Principles of Economics: Introduction, Institutions & Philosophies

Course Number: EC 200
Transcript Title: Prin Econ: Intro, Inst & Phil
Created: September 1, 2012
Updated: August 17, 2017
Total Credits: 4
Lecture Hours: 40
Lecture / Lab Hours: 0
Lab Hours: 0
Satisfies Cultural Literacy requirement: No
Satisfies General Education requirement: Yes
Grading options: A-F (default), P-NP, audit
Repeats available for credit: 0


MTH 20 or equivalent placement test

Prerequisite / Concurrent


Course Description

Introduces basic economic concepts including; microeconomics, macroeconomics, the history of economic ideas, international trade and a variety of economic issues. Recommended: MTH 60. Prerequisites: MTH 20 or equivalent placement test scores. Prerequisite/concurrent: WR 121. Audit available.

Intended Outcomes

  1. Think critically and formulate independent and well-considered conclusions about economic issues and policies.
  2. Effectively participate in the political process and the economy by utilizing an understanding of the historical evolution of economic systems, institutions and ideologies.
  3. Make rational decisions based on rudimentary marginal analysis.

Alignment with Institutional Core Learning Outcomes

In-depth 1. Communicate effectively using appropriate reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills. (Communication)


2. Creatively solve problems by using relevant methods of research, personal reflection, reasoning, and evaluation of information. (Critical thinking and Problem-Solving)
3. Extract, interpret, evaluate, communicate, and apply quantitative information and methods to solve problems, evaluate claims, and support decisions in their academic, professional and private lives. (Quantitative Literacy)


4. Appreciate cultural diversity and constructively address issues that arise out of cultural differences in the workplace and community. (Cultural Awareness)


5. Recognize the consequences of human activity upon our social and natural world. (Community and Environmental Responsibility)

Outcome Assessment Strategies

Traditional and nontraditional techniques will be used to assess student mastery of the content, competencies, and outcomes. These techniques can assess either student products or processes.

  • Products: multiple choice exams, essays, individual group projects, student demonstrations, research projects, other projects with specified rating criteria, and portfolios.
  • Processes: interviews, documented observations, web searches, journals, student self-evaluations.

Course Activities and Design

This course may include lecture and discussion formats utilizing faculty expertise, texts, supplementary reading materials, films, speakers, and other classroom aids at the discretion of the instructor.  Regular attendance and completion of assigned reading are essential to the successful completion of this course.  Instructors will teach in accordance with the goals and objectives listed in this Course Content Guide.  The Course Content Guides are developed by college-wide subject area faculty and are approved by Management.

Course Content (Themes, Concepts, Issues and Skills)

  • Basic economic concepts such as scarcity and choice, opportunity cost, and the basic economic problems.
  • The causes of industrialization and the development of the market system which would include the evolution of the market system, and the basis of supply and demand, market efficiency, and elasticity.
  • Some of the major economic philosophies that have influenced the U.S. political economy which may include: Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Alfred Marshall, Thorstein Veblen, and John Maynard Keynes.
  • The Consumer sector; household demographics, income distribution, poverty, and Government anti-poverty programs.
  • The current structure of the American business sector.
  • A simple treatment of aggregate supply and aggregate demand.
  • The Government Sector: the evolution of Federal and State government, the current spending and taxation patterns, the benefits and problems of government intervention.
  • Current issues in the American economy, such as health care, social security, environmental protection, and budget and trade deficits.
  • International trade: comparative advantages, exchange rates, balance of payments, tariffs and quotas, international institutions, developing nations, and reform policies in former command economies.

Skills and competencies

  • Build a vocabulary of economic terms that will enable the student to find the daily reading of papers and periodicals easier and more meaningful.
  • Develop the ability to summarize an economic argument, understand economic reports, and to discern between positive and normative statements.
  • Develop the ability to acquire and analyze quantitative data and make mathematical computations using formulas.
  • Develop the ability to use and apply theoretical models.
  • Develop the ability to conduct cost/benefit analysis.
  • Develop the ability to think clearly about social and environmental problems in an orderly and objective way.