ECON 3525 - Economic Policy Analysis III

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2024

This course is about the design and evaluation of economic and social policies. It provides students with the theoretical tools needed to design such policies and with the empirical tools needed to evaluate them. Students will apply these tools to write policy reports for the policy maker. Case studies and empirical examples will be discussed, and will offer a model for the issues which students are required to research and write about. This course is the capstone experience for the B.Ec.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ECON 3525
    Course Economic Policy Analysis III
    Coordinating Unit Economics
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week in Weeks 1-10 and up to 5 hours per week in weeks 11-12.
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Incompatible ECON 3523
    Assumed Knowledge ECON 2507, ECON 2514, ECON 2515
    Assessment Typically, progress reports and a final presentation
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Di Zeng

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    This course is about the design and the evaluation of economic and social policies. It provides students with the theoretical tools needed to design such policies and with the empirical tools needed to evaluate them.

    On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
    1. Provide a balanced and coherent discussion of conceptual, methodological and ethical issues underlying the identification, selection, implementation and evaluation of a variety of micro and macro-economic policy proposals.
    2. Apply what has been learned during the first two years of their undergraduate studies in economics to the description and evaluation of specific policies, relating to a variety of social and economic issues.
    3. Construct effective reports aimed at briefing policy makers, both individually and in groups, of a professional standard, to communicate the results of their analysis to non-economists, including the general public.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.


    Attribute 4: Professionalism and leadership readiness

    Graduates engage in professional behaviour and have the potential to be entrepreneurial and take leadership roles in their chosen occupations or careers and communities.


    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.


    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    The book for the course is Real-World Economic Policy: Insights from leading Australian economists, by Jan Libich.
    This book is essential for the course, since it is used in the tutorial sessions.

    It is available for purchase online at It is strongly recommended that you should buy it. Its 10% discount code is WOW10, and it can be used for both print and eBook versions, with 2-weeks free access to the eBook while print orders ship.

    Other readings and other resources will be provided on the MyUni site.
    Online Learning
    MyUni -

    A variety of online Resources will be provided via the above site, during the course.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The course will comprise of lectures, guest lectures, tutorial sessions and assigned tasks for self study. See description below for details.

    Lectures and tutorials will be delivered face-to-face.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Lectures: 2 Hours per week

    Tutorials: 1 Hour per week

    Research, writing and self-directed study expectation: 6-9 Hours per week.
    Learning Activities Summary
    Lectures: The lectures will summarise and review important economic concepts and principles relating to the design of economic and social policies as well as fundamental quantitative tools for the evaluation of such policies. Case studies and empirical examples will be discussed, and will offer a model for the issues which students are required to research and write about.

    Guest Lectures: There will be guest lectures in which researchers, policy makers and policy analysts will talk about their experiences related to the process of econom policy-making. These lectures will be conducted in the form of interactive discussions with the course co-ordinator and students.

    Tutorials will be based on presentation and discussion of case studies assigned out of the Economics of Public Issues book. Students in each tutorial group will be further divided into sub-groups. Each sub-group will work together on presentation of case studies assigned to them. When not presenting, students will participate in the discussion of the case studies being presented.

    Self-study: The course will make use of various blogs, podcasts and other material available fo social media to discuss topics of the days pertaining to economic policy making. Students will be expected to have done their background reading/listening prior to the lecture in which the relevant topics will be discussed.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Length Due Weighting Learning Outcome
    Policy analysis exercise Individual Approx 3 pages (12 pt, 1.5 spaces) Week 5 20% 1
    Newspaper Article Analysis Individual Approx 2 pages (12 pt, 1.5 spaces) Week 8 15% 3
    Active Participation Individual NA Throughout Semester 10% 1, 2
    Tutorial presentations Group 15-minute group presentations Twice during the semester 20% 1, 2 and 3
    Final Policy Evaluation Report Individual Approx 8 pages (12 pt, 1.5 spaces) Study week 35% 1, 2 and 3

    Assessment Related Requirements
    To pass this course, students need to secure an overall mark of at least 50%.

    There is no final examination.
    Assessment Detail

    There are five components towards the overall course outcome: 

    Policy analysis exercise (20%) - Students will use the policy analysis tools covered in the first several weeks of the course to briefly analyze policy impacts in given contexts. 

    Newspaper article analysis (15%) - Students will identify a non-commentary news article from newspaper/internet published after the beginning of the course, briefly summarize the news story and analyze into the backstage economic mechanisms and welfare consequences of different stakeholders. A detailed assessment outline and criteria will be given at the start of the course.

    Tutorial presentations (20%) - Students will form groups of five that will do two 15-minute group presentations on policy analysis throughout the semester. Details will be communicated at the start of the course. 

    Active tutorial participation (10%) - Students will attend the tutorials and actively participate in discussions of analytical problems and other groups' presentation.

    Final policy evaluation report (35%) - Students will identify a recent policy release or policy change in the current year and comprehensively evaluate the policy impacts. A written document of up to 8 pages (12 pt, 1.5 space), excluding figures and references, is to be submitted by the end of semester (in study week). 

    All assessments are to be submitted electronically on the MyUni site.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
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