Mr. Scott Meikle, Room 624
Website: (702) 799 – 7870 ext. 3624 http://www.atech.org/faculty/meikle/index.html
AP Economics is a college-level course that focuses on the decision making of individuals, businesses, and the government. Students will study a variety of economic theories and analyze their practical application in the real world.
This yearlong course will cover both microeconomics and macroeconomics. Microeconomics focuses on the supply and demand for products, the labor markets, and the role competition plays in a free market system. Macroeconomics focuses on the economy as a whole, including economic measures, economic growth, fiscal policy, monetary policy, and international economics. Students are expected to take both AP exams in May.
This class will prepare you for college and potentially allow you to earn 6 university credits upon passing both AP exams. Extensive math skills are not required; however, the ability to analyze graphs and charts is essential.
The purpose of the AP course in microeconomics is to give students a thorough understanding of the principles of economics that apply to the functions of individual decision makers, both consumers and producers, within the economic system. It places primary emphasis on the nature and functions of product markets and includes the study of factor markets and of the role of government in promoting greater efficiency and equity in the economy.
The purpose of the AP course in macroeconomics is to give students a thorough understanding of the principles of economics that apply to an economic system as a whole. The course places particular emphasis on the study of national income and price-level determination, and also develops students’ familiarity with economic performance measures, the financial sector, stabilization policies, economic growth, and international economics. There is no single approach that an AP Macroeconomics course is expected to follow. Whatever the approach, however, AP teachers are advised to take into account certain topics generally covered in college courses.
The order of the syllabus is to be taught at the discretion of the teacher.
Mankiw, N. Gregory. Principles of Economics. 6 th
ed. South-Western/Cengage Learning,
Morton, John. Advanced Placement Economics, Microeconomics: Student Activities. 3 rd ed. National Council on Economic Education, 2003.
Items, such as political and historical documents, writings, documentaries, bibliographies, etc., will also be used throughout the year. These will be supplied by the instructor, or directions will be given so the students can obtain such records.
College-ruled notebook paper
Pens (Black or Blue ink only) and #2 Pencils
(Chapters 1, 2, 3: Mankiw)
Scarcity, the economizing problem
Tradeoffs and Opportunity Cost
Free-market system (Adam Smith’s invisible hand)
Types of Economics
Microeconomics vs. macroeconomics
Positive economics vs. normative economics
Production Possibilities Graph
Straight vs. bowed PPF
Underutilization, full employment, and unattainable
Law of increasing opportunity cost
3 shifters of the PPF
Consumer goods vs. capital goods
Circular Flow Model
Product market, Factor market, and Public sector
Specialization and Trade
(Chapters 4, 5, 6, 9, 21: Mankiw)
Law of demand
Market demand curve
Determinants of demand
Normal vs. inferior goods
Substitutes and complements
Equilibrium and Efficiency (graph)
Equilibrium price and quantity
Disequilibrium: surplus and shortages (graphing)
Law of supply
Market supply curve
Determinants of supply
Government Policies (graphs)
Price floors and Price ceilings
Excise taxes, Subsidies, Tariffs, Quotas
Price, Income, and Cross Price elasticity of demand
The total revenue test (graph)
Law of diminishing marginal utility, Substitution effect, Income effect
Utility maximizing rule
(Chapters 13 and 14: Mankiw)
Economists vs. Accountants
Explicit and Implicit costs
Economic costs and profits
Costs of Production (graph)
Fixed Costs, Variable costs, and Total costs
Per-unit costs (AVC, AFC, ATC)
Shifts in MC, ATC. AVC, and AFC
Marginal costs and Marginal revenue
Law of Diminishing Marginal Returns (graph)
Stage I: increasing returns
Stage II: decreasing returns
Stage III: negative returns
Long-run Production Costs (graph)
Economies of scale, Constant Returns to scale, Diseconomies of scale
Characteristics of Perfect Competition
Demand = MR= Price
Graph: Firm vs. industry (market)
Short-run (profit or loss)
Long-run equilibrium (New firm enter and exit)
Shutdown decision (P< AVC)
Productive efficiency (P = Min ATC)
Allocative efficiency (P = MC)
(Chapters 15, 16, 17: Mankiw)
Characteristics of Monopolies
Barriers to entry
MR below demand (graphs)
Profit-maximizing price and quantity
Effects on overall economy
Compared to competitive industry
Price discrimination (graph)
Purpose and results
Unregulated price, fair return price, and socially optimal price
Taxes and subsidies
Characteristics of Monopolistic Competition
Long-run equilibrium (graph)
Characteristics of Oligopolies
Kinked demand curve-competitive pricing
Game theory (chart) price leadership
Collusion and cartels
(Chapters 18 and 19: Mankiw)
Factor Markets Overview
Circular Flow of Economic Activity
Review definitions of marginal revenue, marginal product, the law of diminishing marginal returns, rent, rent-seeking behavior, land, physical capital, goods,
services, consumption, expenditures, resources, costs, interest, and revenue.
Demand for labor
MRC = MRP
Least Cost/Profit Maximizing
Combination of Resources
Marginal physical product (MPP)
Value of marginal product (VMP)
C. Perfectly competitive labor market (graph)
Perfectly elastic supply of labor
Demand v. quantity demanded of a resource
D. Monopsony (graph)
Wages and quantity compared to perfectly competitive labor market
E. Labor Unions
Goals and methods
F. Effects of Minimum Wage
Arguments for and against minimum wage (graphs)
G. Wage differentials
Investment in human capital vs. physical capital
Distribution of Income Among Factors
(Chapters 10, 11, 20: Mankiw)
Demand for public goods
Supply of public goods
Non-excludability and Non-rivalry
Positive externalities/spillover benefits (graph)
Marginal social benefits vs. private benefits
Negative externalities/spillover costs (graph)
Marginal social cost vs. private cost
Lorenz curve (graph)
(Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5: Mankiw)
Scarcity: the nature of economic systems
Opportunity costs and tradeoffs
Production possibilities graph
Absolute advantage, Comparative advantage, and Specialization
The functions of any economic system (what, how, and for whom to produce?)
Demand, supply, and price determination
(Chapters 23, 24, 28, 30: Mankiw)
Gross domestic product and national income concepts.
Components of GDP
Calculating GDP using the Expenditure and Income Approach
Real vs. Nominal GDP
Per Capita GDP
Shortcomings of GDP
Unemployment and the Business cycle
Four phases of the business cycle
Types of Unemployment
Natural rate of Unemployment, actual rate of unemployment
Inflation and price indices.
Calculating Consumer Price Index (CPI)
Types of Inflation
Consequences of inflation
Real vs. nominal income/ interest rates
(Chapters 33, 34, 35: Mankiw)
Aggregate Demand Graph
Circular flow model
Determinates of aggregate demand
Aggregate Supply Graph
Determinants of aggregate supply
Short-run vs. Long-run analysis (AD/AS model)
Real output and price level (graph)
Short run vs. long run output
Actual vs. full employment output
Income-Consumption and Income-Savings Model
Average Propensity to Consume/Save
Marginal Propensity to Consume/Save
Real interest rate-investment relationship
Investment Demand Curve (graph)
(Chapters 26, 29: Mankiw)
Money and banking
Definition of money and its functions
Measurements of the money supply
Banks and the creation of money
Role of the central bank and the money supply
Tools of the central bank
Expansionary vs. contractionary monetary policy
Real vs. nominal interest rates
Expansionary vs. Contractionary fiscal policy
Demand-side vs. supply side economics
Automatic stabilizers and crowding out
Fiscal and monetary mix
Interaction of fiscal and monetary policies
(Chapters 31, 32, 36: Mankiw)
Trade-offs between inflation and unemployment
Unemployment-inflation relationship and the Phillips Curve
The long-run Phillips Curve (graph)
Production possibilities analysis of growth (graph)
U.S. Economic growth rates
Accounting for growth
Disputes over macro theory and policy
Classical view vs. Keynesian view
New classical view of self-correction
Comparative advantage revisited as to why nations trade
Supply and Demand analysis of Exports and Imports
Trade Barriers: Tariffs, Quotas, & Embargoes
Protectionism vs. free trade arguments
Balance of payments, Current account, Capital Account
Flexible vs. fixed exchange rates
U.S. trade deficit
This course will include varied techniques for instruction. These assignments will also be graded, with the total points available determining the weight for that particular assignment. These methods will include:
- Cooperative group work
- In class assignments
- Lecture and discussion
- Chart work - Video presentations
- Quizzes - Chapter Problem Sets
A .......... 90 – 100 %
D .......... 60 – 69 %
B .......... 80 – 89 %
F .......... 0 – 59 %
C .......... 70 – 79 %
Your nine-week grade will be based on a cumulative point system and the percentage of the total points earned. Total points available will vary each nine-week period.
The instructor reserves the right to modify the grading scale, on an assignment or test, as needed.
There is no curve for the class.
Quizzes = 20% Problem Sets = 25%
Unit Tests = 35% Partner Tests = 20%
Quarter Grade ………. ……….40 %
Semester Exam Grade ………. 20 %
An average of two to four oral quizzes will be given for each unit covered in class. These quizzes will cover reading and lecture material.
Each unit will include a practice test. The practice test will be graded and will contain 15 – 20 questions. This test will be taken with your partner.
Each unit will include a test. The tests will generally include 30 – 40 multiple choice questions and an FRQ. Approximately half of the multiple choice questions will be from released exams.
Problem Sets are essentially take home practice questions that require you to explain and apply the concepts discussed in class and in your book.
Each problem set will contain at least two Free Response Questions (FRQs) similar to those given on the AP Exam.
Problem sets are expected to be typed, double-spaced, 12 font size, with reasonable margins.
(Special cases will be excused upon request)
These are not graded; however, successfully working with partners/small groups will help you investigate and understand complex concepts. Also, these will provide opportunities for practice and mastery of content.
The following is from CCSD policy 5113, regarding make-up work. This is the policy that I will follow:
“After any absence, a secondary student is required to initiate contact with the teacher(s) to obtain appropriate makeup work within three school days immediately following the absence.
Once contact has been made with the teacher(s), specific makeup work must be completed and returned to the teacher(s) within a reasonable length of time, to be determined by the teacher and communicated to the student/parent or legal guardian. The makeup work must be returned to the teacher(s) by the specified due date if it is to be acknowledged. Students shall be allowed a minimum of three (3) days to complete makeup work.”
In addition to the above policy, the following policies will also be enforced:
Arrangements will be made using a log book located at my desk. All assignments and/or arrangements will be tracked; this is for your protection as well as mine.
If you miss a quiz or test you may NOT make this up during class. You will have to come
in before or after school.
Any assignment given prior to an absence is due the first day of the student’s return.
Special cases will be accepted, but this is at the teacher’s discretion.
Each quarter, you will be assessed a citizenship grade. Essentially, I will determine your level of citizenship as it pertains to this class. Things I will look for, in terms of determining your grade, will be:
Interest in current events.
Ability to connect the past with the present.
A genuine interest in the material, as it is presented.
A positive and productive attitude towards this class and subject matter.
The grade given for this section will be as follows:
O = Outstanding N = Needs improvement
U = Unsatisfactory S = Satisfactory
It is not my intention to check notebooks on a regular basis. However, I will “spot-check” students from time-to-time to ensure compliance. How you construct and use the notebook is your own choice. I believe you will find an organized and up-to-date notebook to be a useful tool for achieving success in this course.
Cornell Notes will be required for all in-class notes that you will take.
Homework will be given on a daily basis. This may include reading, preparing for a quiz, reviewing for a test, completing chapter problem sets, or any other tool I may use at my discretion.
Point values and the category of grading will vary depending on the type and scope of the assignment.
Spelling, grammar, neatness, and following directions are required on ALL assignments. Failure to adhere to these standards will result in a loss of points.
It is not my general policy to offer extra credit. However, extenuating circumstances in the news
(events, special occasions, etc.) may offer an opportunity to extend an extra credit assignment.
This is at my sole discretion. Information will be given when appropriate.
As all of you are experienced at being in the classroom, all of you should know what is expected of you
However, here are some of the general rules pertaining to this class:
1. Show respect to faculty, staff, and other students at all times.
- This includes raising your hand to be called upon and not interrupting while others are speaking.
2. No racial or ethnic slurs, nor sexually suggestive language, will be tolerated at any time.
3. Be prepared to start class at the appropriate time.
- This includes having all of the appropriate supplies and assignments.
4. No unauthorized work on computers.
- This includes visiting websites that are deemed inappropriate by the school.
5. No food or drink is allowed in the classroom.
6. Students can only leave the class with a corridor pass.
7. No use of personal electronic devices (I-Pods, cell phones, etc.).
- There is absolutely no need for these in class, and they will be confiscated if found. This process is explained in the Student Handbook.
8. All of the other school policies printed in the Parent/Student Handbook will be
adhered to at all time.
1. A-TECH employs a progressive discipline policy which can be found in the
2. Students will be expected to follow these policies at all times.
3. I will notify students of any changes, if necessary, to the general classroom rules.
Each case is different, but here is a general list of consequences for breaking any of the classroom rules.
1. Verbal warning
2. Rearrangement of seats
3. Conference with the teacher
4. Notification call to parents