Unit 1

Welcome to Comparative Economic Systems, ECON 260. I’m Jim Luke, your professor for this course. I’m looking forward to our on-line “conversations” about economic systems.

This course is a bit different from most of the courses I teach. Normally, I teach Econ 201 and Econ 202, the Principles of Micro-economics and Macro-economics courses. Those courses are chock-full of models and theories. There’s a lot of material to cover in each of those courses because, frankly, 4-yr universities require that we cover all those theories and models. The principles courses involve a lot of math, graphs, and analysis. As a result, sometimes in those courses we spend more time “studying the trees” and we don’t get to “study the forest”, the big picture.

But this course is about the big picture of economics. It’s about how societies organize themselves to have a better life. It’s about poverty and what’s the best way to reduce or end it. It’s about growth and what’s the best way to achieve it. It’s about what our social and individual economic goals are. It’s not about math or graphs or analytical techniques. Instead it’s about how each us and all of us achieve a better standard of living.

When you start each Unit you will see a page like this.  It describes exactly what you need to do to complete the Unit in the course and where you can find the material.

What you need to do:

  1. Readings:
  1. Obtain a copy of the Maddison book – download the .pdf file. Your option of whether to print or read on screen. It is 100 pages long.  Link here and in D2L in Unit 1 in Content.  It wouldn’t hurt to start reading now. We’ll read the whole book in the next 6 weeks.
  2. Post to “Who Are You”? Forum – You must post to the “Who Are You”” forum. The purpose of this forum is to introduce yourself and to meet your fellow classmates. This Unit 1 forum is the only required discussion forum that is only in Desire2Learn.  All the other Discussion forums will be on this website. You will receive instructions soon about how to login to this website to post comments and posts.
  3. Complete Quiz 1. Quiz 1 is a short Quiz that is worth 10 points. Quiz 1 can be found in Desire2Learn under Content.  The subject matter involves how the course is structured, course requirements, and expectations. Essentially, quiz 1 tells me (the instructor) that you are in the course, have gotten started, know how to do some basic navigation, and know what is required of you. Like all the unit quizzes, you are allowed 2 attempts at Quiz 1. Your highest score of the two attempts will count toward your grade.

WARNING:If you fail to complete the graded work for Unit 1 by the deadline you risk being dropped from the course by the Instructor for non-attendance. I use the Quiz 1 and the Unit 1 “Who Are You” forum as evidence that you are active in the course, know the requirements, and intend to complete them. IF YOU CANNOT COMPLETE Unit 1 BY THE DEADLINE, YOU MUST CONTACT ME.

Leave a Reply