The Economics department aims to provide a learning experience that is topical, inspiring, stretching and enjoyable.
WHY IS ECONOMICS EXCITING AT CLSG?
The CLSG Economics department works hard to ensure learning takes place in an environment which is both supportive and non-judgemental. Most lessons are discussion based and encourage students to develop an ability to develop their own opinions using economic theory with logical analysis.
Teachers use both current affairs and historical examples to introduce topics and to support students in their efforts to apply the theory to real life situations. In order to foster a knowledge and understanding of recent economic affairs, the department uses a wide variety of stimuli ranging from newspapers, magazines, lectures, current books, etc. Alongside teaching new concepts, the department endeavours to develop transferrable skills in students like an ability to conduct an inquiry independently and be resilient when faced with obstacles.
There are weekly enrichment sessions for those Year 13 students who would like to explore the subject beyond A Level. These lessons include an exploration of the links with economics and other academic disciplines including ethics, psychology and politics.
There are four themes, each of which is assessed by external examination in May/June of Year 12 and 13. Below is a very brief outline of what students are expected to understand for each unit.
Theme 1 (Microeconomics):
- the basic economic problem is one of scarcity
- the theory of how markets function with practical examples
- reasons why markets may or may not result in an efficient outcome and interventions that might improve outcomes
Theme 2 (National Macroeconomics):
- how macroeconomic activity is measured with the help of theoretical models
- what objectives governments have
- the policies governments use to achieve these objectives and how to use the theoretical models to predict outcomes
Theme 3 (Business Economics):
- learning what businesses aim to achieve
- analysing at what quantity and price level different types of firms achieve their objectives; this includes graphical analysis and understanding game theory
- when and how governments should regulate businesses
Theme 4 (Global Economics):
- the causes and implications of globalisation
- the best way a country can prosper in terms of trade policy and domestic policy
- the factors influencing income distribution between countries and individuals
- the best ways economic development can be fostered
The department follows Edexcel’s 2015 Linear A level specification. Currently all students sit the standalone AS level exam at the end of Year 12. The results of the AS exam do not have an influence on the A level exam that students sit at the end of Year 13.
RECENT TRIPS/LEARNING ACTIVITES
All Year 13 students have the option of taking part in a competition called "Target Two Point Zero - The Bank of England and The Times Internet Rate Challenge". For this, a CLSG team undertakes research to predict what will happen to UK inflation rates. The team makes a decision on what the Bank of England should do with interest rates and quantitative easing to try and ensure inflation hits the 2% target. Four students report back to the Bank the findings of their research in a 15 minute presentation. This is a superb opportunity to learn how to discover, handle and present significant quantities of complex data and get a much better idea of how the economy functions. In the last few years, CLSG teams have reached the London final three times.
CLSG economists have had success in the prestigious Royal Economic Society essay competition as well as the Institute of Economic Affairs essay competition. CLSG essay entries have made it through to the national final and received commendations.
The school makes use of its links with The City of London to organise various speakers that have a great deal of relevance to economic students. These talks are usually open to the whole of the Sixth Form rather than just A Level economists. Recent speakers have included author and journalist, Tim Harford; former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, Paul Tucker; and President of the Adam Smith Institute, Dr. Madsen Pirie.
Our location also means that many economics conferences and venues can be reached easily making short trips possible e.g London School of Economics, Bank of England Museum, etc. The Business Economics module is strengthened with a visit to a production facility like the Coca Cola bottling plant or the Newsprint printing presses.
The external links below bring together interesting articles that students use to extend their understanding of the topics that they are studying.
"Economics has replaced my presuppositions with opinions that are grounded in reasoning and theory" Eliza
"Having lessons based around discussion and trying to gain a genuine understanding of how the world works in both theory and in practice makes Economics at A Level an enjoyable and useful subject to take. Anyone who takes an interest in trying to make the world a better place or has opinions on how to do so should definitely take this subject!" Isabel
Head of Department
Mr A Kanwar