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Have you ever wondered what causes inflation? Have you questioned whether government economic policies to help the economy work? Do you have an interest in markets and how they operate? Or what causes economic crises? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then Economics maybe the subject for you!
Economics is the study of the economy. It explores the choices that individuals, businesses, and nations make in response to limited resources and challenges. You will gain a firm foundation of how markets work and sometimes fail, what governments attempt to do to manage the economy and how National Economies interact with each other in a global setting. You will explore different theories and policies that attempt to meet and explain the challenges and outcomes that are faced.
Economics is taught from the AQA board. At the end of the first year, you will sit the AS exam. In the second year you will sit three further examination papers, each worth a third of the final grade.
A minimum of five GCSEs at grade 4 and above.
A grade 5 in both GCSE English Language and GCSE Maths
You will study two units in the first year and two more units in the second.
1. ‘The Operation of Markets and Market Failure’: This unit gives you an introduction to microeconomics. You will look at different economic models and apply these to current issues. You will look at how supply and demand works, the operation of the price mechanism and what the causes of market failures are. You will evaluate different economic models to examine their strengths and weaknesses when applied to a real-world context.
2. ‘The National Economy in a Global Context’: This unit is an introduction to macroeconomics. You will explore what sits behind macroeconomic performance and how the circular flow of income operates. You will gain an understanding of aggregate demand and supply as well as how macroeconomic objectives around economic growth, inflation, employment, and international competitiveness are achieved. Lastly, you will also see how governments try to implement monetary, fiscal and supply policies to meet these macroeconomic objects.
3. ‘Individuals, Firms, Markets and Market Failure’: This unit explores further how individuals make decisions using traditional theory and behaviour economics. New market structures including the meaning of monopolies and oligopolies are considered. Labour markets are also studied, including the impact of trade unions, dominant employers and discrimination on wage rates and levels of employment. The distribution of income & wealth and market failure and government intervention are further developed including the role of privatisation, nationalism, and competition policy.
4. ‘The National and International Economy’: This last unit further develops an understanding of the UK economy and government policies as well as developments in the world economy. You will look at how economic performance is measured and understood, including the key indicators that inform on economic performance, and explore different facets of economic performance and policy.
Learners studying Economics often find that this goes well with Business and Politics due to the overlap of economic and political themes. Another good combination is Economics, Politics and Philosophy Religion and Ethics to mirror a PPE programme that is offered at top universities. Economics is also a natural subject to take alongside mathematics, history, and psychology.
Studying Economics at A Level naturally gives you a firm understanding to be able to study Economics Degrees at university and dependent on your other choices may allow you to gain an area of specialism; for example, if you wish to study Economic History, or Global Finance, or Business Law. Studying Economics also gives you opportunities for a variety of different careers from Policy Analysists to careers in finance or marketing and sales.
You will have opportunities to learn outside the classroom. Previously we have held a political husting in the Sixth Form with candidates standing in the general election and learners have been able to grill them on their party’s policies. We also have regular talks from individuals and groups from the world of business and finance. Learners studying this subject also get the opportunity to join our Business Academy where they get their own opportunity to start a real business and develop a business plan. This has strong similarities with the concepts studied in Business.