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Unit information: Economic History in 2015/16

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Unit name Economic History
Unit code EFIM20017
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Professor. Cannon
Open unit status Not open

EFIM10010: Economic Principles 1

EFIM10007: Economic Principles 2

EFIM 10008: Maths and Stats Methods 1

EFIM 10009: Maths and Stats Methods 2

or, for Economics and Mathematics joint honours, the corresponding first-year maths units.

nb no pre-requisites for students on Graduate Diploma.


EFIM20008 Intermediate Economics 1

EITHER EFIM20011 Econometrics OR EFIM20010 Applied Quantitative Research Methods

School/department School of Economics, Finance and Management
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law


The purpose of this unit is to introduce students to various historical economic episodes, to broaden their knowledge of economics and to complement the more theoretical economic units taught in the second year. The unit will be topic-based and emphasise depth at the expense of breadth. Topics will be chosen from the following list:

  • different monetary systems
  • financial crises
  • market integration, trade and the rôle of transport
  • urbanisation and development of living standards
  • agriculture
  • industrialisation

Topics will be chosen to enable the use and practice of economic and econometric tools taught in the first year (and, to a lesser extent, in the co-requisite units). Topics will be drawn predominantly but not exclusively from Europe in the early modern (1550-1750) and modern (1750- 1939) periods. Material will not be drawn from WW2 or afterwards.

Intended learning outcomes

  • Knowledge of a selection of important economic issues in history
  • Ability to apply economic theory to historical episodes
  • Application of research methods (particularly statistical approaches) to empirical analysis of historical episodes

Teaching details

Lectures (20) of whole-group teaching.

Classes (9) of about twelve students for problem solving and discussion.

E-learning via quizzes (9) on necessary technical material.

Assessment Details

Summative assessment

Two-hour written examination: one (one-hour) essays from a list corresponding to the topics; one (one-hour) analysis question.

Formative assessment

Two essays (approx 2000 words) – these will allow students to combine analysis and synthesis of historical information, economic theory and statistical analysis.

Supplemented by some electronic quizzes to review relevant economic and statistical material.

Reading and References

  • Floud and Johnson (ed) The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Britain
  • Persson An economic history of Europe: knowledge, institutions and growth, 600 to the present
  • Various articles from journals such as Explorations in Economic History, Journal of Economic History.