Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2018-2019 (archived)


Department: Business School (Economics and Finance)


Type Open Level 2 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2018/19 Module Cap Location Durham


  • Principles of Economics (ECON1011) AND EITHER Economic Methods (ECON1021) OR (MATH1061) Calculus and Probability I AND (MATH1071) Linear Algebra I OR (MATH1541) Statistics AND (MATH1561) Single Maths A OR (MATH1551) Maths for Engineers and Scientists AND (MATH1541) Statistics OR successful completion of Phase 1 of the Economics programme at Shandong University, China


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • The module aims to develop your knowledge and understanding of essential components of microeconomics by building upon the material introduced at Level 1 and with a view to prepare you to both extend your knowledge of microeconomics and apply microeconomic concepts to more specialists areas of economics at Level 3. In particular, the module aims to improve your analytical skills relevant to consumer and production theories, general equilibrium and welfare. In addition, you also have the opportunity to develop some key skills.


  • The module endeavours to cover the following topics:
  • preferences and the indifference map.
  • utility function.
  • consumers choice problem.
  • comparative statics of consumer choice.
  • Slutsky decomposition and compensated demand curves.
  • Revealed preference analysis.
  • duality and expenditure function.
  • Shephard's lemma and Slutsky equation.
  • consumer surplus.
  • inter-temporal choice.
  • goods and their attributes.
  • risk and uncertainty in consumption.
  • firm, production and technology.
  • costs of production.
  • profit maximisation and competitive supply.
  • competitive markets.
  • monopoly markets.
  • imperfectly competitive markets (oligopoly, monopolistic competition and contestability).
  • strategic behaviour and game theory.
  • general equilibrium.
  • welfare economics.
  • and markets with asymmetric information.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Have knowledge and understanding of essential components of microeconomics
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Be able to apply problem solving and analytical skills to microeconomic issues
  • Be able to apply microeconomics to the analysis of individual's behaviour and public policy decisions
Key Skills:
  • Written Communication - e.g. through summative assessment.
  • Planning, Organising and Time Management - e.g. by preparing for the examination.
  • Problem Solving and Analysis - e.g. by applying the necessary analytical and quantitative skills, as well as the ability to manipulate microeconomic concepts, in answering exam questions
  • Numeracy - e.g. by applying core mathematical and statistical skills to answer a range of exam questions

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Teaching is by lectures and tutorials. Learning takes place through attendance at lectures, preparation for and participation in tutorial classes, and private study.
  • Formative assessment is by means of in-class tests.
  • Summative assessment is by means of a written examination, and a 2000 word individual assignment.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 40 2 per week 1 hour 40
Revision Lectures 2 1 per week 1 hour 2
Tutorials 8 1 every 2 weeks 1 hour 8
Preparation and Reading 150
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Assignment Component Weighting: 40%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Individual Essay 2000 words 100% same
Component: Examination Component Weighting: 60%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
One written examination 1.5 hours 100% same

Formative Assessment:

Two in-class tests (one in each term)

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University