module specification

EC4006S - Principles of Economics (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18
Module title Principles of Economics
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 15
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 150
60 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
90 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
In-Course Test 40%   Short In-class tests
Seen Examination 50%   Part Seen Part Unseen Exam (1.5 hours)
Attendance Requirement 10%   Attendance and participation in seminars
Running in 2017/18
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester City Wednesday Morning

Module summary

This module introduces and develops the principles of macroeconomics providing a secure foundation for students pursuing specialist degrees in Economics and Business Economics.

The module will consider long run economic growth and short-run business cycles. Students will be introduced to key variables and concepts in macroeconomics, national income accounting, simple macroeconomic models and policy issues. They will consider the main determinants of economic growth, short-run fluctuations in economic activity, inflation, unemployment, the balance of payments and exchange rates.

Module aims

The module aims to provide students with:
1. a systematic knowledge and understanding of macroeconomic principles, including a critical awareness of economic reasoning;
2. an ability to apply economic principles and analysis in a variety of contexts;
3. a range of transferable and subject-specific skills that will assist future study and personal development;
4. an appreciation of the economic dimension of wider social, regional and political issues.


IT skills development. Intermediate knowledge of macroeconomic data in spreadsheets and current word processing software for essay and report presentation, embedding tables and graphs, the use of equation editors, contents pages and reports.

Introduction to Macroeconomics
Key macroeconomic variables. Measurement in macroeconomics
Economic growth and the long-run
Short-run economic fluctuations: aggregate demand and aggregate supply
Money and prices
Inflation and unemployment
Monetary, fiscal and supply side policies
Balance of payments and exchange rates
Financial crises.

Learning and teaching

Formal teaching and learning sessions will consist of weekly lectures  and seminars. There will be a two-hour lecture which will be used to set out and explain the key topics of the module and will emphasise what students need to do to undertand the material fully. There will also be workshop activity in the lecture time in which students will solve problems in groups and will engage in a dialogue with the lecturer.

There will be two kinds of hour-long seminar on the module. One hour per week will be spent discussing class problems contained in the student handbook. Students will present solutions to problems in groups and these sessions will be student-centred.

The second hour of the seminar will be used to develop HE skills development including engaging in ‘live’games and experiments.

All workshop-activity and seminars will be highly interactive and will involve problem-solving, real-world data, team work and learning games both online and away from the computer. Students will be expected to present solutions to problems individually and in groups. Workshop activities will embed economic concepts, and support the development of student’s teamworking, leadership, and strategic skills. 

Students will be required to complement their 'formal' learning activity with further reading of the material suggested in the teaching sessions, by interacting with Web-based learning materials and by working on class problems both individually and in groups. These problems will be discussed subsequently in seminars.

Student contact time will be 4 hours per week. Seminars will be designed to provide swift formative feedback and to encourage active learning.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:

  1. write clearly to demonstrate a broad knowledge and a systematic understanding of introductory macroeconomics covering theory, policy and application;
  2. apply economic analysis to solve macroeconomic problems;
  3. analyse and evaluate policy responses to various kinds of economic problem,  recognising the existence of different theoretical approaches to policy questions;
  4. work effectively in groups and demonstrate good communication, self-management, time-management and self-presentation skills.

Assessment strategy

There will be a series of 30-minute tests throughout the semester so that students can monitor their progress and identify any weaknesses. Students will be awarded the average % mark from their best three tests.

Students will be encouraged to participate in seminars and will receive up to 10% of the total available mark, depending on their attendance and participation.

There will be a final unseen exam lasting 1.5 hours, which will be a mixture of short answer and essay-type questions and will test students understanding of core macroeconomic principles and the way they can be applied to economic problems.

Attendance data is collected by lecturers and tutors which is added to Evision and this information will constitute the main element of the attendance/participation mark. However there will also be a reward for active and constructive class participation which is be assessed in discussion with the seminar group


Mankiw, N.G. and Taylor, M.P. (2011)  Economics, 2nd Edition, South-Western Cengage Learning
Sloman, J. , Wride, A and Garratt, D. (2012), Economics, 8th edition, Prentice Hall
Begg D., Fischer S, Dornbusch R., (2008), Economics, 9th ed., McGraw Hill
Frank, R.H.(2008), The Economic Naturalist: Why Economics Explains Almost Everything, Virgin
Akerlof, G.A. and Shiller, R.J.,(2009) Animal Spirits, Princeton

Online resources:  games / experiments  games / experiments film clips
Other online resources at