module specification

FE4054 - The Economic Environment (2018/19)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2018/19
Module title The Economic Environment
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 15
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 150
5 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
105 hours Guided independent study
40 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Unseen Examination 30%   In-class test (1 hour)
Unseen Examination 70%   Unseen exam (2 hours)
Running in 2018/19
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester City Wednesday Morning
Year (Spring and Summer) City Thursday Afternoon

Module summary

This module is designed to provide first year undergraduates with an introduction to economic principles, and the economics of the business operating environment.  The module is primarily concerned with economic thinking at a micro level, but also introduces students to essential macro-economic concepts reflecting state intervention in a mixed economy. The module also introduces notions of efficiency, rationality, and time and opportunity cost within economic thinking, and shows how these ideas may be applied to decision-making contexts.


The basic principles of Economics, and contextualisation of the fundamental concepts that underlie economics in modern society LO1

• Demand and Supply Analysis: the key factors influencing the demand for goods and services, including both price and other determinants and hence both movements along and shifts of market curves; Elasticity i.e., the responsiveness of quantity change to other market shocks. LO2
• Production: the factors of production and output in the short and long-run. Law of diminishing returns and scale economies.
• Varying degrees of competition in markets and the consequent impact on consumer welfare

• Macroeconomics, National Income Accounting, and the circular flow. LO3
• Economic targets: Inflation, Unemployment, Balance of payments and economic growth.  Exchange rate policies and effects on economy/business

• The role of the State. Macro Government policy instruments, both fiscal and monetary used in the pursuit of economic objectives. State intervention at micro level: CMA, licensing, price regulation, trading standards.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Delivery of the module will use a mixture of lectures (1.5 hours) and seminars (1.5 hours) and the module will be as student centred as possible. Students will be encouraged to research economic issues from a variety of sources in addition to module materials including newspapers, textbooks and online sources and to identify aspects relevant to their areas of study.

Lectures are designed to provide a stimulating introduction to the fields of economic knowledge and theory, followed by active learning in the seminars.

The module will be supported with ICT resources such as Weblearn and Publisher’s E-resources which will give easy and flexible access to lecture materials and assessment information.

Learning outcomes

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

1. Understand the context in which business takes place, and the principles which underpin economies

2. Identify and illustrate the principles which underpin the behaviour of economic agents

3. Discuss the role for the State in a modern economy

Assessment strategy

Students will be assessed formally by means of summative and formative assessment. The summative assessment will take the form of an unseen, end of session examination, an oral presentation and an in-class test.

The formative assessment takes place in the seminar through learning activities. Each week students are required to provide answers to practice questions. Thus, the seminar programme has been designed to provide students with information concerning their progress in the module. In addition, students are encouraged to submit answers to previous examination questions. Their answers are marked, with comments, and returned to students.


Core Texts
Sloman, J., Guest, J. and Garratt, D. (2018) Economics, 10th edition, Pearson

Other Texts
Dobson, S. (2004) Introduction to Economics, Oxford University Press
Dornbusch, R., Fischer, S., Begg, D. and Vernasca, G. (2014) Economics, McGraw-Hill