NOTE: EXTRA CREDIT OPPORTUNITY.
Attend the lecture described below and have you ID card "swiped" at the event. Details in class.
The Locavore’s Dilemma:
In Praise of the 10,000-Mile Diet
Wednesday, September 11th
A Lecture by
Dr. Pierre Desrochers,
Associate Professor of Geography,
University of Toronto
INTRODUCTION TO ECONOMICS (Econ
150-003) Fall 2013
(10:20-11:15am MWF Grise Hall 440)
INSTRUCTOR: William Davis Grise Hall
Rm 418 Office phone/voice mail. 270-745-3123
e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Web page: http://www.wku.edu/~bill.davis/
Office Hours: (9-10:20am , 11:30-12:30 MWF, or by appointment
Check web page for latest assignments and sources.
1. The Economic Way of Thinking (I) , by Paul Heyne, Peter Boettke, & David Prychitko, 12th ed. MacMillen, Inc. 2010 Older editions are quite satisfactory. Study guide suggested.
2. A Daily Reading of the Wall Street
Journal, The Economist
, New York
Times or The Financial
Times Details in class.
Hazardous Product Warning Economics is potentially hazardous to your social acceptability. Extensive exposure to economic analysis is dangerous for immature persons or anyone whose resistance to new understanding is not yet fully calcified. It may dispel illusions, reduce myth retention, deaden one to political oratory, alienate friends, disrupt social conversations, allay fears of market systems, curb self-serving speech, and create possibly unknown dismal side effects. Initial dosage should be by prescription and care surveillance of an expert. The producers disclaim liability for damages from misapplication or uses not in strict accord with principles herein stated. (Rating: X) From the instructors manual of Exchange, and Production: Competition, Coordination, and Control. 2nd edition. by Armen A. Alchian and William R. Allen. Wadsworth Publishing Co. In. 1977.
This course fulfills one requirement for General Education category C -- Social and Behavioral Sciences. It is designed to provide an understanding of the concepts, ideas, policy issues, and methods of analysis which are central to understanding economies at the local, regional, national, and global level. Upon completion of this course, students should be able to apply concepts to contemporary issues and understand the impact that economic decisions and actions have on individuals and society.
Economics: A social science with a focus on economic activity at the local, regional, national, and global levels with attention given to the impact of market processes and policies on individuals and societies. The course emphasizes the application of economic analysis in critically evaluating contemporary issues. The primary focus of Economics has always been on the characteristics of a robust economy.
To introduce the student to the economic sciences and make apparent the importance of the concepts and analytical methods of the economic
sciences in understanding contemporary issues and critically evaluating the policies (local, national, and global) which impact individuals and society.
Course Threads: Ideas, concepts, ways of thinking that are
threaded and emphasized in the text and class discussion. You should have some
understanding of their importance in the Economic Sciences
by the end of the course.
Not in any particular order of importance and subject to modification
What do we know about economic development and security
Understanding how economists view "costs"
How Goods and Markets Work, How Prices Emerge (supply and demand), and what happens markets are interferred with.
Comparative Advantage, the importance of trade, and issues associated with "globalization"
The Extended Order of Cooperation and the importance of "property rights", the "rules of the game"
Externalities (imperfections in markets, how economists view them, and an intelligent person's guide to potential remedies
What is known about the causes of economic instability?
What is to be learned about the history of the Great Depression that can inform the discussion of current economic conditions?
Get advice/tips from students that have had this course from me. (Make sure to ask what grade they received before proceeding -refrain from taking advice from those who did not do well.) Get their old exams. I will post old hourly exams, final exams, and quizes on the Test Bank of Previous Quizes/Tests link (also shown below). Use this and the questions at the end of text chapters as study exercises. Answer all the questions and ask for my help if you cannot answer the questions or have doubts about your answers. The exams,quizes will be mostly essay with a few objective questions. You will find that it will be easy to anticipate the essay questions that I will ask. It is suggested that you practice constructing essay answers to anticipated questions and have me give you tips on achieving an "A" on each question.
Class attendance and code of conduct
A seating chart will be used to gather information on student attendance. Although no strict attendance policy is enforced excessive absences is interpreted as a low level of commitment to the course and will be considered appropriately in the "class participation" component of the grade. Previous experience indicates that excessive absences results in poor performance and lower course grades. Classroom conduct conducive to learning is a necessity. Therefore, chatter and third party discussions that are not part of the class activities, disruptive behavior, use of electronic media (such as text messaging and laptops) that are not part of the announced class activities are not permitted. Infractions will result in disciplinary action that could result in dismissal from the class. Refresh your memory on the matter of academic dishonesty. WKU Student Handbook http://www.wku.edu/handbook/2009
Fall 2013 Semester at a Glance http://www.wku.edu/registrar/academic_calendars/documents/fall_semester_glance.pdf
Fall 2013 Final Exam schedule http://www.wku.edu/registrar/academic_calendars/fall_final_schedule.php
Econ Club Facebook Page http://www.facebook.com/groups/297132550358241/297626683642161/
Spring, 2013 Final Exam Schedule--
I. INTRODUCTION: ECONOMICS- the study of the
"ecology" of human interaction among unfamiliar individuals.
A. Adam Smith: "An Inquiry Into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations ". 1776 Where modern economics began.
The central problem of all economies---securing the cooperative behavior of its members
B. Stylized systems. Traditional, command, and market economies
C. An overview of allocative and distributive mechanisms common to all economies
D. The focus of the course-markets as coordinating mechanisms
E. The analytical assumptions about individual behavior and the forward looking nature of man
F. Introductory applications
1. The failure of the Soviet Union
2. The issue of industrial policy-Japan & U.S.
3. Economic analysis as an antecedent to ethical judgments
Heyne, Chps.1,2, &3
1I. THE CONCEPT OF ECONOMIC EFFICIENCY
A. Engineering efficiency versus economic efficiency
B. The concept of absolute and comparative advantage
C. Trade as a wealth creating activity
D. Production as a wealth creating activity
E. Applications-domestic and international
Heyne, Chp. 2.
III. MARKET CONCEPTS: THE DEMAND SIDE
A. The concept of demand as an empirical proposition
B. Some mechanical conventions in the use of demand schedules
C. The concept of elasticity of demand
D. Price discrimination
Heyne, Chps 2,3,&4
IV. MARKET CONCEPTS: THE SUPPLY SIDE
A. The concept of supply as an empirical proposition
B. Some mechanical conventions in the use of supply schedules
C. The concept of elasticity of supply
Heyne, Chps. 2,3,&4
V. THE RATIONING AND ALLOCATIVE FUNCTIONS OF MARKETS
A. Price determination in highly organized markets
B. Shortages and surplus
C. The popular view of price changes
D. The price and allocative effects of price changes
1. Agricultural policy in the U.S. and the Common Market
2. Rent control laws-the case of New York City
F. Specialized markets
1. Information markets
2. Forward and futures markets
Heyne, Chps. 2,3,4,&7
VI. THE CONCEPT OF COSTS
A. The equi-marginal rule in rational decision making
B. The difference between marginal costs, average, and sunk costs
C. The expectational dimension of costs
D. The differences between accounting and economic concepts of costs
E. The diamond-water paradox
Heyne, Chp. 5
VIII THE ORGANIZATION OF PRODUCTION AND ECONOMIC
A. Individual production and trade---the two party case
B. Team production and trade
1. Implications of various property rights arrangements
2. Special problems of monitoring and economic risk
C. Applications-LBOs, corporate raiders, junk bonds, and hostile takeovers
IX. MARKET STRUCTURES AND ECONOMIC COMPETITION
A. The analytical meaning of competition
B. Competition in price taker markets-open and closed
C. Competition in price searcher markets-open and closed
D. The ambiguous concepts of monopoly and oligopoly
E. Contestability of markets
F. Anti-competitive behavior
2.Collusion and cartels
G. Government regulation of business
H. The issues of deregulation and privatization
3. Education reform
Heyne, Chps. 5 &7
X. PROFITS AND CAPITAL VALUES-HOW DO THEY ARISE AND HOW ARE THEY DISSIPATED?
A. Why does interest exist?
1. risk factors
2. nominal versus real
3. positive rate of time preference
B. How are profits defined?
C. The dissolution of profits
1. With barriers to entry
2. Without barriers to entry
D. The concept of present value
E. The role of uncertainty in an assessment of profit
F. Property rights, decision making, and profits
Heyne, Chps 8,9,10&11
XI. AN OVERVIEW OF MACROECONOMICS: THE 2008 ECONOMIC CRISIS, THE GREAT DEPRESSION AND CONTEM PORARY MACROECONOMIC ISSUES
XII. AGGREGATE ECONOMIC STABILITY: UNEMPLOYMENT, INFLATION,
AND ECONOMIC GROWTH
A. The fear of unemployment
B. The fear of a loss of jobs
C. Definitions and measurement of unemployment
D. The fear of inflation
E. Defining and measuring inflation
F. Defining and measuring economic growth
G. The significance of economic growth
Heyne, Chps. 15&16
XIII. NATIONAL STABILIZATION POLICY
A. The concepts of aggregate demand and supply
B. National income accounting
C. An overview of the economic history of the U.S. economy
D. The great depression
E. The development of stabilization policy since the the great depression
1. The formulation and execution of fiscal policy
2. The formulation and execution of monetary policy
F. Causes of economic instability and their relevance to the current state of the U.S. economy
G . International issues.
Heyne, Chps. 17,18,19,&22
A. Economics of environmental degradation
B. Economics of public goods
C. Economics of international competitiveness and economic growth.
D. Economics of Global Warming
Heyne, Chps. 13 &14
1. 150 Readings s12
New readings for Fall, 2012
Economist Ray Fair's Fair Model of Presidential Elections
Nobel Prize Winners in Economics
National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA)
An Inquiry Into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, 1776
National Center for Policy Analysis
Market Based Environmental Study-ETeam
Market Based Scholarship on Health Care Issues
Social Security Reform Issues
Property Rights and Sustainability
How Ideas Trump Crises by Alex Tabarrok.
PERC http://www.perc.org/ market based environmentalism center in Bozeman Montana
Online Encyclopedia of Economics s
Consumer Price Index
BEA Bureau of Economic Analysis
Property Rights and Susatainability A report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
How Ideas Trump Crises by Alex Tabarrok.
Don't Panic:Capitalism Continualy Recovers from Financial Crisis by William Easterly
Graphic depiction of Post WWII U S Recessions from the Minniapolis Federal Reserve Bank
The Great Recession in Perspective from the Minniapolis Federal Reserve Bank
NBER Dates end of current recession
College Grads Earning Trends
2010 Economic Freedom Report
Causes of the Economic Crisis
Graphic of U S unemployment since 1948 http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703338004575230041742556522.html?mod=WSJ_economy_LEADStoryTop
Graphic of U S unemployment since 1948
Some of My Favorite Econ Blogs
EconoLog--Kling ,Caplan, and Henderson
Wiki of Econ Blogs
The Marginal Revolution at http://www.marginalrevolution.com/
Wall Street Journal Real Time Economics Blog
An example of how economists think about climate change http://ageconomist.blogspot.com/2011/06/can-we-really-price-carbonthe-trickle.html
Wall St Journal Prediction Mkt
Iowa Electronic Markets
Night views of N and S Korea http://www.paulnoll.com/Korea/History/Korean-night.html
Hans Rosling's 200 Countries, 200 Years http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbkSRLYSojo
Test Bank of Previous Quizes/Tests
Former Student--Gillkinson Notes Gilkison
Two of my favorite questons:
1.What is the difference between lowering price to get more business and lowering price to destroy competition? What objective criteria can be used to distinguish between these two tactics?
2. Prior to deregulation of the airline industry, Republic and Northwest Airlines were required by the Civil Aeronautics Board to charge the same fares. After deregulation, they were prohibited from getting together to
establish a common fare schedule. After the two firms merged, they were free to set fares as their mutual interests dictated. If one of these makes sense, how can the others be defended?
Composition of Course Grade:
1. Test #1 100 points
2. Test #2 100
3. The best five of six 10 point quizes 50
4. 25 weekly posts on the class blackboard
forum-two points each (details in
Accepted Sources: Wall Street Journal
The Economist Magazine
NY Times Anything from
the The Library of Economics and LIberty
or any threaded disusssion
from My Favorite Blogs. any podcast found at
http://www.econtalk.org/ or articles
the "Readings" links above 50
6. Comprehensive final exam 150
Total available course points 525 points
Course grade: accumulated points (90%) 472.5 or
more = A
(80%) 420-472.0 = B
(70%) 367.5-419 = C
(60%) 315-366 = D
Less than 315 = F
Make-up exams and quizes will be given only for excused
Student Disability Services In compliance with
university policy, students with disabilities who require academic and/or
auxiliary accommodations for this course must contact the Office for Student
Disability Services in Downing University Center, A-200. The phone
number is 270 745 5004. Please DO NOT request accommodations directly from the
professor or instructor without a letter of accommodation from the Office for
Student Disability Services.
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