Principles of Economics

Module WI001056

This Module is offered by Chair of Public Finance and Industrial Organization (Prof. Frhr. von Weizsäcker).

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Module version of SS 2015 (current)

There are historic module descriptions of this module. A module description is valid until replaced by a newer one.

available module versions
SS 2015WS 2012/3

Basic Information

WI001056 is a semester module in German language at Bachelor’s level und Master’s level which is offered in winter semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Catalogue of soft-skill courses
Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
180 h 60 h 6 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


This course provides an introduction to the basic concepts of economics. It is devided into two parts: micro- and macroeconomics. Microeconomics deals with the behaviour of individual economic units, such as households, business firms, and public institutions. The main concern is how these units interact to form markets and industries. How can consumer decisions be explained and how can aggregate demand be derived from consumer choice? Which are the factors that determine the production decisions of companies? Which mechanisms give rise to an equalization of supply and demand? Which interrelations exist between market power and social welfare? What is a monopoly? What are the consequences of market failure? Macroeconomics takes an aggregated perspective. In particular, it deals with the topics of growth, unemployment, inflation, and monetary as well as fiscal policy.

Learning Outcome

At the end of the module the students will be able to understand and explain the basic principles of economics. On the micro level, this includes consumer behaviour as well as firms’ production decisions. The students will be able to analyze basic mechanisms that give rise to the equalization of supply and demand in competitive markets. Having attended the lecture, the students will be able to understand the interrelation between market power and social welfare and will be able to explain market failures. On the macro level, students will be able to identify and explain the main sources of growth, unemployment and inflation. Moreover, they will be able to analyze the basic tools of monetary and fiscal policy.



Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VU 4 Grundzüge der Volkswirtschaftslehre (WI001056) einzelne oder verschobene Termine

Learning and Teaching Methods

The module consists of a lecture as well as an exercise course. The lecture content will be conveyed to the students by means of a verbal presentation. In the exercise course participants apply the acquired knowledge by solving exercises and implementing case studies. The course aims at encouraging students to independently deliberate the economic problems, which are discussed in the lecture and in the relevant literature.


text books, script


Mankiw, N. Gregory: Principles of Economics, 6th Edition, Southwestern Educ Pub, 2011 (auch in Deutscher Übersetzung) AND Bofinger, Peter: Grundzüge der Volkswirtschaftslehre, 3. Auflage, Pearson Studium, 2010.

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

Students receive credit for the course by passing a multiple choice exam (written, 120 minutes). The examination is designed to assess the participants' capabilities to apply economic theory in order to discuss and solve problems within limited time and without auxiliary means. Participants should demonstrate their capacity for abstraction (thinking in economic models) and concretization (interpreting and applying the results of the model). The examination questions refer to the content of the lecture and the exercise course.

Exam Repetition

There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.

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