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Unit information: Applied Microeconomics in 2015/16

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Applied Microeconomics
Unit code EFIM20002
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Professor. Smith
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Economics
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description including Unit Aims

The main aim of the course is to show how micro-economic principles can be used to understand real-world issues. The course covers a range of topics: Minimum wages, Targeted benefits, Congestion charging, Employer-provided training, Competition policy.

Each topic relates to specific elements of micro-theory, primarily from the first and second year courses. The main focus of this course will be on how the theory can be applied in practice - looking both at theoretical insights into the issues and at relevant empirical evidence.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course the students will be able to:

  • Select and apply the relevant micro-theoretical tools to real-world problems
  • Discuss the main insights from a theoretical analysis, together with the relevant evidence

Teaching Information

18 lectures and 12 tutorials

Assessment Information

Summative assessment: The main learning outcomes will be assessed by means of a two-hour exam and a 1500 word essay. The examination will require students to answer both short questions (focused primarily on testing students’ ability to select and apply the relevant bits of theory), and longer, essay-type questions (allowing students to discuss the theoretical insights and evidence in more detail).

Formative assessment: The students will prepare short-answer questions for three exercise classes each term (six in total). Answers will be given during the class, but will not be marked. The students will have to do a one-hour, in-class test at the end of each term, also focusing on short-answer questions and the application of relevant micro-theoretical tools. This will be marked. Working in pairs/ small groups they will prepare a short presentation which summarises and discusses one of the key empirical papers. They will also be required to do one essay each term (between 1,200 – 1,500 words) which requires them to synthesize both theoretical and empirical material to discuss issues in some depth. This will be marked and returned.

The assessments are designed to test all of the learning outcomes listed above.

Reading and References

The course will be topic-based and, as such, will not have a single text book. Instead, students will be given one key reading (journal article, policy report) per topic, together with two or three supplementary papers.