Summarise the Economics Syllabus with Aplomb – Macroeconomics
National Income (Introduction to Macroeconomics)
A piece of key advice which Mr Koh dispenses to his Economics tuition students is to dedicate sufficient time to memory exercise to this topic. For example, students are expected to be thoroughly familiar with the multiplier process, as well as to be able to explain national income equilibrium using the AD/AS or circular flow model.
That being said, topical questions on national income are certain to appear in the case study as well. Students should be familiar with the rules for assessing an economy’s performance and the level of living standards from data contained within a table. To this end, the use of the methodologies taught in Mr Koh’s Economics tuition classes (especially the DIRCO approach) is useful in helping students apply what they have learnt in a systematic manner.
Macroeconomic Aims and Issues
From exercises taught during Mr Koh’s Economics tuition classes, students can see that a basic understanding of the concepts under macro goals and policies is not enough. To improve their chances of scoring well in the exams, students should take note of the following Cs:
- Combine: Instead of a “silo mentality” where students understand the causes, consequences and cures for macro problems as 3 discrete parts, they should be able to relate say the consequences of a macro problem to causes of other macro problems. At the same time, understanding cures to macro problems should always start with an identification of the root causes of the problem. To this end, the 1-on-3 exercise and the A3 exercise (taught during Mr Koh’s Economics tuition classes) are crucial to bridging these concepts to build a more holistic understanding.
- Context: We cannot over-emphasise the importance of the context in a macro question. Context here can refer to the nature or state of an economy. For example, when attempting questions on the causes of inflation in the Singapore context, students should not provide a blow-by-blow account of the different theoretical causes of inflation. Instead, they should focus on how Singapore is especially vulnerable to imported inflation, and may experience the occasional demand-pull inflation (from external demand) or asset-price inflation from hot money inflows. Meanwhile, the state of an economy also affects the viability of different macro policies. For example, fiscal policy is not feasible for an economy with a huge budget deficit.
- Completeness: Given the scope of points that should be covered in an essay answer, students should make use of Mr Koh’s Economics essay structures (e.g. GPLS, CFCE, DICE) where applicable to ensure completeness in their analysis, and to save time on planning an essay from scratch.