Eight more parody songs that actually teach you some economics

April 25th, 2016 by econ-network

Following on from our favourite videos from the Rockonomics student competition, here are some picks from an Advanced Placement course in Economics in the US, where students have worked economics lyrics into popular songs.

Monopoly is the Way to Go

If there’s only one seller of a product and new firms can’t enter the market, competition can’t drive prices down, as explained in this video after some nice black-and-white scene setting. Being a monopoly is nice work if you can get it.

Money quote: “Monopolistic competition, oligopolies / neither of them are efficient allocatively”

Counting Prof

Looking at the same topic from a different angle, this is so well-produced it looks like a proper music video. Read the rest of this entry »

Economics graduates are in the money

April 15th, 2016 by econ-network

Click on the graph to see it full size

Anyone considering an Economics degree will find good news in research announced this week by the Institute for Fiscal Studies. It is a massive study, looking at what 260,000 university graduates in England are earning, ten years after graduating.

The IFS found “substantial” differences in the money people were earning, depending on the subject they took at university. Economists are most likely to be the top earners, by a clear margin. Read the rest of this entry »

Competition and Living Standards: the Moroccan Software Engineer

February 26th, 2016 by econ-network

For this story about the effect of economics in one person’s life, we thank guest author Elena Fernandez Prados for sharing an extract from her new book, Economics through Everyday Stories from around the World. ISBN 978-1523296415

Rachid Benchekroun is a software engineer from Casablanca, Morocco’s largest city. Rachid works for a technology company developing computer games and lives in an elegant villa around the corniche (waterfront promenade), one of Casablanca’s fanciest neighborhoods. But life has not always been easy for Rachid, and at the age of twenty-five, he feels that he has come a long way in life.

Rachid grew up in Casablanca’s suburbs, in a small one-bedroom apartment that he shared with his parents, his three siblings, and two of his cousins from the village. Abdel Karim, Rachid’s father, was a mechanic, while his mother, Fatima, was a homemaker. From an early age, Rachid learned the value of hard work. He attended school in the mornings and helped his father in the garage in the afternoons, oiling engines and pumping tires. At night, Rachid did his school homework diligently under a kerosene lamp. “Study hard, young boy,” his father often reminded him, “for it is the only way that the son of a mechanic from Chefchaouen can become someone in life.” Read the rest of this entry »

Eight parody songs that actually teach you some economics

September 18th, 2015 by econ-network

The Rockonomics competition, run by a group of US universities, gets students to write economics lyrics for popular songs and raps, and to make videos for them.

Some of these are pretty good ways to stick an economic idea in your head. Read on for our eight choices from the last few years of the competition.
Read the rest of this entry »

Double dip recession: time to panic?

April 27th, 2012 by eoghan

Figures this released by the ONS on this week show that the UK has officially entered a recession; the second recession the UK has suffered in three years. David Cameron has said that these figures were very disappointing while Ed Miliband has called them catastrophic. But how catastrophic is a double dip recession for the UK? There are a number of reasons to doubt the media’s, and some politicians, doomsday predictions.
Read the rest of this entry »

The benefits of studying economics

March 21st, 2012 by eoghan

Why Study Economics? is a website that encourages students from all educational backgrounds to study economics as their first degree. It also provides information to teachers and parents.

Where can students study economics? Over 95 departments across the UK offer an Economics degree. Some of these are straight (‘single’) Economics degrees. Normally they are simply called Economics, but sometimes they are more specialist, e.g. Agricultural Economics or Business Economics. Other degrees combine Economics with another subject (‘joint degrees’). The titles of these joint degrees includes: Economics and Management; Economics and Finance; Economics and Philosophy; Economics and Accounting; Economics and Business; Economics and History; and Economics and Politics.

What will economics students do at university? Most economics students will experience a generic first year at university which builds a solid foundation. The most important modules for a first-year economics student are Introductory Microeconomics, Introductory Macroeconomics and Quantitative Methods for Economics (statistics/mathematics). The concepts taught in these three modules will be used throughout an economics undergraduate degree. In their second, and particularly third, year at university, economics students will have a number of optional units. Students will be able to specialise in Development Economics, Managerial Economics, Labour Economics, Monetary Economics and so on. If students are on a joint degree they will have modules in their other subject in all three years, some of which will be compulsory. Students on either single or joint economics degrees may also be able to do an optional module in another subject area such as a modern language.

“Until studying a course like economics not a lot of people are aware of how the world works, including industries, businesses and governments. You realise that it’s very important to be educated in this type of thing even if it gets to the stage where you become annoyed with family and friends for moaning about taxes!”

The workload at university is generally heavier than at A-level. Students can expect around 10 – 15 hours of contact time a week, consisting of a mixture of lectures and tutorials/seminars/workshops. In addition to this, students will be expected to put in a minimum of 20 hours per week of independent study. The number of contact hours will normally fall between years one, two and three but the amount of independent study will rise (at least it should do!).

Why do students enjoy economics? Economics is the perfect combination of numbers and words, problems and essays, calculations and interpretations. It is both an art and a science subject. Students have the opportunity to build models which give insights into the real world, and then to critique these models on the basis of their assumptions. There is rarely a right answer in economics but any argument put forward must be backed up by quantitative evidence. Students ultimately enjoy economics because it allows them to employ and develop analytical and evaluative skills.

“My decision to pursue an Economics degree has been the single most valuable investment I have made to date.  It sharpened my ability to critically assess information, deliver disciplined and well structured arguments and become a more confident team player.”

What do students need to have studied to read economics at university? Read the rest of this entry »