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History and Economics

The Joint School of History and Economics integrates the two subjects to form a coherent and intellectually stimulating programme.

The combination allows insights that neither subject can realise alone. However, it is possible to specialise primarily in either history or economics while still preserving the benefits of an integrated approach. The combination of economics, economic history and history (political as well as social) means that you will be equipped to view issues in the real world from a variety of contrasting perspectives.

You will learn both the historian’s careful approaches to evidence and argumentation and the economist’s analytical and quantitative methods, providing an excellent preparation for a range of professional, financial and academic careers.

The course is designed to equip you with the basic tools of both history and economics, whilst introducing you to some of the areas that you can study later in more depth. You will be given a wide choice of subjects. Everyone studies introductory economics, which is designed to give a solid understanding of the foundations of both micro- and macro-economics, including some of mathematical tools used in these subjects. Further information regarding the course structure and choice of subjects can be viewed here.

Joint Schools

Economics cannot be studied as a single discipline for a degree, but it is available as a joint course as follows:

History can be studied as a single discipline and is also available as a joint course as follows:

If you have any questions about our entrance requirements, or about applying to study at Jesus College, please contact the Admissions Officer:
Tel: 01865 279721


Professor Patricia Clavin is a Fellow and Tutor in History at Jesus. She has written books on the history of international economic diplomacy between the two world wars, the history of the Great Depression in Europe, a history of Europe from 1789 to the present (with Asa Briggs), and edited a history of Internationalism in the Twentieth Century (with Glenda Sluga). She has also published some thirty articles and book chapters on the international history of the twentieth century. Her book Securing the World Economy. The Reinvention of the League of Nations, 1920-1946, published by Oxford University Press in 2013, was awarded the British Academy Medal. Professor Clavin is also a Fellow of the British Academy. Her latest book project, supported by a grant from the Leverhulme Trust, explores the history of human security in the twentieth century. Patricia teaches the history European and Global history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and offers specialist teaching on the history of the two world war wars and the history of international and transnational co-operation in the twentieth century.

Dr Alexandra Gajda is also a Fellow and Tutor in History at Jesus. She teaches sixteenth- and seventeenth-century British and European history. She has published on the political, intellectual and religious history of English and European history in the early modern period. She is currently writing a book about the evolution of the parliaments of the British Isles during the Reformation.

Dr Aled Davies is a Career Development Fellow in History at Jesus College. He is a political and economic historian of post-war Britain, and his research is particularly focused on the growth of the financial sector and the history of neoliberalism. He teaches Modern British, European and World History.

Professor Péter Esö is the Fellow and Tutor in Economics. He teaches Core Microeconomics and Game Theory at the undergraduate level. His research interests and publications are in microeconomic theory, game theory, and the economics of information.


Dr Conrad Leyser is a Fellow and Tutor in History at Worcester College, who also teaches for Jesus College. His interests lie in the religious and social history of the Latin West, 300-1100; law, memory and narrative.

In a total College entry of about 100 undergraduates, 8 are offered places in a typical year to read History and related joint schools.

Academic requirements:

Offers made to candidates will be conditional upon A-level results (AAA, with an A in History) or equivalent qualifications. Prior study of Economics is not a requirement for entry for the History and Economics course. It is highly recommended to study Mathematics to A-level or equivalent as the Economics side of the course requires strong mathematical skills.

Written tests:

All candidates must take the History Aptitude Test (HAT) and the Thinking Skills Assessment: Section 1 (TSA: S1) in schools on 4 November 2021. Both the HAT and the TSA are administered by Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing. Separate registration is required for each of the two tests and the deadline for this is 15 October 2021. Further details of these tests can be found here:

Written work:

Candidates are required to submit one essay on an historical topic which will be used for discussion at interview. The deadline to submit written work is 10 November 2021. Further information can be viewed here.


Submitted work and UCAS personal statements are likely to form starting-points for discussion in your interview. The tutors are not so much interested in the level of your knowledge as in your ability to think analytically, and (in the case of History) historically. Some colleges may require you to read a short passage of historical writing while you are up for interview, which they will ask you to discuss as part of the interview process.

Deferred Entry:

Applications for deferred entry to Jesus College are accepted. You must apply for deferred entry at the time of application to Oxford: you cannot change your mind after an offer has been made. Please refer to departmental web sites for subject-specific advice. You should be aware that applicants who are offered places for deferred entry will generally be among the strongest of the cohort for their subject. We would not usually offer more than one deferred place per subject in order not to disadvantage the following year’s candidates. In some cases, an applicant for deferred entry may be offered a place for non-deferred entry instead. If you require any further advice, please contact the Admissions Officer at:

The Faculty of History offers a range of taught graduate courses at master’s level and two research programmes leading to the degrees of Master of Letters or Doctor of Philosophy.

In addition to the traditional fields of historical research, in political, social, and cultural history, History at Oxford embraces more specialised areas, such as medieval history, economic and social history, the history of science, medicine, and technology, and the history of art.

The Department of Economics has around 200 graduate students. As a research based community, the Department puts great weight on developing its graduate students. The following degrees are offered at postgraduate level:

  • DPhil Economics
  • MPhil Economics
  • MSc Economics for Development (joint with Development Studies)
  • MSc in Financial Economics (joint with Saïd Business School)

Although a History degree is not vocational in any strict sense (and many students undertake the course for reasons of sheer intellectual pleasure) it does equip students with a set of transferable skills applicable to many careers. Historians are used to the sifting of large quantities of often conflicting information; they are skilled in the evaluation of differing interpretations; they are trained in presenting complex issues in a lucid and convincing fashion; their verbal and critical skills are highly developed. These qualities have enabled generations of Oxford historians to excel in a wide range of careers. Oxford historians typically move on to careers in business, the law, investment banking and consultancies, advertising, accountancy, the civil service, publishing, journalism and the media, global charity work, museums, librarianship and archive work, and teaching.

Further information about History and Economics can be found on the faculty websites here:



Information about Admissions is available here.