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2016/2017  BA-BHAAI1023U  Principles of Microeconomics – a Business Perspective

English Title
Principles of Microeconomics – a Business Perspective

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Bachelor
Duration Summer
Start time of the course Summer
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 120
Study board
Study Board for BSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Course instructor - Raymond Sauer, PhD, Professor, Department of Economics, Clemson University, rs.acc@cbs.dk
    Sven Bislev - Department of Management, Society and Communication (MSC)
In case of any academic questions related to the course, please contact the course instructor or the academic director, Sven Bislev at sb.ikl@cbs.dk
Main academic disciplines
  • Economics
Last updated on 29/05/2017
Learning objectives
To achieve the grade 12, students should meet the following learning objectives with no or only minor mistakes or errors:
  • Fully explain the basic concepts, models, theories and tools used in the principles of microeconomics and use them to analyze economic decisions by individuals and by firms.
  • Identify the foundational assumptions used in their own economic analysis and in the economics analysis of others.
  • Predict the effects of supply and demand changes on the direction of market price and quantity. Use the tools of consumer and producer surplus to identify the gains form exchange and the gains from the ability to manipulate price or quantity (e.g., the effects of barriers to entry, market power, monopolization, price controls, taxes, subsidies, and quotas.)
  • Articulate and explain the systematic nature of economic analysis and address likely secondary effects of particular policies and institutional frameworks.
  • Analyze economic outcomes in terms of their contribution to recognition of scarcity and efficiency.
  • Communicate, discuss, and present sound logical conclusions from their analysis of economic incentives.
Course prerequisites
Principles of Microeconomics - a Business Perspective:
Exam ECTS 7.5
Examination form Written sit-in exam
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Assignment type Written assignment
Duration 4 hours
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) One internal examiner
Exam period Summer, Ordinary exam: End of July - beginning of August 2017.

Retake exam: End of September - beginning of October 2017.

3rd attempt (2nd retake) exam: End November - beginning of December 2017.

Exam schedule is available on http://www.cbs.dk/summer http:/​/​www.cbs.dk/​uddannelse/​summer-university-programme/​exam.
Aids allowed to bring to the exam Closed book: no aids
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.
4 hour written sit-in exam, new exam question

Exam form for 3rd attempt (2nd retake): 72 hours home project assignment, max. 10 pages.
Course content and structure

The Principles of Microeconomics is the primary foundation for all other neoclassical economic theory including much of macroeconomics. Microeconomic theory principles provide insights into the behavior of both individual and collective actors (firms) in markets. This course is the introductory course in any economics curriculum.  It will provide you with an insight into how economists analyze practical problems which present themselves to policy makers in the real world. The concepts are theoretical but we will develop a "set of tools for analysis" which you will be expected to apply. The materials in this course are used extensively in economics, financial economics, and business.
Economics is ultimately about problem-solving through critical thinking. We are asked to provide logical, well-argued, defensible answers to complex questions. To do this we must strip problems down to their essential assumptions, arguments, and then critically analyze them. We do not expect you to master problem-solving or critical thinking in this one course. We do expect that you will greatly increase your proficiency at these skills.   
The emphasize applications because economics conditions and "answers" are constantly changing. What is transferable, fundamental, and constant is the method of economic analysis which we will develop. The ability to apply these tools to varying situations and to make the results clear to others is what gives value to economic analysis.
The primary focus of this course is on the development of analytical prowess or "critical thinking." The discipline of economics originated within philosophy, rhetoric, logic and mathematics and transitioned through political economy in the 19th century into modern economics.  As a result, economics is a very broad social science drawing upon the interconnectedness of human action. We model human behaviors within particular institutional arrangements. 
This course focuses on the behaviors of individuals, firms, and institutional actors. Students should be able to successfully apply time-tested, empirical models of microeconomic behavior.




Class 1

Chapter 1 - The Big Ideas
Chapter 2 - The Power of Trade and Comparative Advantage

Preliminary Assignment:
(1) Read the first two chapters of the textbook and prepare questions to discuss in our first class meeting.

(2) Carefully read this article: Radford, R.A. 1945. “The Economic Organisation of a P.O.W. Camp.” Economica, 12(48): 189-201.  Be prepared to participate in the discussion in the first class. Prepare written answers to the study guide questions in this Word Document and bring a draft typed copy to our first class meeting. An edited and complete typed copy of these same questions will be due by the beginning of Class Meeting 3

Class 2

Chapter 3 - Supply and Demand
Chapter 4 - Equilibrium: How Supply and Demand Determine Prices

Class 3

Chapter 5 - Elasticity and Its Applications
Chapter 6 - Taxes and Subsidies

Class 4

Chapter 7 - The Price System: Signals, Speculation, and Prediction
Chapter 8 - Price Ceilings and Floors
Hayek, F. A. 1945. “The Use of Knowledge in Society.” American Economic Review, 35(4): 519–30.

Class 5

Chapter 9 - International Trade
Chapter 10 - Externalities: When Prices Send the Wrong Signals


Class 6

Chapter 11 - Costs and Profit Maximization Under Competition
Chapter 12 - Competition and the Invisible Hand


A feedback activity defined by the course instructor. Not a part of the exam, but a voluntary activity.

Class 7

Chapter 13 - Monopoly
Chapter 14 - Price Discrimination

Class 8

Chapter 15 - Cartels, Oligopolies, and Monopolistic Competition
Chapter 16 - Competing for Monopoly: The Economics of Network Goods

Class 9

Chapter 17 - Labor Markets
Chapter 18 - Public Goods and the Tragedy of the Commons

Class 10

Chapter 19 - Political Economy and Public Choice
Chapter 20 - Economics, Ethics, and Public Policy

Class 11

Comprehensive Review

Teaching methods
Student workload
Preliminary assignment 10 hours
Classroom attendance 33 hours
Preparation 144 hours
Feedback activity 7 hours
Examination 12 hours
Further Information

Preliminary Assignment: To help students get maximum value from ISUP courses, instructors provide a reading or a small number of readings or video clips to be read or viewed before the start of classes with a related task scheduled for class 1 in order to 'jump-start' the learning process.


Feedback Activity: A feedback activity defined by the course instructor will take place approx. half-way through the course.


Course timetable is available on http://www.cbs.dk/uddannelse/summer-university-programme/courses.

Expected literature

Tyler Cowen and Alex Tabarrok. (n.d.). Modern Principles of Microeconomics. 3rd Edition. Macmillan.

Last updated on 29/05/2017