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EC303: The British Economy in the Twentieth Century

15 CATS - Department of Economics
Autumn Module

Principal Aims

The module aims to enable students to obtain a perspective on the origins of the contemporary British economy, to establish a solid grasp of the most important historical knowledge available for an economist today, to gain an appreciation of the processes and consequences of institutional change and to illustrate appropriate uses of economic analysis for an understanding of the past.

Principal Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module the student should be able to demonstrate general knowledge and understanding of the British economy in the 20th century; demonstrate familiarity with some applications of economics that have been specific to the British economy in the 20th century.


The course introduces the main features of economic change in Britain during the twentieth century, covering macro and micro aspects.

The module will typically cover the following topics:

1. Economic growth and productivity performance

2. Unemployment, inflation and macroeconomic policy

Other topics (indicative but not exhaustive):

3. The changing structure of the British economy

4. Poverty and the welfare state


Optional Module
LM1D (LLD2) - Year 2, LM1D (LLD2) - Year 3, L116 - Year 3, V7ML - Year 3, LA99 - Year 3, L100 - Year 2, L1L8 - Year 3, R9L1 - Year 4, R3L4 - Year 4, R4L1 - Year 4, R2L4 - Year 4, R1L4 - Year 4, V7MM - Year 4, V7MP - Year 3, L1P5 - Year 1, L1PA - Year 1, V7MR - Year 3, LM1H - Year 4, GL12 - Year 4, GL11 - Year 3, L103 - Year 4
Pre or Co-requisites
EC204 or EC201 + EC202, and either EC203 or EC226
Not available to first year students on Economics-based degrees.
Part-year Availability for Visiting Students
Available in the Autumn term only (1 x 2000 word essay – 12 CATS)


Assessment Method
Coursework (20%) + 2 hour exam (80%)
Coursework Details
One assignment (2000-word essay) (20%)
Exam Timing

Exam Rubric

Time Allowed: 2 hours.

Answer TWO questions ONLY. All questions are of equal weight (50 marks each).

Approved pocket calculators are allowed.

Read carefully the instructions on the answer book provided and make sure that the particulars required are entered on each answer book. If you answer more questions than are required and do not indicate which answers should be ignored, we will mark the requisite number of answers in the order in which they appear in the answer book(s): answers beyond that number will not be considered.

Previous exam papers can be found in the University’s past papers archive. Please note that previous exam papers may not have operated under the same exam rubric or assessment weightings as those for the current academic year. The content of past papers may also be different.

Reading Lists