.

MEN                                                     WOMEN

Year Time                                           Year Time

1968 9.95                                           1968 11.08

1983 9.93                                           1972 11.07

1988 9.92                                           1976 11.04

1991 9.90                                           1976 11.01

1991 9.86                                           1977 10.88

1994 9.85                                           1982 10.88

1996 9.84                                           1983 10.81

1999 9.79                                           1983 10.79

2007 9.74                                           1984 10.76

2008 9.72                                           1988 10.49

2008 9.69

2009 9.58

International character

We specifically aim for an international class room, with many students from abroad. Over the last three years we reached this goal with a very diverse group of students. We welcomed students from many European countries (Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain, Poland, Romania, Russia), and Asian countries (China, Vietnam, Korea, Indonesia), but also from the US, Canada and Latin-America. This provides an interesting combination of backgrounds in the classroom and we actively stimulate that students with different backgrounds work together.

Course overview

Disclaimer: The overview below shows the programme curriculum for the academic year 2020/2021.

    • Block 1+2+3

      • Guidance (econometrics) consists of two modules:

        • Module A: Academic Study Skills in block 1, 2 and 3. 
        • Module B: Academic Presentation Skills. This module takes place in block 2. 
    • Block 1

      • The Take-Off is the introduction event for all new students of Erasmus School of Economics. During this interesting introduction event, you will be provided with useful practical information and receive an introduction to your studies, meet your fellow students and our School.

      • The aim of this course is a.o.

        • To become familiar with the Lagrange multiplier method.
        • To master part of the techniques of integration.
        • To learn mathematical proving techniques, such as set proofs, mathematical and complete induction.
      • Following a brief introduction to the different phases of scientific research, the main focus of this introductory course is on developing the mathematical basis (probability calculus, probability distributions, introduction to statistical testing) and with applications in solving practical questions.

    • Block 2

      • The aim of this course is to acquire insight into the abstract underlying structure of matrix algebra.

        • The first part of the course deals with the theory of the consumer.
        • The second part focuses on the theory of the firm, and includes the topics of firm production and firm cost;
        • The last part of the course turns to market structures (monopoly, imperfect competition and perfect competition), to the joint analysis of firm and consumer behavior within a market (general equilibrium theory) and to factor markets (labor and capital).
    • Block 3

      • The aim of this course is getting sufficiently familiar with those concepts and methods of differential and integral calculus that an econometrist should know, by means of a leading international textbook.

    • Block 4

      • The aim of this course is to understand the basics of probability theory, including central concepts and proofs of central results.

      • The course starts by introducing the fundamental data types and operations. After that, control statements, i.e., decision and repetition, are presented. Then, methods, as computations consisting of multiple steps, are given. Arrays, representing a data structure storing multiple values, are depicted next. Last, the main concepts of object-oriented programming paradigm, i.e., class and instance, are described.

      • The aim of this course is to acquire basic knowledge of eigenvalues, eigenvectors, orthogonality, projections, diagonalization, quadratic forms, vector spaces, inner products, norms, distances and vector differentiation.

    • Block 5

      • The course Statistics aims to facilitate the construction of statistical statements about the population on the basis of a random sample.

      • The aim of this course is to recognise and model linear programming problems.

      • The aim of this course is to become familiar with the mathematical methods and skills that are required for studying Econometrics.

    • Block 1

      • Combinatorial optimisation deals with finding an optimal solution from a finite set of feasible solutions. Since enumerating this set is practically infeasible in general, one tries to exploit the problem structure to find an optimal solution in a computationally efficient way. In this course, we develop techniques for combinatorial optimisation problems. 

      • The learning objectives are a.o.:

        • Being able to program econometrical model estimation and result visualization in Matlab
        • Understanding the main differences between procedural and object oriented programming paradigms
    • Block 2

    • Block 3

      • Econometrics is characterized by the combination of economic research questions, use of empirical data, application of statistical and mathematical methods, and the use of software to estimate and evaluate models. All these topics are extensively discussed in the lectures and practised in the tutorials.

    • Block 4

      • The lectures are a follow-up on the lectures in Econometrics 1.

    • Block 4 + 5

      • By means of practical case studies, attention will be given to the four different major tracks within the bachelor econometrics programme.

    • Block 5

      • Time series analysis concerns modelling sequential observations on economic variables, such as monthly unemployment figures. A suitable time series model can be used for making forecasts and for policy analysis. A key issue in developing a suitable model for time series concerns the dynamic features of economic variables, such as trends, seasonal fluctuations, and business cycles.

    • Block 1

      •  A minor is a coherent combination of courses of 12 or 15 credits in total. A minor is meant to be a valuable addition to your regular study curriculum and can be either broadening or deepening.

        Students are allowed to replace the Minor with studying abroad, or with an internship.

    • Block 2+3

      • The electives represent a choice of supplementary but fascinating academic views from the specialisation that you have chosen.

        The elective space is 12 cr when the Minor is rounded off at 12 cr, and 9 cr when the Minor is rounded off at 15 cr.

    • Block 3

      • The course consists of two parts.  It begins with a refreshment on classical microeconomics analysis and develops into the utility maximization theory, in Part 1.  The necessary mathematical tools (ODE) are briefly presented. The main analytical emphasis is on restoring underlying preferences from empirically observed individual behavior.
        In the second, large part, the course begins with a brief introduction to Game theory and develops into the area of Bayesian games.  A few examples from the recent economic literature are studied in depth.

    • Block 3+4

      • A Major consists of one seminar and two major courses.

    • Block 5

      • This is an introductory course in the philosophy of economics. Both classical texts and more recent research in the areas of economic methodology and ethics & economics will be discussed and commented on.

      • The thesis is the crown on your Bachelor’s degree programme.