Economists study studies human behavior, how markets work and how they fail. We seek to understand the dynamics of change at a micro level (e.g. within an industry) and at a macro level (e.g. within and between countries)

The social science of economics has gained increasing prominence since the credit crunch of 2008 with resources, such as money and housing, in critical shortage and seemingly inadequate for a population with unlimited needs and wants. These pressures are evident in and around Southend as the government seeks to cut spending on health and education in an area of population growth and youth unemployment. Our department wants to make students aware of how these economic events may influence their lives.

A Level Economics has never been more popular as a course choice and the increasing presence of economics in the national media and consciousness makes this an ideal time to study the subject. At Cecil Jones we seek to make the study of economics as fascinating, accessible and challenging as possible.

 

Are you curious about the society you live in and the people around you?

Economics asks big questions, such as why countries develop, why inequality persists and what the future of work will be like. It thinks about how to design internet platforms and health systems and policies to tackle climate change. It also studies human behaviour, including co-operation, peer effects and pro-social behaviour.

Do you want to change the world?

Economics is the most powerful social science with economists working in key roles in government departments and at the Bank of England, not to mention international organisations such as the World Bank.

Do you want a well-paid career?

Economics graduates are among the highest paid. Studying economics gives students great analytical skills and trains them to be comfortable with data. Most economics graduates won’t go on to be economists; but they will be hired as data analysts, consultants, financial analysts, policy and strategy advisors, researchers, accountants.

 

Economics is always changing – here is another interesting topic/article we looked at this week

https://www.forbes.com/sites/avivahwittenbergcox/2020/05/31/5-economists-redefining-everything–oh-yes-and-theyre-women/#58c02b5a714a

 

Why choose this subject?

The products and services you use every day are only available because of an increasingly complex system of global markets. Economists seek to understand how households, business and governments interact and make decisions that influence our present and future living standards.

Choose economics if you want to understand the challenging decisions that face modern political and business leaders in their attempts to manage resources more effectively (not necessarily ethically). Economics is widely respected as a challenging subject by universities and employers.

There aren’t many A-Level subjects as dynamic as Economics. The news is full examples of Economics in action such as:

How Economics can help provide answers to the challenges of climate change and environmental damage

The winners and losers from increasing protectionism

The future of work in an era of artificial intelligence

Money makes the world go around. It plays a big part in politics, society, law, geography, and almost everything else in life. Understanding how people, companies, and countries control their money is one of the most valuable skills to any employer.

But, economics is much more than pounds and dollars. It’s a fascinating study of psychology, of why people make the decisions they make, and how resources are spread out around the world. Economics is studied in two main strands:

  • Microeconomics is the study of how individual parties (people, groups, and businesses) use their wealth.
  • Macroeconomics looks at entire economies. The unemployment, inflation, and monetary challenges of cities, countries, and continents.

Combine this course with:          Geography, Sociology, Psychology, languages or Maths.

 Essential if you go on to:             A career in financial services (banking, accountancy, stockbroking), law, politics, journalism, business consultancy, insurance, or professional economist.

 Further information in the link below – please have a look

http://www.discovereconomics.ac.uk/

 

Course Description

A Level Economics

Theme 1: Introduction to markets and market failure

An introduction to economic principles and how they influence the markets for goods and services. We will study how some markets can fail societies and what the government can do to reduce such problems. This theme introduces you to the microeconomic nature of economics. Looking at economic problems and the ways economics think and work.

Theme 2: The UK economy – performance and policies

This unit is based on identifying the UK macroeconomic objectives and how economic performance can be measured. You will then study the policies the government uses to meet these objectives and their impact upon living standards. This unit explores the main instruments of economic policy primarily in a UK context.

Theme 3Business behaviour and the labour market

This theme builds on the content of theme 1. Citizens in developed economies are dependent on the goods and services that businesses provide. You will study how a firm’s objectives, behaviours and profits are influenced by the level of government intervention and market structure in which it operates.

Theme 4: A global perspective

This unit applies theory covered in theme 2 to other developed countries with an additional focus on emerging and developing economies. You will identify causes of poverty and inequality and constraints on economic development and competitiveness. For the first time students will study the financial sector and its significant impact on globalisation.

How will you be assessed?

The A Level will be assessed on 3 x 2 hour exams at the end of year 13.  Each exam consists of a mixture of multiple choice, data response and extended open response questions and are worth 100marks per paper.

Paper 1: Markets and business behavior (Themes 1 and 3) 35%

Paper 2: The national and global economy (Themes 2 and 4) 35%

Paper 3: Microeconomics and macroeconomics (All themes) 30%

Recommended Reading List;

  • 50 Economics Ideas: You Really Need to Know – Edmund Conway
  • Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman
  • GDP: A Brief but Affectionate History, Diane Coyle
  • The idea of Justice, Amartya Sen
  • Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Clas Owen Jones, 2012
  • Leftover Women: The Resurgence of Gender Inequality in China by Leta Hong Fincher
  • Microfinance and Its Discontents: Debt in Bangladesh by Lamia Karim
  • The Two Forms of Production Under Capitalism by Mary Inman
  • Grave New World: (Stephen King) – Former head of Econ at HSBC looks at the fracturing global economy
  • If I Could Tell You Just One Thing…: Most Valuable Advice from Remarkable People: (Richard Reed)
  • Inequality (AB Atkinson) – a superb book on one of the defining economic/political issues of the age
  • Inner Lives of Markets: How People Shape Them—And They Shape Us (Sharman and Fishman)
  • Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioural Economics (Richard Thaler) – Superb biography
  • Poor Economics: Rethinking Ways to Fight Global Poverty (Banerjee & Duflo) – development economics
  • Positive Linking – Networks and Nudges (Paul Ormerod) – good introduction to network economics
  • Rise and Fall of Nations: Ten Rules of Change in the Post-Crisis World (Richir Sharma)

Read here https://www.tutor2u.net/economics/blog/my-top-30-books-for-economics-and-business-reading-in-2017 for further recommended reading title’s from Tutor 2 U’s Geoff Riley.

Further useful reading and websites include:

https://www.tutor2u.net/economics/topics

https://www.theguardian.com/business/economics

https://www.tutor2u.net/economics/blog/my-top-30-books-for-economics-and-business-reading-in-2017

 

You will be provided with the following resource during your studies:

 

Extra Curriculum opportunities:

As a department we thrive on offering aspiring workshops, competitions, school trips and more.

Below is just a few of the wonderful events which create opportunities for our students to develop many skills as well as their academic knowledge in the courses of business and economics. This is excellent experience for UCAS statements or even employment interviews.

 

Here is an example of a trading competition students took part in during Autumn. Students were given the role a stock trader.

 

During lockdown students were fortunate to be invited to attend some outstanding lectures in economics held on behalf of Warwick University.

Students were able to listen to superb thought and discussion on economic topics including Game Theory and behavioural economics. Some of which directly linked to content studied in year 12 and 12 Economics as well as looking at the COVID 19 and how economic theory has influenced policy. Students were lucky to also receive an interesting PowerPoint resource and suggested further reading from today’s topic to explore in their own time.

This was a fantastic opportunity to further widen and apply their knowledge in economics as well as get a taste for studying Economics at university.