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Review

A math review to help students calibrate their expectations and a review of supply and demand to help them understand why we will spend the next 6-8 weeks talking about functions.

I've prepared the following worksheet for supply and demand to review the concept but also to get students into the mindset that we want to test theories.

Consumer Theory

In this module, students become familiar with budget constraints, indifference curves, and finding the best affordable bundle across a variety of contexts. We also discuss aggregate demand, elasticity, and income & substitution effects.

To help with the transition from graphs to utility maximization I've prepared the following worksheet to pair with the in-class MobLab experiment.

Producer Theory

Building on the same intuitions from indifference curves and utility functions, students learn about production and cost minimization.

Perfect Competition

In this module, we show how the maximizing behavior of consumers and firms underpins the model of supply and demand.

All of learning is about feedback. To help students see how the feedback of profits/losses encourages/discourages entry and exit leading to zero profit we play an entry/exit game.

Market Power

This module starts with monopoly and builds to models of imperfect competition and an introductory discussion of game theory.

To help students see the potentially counter-intuitive effects or price discrimination I walk students through the following monopoly game

To help students understand strategic interdependence and see how increased competition effects consumer surplus in Cournot Competition we play games that vary N and do some exercises.

Finally, to help students grasp the fundamentals of game theory we play a Prisoner's Dilemma in class.

Non-Market Decision-making

In this module, we discuss property rights, externalities, common pool resources, and public goods.

I have students play a simple binary public goods game with and without communication to discuss both the standard theoretical prediction as well as some puzzles that lead to more sociological questions.