This project is a long-form writing project where you are required to come up with an interesting economic question, and provide some insight on this question using the methods and tools discussed in this course. You may complete the assignment as a report in Microeconomics (Type A), or in Macroeconomics (Type B).
Type A: For a Microeconomics report, you will notice some behaviour in your every- day life which you find unusual and which might be amenable to economic analysis. You will explain this behaviour, and provide some work towards analysing why this happens using the tools developed in this course.
Type B: For a Macroeconomics report, you will notice some macroeconomic indicators or trends which you find unusual and which might be amenable to economic analysis. You will explain this behaviour, and provide some work towards analysing why this happens using the tools developed in this course. This option will require typically greater use of data than a Type A assignment. You may use data from Australia, or any other country of your choice.
In either case: Your explanation may include references to work done by others on your economic question, and may also include appropriate real-world data. It may also include appropriate graphs and equations. Your explanation may be of strictly narrative form, where the phenomenon is discussed without the use of graphs or equations, and with only reference to your own thoughts, the ideas developed in class, and relevant data. Whatever is most appropriate for your chosen question is ideal.
Assignments of this type (particularly Type A) are sometimes called “Economic Naturalist Writing Assignments”. Many example economic questions for this type of assignment are available online. I encourage you to come up with your own question that is of interest to you.
Minor Restriction: If doing a Microeconomics report, you may not do a report on housing prices. It’s definitely an extremely interesting topic, but we do not have the kind of tools necessary to properly analyse this problem.
Word Limit: 1000 words Submission: Turnitin on Wattle
Word Processing Software: I strongly encourage you to use LATEX (or similar) to write your assignment. Microsoft Word (or similar) is also acceptable. A LATEX template for the assignment is provided on Wattle.
Requirements and Recommendations
You are required to:
- Choose a topic based on the description above.
- Complete an original report on your chosen topic of no more than 1000 words. A 1000 word report should be less than 5 pages, even with any pictures/graphs you wish to include.
- Write your paper using LATEX or similar. Microsoft Word is also acceptable. [A LATEX template is available on Wattle.]
- Submit the paper on Wattle using Turnitin in pdf format by the deadline. It is strongly recommended that you:
- Choose your topic soon.
- Endeavour to choose a topic you find interesting and unique.
- Talk (briefly) to your tutor, or at the Help Desk, about your choice of topic. They will have useful comments to make.
- Use the Report Template from Wattle to structure your paper. I encourage you to:
- Talk about your ideas with other people from class or your social circles. Bouncing ideas off others is great for clarifying your ideas.
- If you’re idea is not working out, and you have time to spare, dump it for a better one.
- Complete a draft, which can be looked at during the Help Desk times.
- Submit the work to Turnitin a little early. Particularly if you have not used Turnitin before; it can be volatile at times.
You will be graded based on a combination of the following factors:
- Quality of Analysis: How well the argument itself is developed. Includes how accurately and appropriately you have used the methods and tools developed in class. Can be judged on Accuracy, Precision, Logical Soundness, Lack of Bias, and Breadth and Depth of Analysis.
- Quality of Expression: How well the report is written and expressed. This is primarily concerned with the flow of argument.
- Topic Choice: The extent to which your topic choice aligns with the project description. For Type A: whether the topic is of relevance to you personally, and which is amenable to economic analysis. For Type B: whether the topic is an appropriate macroeconomic question, which is amenable to economic analysis.
- Use of Appropriate References: The quality and relevance of references used. For some topic choices there will be relatively few appropriate references; this is not a problem.
- Word Limit: The Assignment must be completed using LATEX, or Microsoft Word, or similar. The word limit must not exceed 1000 words (excluding references and reasonable footnotes).
- Referencing: References must be provided, the referencing system used must be consistent, and of sufficient detail to be able to find the references. We do not specify which specific referencing system must be used. A bibliography must be included.
- Proper Academic Conduct: As always, submitted assignments must be your own original material. Penalties for improper academic conduct range from a 10% penalty on this assessment to removal from the university.
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