Introductory Microeconomics

The details
Colchester Campus
Postgraduate: Level 7
Thursday 05 October 2023
Friday 15 December 2023
14 September 2023


Requisites for this module



Key module for

MSC L11912 Behavioural and Experimental Economics,
MSC L119EB Behavioural and Experimental Economics,
MA L10012 Economics,
MA L100EB Economics,
MA L11312 Financial Economics,
MA L16112 International Economics,
MA L10512 Management Economics,
MA L16412 International Development,
MA L14312 Economics with Public Policy

Module description

Economics is the social science that deals with the allocation of limited resources to satisfy unlimited human wants. Broadly speaking, economics is composed of two branches, microeconomics and macroeconomics. Microeconomics studies the economic behaviour of individual economic decision makers such as consumers, workers, firms, or managers. It also analyses the interaction and behaviour of groups of these individuals such as households, industries, markets, labour unions, and trade associations.

We will be looking at decision-making and markets when all agents have perfect information about goods and prices and individual agents cannot affect prices through their own actions. We will begin with an overview of the equilibrium behaviour of competative markets and the main tools used by economists to analyse such markets: the demand curve, the supply curve and the notion of market equilibrium. The rest of the term will be spent on understanding how market demand and supply curves come about. We build up a model of consumer preferences and consumer choice, which can be used to derive a market demand curve. Before addressing issues of market supply, we turn briefly to the study of intertemporal choice and behaviour under uncertainty by consumers and other economic agents. We then move on to the theory of production and firm behaviour to derive a market supply curve. We can then turn to the concept of market equilibrium with our more detailed understanding of demand and supply in order to derive properties of market behaviour. This type of analysis is called "partial equilibrium" because it characterises behaviour in a single market.

Module aims

The aim of this module is:

  • To help you master a small set of very powerful analytical tools used for Microeconomic analysis: constrained optimisation analysis, equilibrium analysis, and comparative statics analysis, by presenting their graphical, algebraic and logical mechanics as well as by illustrating their use in many different contexts throughout the module.

Module learning outcomes

Transferable Skills:

The module provides students with the following employability skills.

  • Academic skills (literacy, numeracy, ICT Skills) are enhanced through essay writing, mathematical problem solving and the use of ICT equipment.

  • Communication skills are enhanced through various forms of assessment and class participation.

  • Personal development planning (target setting and time management) is also promoted.

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

The module will be delivered via:

  • 2 hours of lectures per week, weeks 2-11
  • 2 hours of classes per week, weeks 3-11, 30.


The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   Assignment    50% 
Coursework   Term paper    50% 
Exam  Main exam: In-Person, Open Book, 120 minutes during Summer (Main Period) 
Exam  Reassessment Main exam: In-Person, Open Book, 120 minutes during September (Reassessment Period) 

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Whichever is the Greater: EITHER 50 per cent Coursework Mark, 50 per cent Exam Mark OR 100 per cent Exam Mark IF Coursework Mark is a pass or better


Whichever is the Greater: EITHER 50 per cent Coursework Mark, 50 per cent Exam Mark OR 100 per cent Exam Mark IF Coursework Mark is a pass or better

Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Albin Erlanson, email:
Lectures & Classes: Dr Albin Erlanson
For further information, send an email message to



External examiner

Dr Domenico Moro
university of Birmingham
Available via Moodle
Of 53 hours, 53 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information

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