Making Economic History Count

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Jordan Claridge SAR 5.05


This course is compulsory on the BSc in Economic History. This course is not available as an outside option nor to General Course students.

Course content

This course provides students a brief, non-technical introduction to the quantitative methods that economic historians use to understand the past. It assumes no prior statistical knowledge or experience. It will teach students basic statistics (descriptive statistics and inferential statistics) and how to implement and visualise these statistics with Excel. These skills will be essential for the independent research projects conducted in the second and third year and are highly desired skills on the job market.


5 hours of lectures and 6 hours of classes in the MT.

Some of the classes will take the form of computer based workshops.

Formative coursework

The formative coursework will consist of weekly exercises to give students practise with Excel and the methods being taught in the lecture. There will be a formative take home exam over the reading week in Michaelmas Term, to test students' knowledge of the material.

Indicative reading

Hudson, Pat and Mina Ishizu, History by Numbers (London, 2016).

Feinstein, Charles and Mark Thomas, Making History Count: A Primer in Quantitative Methods for Historians (Cambridge, 2002).


There is no summative assessment for this course.

Key facts

Department: Economic History

Total students 2018/19: 23

Average class size 2018/19: 7

Capped 2018/19: No

Value: Non-credit bearing

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills