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Economics

 

Unit Overview - Theme 1

Theme 1: Introduction to markets and market failure

Skills

Learners will develop the ability to construct simple microeconomic models and use them to predict the outcomes when an economic variable changes

They will also develop the skills required to use economic modelling to make policy recommendations to correct market failure with regard to social inefficiency

Learners will develop their academic writing skills to allow them to construct detailed meaningful arguments using statistical and theoretical evidence. This will focus upon the key mantra of application, analysis and evaluation

They will develop the skills to manipulate basic statistics and perform calculations to determine the impact of changes in one variable to another

Knowledge

Theory of Demand and Supply

Income, Price and Supply elasticity

Distribution of factors of Production and Production Possibility Frontiers

Various forms of market efficiency and market failure (Social, Allocative, Productive)

Positive and negative externalities and their impact on market efficiency

Rational behaviour and maximising utility

Classical economic texts (Adam Smith, Riccardo, JS Mill)

Rationale

This unit seeks to develop a basic understanding of microeconomics. It is upon this that everything else in Economic study is based. AS such, it is often presented as discrete theory based on unrealistic and outmoded examples. Therefore, text books and exam board resources limit learners ability to apply this beyond AS or even A level so our approach to study will be based heavily on the works of classical economists applied in a variety of modern day contexts.

This will allow us to use detailed extended reading of excerpts from original economic texts and articles about them to develop a level of understanding well above that required for AS Economics and ensure learners are ready to study these themes in greater depth both at A level and university.

It will also ensure learners are developing good academic habits and practice whilst maintaining their interest in what can traditionally be a very dry unit.

Unit Overview - Theme 2

Theme 2: The UK Economy – Performance and Policies

Skills

Learners will develop the ability to use Macro-Economic modelling tools to explain changes in the macro economy and to make and justify policy recommendations in response to these changes

Learners will develop the ability to identify key statistical and other evidence from texts to support their arguments

Learners will develop the ability to read, interpret and discuss extended articles and Economic Texts of undergraduate level of complexity

Learners will also develop their ability to write in an analytical, academic style.

Knowledge

Government Economic objectives

Key Economic variables; Inflation, Unemployment

The Circular Flow of income Model and its links to Aggregate Demand

Aggregate Supply and equilibrium in the macro-economy

Monetary and Fiscal Policy (Drawing on Government Spending and Tax from Theme 4 and incorporating Monetarist Economic Theory from undergrad texts)

Recent UK Economic History (since 2008)

Key Macro Economic theorists (Keynes, Friedman, Marx)

Rationale

Whilst aspects of this work will be discussed and investigated during the study of theme three, this unit builds upon the micro economic work of theme 3 and applies the skills and concepts learned there to a macro-context.

This unit is very much the ‘core’ of the course and provides key grounding for A2 studies in theme 3 and theme 4 which are taught in parallel. In particular, a thorough understanding of policy objectives and macro-economic AS/AD models is essential and every learner must develop an thorough understanding of these.

By drawing upon the work of key economic philosophers and recent Economic History, learners should develop the ability to analyse economic problems in context and in abstract, preparing them properly for study at an undergraduate level.

knowledge Organiser

A knowledge organiser is an important document that lists the important facts that learners should know by the end of a unit of work. It is important that learners can recall these facts easily, so that when they are answering challenging questions in their assessments and GCSE and A-Level exams, they are not wasting precious time in exams focusing on remembering simple facts, but making complex arguments, and calculations.

We encourage all pupils to use them by doing the following:

  • Quiz themselves at home, using the read, write, cover, check method.
  • Practise spelling key vocabulary
  • Further researching people, events and processes most relevant to the unit.