St Peter's School

Economics

EconomicsThe Course

Over the last year, economic issues have dominated national and global headlines. ‘Brexit’ and its subsequent implications sent the value of the £ crashing to its lowest value seen in years whilst UK inflation is on the rise and beginning to have a major impact on our standard of living. Indeed not a day passes without economic issues making headline news; from discussions on road pricing, the fees charged for university study, or the Bank of England’s interest rate decision – it’s not difficult to see why nationally, Economics is
one of the most popular A Levels. Economics is an intellectually challenging but rewarding subject where students will be expected to develop logical thought and their skill of reasoned problem-solving.

The A Level course is broadly split into two areas, the first of which focusses on ‘microeconomic’ aspects where pupils investigate such topics as to why petrol prices rise and how governments respond to problems in areas such as education and the NHS. The world of business economics is also addressed in which pupils examine issues such as cost, revenue and profit within a range of practical industries. Discussion of ‘hot topics’ such as London’s congestion charge or HS2, or the power wielded by the big companies in industries such as energy supply ensure pupils are fully immersed in this ‘real- life’
subject.

Pupils will also cover ‘macroeconomic’ aspects including learning key measures of national economic performance and the main objectives and instruments of UK economic policy. We look at the importance of the Eurozone, the UK tax system and the implications of government spending plans and ‘austerity’ amongst much more (is it right that the UK national debt is in excess of £1.7 trillion?) international trade, globalisation, global poverty and measures to promote economic development across the world are some of the exciting and thought-provoking issues covered.

Through the A Level course, pupils will visit the Bank of England and the financial centre of London, write and publish articles for our in-house Economics magazine ‘Peternomics’, invest a virtual £100,000 in the stock market, enter the Royal Economics Society’s ‘Young Economist of the Year’ and other essay competitions. In recent years we have listened to the Nobel prize winner in Economics, Christopher Pissarides and author Tim Harford amongst a range of other trips and visits.

Assessment

  • Paper 1 - 2hr written paper
    Markets and Business Behaviour - 35%
  • Paper 2 - 2hr written paper
    The National and Global Economy 35%
  • Paper 3 - 2hr written paper
    Microeconomics and Macroeconomics - 30%

Examination Board: Edexcel

Additional Notes

Due to the mathematical skills and essay writing skills required, a grade 6 at GCSE in both English and Mathematics is expected.

Economics and Economics related or combined courses are a popular choice at university, pupils should be aware that for such courses, Mathematics at AS or A level is a prerequisite for some universities.