Credit points


Campus offering

No unit offerings are currently available for this unit


10cp from 100 level units in Economics or ECON200 Economics: Policy Frameworks and Markets

Teaching organisation

3 hours per week for twelve weeks or equivalent.

Unit rationale, description and aim

Understanding markets and market failure is integral to the work economists do in microeconomics. This unit builds upon the content and skills students learned in Microeconomics 1 by providing students with an analytical approach to learning microeconomic terms, concepts and models. This unit will emphasise rigorous logical reasoning and the application of theory to contemporary issues and will explore the responsibilities of individuals, businesses and government in dealing with market structures, market failures and their impact. Students will examine different market structures and evaluate the effectiveness of microeconomic reform in Australia. This unit will involve students using isoquant and isocost analysis of firms and analyse the role of the government in reducing market failure. This unit aims to provide students with a deep understanding of the major streams in microeconomic thought.

Learning outcomes

To successfully complete this unit you will be able to demonstrate you have achieved the learning outcomes (LO) detailed in the below table.

Each outcome is informed by a number of graduate capabilities (GC) to ensure your work in this, and every unit, is part of a larger goal of graduating from ACU with the attributes of insight, empathy, imagination and impact.

Explore the graduate capabilities.

On successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

LO1 - Explain intermediate economic concepts and their connection to contemporary microeconomic issues (GA5, GA7, GA8)

LO2 - Discuss the responsibilities of individuals, businesses and the government in dealing with market failure (GA2, GA3, GA5)

LO3 - Apply mathematical ideas, economic models using information technology (GA10)

LO4 - Identify and discuss the role of the government in the market (GA2, GA4, GA8)

LO5 - Analyse the impact of different market structures on individuals, firms, institutions and governments (GA5, GA7, GA8).

Graduate attributes

GA2 - recognise their responsibility to the common good, the environment and society 

GA4 - think critically and reflectively 

GA5 - demonstrate values, knowledge, skills and attitudes appropriate to the discipline and/or profession 

GA7 - work both autonomously and collaboratively 

GA8 - locate, organise, analyse, synthesise and evaluate information 

GA10 - utilise information and communication and other relevant technologies effectively.


Topics may include: 

  • Introduction; markets, prices, consumer and producer surplus 
  • Consumer theory – how consumers (including First Nations) make decisions; 
  • Different market structures – Perfect Competition, Monopoly, Monopolistic Competition and Oligopoly; 
  • Producer theory; 
  • Markets: information, resources and labour market; 
  • Market failure and the Government; 
  • Externalities, climate change and the environment; 
  • Inequality and the redistribution of income; 
  • Income disparities among Aboriginal peoples, and between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples. 
  • Government policies: Microeconomic Reform.

Learning and teaching strategy and rationale

Mode: Attendance or multimode 

This unit embraces a constructivist approach to learning where students are encouraged to acquire intermediate microeconomics concepts and assimilate these with prior knowledge, content and skills learned in Microeconomics 1. The lectures will provide content and relevant theory to real world examples. The tutorials will provide students opportunities to work together on constructing and applying economic models at an intermediate level.   

In multimode offerings: pre-recorded or streamed lectures will provide content and theory and face to face or streamed tutorials or webinars will provide opportunities for students to work on activities, discuss and debate ideas and develop advanced skills in microeconomics.  

This is a 10-credit point unit and has been designed to ensure that the time needed to complete the required volume of learning to the requisite standard is approximately 150 hours in total across the semester. To achieve a passing standard in this unit, students will find it helpful to engage in the full range of learning activities and assessments utilised in this unit, as described in the learning and teaching strategy and the assessment strategy. The learning and teaching and assessment strategies include a range of approaches to support your learning such as reading, reflection, discussion, webinars, podcasts, video etc.

Assessment strategy and rationale

Mode: Attendance or multimode 

The assessment items have been particularly designed to cover a variety of tasks, support discipline standards, and enable a differentiation of levels of achievement. This assessment is designed for an attendance mode or multimode offering.  

  1. The skills development activity is scaffolded to ensure that students undertake problem solving, economic simulation activities, and case studies that will equip students with knowledge of economic theories to solve realistic, complex, and contextually rich situations that might involve analysis of the market behaviour of economic participants. Students will build on this fundamental information in the subsequent tasks.  
  2. Research assignment provides students with an opportunity to undertake research into the scholarship on a specific topic which might include behaviour of real world Australian and foreign firms in the particular market structure, behaviour of the households under different market conditions (e.g. the rise of sharing economy) and other topics, and to develop further communication and writing skills.  
  3. Final exam

The final examination is based on the fundamental content knowledge and skills built in the skills development activities and research assignment. The purpose of this assessment is to tests students’ application of skills, theories and knowledge developed throughout the unit. Students will be given problems and case studies that relate to individual and firm decision making under different market structures, analyse production and cost decisions of companies, evaluate the role of the government in solving market failures such as climate change and will be asked to use their critical thinking and analytical skills to provide recommendations at the intermediate level of economic analysis. 

Overview of assessments

Brief Description of Kind and Purpose of Assessment TasksWeightingLearning OutcomesGraduate Attributes

Weekly skill development in class activities 

Through these activities, students will be able to improve their knowledge of the relevant economic theories, concepts, models and practices, recognise market failures and the responsibilities that economic agents have in dealing with them.


LO1, LO2, LO3

GA3, GA5, GA7, GA8, GA10

Research assignment 

The purpose of this assignment is to develop student’s ability to analyse, investigate and evaluate economic behaviour using appropriate theories, mathematical ideas and technology.


LO2, LO3, LO4

GA2, GA3, GA5, GA7, GA8

Final exam 

The final exam will test students’ ability to critically think and apply the skills learned across the semester. 

Students will be given problems and case studies that relate to individual and firm decision making under different market structures, analyse production and cost decisions of companies, evaluate the role of the government in solving market failures such as climate change and will be asked to use their critical thinking and analytical skills to provide recommendations at the intermediate level of economic analysis.


LO1, LO2, LO4, LO5

GA2, GA3, GA4, GA5, GA7, GA8

Representative texts and references

Acemoglu, D., Laibson, D., and List, J. (2018). Microeconomics, 2nd Edition, Pearson. 

Baumol, W. and Blinder, A. (2019). Economics - Principles and Policy, 13th Edition. Cengage Learning, Melbourne. 

Gans, J. King, S. Byford, M. and Mankiw, N. (2018), Principles of Microeconomics. 7th Edition. Cengage Learning, Melbourne. 

Hubbard, G., Garnett, A.M., Lewis, P., and O’Brien, P. (2016), Essentials of Economics, 3rd Edition. Pearson Education, Sydney. 

Miller, R.G, (2018) Economics Today: The Micro View, 19th EditionPearson Education, London. 

Parkin, M. and Bade, R. (2019), Microeconomics: Australia in the Global Environment, 2nd edition, Pearson Australia 

Pindyck, R and Rubinfeld, D. (2009), Microeconomics. 7th Edition. Pearson Education, Sydney.

Further references 

Australian Bureau of Statistics,  

Have a question?

We're available 9am–5pm AEDT,
Monday to Friday

If you’ve got a question, our AskACU team has you covered. You can search FAQs, text us, email, live chat, call – whatever works for you.

Live chat with us now

Chat to our team for real-time
answers to your questions.

Launch live chat

Visit our FAQs page

Find answers to some commonly
asked questions.

See our FAQs