Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: image009










Instructor - Robert F. Mulligan

"Practical men, who believe themselves exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist.  Madmen in authority, who hear voices in the air, are distilling their frenzy from some academic scribbler of a few years back.” - John Maynard Keynes

Office hours -  MWF 1:00-2:00 PM, TTh 10:00-11:00, or by appointment.  I am always happy to talk to students outside my scheduled hours.  Feel free to drop in without an appointment, but if you are coming from off campus, call or email first to make sure I will be available.


Office – Forsyth 104E, Phone - (828) 227-3329. 


1. Text - Microeconomics, McConnell, Brue, & Flynn, 20th edition.


Red Zone Campaign


Western Carolina University supports its campus community members in their right to healthy, happy, consensual relationships and is dedicated to developing a culture of respect and nonviolence. Early in the first and second year at college, students enter the “Red Zone,” where they are more at-risk for unwanted sexual experiences on college campuses. And, according to NCHA 2013 data, 16.0% of WCU men and women indicated being in an emotionally, physically, or sexually abusive relationship in the past 12 months. As a result, the Red Zone Campaign encourages and empowers students, faculty, and staff to develop an open dialogue on the dangers of sexual violence and to speak up when they see violent behavior occurring.


If you notice red flags in yours or a friend’s relationship, are experiencing violence or have in the past, you have a number of resources available to you:

• Counseling and Psychological Services (828.227.7469 or

• REACH of Macon County services in Jackson County (828.586.8969 or

To report a crime, please contact University Police at 828.227.8911 (Emergency line).

For more information, please visit or contact Sarah Carter at


Office of Disability Services


Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Western Carolina University is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for students with documented disabilities and/or medical conditions.  Students who require reasonable accommodations must identify themselves as having a disability and/or medical condition and provide current diagnostic documentation to the Office of Disability Services.  All information is confidential.  Please contact the Office of Disability Services at (828) 227-3886 or come by Suite 135 Killian Annex for an appointment.


Student Support Services


Student Support Services provides support to students who are either first-generation, low-income or those who have disclosed a disability with: academic advising, mentoring, one-on-one tutorial support, and workshops focused on career, financial aid and graduate school preparation. You may contact SSS at (828) 227-7127 or email for more information. SSS is located in the Killian Annex, room 138.


Writing and Learning Commons (WaLC)


Electronic format (with hyperlinks):

The Writing and Learning Commons (WaLC), located in BELK 207, provides free small-group course tutoring, one-on-one writing tutoring and academic skills consultations, and online writing and learning resources for all students.  All tutoring sessions take place in the WaLC or in designated classrooms on campus. To schedule tutoring appointments, log in to TutorTrac from the WaLC homepage (

) or call 828-227-2274. Distance students and students taking classes at Biltmore Park are encouraged to use Smarthinking and the WaLC’s online resources. Students may also take advantage of writing tutoring offered at the Biltmore Park campus on certain days of the week; call 828-227-2274 or log in to TutorTrac and select “Biltmore Park Writing Tutoring” for availabilities.


The Mathematics Tutoring Center (455 Stillwell,, 227-3830) provides tutoring in all lower-division math and many CS courses, help with mathematical concepts in other disciplines, and workshops on study skills specific to mathematics courses. Tutoring is available on a drop-in basis, 9-5 and 6-9 pm Monday-Thursday, and 9-5 on Friday or by appointment.


Academic Calendar includes dates for all breaks, university closures, final exams, etc.  The academic calendar can be found at:



"The world consists of facts, not of things." - Ludwig Wittgenstein

          "Economics is the science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses." (Lionel Robbins, Essay on the Nature and Significance of Economic Science, 1932).  Note that economics is about human behavior, not about money.  It studies how we act to realize our chosen ends given the limitations imposed by scarce means which have alternative uses.  If means don't have alternative uses, there is no choice about which ends they should be used for.  If means are not scarce, they do not impose a limitation on our behavior or the realization of our wants.


This course will enable you to:


a. Develop an understanding of economic markets and how they function to transmit information, provide incentives to economic agents, allocate resources, and distribute income, and satisfy peoples’ wants.
b. Explore the different roles played by households, firms, and the government in the economy.
c. Analyze rational choice and the role of cost in agents' decision making.
d. Explore how ethics and value judgments enter into economic decisions.
e. Show how economic principles govern public as well as private choices.


This course is a Liberal Studies course.  The learning goals of the Liberal Studies Program are for students to:

        Demonstrate the ability to locate, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate information;

        Demonstrate the ability to interpret and use numerical, written, oral and visual data;

        Demonstrate the ability to read with comprehension, and to write and speak clearly, coherently, and effectively as well as to adapt modes of communication appropriate to an audience;

        Demonstrate the ability to critically analyze arguments; demonstrate the ability to recognize behaviors and define choices that affect lifelong well-being;

        Demonstrate an understanding of

        Past human experiences and ability to relate them to the present:

        Different contemporary cultures and their interrelationships;

        Issues involving social institutions, interpersonal and group dynamics, human development and behavior, and cultural diversity; scientific concepts and methods as well as contemporary issues in science and technology;

        Cultural heritage through its expressions of wisdom, literature and art and their roles in the process of self and social understanding.


This course is a Perspectives course.  The primary goals of the Perspectives courses are:

        To promote love of learning and to cultivate an active interest in the Liberal Studies;

        To build on the Core's foundation through practice and refinement of areas of academic emphasis;

        To provide students with a broadened world view and knowledge base;

        To provide experiences in the arts, humanities, and social sciences from which connections between disciplines can be revealed;

        To provide an introduction to the challenges of living in a global society;

        To create opportunities for reflection on values, and for discussing differences in values in a critical yet tolerant manner;

        To afford opportunities to make career or disciplinary choices.


In addition, each Perspectives course will be expected to include emphasis on one or more of the following:

        Critical analysis of arguments

        Oral communication

        Service learning

        Moral reflection

        Cultural diversity

        Any other creative but defensible area of intellectual development that a discipline wants to focus on, and that the program chooses to adopt.


          This course partly satisfies the P1 Social Science Perspective Requirement of the WCU Liberal Studies Program. Courses in Social Sciences provide systematic study of observational and analytic methods and findings of those disciplines that focus on the interpersonal functioning and institutional creations of human beings.  Courses in this category may focus on the scientific study of the mental and behavioral characteristics of individuals or groups or may focus on the description and explanation of political, economic, or legal institutions.  Included will be inquiry into basic social scientific concepts such as mind, behavior, class, society, culture, freedom, government, property, equality, and rights.

          As a component of the foundations of business knowledge, economics contributes an understanding of how and why individuals, as consumers and as managers of private and public sector organizations, make choices about the allocation of scarce resources. Economics examines how competition in markets leads to efficient production of goods and services, and the consequences of government intervention in private markets. Students gain an understanding of effective decision-making by managers of firms and other organizations. 

          Your education in economics thus prepares you for employment in a wide variety of jobs, or serves as an excellent foundation from which to pursue law school or other advanced degree work. Employment for economics majors ranges from very technically-oriented work, including business analysis and forecasting, with private firms, foundations or trade associations, to policy-oriented work with public sector agencies or private firms.  Economists work as loan officers at banks, budget analysts and market research analysts in firms, insurance actuaries, policy analysts for government agencies and industry groups, and in many other specialties where technical knowledge about consumer behavior, firm behavior, and policy implications is called for. 

          Virtually every large corporation in America, and numerous medium-sized firms, employs economists to help make appropriate pricing decisions for its products, to help evaluate the impact of government regulations, and to forecast future demand and supply conditions within the industry.  Trade organizations representing all firms in an industry hire economists for the same reasons.  Public sector agencies at the federal, state and local levels hire economists to monitor performance of the economy, to assess the desirability and impact of regulations, and to contribute to ongoing discussions of policy formation. Nonprofit groups such as hospitals, community foundations, charitable organizations and schools employ economists as well.


Spend no less than fifteen-twenty minutes each weeknight reviewing, recopying, and reorganizing your notes, in addition to reading the assigned chapters of McConnell.  This adds up to about 5-8 hours of study time each month.  Be committed to spending enough time each day to cover the material you need to, and to fully reviewing your notes and identifying areas requiring further work and things you need to ask me about.  Spread out this way, your study time will be much more productive than an equivalent amount of cramming before tests.   In addition to taking lecture notes in class, read, outline, and make notes on each text chapter.  Take the chapter quizzes posted on the course website to test your understanding and identify problem areas which need further work.  Some students find it helpful to attempt these quizzes before reading the chapter or before covering the material in class.  Take all the applicable chapter quizzes to prepare for exams.  The more time you have spent on the course, the easier it will be to spend additional time studying, and the more productive additional study time will be for you.  Start this strategy the first day of class, because the sooner you start, the easier it will be to continue.


The Writing and Learning Commons, Belk 207, 227-2274, email WaLC services are designed to provide a solid foundation for college success. Students in 100 and 200-level classes who participate in tutoring sessions have an opportunity to improve their knowledge of course content, to cultivate an understanding of their learning preferences, and to develop study strategies that can be transferred to upper-level courses. Online Learning Resources are available to all students and include strategies for time management, note taking, studying, and test preparation. WaLC Center tutors are successful students who are recommended by the faculty and trained in effective tutoring practice via an Internationally Certified Tutor Training Program. Tutoring sessions are available by appointment and on a drop-in basis. Visit the WaLC website


5. Course Policies & Organization

"Eighty percent of success is just showing up." - Woody Allen


a. Absence policy:

Class attendance is essential.  Attendance is important because: 

     1. Responsible adults display responsible behavior, and 

     2. Difficult concepts will be explained and administrative announcements will be made in class. 


"Be content with fruit, with flowers, with weeds, with thorns even, but gather them in the one garden you may call your own."

- Edmond Rostand, Cyrano de Bergerac


b. Grades:  Out of a total of 1600 possible points:

Test 1

100 points

Test 2

200 points

Test 3

300 points

Test 4

400 points

Test 5/Final Exam

500 points

E-Writing Assignment

100 points


1600 points

you will receive the following letter grade:

Letter Grade

Minimum Required Percentage




























"Champions keep playing until they get it right." - Billie Jean King


c. Exams:

     1. No make ups. 

     2. Cheating will result in an automatic grade of F for the course. 

     4. There will be five cumulative exams.  Exam 5 will be administered during the last week of class and may be taken in place of the final. A final exam will be given during the scheduled final exam period. You may take either or both. If you take both, only the highest score will count. If you do better on test 2 than test 1, your test 2 grade will count for both tests 1 and 2. 

     5.  If you do better on test 3 than test 1 or test 2, your test 3 grade will replace each of the earlier test grades it is higher than, etc. 

     6. Tests 1 - 4 each consist of 32 questions each, but are graded on a basis of 30 questions.  The extra two are for extra credit. 

     7. Test 5 consists of 35 questions.  Because there is no quiz after this test, there are five extra credit questions.

     8. The final exam consists of 70 questions.  Ten are extra credit. 

     9. Always bring a calculator on test days.  You will not be permitted to take any exams without a calculator.


d. Withdrawal from the course:

     1. Students considering withdrawal prior to the withdrawal deadline should make an appointment to discuss withdrawal with the instructor. This is to give me the opportunity to advise you of your options and standing in the class. I do not attempt to stop students from withdrawing. 

     2. Ws will not be given after the appropriate deadline except for documented medical or legal reasons. See the WCU Undergraduate Catalog.

     3. Every semester a number of students receive Fs because they stop attending class and taking exams, but do not formally withdraw through the registrar. Please don't let this happen to you.


6. Writing assignment:

Your graded writing assignment is to create a resume-like homepage on the professional networking website LinkedIn (  Register for a free, non-premium account.  At a minimum, list Western Carolina University as your school, from the year you enrolled, to the future year you expect to graduate.  Any other information is optional, but everything you include in your personal profile must be (a.) honest and factually correct, and (b.) presented in a mature, professional manner.  You may include information on past and current employment, extra-curricular activities, etc.  If you post a picture, it must present a professional appearance.   When you are done and ready for your profile to be graded, invite me to add you as a contact.  My email address is  This assignment is due on Friday, January 30, but you are welcome to complete it earlier.


7.  Accommodations for students with disabilities:

Western Carolina University is committed to providing equal educational opportunities for students with documented disabilities and/or medical conditions.  Students who require reasonable accommodations must identify themselves as having a disability and/or medical condition and provide current diagnostic documentation to Disability Services.  All information is confidential.  Please contact the Office of Disability Services for more information at (828) 227-3886.


8.  Course calendar:

Read assigned chapters before the day they will be discussed in class.