Why do oil prices fluctuate? Why does the government provide free health care to its citizens? Why do economies experience recessions? The study of economics provides us with answers to these questions and many more.
Economics is a fascinating subject, especially in the current climate. It helps us to look more deeply into the world around us and can give new perspectives on some of the most pressing and challenging problems which the world faces today. Economics makes the world go round; few decisions are taken that are not influenced to some degree by economics. It explores the role of producers, consumers and government and explains many of the issues and debates that feature in the news and in society.
A Level Economics is a thought provoking course which enables pupils to learn about economic theories and practices in the context of different economic issues, both in a national and international context. Economics is a dynamic subject and class activities monitor and examine the day to day changes in real world events.
What will I Study?
Economics at AS Level includes two units. The first unit, Operation of Markets and Market Failure, is an introduction to microeconomics and looks at how buyers and sellers come together in a market place. It also deals with concepts such as demand and supply, the price mechanism and what happens when markets fail. A study of government involvement in the marketplace and a study of different types of market structure complete this unit.
The second unit, The National Economy in a Global Context, introduces candidates to macroeconomics. This unit examines the economy on a national scale and explores current economic behaviour and performance. The focus is on the UK, however, an examination of the UK’s place in the European Union and the international economy is also undertaken.
A Level Economics includes two further units in the second year of study; Individuals, Firms, Markets and Market Failure and The National and International Economy. The first, Individuals, Firms, Markets and Market Failure, considers the microeconomic principles underlying business decisions in a variety of different market structures and introduces behavioural economics . The labour market, inequality and poverty, influences of technology on business and government intervention in the market are also studied.
The second, The National and International Economy, examines the UK’s economic performance over the past fifteen years, including the study of inflation, economic growth, unemployment and international trade. It also offers the opportunity to examine changes in the UK economy resulting from continued developments in globalisation and the UK’s position in the European Union context. The new syllabus includes study of the financial markets, as well as governmental management of the economy through monetary, fiscal and supply side policy.
Throughout the course students are encouraged to develop a critical approach to economic models and methods of enquiry. The skills of analysis and evaluation are developed throughout the course. As economics moves from the modular to the linear assessment methodology in September 2015, pupils studying for the full A Level will sit exams at the end of the two-year course. The AS course concludes with a stand-alone qualification.