Skip to main content

Reforming ECO 101

I started my lecturing career in 1997 and the first course I taught was ECO 101 (introductory economics). My class had 200 students and it took two technicians 30 minutes to set up the huge data projector for my PowerPoint slides - this was the first time PowerPoint was used in the university to teach economics! It was a fun course to teach. This was the first time that most students had come across economics, and the power of economics to explain what happened in the real world really captivated them. My first assignment required students to write a paper explaining why house prices in Northern Ireland had increased 50% between 1992 and 1997!

ECO 101 is one of the most popular courses at universities today. Click here to read a piece on Bloomberg which makes a variety of suggestions as to how ECO 101 could be changed to make it more realistic and relevant (hat tip: Chris Colvin). One suggestion is that students play Deregulated Monopoly!

Popular posts from this blog

The Failure of Herstatt Bank

As an undergraduate, I was taught about the failure of Herstatt Bank in 1974 and Herstatt risk. This bank was only the 35th largest bank in Germany at the time so why would anyone be interested in studying its failure? Herstatt failed because of its involvement in risky foreign exchange business. When it closed its doors on 26 June 1974, counterparty banks (mainly in New York) had not received dollars due to them because of time-zone differences - this is known as settlement risk. The cross-jurisdictional implications of its failure resulted in the Bank for International Settlements setting up the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and Herstatt's failure was a key reason for the establishment of real-time gross settlements systems, which ensures that payments between two banks are executed in real time. The Bank of England's Ben Norman has an interesting post on Herstatt over at the Bank's new blog ( Bank Underground ). As well as giving an excellent overview of

Boom and Bust: A Global History of Financial Bubbles

Boom and Bust: A Global History of Financial Bubbles, co-authored with my colleague Will Quinn , is forthcoming in August. It is published by Cambridge University Press and is available for pre-order at Amazon , Barnes and Noble , Waterstones and Cambridge University Press . 

The Great Depression

Marginal Revolution University has a great video on the Great Depression.