David A. Conners
B CUSP 201
Analysis of the aggregate economy: national income, inflation, business fluctuations, unemployment, monetary system, federal budget, international trade and finance. Prerequisite: B CUSP 200; recommended: B CUSP 123. Offered: AWSp.
Macroeconomics is the study of the overall economy of a particular country (normally the United States). It considers such domestic topics as understanding Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and its measurement (including the important roles of consumer spending, business spending, government spending, and exports & imports); business cycles (including recessions and depressions); inflation; unemployment; and fiscal & monetary policies. It also considers the increasingly important role of international trade.
Student learning goals
The instructor’s primary goals are for all students to understand the course material, and to receive the highest possible course grade for their efforts. Toward that end, students should strive to understand thoroughly the subject matter by successfully applying the core theories, concepts, equations, and graphs to numerous real-world scenarios in the form of current published newspaper articles and on the Internet. Successful learning will require active participation, regular attendance, and a willingness to work hard to understand the subject matter. The instructor is willing to work with each and every student to achieve success.
General method of instruction
The instructor will lead class discussions of the course material – with an emphasis on understanding important equations and how to draw relevant graphs. Additionally, each student will be creating and updating their own EXCEL worksheets on a weekly basis. The instructor will also guide students’ efforts to apply the subject matter to various real-world scenarios of their choosing. As needed, the instructor is willing to work one-on-one with each student to maximize understanding.
This course will require the use of intermediate algebra, the graphing of functions, and the interpretation of such graphs. Prior completion of B CUSP 123 or a similar course is thereby strongly recommended.
Additionally, each student should review and/or "brush-up" on creating and using EXCEL worksheets [in so-called "Landscape" (i.e., horizontal viewing) mode], since we will be employing weekly EXCEL sheets that each student will be creating and updating.
Lastly, it is assumed that students enrolling in B CUSP 201 will have previously passed B CUSP 200 (Introduction to Microeconomic) or its equivalent.
Class assignments and grading
Weekly EXCEL worksheets that each student will create and turn in. Collectively, the weekly assignments will count for a minimum of 60% of your course grade. A midterm exam may also be offered, plus a final exam. Lastly, each student will also turn in a short Macro analysis of a country besides the U.S.A. Improvement made throughout the quarter, your extra efforts and revisions, and your meaningful participation in class discussions – collectively these “intangibles” will count for at least 10% of your course grade. The final exam will account for the remainder.
Higher grades will be awarded to those written applications and test answers that clearly demonstrate the student’s comprehension of the relevant core material. Time spent on the applications should be regarded as excellent preparation for the final exam.