INTRODUCTION TO ECONOMICS
Learning outcomes of the course unit
The course offers an introduction to microeconomics and macroeconomics. By the end of the course students should be able to understand the basic principles, concepts and methodologies of the discipline. The course is designed primarily for students who did not graduate in economics and need an introductory course.
Course contents summary
Part I – Microeconomics
1. Demand and supply: how markets work (ch. 4 MAN)
2. Elasticity and its applications (ch. 5 MAN)
3. Demand supply and elasticity: Exercises and applications
4. Demand, supply and economic policy (ch. 6 MAN)
5. Consumers, producers and market efficiency (ch. 7 MAN)
6. Economic policies and efficiency: Exercises and applications
7. The cost of taxes (ch 8 MAN)
8. Globalization and international trade (ch. 9 MAN)
9. Taxes and globalization: Exercises and applications
10. Externalities (ch. 10 MAN)
11. Public good (ch. 11 MAN)
12. Externalities and public good: Exercises and applications
13. People, preferences and society (ch. 2 BER)
Part II – Macroeconomics
14. Main macroeconomics aggregates (I): GDP (ch. 1-2 BLA)
15. Main macroeconomics aggregates (II): Inflation and unemployment (ch. 1-2 BLA)
16. Main macroeconomics aggregates: Exercises and applications
17. The goods market (ch. 3 BLA)
18. Financial markets (ch. 4 BLA)
19. The good market and financial markets: Exercises and applications
20. The IS-LM model (ch 5 BLA)
21. Fiscal and monetary policy in the short period
22. The policy mix
23. The labour market (ch. 6 BLA)
24. Aggregate demand and aggregate supply (AD-AS model) (ch 7 BLA)
25. AD-AS model: Exercises and applications
26. Firm’s decision
27. Recap. Q&As
BER – Bowles S., Edwards R. and Roosvelt F., Understanding Capitalism: Competition, Command and Change, Oxford University Press
MAN – Mankiw G., Principles of Microeconomics, South Western Cengage Learning
BLA – Blanchard O., Macoreconomics, Prentice Hall
Acquisition of knowledge: frontal lectures
Acquisition of the ability to apply knowledge: group and individual exercises
Acquisition of judgment: during the course the students will be pushed to compare the hypotheses elaborated with the use of microeconomic and macroeconomic models with the empirical evidence derived from markets, industry and countries with the EU.
Acquisition of learning skills: for each argument the instructor will first illustrate the main assumptions of formal models; then the main results will be critically evaluated.
Acquisition of technical language: during the course the maim concepts and definitions related to the microeconomic and macroeconomic field will be introduced and discussed (e.g. demand, supply, market, GDP, inflation, unemployment).
Assessment methods and criteria
Learning assessment is through a written exam. The exam consists of 5 multiple choice questions, one exercise and one open-ended question. The multiple choice questions cover topics related to both microeconomics and macroeconomic. The exercise question can be either on microeconomics or on macroeconomics. If the exercise covers topics on microeconomics the open-ended question will on topics related to macroeconomics, and vice-versa.
Acquired knowledge will be assessed with the multiple choice questions (10 points)
The ability to apply knowledge will be assessed with the exercise and the open-ended question (20 points).
The autonomy of judgment and the ability to learn will be assessed with the modality of solving the exercise adopted by each student during the exam.
The ability to communicate with the appropriate technical language will be assessed wit the analysis of the definitions and concepts used by the students is answering the open-ended question.
The final mark results from the sum of the points obtained in the multiple choice question, exercise question and open-ended question.
The exam is considered to be passed if the student final mark is greater or equal 18.