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What Are the Different Types of Microeconomics Courses?

Erik J.J. Goserud
Erik J.J. Goserud

Economics may be defined in a variety of ways, ranging from simple to complex. Although these definitions usually revolve around monetary themes, at the heart of this social science is the study of human decision making. This discipline is broken into two primary sectors: microeconomics and macroeconomics. As their prefixes may suggest, microeconomics refers to the study of how individuals make these decisions, while macroeconomics takes a broader perspective in studying groups and societies. There are a number of microeconomics courses designed to help interested individuals learn more about this science, and although these courses vary greatly from school to school, most revolve around different approaches to studying individual choices in market decisions.

The three staples of most undergraduate microeconomics courses are introductory, intermediate, and advanced microeconomics. The outlines for these courses are likely similar across the board, with slight instructor and school variations. Outside of these three, however, there is the potential for a great deal of variety. Graduate courses may go beyond the stated three regular levels and focus on more theoretical and research-oriented concepts.

Businessman with a briefcase
Businessman with a briefcase

Examples of a university's microeconomics course offerings include Introduction to Microeconomics, The Market Society, and Price Theory. It is easy to see how many subcategories of microeconomics there are and how much potential for new microeconomics courses. Most take a general concept from the field and examine it in greater detail, as in Price Theory or Price and Distribution Theory. The field of microeconomics, as is the case with most disciplines in academia, is constantly evolving, leaving the ongoing possibility of new courses emerging, current courses evolving, or other microeconomics courses being no longer applicable.

Before signing up for microeconomics courses or committing to the study of economics, a student should evaluate his or her interest, dedication the field, and skill set to be sure that economics is the right fit. Logical thinkers, hard workers, and astute students with strong mathematics and numerical studies skills tend to do well in economics classes. This important discipline has a more dramatic effect on the lives of common citizens than most realize.

The policies that contribute to the lifestyles of the citizens of the world are often dictated by economic principles. For this reason, it is important that bright minds continue to pursue studies in economics to maximize quality of life. Microeconomics courses can help one attain the knowledge necessary to do so.

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Discussion Comments


@Soulfox -- perhaps that was once the case, but a lot of social sciences disciplines have moved away from economics and that may be partially due to students not doing will in those classes because they hate dealing with math. Still, your original point is valid -- an understanding of economics cuts across many fields and one would do well to take at least one micro and one macro class to gain some insights that might help them understand why the economy works as it does and what impact that has on people.


College students who aren't too adept at math might have to learn a certain comfort level with that discipline as microeconomics and macroeconomics are mandatory to a lot of disciplines. In the social sciences, for example, political science students at many colleges will take a couple of units in economics to get an understanding of how micro and macro concerns impact voting trends.

Fortunately, microeconomics in particular is based on theory as much as it is on manipulating numbers. The numbers are there to simply prove concepts -- students who hate math do seem to respond better to "result based" exercises rather than working page after page of formulas for reasons that are often not apparent to students.

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