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BS1547 Introduction to Economics

BS1547 Introduction to Economics
1. The following essay question should be answered in 1000 words or less. If you write more than 1000 words only the first 1000 will be marked.
2. Please include any diagrams, tables, figures or equations you think appropriate. These will not contribute to the word limit — nor will references or footnotes.
3. Students are expected to use the lecture handouts, and any text of their choice to help them answer the question. However, additional reading is also required.
4. Essays must be submitted by 4pm on Tuesday 17th March. Late returns will not be marked, and a mark of 0% will be given.
5. The essay must be submitted online via Learning Central in the “Assessment/Assignment” section.
6. Full instructions of how to upload your assignment have been posted in the “Assessment/Assignment” section on Learning Central.
7. All diagrams and supporting material must be included in a single computer file.
8. If you have difficulty drawing diagrams in Microsoft Word or other packages, photographing/scanning of hand drawn graphs and subsequent insertion as a picture file
is perfectly acceptable
9. This coursework is worth 10% of your total module assessment.
1. Discuss whether GDP per capita is a good measure of the standard of living. Using data for a developed and developing country of your choice, estimate how long it
would take for the standard of living to double in each country. Evaluate whether there has been convergence or divergence in the standard of living between the
countries. (50%)
2. The new Greek government has recently rejected an extension to the country’s €240bn bailout. This has renewed talks of Greece leaving the Euro (so called Grexit).
This would put pressure on the currency union in Europe. Discuss the pros and cons of a currency union and whether Europe is an optimal currency area. . (50%)
The percentages above associated with the different parts of the question provide a guide as to how you should structure your answer in terms of sections.
Hints and Tips
Ensure your answer references the module material throughout the answer. A careful re-reading of the material will be needed to ensure you approach these question
fully. Question (2) will require reading outside the module material.
Use appropriate economic language and concepts.
Put in roughly the amount of work and words to each section, that the percentages associated with (1) and (2) suggest.
Don’t write everything you know about the subject, answer the question only. I want you to write in a concise way, so avoid flowery language and an excess of
‘marketing speak’.
For this coursework you don’t need to worry about formal referencing formats, but all source material should be acknowledged in the text and linked to in footnotes or
You can download the data you need for question (1) from
i) Click the World Development Indicators database.
ii) Select the two countries you are interested in.
iii) Click SERIES and select the GDP series you want to use.
iv) Click TIME and “Select all”.
v) Download the data using the DOWNLOAD button at the top right of the page.
Please remember to write which series you are using as part of your answer to the question.
Answer question (2) from an economic point of view, not a political one.

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