Students express disappointment with the teaching of Microeconomics at the University of Warwick from 2009 to 2011 sign now

The quality of teaching and content of Microeconomics for the 2009 L100 class at the University of Warwick has been poor and detrimental to proper understanding of essential intermediate level Microeconomics expected by many employers and further education institutions.

The failure of an Economics department, ranked within the top 5 in the country, to provide some essential parts of an respectable undergraduate course is not acceptable and steps should be taken to compensate those subject to it and prevent a similar situation from occurring again.

Why we believe this statement:

Content

1)Essential concepts such as welfare economics were not mentioned at all, not even in passing. Other important ideas, such as general equilibrium concepts, were mentioned in one or two slides compared to several dedicated lectures most institutions devote.

2)These omissions are significant and put those affected at a disadvantage when seeking employment or continued education within the field of economics.

3)These facts have been recognised by the Department in their decision to change the content for the 2010 class as exampled by the new syllabus description provided on the EC202 course website, which now includes topics such as social choice, welfare, public choice, cost benefit analysis and general equilibrium none of which were covered in 2010/2011.

Teaching

1)Although we do not wish to comment on individual lecturers as we acknowledge they face a tough and often largely unappreciated job, it remains true that for 2 years running the class of 2009 have been subject to new lecturers with limited experience of teaching Microeconomics.

2)While we understand there will always be inexperienced lecturers who need to be given opportunities, we feel choosing the Microeconomics to be their proving ground for two years in a row has unfairly burdened the 2009 class.

3)We acknowledge that as students we are individually responsible for our own learning experience but this does not detract from the fact that good teaching makes a difference to the enjoyment and success of a course.

What should be done?

1)The department must take this opportunity to reflect on the failures outlined above and work to ensure that they are corrected for subsequent years.

2)The introduction of an optional non examined 1 term course for L100 students entering their 3rd year in 2011/2012 which covers those areas missed by the EC202 syllabus.

We do however wish to express praise for the Department in many other areas of teaching which have been of a very high standard. We also express praise for the Departments attempts to provide as broad as possible module choice for 3rd years, but express disappointment in the heavy use of prerequisites which prevent students taking advantage of this choice narrowing them to studying only what they have in previous years.

Signatories of this petition find agreement, wholly or in part, with the concerns and recommendations outlined above and by signing accept they are L100 students with experience of the EC201 and EC202 courses carried out over the 2009-2011 period.

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Neva EatonBy:
Technology and the InternetIn:
Petition target:
Economics Department, University of Warwick

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