Economics 201, Section 2: Microeconomic Analysis

Professor Christiaan Hogendorn
Fall 2001

Prof. Hogendorn's Homepage Course Syllabus

Course Policies

Time and Place: Tuesday/Thursday, 10:30-11:50, Butterfield A413.
Office Hours: PAC 330, Monday 2:00-3:00, Thursday 2:00-3:00.

Also when door is wide open. If door is ajar, I may be available, please knock. I also encourage appointments: talk to me before or after class, or call x2108 (afternoon is most likely to work). For questions other than appointment times, e-mail is also a good choice.
Internet: e-mail: chogendorn@wesleyan.edu
course policies (this document): http://chogendorn.web.wesleyan.edu/201.html
course syllabus: http://chogendorn.web.wesleyan.edu/201_syllabus.html
Course Assistant: Mark Umbarger, mumbarger@wesleyan.edu

Weekly clinic, Sunday 7:00pm, PAC 125.
Description: This is a core course in the economics major that explores neoclassical microeconomic theory. We will study the major topics covered by this theory: consumer behavior, consumer demand, firm behavior, perfect competition, market power, market failures, and financial economics. The tools learned in this class are immediately useful in other economics classes, in many jobs in business and government, and in providing an alternative perspective on various topics in the social sciences.

Because microeconomic theory is mathematical, calculus is a prerequisite for this course and we will use calculus extensively. In order to learn the theory and how to apply it, we will do a large number of problems.
Textbook: Hal Varian, Intermediate Microeconomics, 5th edition, Norton. Note that many of the chapters in this book have a calculus appendix. When a chapter is assigned, always read the appendix too.
Other course material: All other assigned course material is on the web site.
Problem Sets: There will be 10 problem sets. Problem sets are due at the beginning of class. You may work with other students on problem sets, and you may turn in one set with multiple names on it. If one contributor to a problem set has a particularly creative idea, please cite accordingly.

There are also review problems in the syllabus. These do not have to be turned in, but you are responsible for understanding them. Some of the questions on the exams will be extremely similar to the problem sets and review problems.
Exams: There will be two hour-exams and a final exam.
Grading: 10% Problem sets
20% First hour exam
20% Second hour exam
40% Final exam
10% Class participation

Each problem set will receive a grade of 0, 2 (check minus), 4 (check), or 5 (check plus). Your lowest two problem sets will be dropped. Late problem sets will not be accepted.

Each question on each exam will receive a grade of 0, 1, 2 (the "hurdle" level of understanding), 3, 4 (minor errors), or 5. If your grade on the final exam is higher than your lower hour exam grade, then your lower hour exam will be dropped and your final will count for 60% of your grade. Because of this, you may not reschedule the hour exams. To make the grading fair to all, it is also important to avoid rescheduling the final exam, so this will be possible only in serious emergencies.

Final grades for the class will be curved to approximate the typical grade distribution in the Economics Department.
Attendance: Please attend classes regularly (your attendance is one component of "class participation"). If you know in advance that you will be late or have to leave early, please let me know. Please avoid coming in late so as not to disturb the rest of the class.