The severe economic downturn of 2008, the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union single market which happened at the beginning of 2021 and the coronavirus pandemic which began in 2020 have all had a major influence on the world economy and make this a fascinating time to be studying Economics. Pupils will have the opportunity to learn about and discuss many topical issues, such as unemployment, changes in incomes, the value of the pound, the problems of debt at a country level and the possible policy responses.
Mr M Patterson - A Level and GCSE
Mr N Irwin - GCSE
At GCSE pupils will learn to:
• actively engage in studying economics to develop as effective and independent learners and reflective thinkers with enquiring minds;
• use an enquiring, critical approach to distinguish between fact and opinion, build arguments and make informed judgements;
• apply their knowledge, understanding and skills to contemporary issues in a range of local, national and global contexts;
• understand various stakeholders’ perspectives on economic activity;
• explore the moral issues that arise from the environmental impact of economic activity and economic development;
• recognise that their economic knowledge and skills help them to understand current events and provide a basis for their role as consumers, producers and citizens, and for further study of economics.
The AS and A level in Economics encourages learners to:
· develop an interest in and enthusiasm for the subject
· appreciate the contribution of economics to the understanding of the wider economic and social environment
· develop an understanding of a range of concepts and an ability to use those concepts in a variety of different contexts
· use an enquiring, critical and thoughtful approach to the study of economics and develop an ability to think as an economist
· understand that economic behaviour can be studied from a range of perspectives
· develop analytical and quantitative skills, together with qualities and attitudes which will equip them for the challenges, opportunities and responsibilities of adult and working life.
Every day we make choices about the goods and services we buy. Society faces similar choices: the wants of its members are unlimited, but the resources available to satisfy those wants are limited. This module examines how prices are used to signal to producers what they should produce and how sometimes this provides poor outcomes.
At present many countries are experiencing falling or static living standards and high unemployment. In this section students examine economic problems such as unemployment or rapidly rising prices and consider different policy responses e.g. changes to interest rates and taxation.
In some industries, such as farming, there are many small firms while in others, such as water supply in Northern Ireland, there is only one. In this module students consider why this is so and why, in some industries, the government would wish to encourage competition. Pupils also examine the impact of various influences on firms, such as globalisation, the environment and the internet.
In this section students undertake a more detailed exploration of government objectives relating to economic growth, inflation, unemployment and balance of payments, introduced at AS level.
We live in a world of increasing specialisation and interdependence. Students will have the chance to explore the costs and benefits arising from this process and to understand the obstacles to and solutions for sustainable economic development among less economically developed countries.