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Assignment Questions

Production Possibilities Curve

Module 1 – Case

Thinking like an economist: The basic vocabulary of the field

Production Possibilities Curve

The Production Possibilities Curve is an economic model that is used to represent many economic concepts such as scarcity, opportunity cost, and efficiency.

Required Case Readings:

Rittenberg L. and T. Tregarthen (2009). Chapter 1 (sections 1-3): Economics: The Study of Choice Principles of Microeconomic Analysis. FlatworldKnowledge.com. Retrieved June 6, 2011 from: click here

Rittenberg L. and T. Tregarthen (2009). Chapter 2 (sections 1-4): Confronting Scarcity: Choices in Production Principles of Microeconomic Analysis. FlatworldKnowledge.com. Retrieved June 6, 2011 from: click here

After reading the materials listed above, please address the following questions in a 4-5 page essay:

1. How does a college education increase one?s human capital?

2. Does your college tuition fully reflect the opportunity cost to you of taking the course? What is your personal opportunity cost of taking this course?

Review the Case in Point essay ?The European Union and the Production Possibilites Curve,? in section 4 of Chapter 2 in the Principles of Microeconomics online text listed above to address the following two questions.

3. Does a reduction in trade barriers cause a country to move closer to its production possibilities curve or does it cause the production possibilities curve to shift outward? What factors would cause the production possibilities curve to shift outward (economic growth)?

4. Using the same case, what role did comparative advantage play in trade among member nations? What was the effect on the standard of living among trading nations?

Case Assignment Expectations:

Use concepts from the modular background readings as well as any good quality resources you can find from the cyberlibrary or other internet search engines. Please be sure to cite all sources within the text and a reference list at the end of the paper.

Length: 4-5 pages double spaced and typed

The following items will be assessed in particular:

Your ability to understand fundamental economic concept such as opportunity costs.

Some in-text references to the modular background readings (APA formatting not required).

The essay should address each element of the assignment. Remember to support your answers with solid references including the case readings.

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