Curriculum – Economics

Why study A Level Economics?

Economics is the study of the production and consumption of goods and the transfer of wealth to produce and obtain those goods. Economics explains how people interact within markets to get what they want or accomplish certain goals. Since economics is a driving force of human interaction, studying it often reveals why people and governments behave in particular ways.


A level Edexcel Course Content

Theme 1: Introduction to Markets and Market Failure

This theme provides an introduction to the nature of economics and examines how the price mechanism allocates resources in markets. It analyses the nature of market failure, its causes and possible policy remedies. At the end of this unit, students should be able to apply supply and demand analysis to real-world situations; to understand why markets might not allocate resources efficiently; and the methods of dealing with market failure, together with an evaluation of their effectiveness.


Theme 2: The UK Economy – Performance and Policies

This theme introduces the key measures of economic performance and the main objectives and instruments of economic policy. Students should be able to use a basic AD/AS model to understand why demand and/or supply side policies may be seen as appropriate ways of managing an economy; predict the possible impact of such policies and to recognise the assumptions involved; argue for different approaches; and identify criteria for success.


Theme 3: Business Behaviour and the Labour Market

This theme examines how the number and size of market participants and the level of contestability, affect the pricing and nature of competition among firms.  Students will look at the rational assumption that firms are profit maximisers and then challenge this by looking at alternative business objectives.  Supply and demand analysis is also specifically applied to the labour market to see how wages are determined in competitive and non competitive markets.


Theme 4: Global Perspectives

Students will be introduced to concept of globalisation and begin to explore the significance of international trade, the balance of payments and exchange rates.  Students will also examine public finances and the role of the financial sector on a global context before turning their attention to development economics and emerging markets.


Students taking the full A level economics will be expected to sit three examination papers in year 13.  Please note that the AS exams do not contribute to the full A level as it is a standalone qualification.  These are:

Paper 1: Markets and business behaviours

Paper 2: The national and global economy

Paper 3: Microeconomics and Macroeconomics


NCS Economics Enrichment

Banking & Finance Emerging Talents Programme Lectures from Lord Mervyn King, Mr Jonathan Portes, Professor Charles Goodhart and Mr Evan Davis (amongst others)

Target 2.0 Competition

Visits to key places of commerce: Bank of England, Stock Exchange and the London Metal Exchange Automatic invitation to The Friedman Society

Career Insight Days at leading investment banks and accountancy firms

Graduate mock assessment days with high profile financial institutions

Mentor/Coaching from an outstanding NCS Mentor


Further reading

Milton Friedman, Capitalism and Freedom Paul Krugman, Peddling Prosperity

Steven Landsburg, The Armchair Economist P.J. O’Rourke, Eat the Rich

Burton Malkiel, A Random Walk Down Wall Street Avinash Dixit and Barry Nalebuff, Thinking Strategically

Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner, Freakonomics

Examination Board: Edexcel

Disclaimer: The information on this page is to be used as guidance only. The course availability and content is subject to change based on demand and time-tabling.

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