Module code: ECO2058

Module Overview

The module surveys and discusses the main schools in the history of economic thought, the challenges between them, and their development over time. Throughout the module, economic theories will be discussed in historical context, highlighting the interplay between theories, policies, and conditions. As a module on the history of economic thought, this topics of this module are closely linked to the philosophy and methodology of economics as a discipline.

Module provider


Module Leader

GOLSON Eric (Economics)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: V310

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Classical economics

  • Economic theories of trade

  • Critique of classical economics

  • Neo-classical economics

  • Methodology of economics

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of how theories and ideas are being developed, and how the environment relates to this evolution. It is designed to allow students to show that they have a basic understanding of how economics of a discipline has evolved, as well as stimulate discussions to allow students to question the validity of assertions.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of two units of assessment:

  • An in-class test (Week 6) (1 Hour 15 minutes around week 7 but before mid-semester break) worth 30% of the module mark. This will be made up of a multiple choice component intended to test basic elements of the history of economic thought, as well as three short answers questions requiring a broad engagement with the material.  

  • An examination (2 Hours) requiring two short answers (33%) and two long essays (66% of exam mark).. The two essays can be selected from a list of seen topics released prior to the examination.  

 Formative assessment and feedback

Formative assessment and feedback is given through discussion in lectures, many of which will be team-centered, in which students are asked to prepare and present (in rival groups) the case for one school of thought against another. Further, feedback is provided for the class test, and general questions posted in lectures / online. Office hours provide further opportunities for individual feedback and discussion.

Module aims

  • Highlight the applicability of economic thought throughout history to the historical context and the evolution of the discipline.
  • Broaden students' understanding of the discipline, and its applicability in daily life.
  • Sharpen students' understanding of how ideas develop and evolve.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Display knowledge of the main schools of economic thought and how they are related to each other / how they evolved from each other KCT
2 Relate economic thought to historical context, and discuss how ideas and environment shape each other KCT
3 Comprehend the historical development of economic thought KC
4 Appreciate and discuss the difference and trade-off between efficiency and fairness KCPT
5 Appreciate the need to meet tight deadlines PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 128

Lecture Hours: 22

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

  • Build an appreciation of how ideas and theories are developed and evolve to address issues of importance.

  • Allow students to communicate their knowledge of relevant economic theories and ideas in (group) discussions effectively.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Lectures with opportunities for discussion and group work (2 x11 hours including test) 

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Reading list for HISTORY OF ECONOMIC THOUGHT : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/eco2058

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Economics BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Liberal Arts and Sciences BA (Hons)/BSc (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.