Welcome to the homepage for ECON200, Introductory Macroeconomics. Below you will find links to all class lectures, as well as some relevant videos and information I’ve created or pulled together from the internet. If you have anything you think would be worth adding, please let me know. You can find me in my office on: Tuesday and Thursday during two time slots, 10:45am-12:00pm and 2:00pm-3:15pm. Office hours are occasionally rescheduled due to conflicts. Please try to make an appointment before coming by.

Syllabus

Please register for FlatWorld using your JMU email address, and invitation code HW-C7FE56. If you need help, check out this document, and if you have any trouble, check out the chat bubble in the lower right hand corner of the site. They are relatively quick to respond to any issues.

Note on textbooks: This semester we are using two main textbooks. First, we are using a customized online textbook by Taylor and Weerapana available through FlatWorld for $29.95. At the FlatWorld site, you can enter codes you purchase from the bookstore, as well as choose if you want additional versions of the textbook (downloads or paper). We are also using the CORE Team Econ textbook. This is free, but you have to register. There is also a paper version of this book available for $49.95. Links to relevant sections are provided throughout. While it might be confusing, I am doing this in an effort to minimize costs to you.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers:
  • When is my midterm/Canvas Quiz/FlatWorld assignment due?
    • Look at the Canvas calendar. All dates are posted there.
  • When is my final exam?
    • Search Google for "JMU Final Exam Schedule," or if you have trouble with that website, just click here or here for a schedule.
  • Where is the final exam?
    • In our regular classroom.
  • Where do I find PowerPoint slides?
    • Here. They are also on Canvas in the "Files-PowerPoint" folder.
  • When are office hours?
    • Look in the syllabus, or move your gaze up a couple of inches.
Tutoring:
  • Tutors are privately hired and will often be happy to work with groups of students.
  • Hire tutors early in the semester! Tutors are other JMU students who often get busy with their own work!
  • A list of available tutors can be found at the bottom of this page

Lectures


Material for each Canvas Quiz is listed in order below. Required and suggested readings are listed below.

Lecture 0 (PPT): Math - Video Lecture stream in Canvas using your JMU login

First Day Reading

Lecture 0 includes some algebra, a little geometry, and some useful equations you will need to know and understand to succeed in this course. I have put together a post that describes the math you need to succeed here, as well as numerous ways to practice.

I will not go over this in class unless you have any questions.

FlatWorld Assignment 0
CANVAS QUIZ 0 ON MATH REVIEW VIDEO, CHAPTER 2 AND APPENDICIES

Lecture 1 (PPT): The Central Idea

Reading

  • Link for podcast to Planet Money’s “Making Christmas More Joyful, and More Efficient” discusses gift giving and how trade can create value out of nothing.
  • Link for videos and site on “Planet Money Makes a T-Shirt” which walks through the global supply chain of clothing, and helps put a human face on international trade.
  • Freakonomics’ Stephen Dubner’s podcast on gift giving. Steven Levitt gives a not so dour look at gift-giving, and Justin Wolfers comments.
  • Planet Money’s “Cappuccino Reconsidered” (download) discusses trade and the market economy at around the 6:00 mark. Tim Harford makes the point that economists have failed to understand the role of complexity in the market economy.
  • Thomas Thwaites’ project on making a toaster from scratch became a TED talk that shows just how interdependent we all are when thinking about manufacturing something as simple as a toaster. (Link to TED talk)

Invention, Innovation, and Entrepreneurs

A Video to Summarize Credit and the Economy

FlatWorld Assignment 1
CANVAS QUIZ 1 ON THE CENTRAL IDEA

Lecture 2: Macroeconomics: The Big Picture

Reading

  • TW Chapter 3
  • CORE Unit 1 with particular focus on:
  • CORE Unit 13.8 (up to GDP deflator)
  • CORE Unit 5.12
  • CORE Units 9.0 & 9.2

HELP on Compound Growth Equations (i.e., the Present Value Formula) and Gini Coefficients

HELP on Capital & Labor Markets and Unemployment

FlatWorld Assignment 2
CANVAS QUIZ 2 ON MACROECONOMICS: THE BIG PICTURE
Help with CQ2 - available after due date

Lecture 3: Money, Banking & The Fed

Reading

HELP on Banks and Lending

Interesting Articles on The Financial Crisis of 2008

Lehman Collapse, the Financial Crisis, and the Great Recession (10 Year Update)

FlatWorld Assignment 3
CANVAS QUIZ 3 ON MONEY, BANKING & THE FED

Midterm 1 up through here


Lecture 4: Firms, Financing & Corporate Governance

Reading

  • TW Chapter 5 (but SKIP 5.2)
  • TW Chapter 1.6 (present discounted value)
  • CORE 6.0-6.4 & 6.10

HELP on Bonds & Present Value

FlatWorld Assignment 4
CANVAS QUIZ 4 ON FIRMS & FINANCING

Lecture 5: GDP (Nominal and Real), Savings & Inflation (Measuring the Production, Income, and Spending of Nations)

Reading

  • TW Chapter 6
  • CORE 13.8

HELP on GDP, Savings & Inflation (also for Lecture 6)

FlatWorld Assignment 5
CANVAS QUIZ 5 ON SAVINGS & INFLATION

Lecture 6: CPI Inflation & Real Wages

Reading

  • TW Chapter 6.3
  • TW Chapter 7.1
  • CORE 13.8

HELP on Inflation (see HELP listed under Lecture 5)

CANVAS QUIZ 6 ON CPI INFLATION & REAL VALUES

Lecture 7: Supply & Demand

Reading

FlatWorld Assignment 6
CANVAS QUIZ 7 ON SUPPLY & DEMAND

Lecture 8: Market Failure, the Role of Government, & a Digression on International Trade

Reading

  • TW Chapter 8.5 (Interference with Market Prices)
  • TW Chapter 9 (Public Goods, Externalities and the Role of Government)
  • TW Chapter 19.0-19.1 & 19.4-19.6 (International Trade)
  • CORE 12

HELP on Supply & Demand (Regulations)

FlatWorld Assignment 8
CANVAS QUIZ 8 ON MARKET FAILURE

Midterm 2 up through here


Lecture 9: Capital & Labor Markets

Reading

  • TW Chapters 5.1 and 5.2
  • TW Chapter 7
  • Code.org on the lack of coders in the U.S. (1min, 5min, 9min)
  • APM’s Marketplace story on how small businesses try to create jobs (download).
  • Planet Money story on unemployment and labor force participation (download).
FlatWorld Assignment 9
CANVAS QUIZ 9 ON CAPITAL & LABOR MARKETS

Lecture 10: Potential GDP & Economic Growth (ignore material on inequality at the end)

Reading

  • TW Chapters 11 & 12

HELP on Economic Growth

FlatWorld Assignment 10
CANVAS QUIZ 10 ON ECONOMIC GROWTH

Help with CQ10


Lecture 11: Spending Allocation Model

Reading

FlatWorld Assignment 11
CANVAS QUIZ 11 ON THE SPENDING ALLOCATION MODEL

Lecture 12: Economic Fluctuations & Economic Fluctuations Model

Reading

  • TW Chapters 14 & 15

HELP on Economic Fluctuations Model

FlatWorld Assignment 12
CANVAS QUIZ 12 ON THE ECONOMIC FLUCTUATIONS MODEL

Help with CQ12

Final Exam up through here


VIDEOS

The Crisis of Credit Visualized

The Crisis of Credit Visualized from Jonathan Jarvis on Vimeo.

Creative Destruction - Hyundai Commercial

Economics Themed Playlist