EC301GC      Half Unit
Advanced Economic Analysis (Spring Semester)

This information is for the 2020/21 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr L. Rachel Ngai  32L 1.15



This course is available to General Course ‘Spring Semester’ students.


Students should have at least first year university maths and intermediate macro.

Course content

Focus on economic growth, considering questions like these: Why was GDP per capita in the UK 15 times higher than China in 1960? Why did the factor of 15 decrease to 5 in 2000?  To gain an understanding of the “whys” we have to ask deeper questions: what drives economic growth? Why do some economies grow faster and other slower? Thus this part of the course studies the determinants of economic growth through capital accumulation, human capital accumulation, endogenous technological progress through R&D, and institutions. We focus on two applications: the cross-country income differences and the recent Chinese growth miracle.


15 hours of lectures and 10 hours of classes in the LT.

This course is delivered through a combination of classes and lectures totalling a minimum of 25 hours across the Lent Term. This year, some or all of this teaching will be delivered through a combination of virtual classes, live streamed (recorded) lectures, and some flipped content delivered as short online videos.

Formative coursework

Students will submit, and receive feedback on, two problem sets.

Indicative reading

The course is mainly based on lecture notes and journal articles. As an example of the level and content of the reading in economics articles, students may wish to look at the following:

Hall, R. and C. Jones. 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?” Quarterly Journal of Economics, 114: 83-116.

Lucas, R. 2000. “Some Macroeconomics for the 21st Century.” Journal of Economic Perspectives, 14: 159-168.

Ngai, L. R. 2004. “Barriers and the Transition to Modern Growth “. Journal of Monetary Economics 51:1353-1383.

Young, A. 2003. “Gold into Base Metals: Productivity Growth in the People’s Republic of China during the Reform Period.” Journal of Political Economy 111: 1220-1261.

A good textbook reference for economic growth is:

Jones, C. and D. Vollrath (2013), Introduction to Economic Growth. W. W. Norton & Co.


Exam (100%, duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes, reading time: 15 minutes) in the summer exam period.

Important information in response to COVID-19

Please note that during 2020/21 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the situation of students in attendance on campus and those studying online during the early part of the academic year. For assessment, this may involve changes to mode of delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.

Key facts

Department: Economics

Total students 2019/20: Unavailable

Average class size 2019/20: Unavailable

Capped 2019/20: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Application of numeracy skills