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Course Description
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Business Economics
University of Westminster
London, England

Subject Area(s) Level(s) Instruction in Credits Contact Hours Prerequisites
Business 200 English 4 50 N/A

Module Code: 2ECO401

Summary of Module content

Business Economics provides a foundation in economics with specific business applications


Module Aims

The module aims to:

·         enable students to recognise, describe and relate to basic micro- and macro-economic concepts and simple models

·         enable students to identify the principle applications of economic concepts to business and the business environment

·         develop students’ transferable skills in using models


Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, the successful student should be able to:

1.      identify and explain the use of business economic tools and techniques.

2.      apply business economic tools and techniques to business situations

3.     construct and present ideas in a coherent manner aided by simple economic modelling.


Indicative Syllabus Content

Topics may be covered may include but are not limited to:

1.             Demand analysis: determinants of demand; elasticities of demand; implications for pricing, product & planning decisions.

2.             Cost analysis: short-run cost behaviour; implications for pricing decisions; long-run costs – economies of scale; Supply; implications for competitiveness & market structure.

3.             Market structure and implications for conduct & performance; competition versus monopoly and oligopolistic markets.

4.             Competition policy; analysis of policies towards dominance, anti-competitive practices, and mergers & acquisitions;

5.             National Product and Income. The circular flow and overview of the role of government in the economy

6.             Macroeconomic mechanisms and Policies. Control of inflation and promotion of employment and growth. Exchange rates.


Teaching and Learning Methods

This Module is delivered primarily through the Blackboard virtual learning environment. Students should work through the materials and self-study questions in this Handbook and those provided online. It is important that you do this week by week and do not get behind schedule.

In addition there will be ‘live’ meetings as time-tabled. The major means of communication between students and staff will be the Discussion Board forums on Blackboard. Here you should raise, as they arrive, issues from the Presentations, Handbook notes and the various kinds of self-study question. I will expect several contentful messages from each student every week.


Assessment Rationale

Students will be assessed by:

1.      A multiple choice class test towards the end of the teaching period.

2.      Participation in online discussion to develop proactive learning and facilitate timely feedback on student progress.

Assessment Criteria

  1. The Class Test will test students grasp of basic economic concepts and models and their application to business and its environment
  2. Online discussion will provide timely and effective formative feedback to facilitate student learning. Students will be assessed on:

·                     Their growing knowledge of the module material

·                     Their ability to pose coherent questions, taking into account module material to date and earlier discussion in the same thread

·                     Their ability to respond coherently and knowledgeably to other participants questions and arguments.

·                     Their ability to relate the economics that they are learning to relevant current events.

Assessment Methods and Weightings


Class Test:     100%


The pass mark for this module is 40%. 



Essential reading

David Begg & Damian Ward: Economics for Business, McGraw-Hill Education, 2003 [You are strongly urged to buy this, the main Module Text Book]

Further reading

(Latest edn. In each case)

Baye M R, Managerial Economics & Business Strategy, McGraw-Hill, 2000

Brewster D: Business Economics, Dryden, 1997

Dobbs I Managerial Economics, OUP, 2000

Hornby W, Gammie B & Wall S, Business Economics, FT Prentice Hall, 2001

Griffiths A & Wall S (eds.): Applied Economics, Longman, 2001

Png I, Managerial Economics, Blackwell, 2002

Sloman J & M Sutcliffe: Economics for Business, FT Prentice Hall, 2001 [This goes into a bit more detail, and so is useful for looking up specific models and so on]

Sloman, J: The Economic Environment of Business, FT Prentice Hall, 2005 [This new book relates the economics to strategic issues rather well]

Sloman, J: Economics, Prentice Hall, 2000 [This is an introductory Text for Economics Students. Again, useful for looking up particular 'technical' issues]

Periodical references

Reference will be made to relevant journal articles wherever necessary such as Journal of Industrial Economics, International Journal of the Economics of Business, Journal of Applied Economics, Economic Issues, Economic Policy

WWW References

UK Competition Commission (

Economist magazine (

Economist Country Briefings (

Financial Times (

FT Business Specials (

Guardian Unlimited Archive (

Office of Fair Trading (

Office for National Statistics (

International Monetary Fund (

European Central Bank (

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