Study Economics & Management with our Oxford Summer School 2018 | Students aged 13-15

Also available for students aged 16-18.

Class Summary

The Economics and Management course has been designed as an introductory course for students who are relatively or entirely new to either subject, to outline the sorts of theories and issues that business management theorists and economists are concerned with, that students might study at university, and that generally allow students to engage with the world around them to a greater degree.

In economics, students learn about the basic economic problem concerning scarcity and choice, study the supply and demand model, different models of market structure, the occurrence of market failure (e.g. due to the absence of markets for public goods, problems of information, and  externalities), and the incidence and effectiveness of government intervention. The differing theories of Adam Smith, John Maynard Keynes, and Friedrich August von Hayek are addressed and debated.

In management,  they look at the different objectives that firms may have (e.g. profit-maximisation,  revenue-maximisation, sales maximisation, market share) and the different organisational or market conditions under which these emerge, the impact of price elasticity on demand upon price and revenue decisions, the (managerial and other) sources of falling/rising average costs (i.e. internal/external economies of scale and dis-economies of scale), and the different techniques managers could use to motivate their workers.

Students further consider the purposes of advertising and branding, and to what extent firms should be constrained by ethical considerations; in this way, the course touches on the philosophy as well as the practice of economics and management. Classes involve discussion, analysis of articles, presentations (both by the teacher and by the students), and visual resources. Interactive elements such as ‘The Equilibrium Game’ express fundamental economic theory in an dynamic way: students are randomly allocated ‘buyer’ or ‘seller’ cards by the ‘broker’ and instructed to negotiate the best sale price per round.  This varied atmosphere ensures that all students to get the maximum possible learning experience out of the course, accommodating all learning styles as thoroughly as possible.

Students are also given the opportunity to consider and express their own point of view, both through an essay task set in the first week and through a group task where they decide and justify what motivational strategies are most appropriate in different scenarios. Students benefit from the diversity of backgrounds, cultures and nationalities on the Oxford Royale Academy Broadening Horizons programme, as they can share and exchange their experiences of different economic systems around the world, alongside considering how cultural differences affect management strategies; a vital area of knowledge in the modern globalised economy.

Expectations/Prerequisites

This course has been designed for complete beginners – all you need is enthusiasm and a willingness to grapple with new and often abstract concepts.

Suggested Reading

There is an optional and very short introductory reading for the economics aspect of the class here.