Economics

Ever wondered why decisions are made which affect you and the country you live in? Think you have the answers and want a platform to voice them? If the answer is yes, then the study of economics is for you as it analyses the tensions and choices of both everyday and more unusual decisions.

Whilst the subject uses techniques that incorporate a variety of teaching and learning styles, discussion and research, there is also an emphasis on developing a student's ability to think logically and critically. It is essential for students to have a numerical capability to handle data and present information graphically. Indeed many students choose to study this subject alongside A level Mathematics.

We follow the OCR Specification with assessment taking place in units through Y12 & Y13. These are divided into the study of micro-economics and macro-economics.

The aim of the specification:

  • provide a coherent combination of microeconomic and macroeconomic content, drawing on local, national and international contexts;
  • foster an appreciation of economic concepts and theories in a range of contexts and their value and limitations in explaining real-world phenomena
  • develop an understanding of economic concepts and theories through a critical consideration of current economic issues, problems and institutions that affect everyday life;
  • select, interpret and use appropriate data from a range of sources;
  • analyse, explain and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the market economy and the role of government within it;
  • develop a critical approach to economic models and methods of enquiry;
  • study economic choices and markets;
  • study the national and international economy.

The following units are studied at AS level:

Unit 1 - Markets in Action - 50% of AS level, 25% of A-level

  • What is meant by ‘the economic problem'?
  • How can production possibility curves be used to show scarcity, choice and opportunity cost?
  • What is a competitive market?
  • How can a firm use demand and supply diagrams to assess the influence of price?
  • How much impact does a change in price have on the demand of a good?
  • What is meant by ‘market failure'?
  • What is an externality?
  • What government policies are used to correct market failure?

Unit 2 - The National and International Economy - 50% of AS level, 25% of A-level

  • What is aggregate demand?
  • What influences aggregate demand?
  • What is aggregate supply?
  • What are the government macroeconomic objectives?
  • What are the causes and consequences of unemployment and inflation?
  • What policies are used that affect inflation, unemployment and balance of payments?
  • How can an economy benefit from international trade?
  • How can protectionism be used by an economy?

Both units are externally assessed at the end of Year 12

The following units are studied at A2 level:

 

Unit 3 - Transport Economies - 25% of A-level

  • What are the modes of transport?
  • What are the trends of modes of transport in the UK and in the EU?
  • What are the costs a firm in the transport market might incur?
  • How can these costs be shown on a diagram in order to demonstrate economies of scale?
  • How can the theory of market structures be applied to the transport market?
  • What negative externalities are associated with the transport market?
  • What policies may be used to correct market failure in the transport market?
  • What policies are used internationally to reduce congestion?
  • What is cost-benefit analysis? How can it be used to allocate resources?

Unit 4 - The Global Economy - 25% of A-level

  • What is the macroeconomic performance of the UK?
  • What are the causes and consequences of the macroeconomic performance?
  • Why do economies benefit from specialisation?
  • What is economic integration? And the consequences of integration?
  • What is the difference between growth and development?
  • What policies are used to promote development?
  • How can sustainability be measured?
  • What are the characteristics of globalisation?
  • What is the role of multinational firms?
  • What is the role and impact of international financial institutions?

Both units are assessed externally at the end of Year 13