The purpose of studying Economics is not to acquire a set of ready-made answers to economic questions, but to learn how to avoid being deceived by economists.
Every one of us is an economic agent – we earn income, we spend or save, we send signals to firms to produce the output we desire, we pay taxes and we all benefit from state provision in some form, be it street lighting, defence or healthcare. How do we know we are making good decisions when we act in these ways?
Studying Economics provides the tools with which to determine answers to these questions. This is the underlying principle for the way Economics is taught at St Columba’s College. Teachers in the Department have a passion for their subject and encourage curiosity. Students are introduced to methods of individual study and research that will be vital to their progress and success at university and in work. The Department has built up a large stock of Economics books, which are lent to students, in addition to the main School Library collection. The Department’s teaching rooms are fully equipped with ICT resources, and teachers make regular use of the shared ICT facilities of the main school.
The students take the linear two year OCR A Level Economics course which provides a strong foundation in both microeconomics and macroeconomics. In the first year boys will investigate how markets work and consider the effectiveness of a range of market failure solutions as well as studying key macroeconomic objectives and international trade. In the second year work is focused on competitive market structures with an emphasis on the labour market together with the study of macroeconomic management using demand and supply side policy measures.
The Department encourages teams to participate in the Young Enterprise Scheme and Dragons’ Apprentice Challenge each year and enter the Bank of England Target 2.0 competition. Additional provision is made for all boys who intend to study Economics at university and they are encouraged to attend RES lectures and events. Regular homework support sessions and revision clinics are held throughout the year.