Teaching Economics the CORE way: getting the students to work together on real-life policy problems.

Theme 4   Alternative teaching approaches.

Secondary school seachers.
Researchers and academics.

This presentation will focus on the recent development and implementation of two new teaching resources: CORE’s Economy, Society, and Public Policy (ESPP, a new introductory economics textbook) and its sister publication, Doing Economics (a compilation of up-to-date, data-based projects that address important policy problems using real data)

These two new e-books and associated resources are freely available and are used in parallel in the teaching of first year Economics Principles and were created by a worldwide collaboration of economists and social scientists, of which I am one of the many contributors.

CORE’s approach to teaching economics is student-centred and provides not just the necessary knowledge about the main economic principles and ideas but is motivated by recent real-world problems and real-world data and was designed to be highly interactive and to encourage students to work collaboratively.

In this talk, I will explain how this novel approach to teaching and learning economics has been implemented at Exeter University over the past two years, in a class of about 400 (non-specialist) students from a variety of undergraduate programmes, from BSc Business Economics to BA Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

The adoption of this new approach implied a complete break with more traditional teaching methods and led to a complete revamp of the way introductory economics is taught at Exeter. Students are now encouraged to first engage with the content by themselves outside of the classroom, and the lessons are wholly focused on application, discussion and group activities, from conducting economic experiments to class debates.

I will be reporting on how students responded to this change (the good and the bad) by providing student satisfaction data and student feedback, and, I hope, sharing ideas for an open and frank debate with the audience on collaborative learning and teaching in a post-covid era.

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