Introduction to Economics

The details
Essex Pathways
Colchester Campus
Full Year
Foundation/Year Zero: Level 3
Thursday 03 October 2019
Friday 26 June 2020
09 August 2019


Requisites for this module



Key module for

BSC N401 Accounting (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN43 Accounting and Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN42 Accounting and Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N4L1 Accounting with Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BBA N104 Business Administration (Including Foundation Year),
BBA N104CO Business Administration (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N201 Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA L102 Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L103 Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC LG18 Economics and Mathematics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L1G8 Economics with Mathematics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N301 Finance (Including Foundation Year),
BSC GN18 Finance and Mathematics (Including Foundation Year),
BA L118 Financial Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L117 Financial Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BA LV18 History and Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N124 International Business and Entrepreneurship (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N124CO International Business and Entrepreneurship (Including Foundation Year),
BA L160 International Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L161 International Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BA L190 Management Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC L191 Management Economics (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N505 Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N505CO Marketing (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N835 Tourism Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N835CO Tourism Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N347 Finance and Management (Including Foundation Year)

Module description

This module is designed to introduce and build an understanding of economics at the foundation level. The module covers basic but essential elements in microeconomics and macroeconomics. There is no assumption of any prior knowledge of economics or mathematics. Microeconomics includes supply and demand, consumer and producer problems, and the market structure. On the other hand, macroeconomics includes aggregate economy, short-run economics fluctuations, macroeconomic policies and the open economy.

Module aims

The aims of the Economics module are to:

- Introduce students to the main economic principles, theories and concepts at foundation level

- Introduce students to the main conclusions derived from economic analysis and develop students’ understanding of economic implications

- Enable students to develop analytical skills using simple mathematics techniques and economic diagrams.

Module learning outcomes

By the end of this module a student will be expected to be able to:

1. Define and discuss the main economic principles, theories and concepts at foundation level

2. Use relevant economic diagrams to support arguments or complement with the analysis

3. Solve economic questions mathematically and interpret the results

4. Apply and use the main economic models to explain case studies and real life situations

Module information


The syllabus covers the following topics:

Autumn Term (Microeconomics)
1. Introduction: What Is Economics? First Principles; Economic Models; Using Models.
2. Supply and Demand: Construction of Demand and Supply Curves; Market Equilibrium; Price and Quantity Controls; Elasticity.
3. The Consumer: Preference; Budgets and Optimal Consumption; Indifference Curve; Consumer Surplus; Making Decisions;
4. The Producer: Inputs and Costs; Production Function; Perfect competition and the Supply Curve; Profit Maximisation; Competitive Market Equilibrium in the Short and Long Run.
5. Market Structure: Non-Perfect Competition, Monopoly; Monopoly Profit Maximization; Regulation of Monopoly; Monopolistic Competition; Oligopoly.
6. Externalities: Production, Consumption and Externalities. The Economics of Pollution; Policies towards Pollution.

Spring Term (Macroeconomics)
1. Macroeconomics: Circular Flow of Income; National income, Expenditure and Output.
2. Short Run Economic Fluctuations: Income and Expenditure; the Multipliers; Aggregate Supply and Aggregate Demand (AS-AD) Model.
3. Unemployment and Inflation: the Phillips Curve; Unemployment and Business Cycle; Wage and Price Adjustment; Inflation, Disinflation and Deflation.
4. Fiscal Policy: the Budget Balance; Fiscal Policy and the Multiplier; Long-run Implications of Fiscal policy.
5. Monetary Policy: Money and Banking; Determining the Money Supply; The Demand for Money; Money and Interest Rate; Monetary Policy and Aggregate Demand; Money, Output and Prices in the Long-run
6. The Open-Economy Macroeconomics, Capital Flows and Balance of Payments; The role of Exchange Rate; Exchange Rate Policy.

Formative assessment
Every student is expected to take a diagnostic test in economics in week 2. This will enable the Module Leader to assess each student's background in economics.

In week 6 every student is also expected to take a mock test in economics. With the guidance from the tutor, students will have an opportunity to clearly understand the marking criteria and assess their own work. This is part of students' self-evaluation mechanism and a way for the tutor to identify if extra support is required.

Summative assessment
One in-class test in week 9 (30%)
One individual 1,000 word essay (30%)
One in-class test in week 23 (30%).
Participation (10%) – Completing weekly quizzes in Moodle outside class time.
3:00 hour exam during Summer Examination period.

Reassessment strategy

Failed Exam - Resit the exam which is re-aggregated with existing coursework mark to create a new module aggregate.
Failed Coursework - Resubmit a piece of coursework which is re-aggregated with existing exam mark to create a new module aggregate. The reassessment task will replace the coursework component and will enable the relevant learning outcomes to be met.
Failed Exam and Coursework - Resit the exam and resubmit one piece of coursework to be aggregated to create a new module aggregate.

Learning and teaching methods

The module will run for a period of 22 weeks. Students are expected to attend four hours of teaching per week

Each week's instruction consists of a 2-hour lecture and a 2-hour class.

Lecture: The two-hour lecture will explain the topics covered in the syllabus and will identify the key concepts and points for discussion.

Class: The two-hour class aims to promote interaction among students, familiarise them with economic terminology and also identify any problems at individual level. It also aims to provide the opportunity for students to work in pairs or as a group to discuss on economic problems and apply economic theories to real life examples.

Learning support Summarised lecture material will be presented using PowerPoint and will be posted on Moodle on a weekly basis. These lecture notes will include chapter references of the required textbook. Class exercises will be published to students in advanced to reinforce the material covered in lectures. Students will also be given exam type questions/case studies to work on during the classes and encouraged to work in groups.

Any queries that might arise during the classes will be addressed directly with the students. Students will be encouraged to discuss and apply problem-solving skills on relevant economic topics. Students are encouraged to see the Module Leader and/or the tutor during the weekly academic support hours to discuss practical ways of making an improvement in learning Economics.

For further support, some drop-in sessions will be provided by Peer-Assisted Learning (PAL) mentors. Students can find all of this information on Moodle.


  • Krugman, Paul R.; Wells, Robin. (c2013) Economics, New York, NY: Worth Publishers.
  • Krugman, Paul R.; Wells, Robin. (2018) Economics, New York: Worth Publishers.

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 Weighting
Coursework   Participation    10% 
Coursework   IA106 Assignment 1     30% 
Written Exam  IA106 In class test 1     30% 
Written Exam  IA106 In class test 2    30% 
Exam  1440 minutes during Summer (Main Period) (Main) 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
50% 50%


Coursework Exam
50% 50%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Anyarath Kitwiwattanachai, email: akitwi@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Anyarath Kitwiwattanachai, Fowad Murtaza
Helen Hearn (hhearn@essex.ac.uk or 01206 872842)



External examiner

No external examiner information available for this module.
Available via Moodle
Of 680 hours, 386 (56.8%) hours available to students:
294 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information
Essex Pathways

Disclaimer: The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its Module Directory is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to programmes, modules, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to modules may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery or assessment of modules and other services, to discontinue modules and other services and to merge or combine modules. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications and module directory.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.