The Economist Articles — Week of 19 Mar 2016

Every week I read through The Economist to pick out articles that may be useful for teaching in the classroom. I’ll be sharing some of my notes and the discussion prompts I’ve come up with in these weekly posts. For students, they can serve as guide-rails for your reading. For teachers, I hope they will be helpful for your teaching.

1. Measuring inflation — How much is that doggy?

Consumer Price Index: “At the moment, calculating America’s consumer-price index (CPI) involves sending people into shops to note down prices. The basket is based on a survey of consumers which is updated only every three years or so.” Explain briefly how the CPI is computed.

2014 A level H2 Economics Review: Microeconomics Qn 2

In 2012 the UK had a very poor harvests for grain and potatoes, which are major ingredients of many of the foods of UK consumers and also Grainsprovide feed for much of Britain’s livestock. At the same time, there was a decline in real incomes of many UK citizens, especially those on low incomes.

Using economic analysis, discuss the impact these events are likely to have had on UK consumers and farmers. [25]

You can always count on A level to come up with at least one Demand and Supply question every year. Despite the concepts being easy to grasp, many tutors (including mine) persuade their students to avoid attempting such questions during exams. The wide array of question types and unfamiliar goods being tested make essays from this topic challenging. However, if you are familiar with the goods or services tested and are able to apply the concepts well, there is no reason to avoid such questions. Here are some steps to help you approach demand and supply questions:

Learning Economics From Diagrams: Lesson 3 – The Demand Curve

This week we starting looking at consumer theory. The A-level syllabus condenses this part of the course and jumps straight into the demand function without looking at how it is being derived. I might do a bonus video in the future to explain the derivation of the demand curve but for now this should suffice.

This video illustrates key concepts such as the Demand function, Substitution and Income effects and shifts in the Demand curve.

I hope you all will find this video helpful and till next time, dream economics.