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Business Economics and Social Studies, BA (Hons)

Trinity College Dublin, Ireland

Trinity College Dublin

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About Business Economics and Social Studies, BA (Hons) - at Trinity College Dublin

The structure of the BESS course reflects the Faculty's commitment to providing students with a broadly based education in economic and social sciences, combined with the opportunity to specialise to a high level in a chosen subject or area.

Entry to the Faculty through TR081 leads to one of the following degrees:

  • Bachelor in Business Studies (BBS)

  • B.A. (Moderatorship) in Economic and Social Studies


The B.A. Moderatorship can be taken as single or joint* honors in:

  • Business Studies (joint honor)

  • Economics (single or joint honor)

  • Political Science (single or joint honor)

  • Sociology (single or joint honor)

  • Contemporary European Integration (single honor)


* Joint honor degrees are available in any two of business studies, economics, political science or sociology. The exception is economics and sociology, a combination that is available only within the two-subject moderatorship programme (TR212).

Is this the right course for me?

One major advantage of the BESS programme is that it offers flexibility and choice. Because there is a common first year an incoming student has exposure to a broad range of social science subjects. BESS gives you the freedom to discover and develop interests you may not be aware you have until you enter university. It is not until the beginning of the Senior Freshman (second) year that you need to start making choices between subjects.

The Freshman years

All students follow a common first year that comprises foundation courses in economics, management, political science, sociology and mathematics/statistics. This year is an introduction to subjects that you may not have taken at school and gives you an opportunity to explore without committing to particular subjects. An additional option to study either French, German, Japanese or Chinese is also a feature of the Junior Freshman (first) year.

The Senior Freshman (second) year allows you to broaden your knowledge of the BESS subjects studied in first year and enables you to focus on one or two particular subjects before deciding at the end of the year which degree course to follow. The range of subjects on offer is drawn from business studies, economics, political science, and sociology, as well as from complementary disciplines in the areas of social policy, law, psychology, and economic geography. If you decide to continue with French or German and successfully complete this course you will be awarded a Certificate in Language Proficiency.

Students may take a Broad Curriculum course as one of their six courses in the Senior Freshman (second) year.

The Sophister years

Courses in the Sophister years (three and four) aim to deepen your knowledge and understanding of the particular subject(s) you have chosen to follow to degree level in either business, economics, sociology, political science or combinations of these subjects. In addition, you will usually have the opportunity to take an optional course in social policy, law, psychology or geography in the Junior Sophister (third) year. In the final year students may also be required to prepare a dissertation or case study.

Entry requirements for this course

Contact Trinity College Dublin to find course entry requirements.

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