Grand View College

Syllabus
Economics 102 — Principles of Microeconomics
Fall 2009
January 4, 2010
Department and Course: ECON 102
Course Title: Principles of Microeconomics
Academic Term: Spring 2010, Session III
Class Times: Monday and Wednesday, 8:10p – 10:15p
Instructor: Tom Schenk
Telephone Number: 515-481-0774
Email: tomschenkjr@gmail.com
Academic Major Goals and Objectives
1. Demostrate abilities to conduct research to access relevant information and then communicate the
results of the research to others in written and oral format.
2. Demonstrate abilities to work in a team environment, as a leader and as a follower, to generate solutions
to specific situations.
3. Develop skills in analyzing business situations and recommend courses of action that show a thorough
understanding of the internal and external envorments.
Instructional Objectives
∙ Learning as Knowledge
1. Identify the definition(s) of economics and microeconomics.
2. Identify the basic principles of the law of supply, law of demand, and market equilibrium.
3. Identify and understand the basic types of market structures and economic properties of each
structure.
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4. Understand the economy as a system.
∙ Learning as Process or Behavior
1. Relate political economy systems to the U.S. and other economies.
2. Study how the market system allocates products and services to consumers.
3. Apply economic theory in real-world applications
4. Learn how policy affects all the elements of the economy.
∙ Learning as Attitude
1. Appreciate the basic underlying dilemma of economics.
2. Develop an awareness of how economics impacts their daily lives.
3. Appreciate the complex interactions in an economy.
Content Outline
∙ Elements of economics: political economy, science, and moral philosophy
∙ Economic institutions
∙ Trade-offs (opportunity cost) and the formation of an economy
∙ Supply and Demand: individual choice to market equilibrium
∙ Elasticity: the responsiveness of supply and demand
∙ Applications: Taxation and market efficiency
∙ Constructing supply and demand: individual choice and industrial production costs
∙ Market structures: perfect competition, monopoly, and monopolistic competition
∙ A Beautiful Mind: game theory
Instructional Procedures
Instructional procedures for this course will include lectures, class discussions, company (group) exercises,
case analysis, and individual assignments. Students will successfully pass the class if they aforementioned
activities.
Instructional Resources
1. Textbook: Economics by David Colander, 7th Edition, McGraw-Hill, Irwin: 2006 ISBN: 0-07-340286-9
2. Periodicals: The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, The Des Moines Register, New York Times
3. Blogs: See Greg Mankiw, Marginal Revolution, Brad DeLong, EconLog, Economists View, Market
Design
4. Other course materials will be distributed via the course website: http://www.tomschenkjr.net.
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Assessment of Academic Achievement
The final grade will be determined through the formula:
n = 0.2 ⋅ 1
1
+ 0.2 ⋅ 1
2
+ 0.3 ⋅ 1 + 0.2 ⋅
¯
¹+ 0.07 ⋅ 1 + 0.03 ⋅ C
where 1
1
is exam 1, 1
2
is exam 2, 1 is the final,
¯
¹ is the average of homework problems, 1 is participation,
and C is company scores. Each component is described in detail below.
Exams: Two exams will be administered throughout the semester. The exams will consist of a multiple
choice, argument, and long problems. Multiple choice questions will test basic economic vocabulary and
elementary relationships. Argument questions will ask the student to reply to a normative statement using
economic reasoning taught in class. I may use quotes from recent periodicals and/or blog posts. Finally,
long problems will be multi-part and will test whether the student can work through an economic model.
Each exam will implicitly be cumulative insofar as the principles of economics are tightly intertwined, but
the emphasis will be on the contemporary lesson.
Final : The final will explicitly be cumulative, although the emphasis will be slightly more on the latter
third of the class. The format will be similar to exams: multiple choice, essay, and long problems. The test
is worth slightly more and, thus, will be slightly longer than exams.
Assignments: Assignments will be given throughout the semester through the course website. Home-
work will (usually) be distributed on Tuesday and will be due at the beginning of the following Tuesday.
Assignments are not meant to be taxing, but to help the student prepare for exams and the final. Most
assignments will involve a question that will resemble an exams long problem.
Participation: Students are expected to regularly participate in classes and, if not in class, in out-of-class
communication with the professor. Lack of participation and irregular attendance will be especially noticed
if the student is struggling in class. The professor will warmly reward struggling students who seek help
through email and questions.
Company Score: Students will be randomly assigned to companies of 3 to 4 individuals, depending on the
final class size. Companies will accumulate points throughout the semester based on exams, assignments,
participation, and any other metric the professor feels is appropriate. These activities are meant to be fun
and introspective, while being educational. At the end of the semester, points will be assigned as the inverse
of company rank multiplied by 100, e.g., first place: (1/1)*100 = 100, second: ()*100 = 50, etc. The company
score is especially helpful toward boarderline students.
Final Course Grade
¹ = 90 − 100
1 = 80 − 99.9
C = 70 − 79.9
1 = 60 − 69.9
1 < 60
Missed Exams and Assignments
Assignments will be due at the beginning of class every Tuesday and tests will be given on the days denoted
below. Late assignments will be penalized 40 percent. Students will be allowed to make up exams ONLY
when the professor received prior notification for the inability to complete the exams. In extreme cases where
prior notification is impossible, the student must provide written documentationnot by the studentexplaining
the absence. Students who miss a test for an unexcused absence will receive a zero.
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Attendance
Students will be expected to attend every class. Irregular attendance will be reflected in participation and
company exercise scores.
Writing and Critical Thinking
Modern economics is intensely mathematics, but few people possess the training to grasp a mathematical
model. As such, economics is typically communicated in written periodicals so it is no coincidence that well-
known economists tend to be good writers–e.g., Paul Krugman, Herny James, John Gailbraith, and Milton
Friedman. Employers often lament and seek those with sharp writing ability. Although writing ability is
hard to notice during an application procedure, employers will often quickly promote those who effectively
communicate.
This class will challenge student to reply to assertions during an examination. Students will need to
synthesize economic theory and writing to convince the professor the original argument was either fallacious
or correct. This experience will be different from writing an essay or research paper. Argument portions of
the exam will give the student little room to wonder or add fluff.
Tentative Reading and Schedule
The most up–to–date reading schedule will be available at the course website www.tomschenkjr.net.
Economics is truly an interdisciplinary subject involving political theory, moral philosophy, mathematics,
and elements of all social sciences. This course will be based around the cold logical and mathematical
aspects often satirized in TV and movies. However, this class will also overtly emphasis applications of
economic theory and briefly highlight the moral philosophy and political philosophy elements.
Readings are mandatory and should be completed prior to the beginning of class, with the exception
of the first week. Suggested readings are not mandatory, but will help the student understand the manda-
tory content if needed. The suggested readings will often re-explain the material from a slightly different
perspective, much like the function of this sentence to the former sentence. Lastly, voluntary readings are
tangential to the topicinteresting, but not necessary knowledge for the class. These readings will delve into
political theory, philosophy, and other classical writings that will add to the students comprehensive knowl-
edge. Students will not be tested over the material and absolutely should complete other assignments first.
I hope this syllabus will be a resource for the student after the class has been completed.
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GRAND VIEW COLLEGE
INSTITUTIONAL SYLLABUS STATEMENTS
Mission Statement
Grand View College engages, equips, and empowers students to fulfill their ambitions and to serve society.
Believing that each person possesses natural strengths and developing abilities which can lead to a full and
satisfying life, Grand View College admits and educates students who represent a wide range of ages, achieve-
ments, and expectations. Committed to the development of the whole personmind, body, and spiritand to
preparing students for responsible citizenship in their communities and in a diverse and changing world,
Grand View:
∙ Believes that learning is a collaborative process in which respectful interaction is the norm;
∙ Offers quality programs which expect intellectual growth of students;
∙ Integrates liberal arts education with career preparation in an urban learning environment; and
∙ Affirms Christian faith and ethics as a vision for life, a vision that respects the diversity and dignity
of all people and the pursuit of lifelong learning.
Building on its Danish Lutheran heritage, Grand View is a School for Life.
Academic Honesty
Grand View College is dedicated to the development of the whole person and is committed to truth, excel-
lence, and ethical values. Personal integrity and academic honesty in all aspects of the College experience
are the responsibility of each faculty member, staff member, and student.
A student has an obligation to do work that is his or her own and reflects his or her learning and quest
for academic knowledge. Dishonesty and cheating are not acceptable behaviors. Examples include helping
others during exams, writing papers for others, falsifying data/records, copying other students work, taking
work directly from the Internet or any printed source claiming it as ones own, and downloading/purchasing
papers on-line. Students who cheat, could risk severe penalties, which may include failure of the assignment,
failure of the course, or expulsion from the College.
Accelerated Courses
Grand View offers courses in an eight week or alternative delivery format. These offerings are designed
primarily for students enrolled in the College of Adult and Professional Learning (CPAL). They cover the
same subject content and require the same or comparable assignments that are associated with a traditional
fourteen week course. Students who have successfully completed previous baccalaureate level course work,
are well organized, are able to allocate adequate time for out-of-the-classroom study and preparation, and
are highly disciplined may find this delivery format appealing.
Accommodation
Grand View College prohibits unlawful discrimination and encourages full participation by all students within
the college community. When a student requires any instructional or other accommodation to optimize
participation and/or performance in a course, it is the responsibility of the student to contact both the
instructor and the Director of Academic Enrichment and apply for any requested accommodation. The
Director of Academic Enrichment and Disability Services is Dr. Kris Owens and she can be reached at
515/263-2971.
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Class Attendance
The Federal Government requires that students receiving financial aid attend classes. Students who are
identified by the instructor as not attending classes, will be reported to the Registrars Office. Students who
fail to return to class may lose all or a portion of their financial aid. Students who never attend a class will
be administratively dropped.
Classroom Conduct
Grand View College expects students to conduct themselves as mature members of the College community
respecting the rights of others. Behavior that threatens the safety of others or which interrupts the learning
and teaching process is not tolerated. When students engage in behavior which threatens their own or the
safety of others and/or interferes with classroom learning and teaching, the professor has the authority to
ask students to leave the classroom. Readmission to the classroom is dependant upon the approval of the
instructor. The instructor may also require a student to meet with the Provost before returning to class.
secton*Code of Integrity As a member of the Grand View College community, and in accordance with
the mission of the College and its Lutheran identity, I agree to appreciate and respect the dignity and worth
of each individual. I will honor and promote a community of open interaction, personal integrity, active and
intellectual engagement, and academic honesty with students, faculty, and staff.
College E-Mail Account
E-Mail is the preferred source of communication within the Grand View community. It is essential that all
students check their Grand View College e-mail account or set their account to forward to a preferred e-mail
address.
Students may set up an e-mail auto forward from the myGVC web site. Click on the Manage and Update
Personal Information link and then select set myGVC Mail Forwarding Address under the Links for You
section.
Information outlining proper use of e-mail and computer resources can be found on the myGVC web site.
Click on Campus Life and then Technology Resources.
The Electronic Portfolio
All students who have taken INTS 101, New Student Seminar, are required to maintain an Electronic
Portfolio that documents their success at Grand View College. At various times during their years at Grand
View, these students are required to update their portfolio and to reflect upon the growth in knowledge and
skills. This on-going reflection culminates in INTS 470, Knowledge in Social Context, where students review
the material they have assembled and consider their college experience in its entirety.
Appeal of Final Course Grade or Other Academic Disciplinary Ac-
tion
Students who wish to appeal a final course grade or other academic disciplinary action of an instructor must
complete and file an Academic Appeal with the Provost within fourteen calendar days after the end of the
academic term in which the issue of disagreement occurred.
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