Serious Prerequisites: E201 or S201, and either M119 or M211 or M213
This course explores the wonderful, sometimes mysterious, world of microeconomic theory. The material briefly reviews, and then substantially extends, the knowledge acquired in the student's Introduction to Microeconomics course (E201 or S201). Professor Williams is large, furry, rarely drools and enjoys helping students one-on-one in his office. He teaches a highly structured, relatively challenging course. If attending lectures, taking good notes, and putting in some serious study time prior to exams is not part of your college routine, E321 is likely to have a negative impact on your GPA. In recent semesters, Professor Williams' E321 class has generated an average GPA of about 2.4 (C+/B-).
The math prerequisite should be taken seriously, but should not inspire a major panic attack in anyone who successfully completed M119, M211, or M213 and remembers how to do first and second derivatives. Calculus is an important tool in more advanced economic theory, so a little differential calculus is integrated into the course material from time to time in order to give students some initial exposure to the mathematical side of economics.
Grading is based on the student's performance on four exams. All exams focus entirely on the lecture material; the text is a supplement to lectures. Attending all lectures and taking good notes is critical to doing well in this course. Exams are a mix of short, well-focused essay questions and some nontrivial multiple-choice questions. In addition, students can supplement their exam scores with extra-credit points earned through participation in three computerized decision-making exercises.