Loreto College - Coleraine, Co. Derry, Northern Ireland
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Academic Year 2016/2017

Head of Department:
Mr G McGouran

Teaching Staff:
Mrs S Mellon
Miss B Toner

What is Economics all about?
Economics is seen as a vitally important area of study for any young person considering a career in industry, commerce or politics. The study of Economics is a study of how the world works. It helps you understand more about how we can make the best possible use of the earth‘s scarce resources, the impact of government policies and the effects of globalisation.

What makes a luxury item such as a diamond more expensive than a necessity like water? Why should public transport be subsidised by the government? Should David Beckham be allowed to earn £120,000 per week? Should Britain join the single European currency? Why is China the fastest growing economy in the world and how will it affect me?

Q. Why study Economics?
By studying this course, you will gain an insight into some of the major problems and issues facing society today. For example:

• What is the market’s role in providing for society’s needs and wants?
• How can individuals and businesses manage their resources better?
• What are the possible solutions to environmental problems?
• How economic development can be sustained?
• How can all countries benefit from globalisation?

This course will help you to develop a variety of thinking and communication skills including investigating, analysing, evaluating, reasoning, drawing conclusions and making judgements. These skills will be invaluable in higher education and a variety of careers.

GCSE and A Level results are always excellent.  We have seen many students achieve top places within economics in Northern Ireland. 

We have two very well equipped classrooms with the economics department.  Both rooms have interactive whiteboards, TV, video and DVD facilities.  We have a wide variety of up to date texts and all students have the opportunity to subscribe to Economic journals.

What You Will Study in Economics
Economics teaching starts at Year 11 and no previous knowledge is expected.  The GSCE and A Level syllabi have similar content, differing mainly in depth and skills required.  A brief summary of the A Level course outline is below.  There is no coursework involved at GCSE or A Level.  GCSE students will undertake a case study in Year 12 as part of the final examination in June.  A Level assessment is through data response and structured essay questions.

AS 1:
Markets and Prices

In this unit, you will study the nature of the basic economic problem and the role of markets and prices in resolving it. You will look at a range of markets, examine why these sometimes fail to work efficiently and look at ways of correcting this failure.

AS 2:
The National Economy

This unit examines the nature and causes of contemporary national economic problems and investigates how these can be resolved. You will look at issues such as unemployment, inflation and economic growth and consider how effective government policy is in these areas.

A2 1:
Business Economics

This unit builds on the content of AS 1. It examines how firms make decisions about price and output in a variety of competitive situations. It investigates current influences on business such as environmental issues, globalisation and the growth of the internet. It also looks at government approaches to promoting competition.

A2 2:
The Global Economy

A2 2 further develops some of the understanding developed in AS 2. You will study international trade including the case for and against free trade, the UK balance of payments and exchange rates. The unit also covers the European Union, economic development, the effects of increasing globalisation and policy issues in an open economy

Extra Curricular Activities
Our courses enable students to enter nationwide competitions such as, ‘Student Investor’ and ‘The Bank of England Challenge - Target Two Point Zero’.  We have been very successful achieving top places regularly and we encourage pupils to enter because personal development and confidence grow considerably.  We also have regular school visits to Enterprise Agencies, organise the school bank and help organise a financial awareness day for Junior school.

Careers in Economics
Economics is a good career choice.  It will be of benefit to you in everyday life by helping you make informed decisions and choices. Economics can open
up a wide range of opportunities in higher education or a rewarding career.  Many ‘A’ Level students undertake courses such as Accountancy, Management, Banking, Business Studies, Law, European Studies, Finance, Politics etc.  Economics is a core element in these subjects and therefore makes university studies easier.  It is a very useful subject in combination with Geography, History, English, Computers, mathematics.  In previous years students have studies it along with science subjects to give them a ‘broad’ balance.  Economics is a useful subject from a personal development point of view, helping you to understand and talk about the major economic, social and political issues of the day!

How can I find out more?
There are a number of ways that you can find out more about studying economics.  These include:
• Teachers at your school or college
• Students who are already studying the subject
The Economics and Business Education Association
• Careers advisor
UCAS or CAO for details on entry