Eastern Illinois University
Course Syllabus, Spring 2003
ECN 2802, Sec.2: Principles of Microeconomics

Class meets: 10:00-10:50pm, MWF, Coleman 2160

Instructor: Mukti P. Upadhyay
Office: Coleman 2811
Off. Hrs: MWF 11:00-12:00, also by appointment
Phone: 581-3812, em: cfmpu@eiu.edu

Textbook: O'Sullivan and Sheffrin: Economics, 2001 edition, Prentice Hall.
The study guide is bundled together with the text.

Grading: Besides the final, you will have three exams during the term, and the best two of them will count about 31% each, while the worst will be dropped. There will be no makeup for the midterms. Medical or other emergencies will allow you to skip one of the midterms without worrying about your grade. Since emergencies cannot be foreseen, please take each exam you can and prepare hard for it. The final exam will weigh about 31% of the total grade as well and quizzes and classwork will count 7.7%. The exact numeric grade distribution is given below:
200: best 2 of 3 exams (100*2)
100: final exam
25: quizzes and classwork
325: Total Grade

Exam Dates:
Exam 1, February 12, Wednesday
Exam 2, March 21, Friday
Exam 3, April 28, Friday
Final Exam, May 8, Thursday, 12:30--2:30pm

EXAM GRADES: All exams will follow the multiple-choice format. Questions will be taken from the lectures, class discussions, and the required text. The final letter grade for the course will perhaps follow the usual pattern, with the cutoffs at 90, 80, 70, and 60 percent for A, B, C, and D respectively. If this pattern leads, however, to a bad distribution of grades (e.g., no As or too many Ds), then I will curve the grades, for the benefit of the students. You will not be penalized for this possible modification of the grading procedure but may benefit from it.

ATTENDANCE: Attendance in class is not mandatory. But please understand that research has consistently shown that typical students will understand economics a lot better and score much higher in exams if they attend classes regularly. Further, in-class assignments and quizzes may be conducted on any given day. Thus, absence from class may directly hurt your grade as well. Finally, if you are right on the borderline of grades, you may be moved up if I find that you have attended the class regularly. Quizzes may be given after a short prior notice or may come unannounced, so please keep track of what goes on in every class.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The purposes of this course are (1) to learn about some fundamental principles of neoclassical economics; (2) to learn the basic characteristics of a modern economy, including production (supply), consumption (demand) and equilibrium; and (3) to learn about the conditions for market success and market failure. Microeconomics focuses on the behavior of small units -- individual consumers, businesses, and workers -- and on the interaction of these units that determines how markets function and how resources are used. That is the central theme of this course.

PREREQUISITES AND EXERCISES: The emphasis in Econ 2802 is on learning to use basic economic principles, not on memorizing lots of facts. Because the only way to learn how to do something is to practice it, we will spend part of most classes on demonstrations, or working on in-class exercises, individually or in groups. I often use graphs and sometimes basic algebra to explain microeconomic concepts. To get the most out of class, you should bring in a calculator, a good ruler, and a set of colored pencils or pens. There are no formal prerequisites for this course. If you are going to be an econ major, you certainly need to be comfortable with basic math, but at this Principles stage you need not worry about it yet.

OFFICE VISITS: This may turn out to be a difficult course to some students. If you feel overwhelmed by the material, come to my office at the first sign of trouble. Don't wait until a day or two before the exam. If you are not clear about a point or two in the day's lecture, it is perhaps best to come up and ask right in class at the end of the lecture rather than make a special trip to my office for something that only takes a minute or two to resolve. By all means, do visit my office with your questions, particularly after you have done the reading. If you cannot make it to my office for your needs, send me an email. Emailing can also done from my home page (http://www.ux1.eiu.edu/~cfmpu/). I will try to do my best to answer students' questions on a daily basis.

DISABILITIES: If you have a documented disability, please contact me as soon as possible so we can make necessary accommodations.


Ch. 1-3: Background reading
Ch. 4: Supply, Demand and Market Equilibrium
Ch. 6, 15: Market Efficiency, Government Intervention, and Public Goods
Ch. 5: Elasticity: A Measure of Responsiveness
******Exam 1 about here******

Ch. 7: Consumer Choice
Ch. 8: Production and Cost
Ch. 9: Perfect Competition: Short run and long run
Ch. 10: Monopoly
******Exam 2 about here******

Ch. 11: Entry and Monopolistic Competition
Ch. 12: Oligopoly and Strategic Behavior
Ch. 18: The Labor Market
******Exam 3 about here******

Ch. 32: International Trade and Public Policy
******Final Exam: 12/17 Tue, 12:30-2:30pm******

To keep the course at manageable length, we will skip parts of the less important stuff in several chapters.