This course is discontinued

HIS4311 – The Industrialization of Europe

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The primary goal of this course is to introduce you to the history of industrialization in Europe from the late eighteenth century to the early twentieth century. We will consider the broad economic and social changes of industrialization as well as the role of technological development. The course will cover the classic Industrial Revolution which took place in Britain during the period 1760-1830 and the way its history has been told, but it will focus extensively on the different experiences and shape of industrialization as it unfolded across Europe. By the end of the course, you should have not only an overview of historical developments in European industrialization but also an understanding of the debates among scholars as they attempt to explain a very complex phenomenon.

A common question is whether the industrialization of Europe emerged as one process or several. Was the development of each country unique or part of a common European process? Did Great Britain serve as the main source of technology, capital, and industrial competence? Or did the social, political, and institutional environment of each country create different paths? The course debates questions of this kind by comparing different European countries, Great Britain, France, and Germany in particular. Lastly, we consider European developments in the context of global history: when did Europe ‘forge ahead’ of other continents, and why?

Courses which are particularly well suited complements to this course are:

Learning outcome

The course introduces both factual knowledge and analytical perspectives to the history of industrial development in Europe from the onset of the “first industrial revolution” in the mid-eighteenth century until around 1920.

Students who have successfully completed the course will know the main features of industrialization, including developments within a wide range of industries and the social, technological and economic contexts within which they were developed. They will also know the different approaches to the study of industrialization that historians have adopted, within fields such as economics, history of technology and social history, and they will thereby be familiar with the central concepts, interpretations, and scholarly debates historians have brought to the analysis of European industrialization. Students will be able to appreciate global aspects of the European experience of industrialization.

The course will assist students’ skills development in the areas of critical reading, independent thinking, and academic writing, and students should be able to communicate their knowledge orally as well as in writing.


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If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Admission to the mastersprogramme in History.

Recommended previous knowledge

A good ability to read and understand English is required for this course.


This course is given in the form of seminars.


Students are assessed by a six-hour written examination.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

After the examination result is announced, there will be possible to have an explanation of grades from the examiner. At oral examinations or assessments of practical skills, a request for such an explanation must be made immediately on notification of the mark. Requests for explanations of other assessments must be submitted within one week after the candidate learns of the mark. This request must be made by sending an e-mail to: The explanation will be given either in writing or oral, this will be decided by the examiner. Please inform of your phone number, e-mail address where you can be contacted as well as your candidate number.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course




Spring 2007


Spring 2007

Teaching language