Faculty of Arts

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitSchool of Arts and Social Sciences, Malaysia
Monash Passport categoryPeer Assisted Learning (Act Program)
OfferedMalaysia Second semester 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Joel David Moore


This unit examines the interaction between politics and the economy. Students will be introduced to both classic texts and recent research dealing with the impact of political forces and processes on economic policies and outcomes. No background in economics is required and economic concepts will be explained and discussed with the minimum use of jargon and mathematics.

Through lecture, online discussion, and tutorial participation, students will explore both political science and economic theories with an explicit focus on the practical tradeoffs that exist when resolving competing values such as fairness, equality, and maximizing human welfare. These issues tend to be highly polarising and current trends in media and technology are reducing the ability of people to discuss and resolve these competing values. One explicit goal of this unit is for students to develop the skills necessary to identify the competing values associated with a particular economic policy and use empirically grounded theories to find practical solutions that best intermediate those values. These skills are incredibly valuable for society and unfortunately tend to be tragically under-developed.


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

  1. Apply key political economic theories to current issues and problems;
  2. Explain the difference between the dangers posed by market failures and government failures;
  3. Identify actors that are positively and negatively impacted by different types of economic redistribution;
  4. Communicate ideas effectively in both face-to-face and online environments;
  5. Assess the strengths and weaknesses in own and peers' writing;
  6. Collaborate with peers on a major project using effective teamwork and online collaborative technologies;
  7. Connect the theories covered in class to ongoing research by unit instructors and expert bloggers;
  8. Identify and resolve divergent values in pursuing a particular economic goal.


Tutorial/Forum Participation: 20%
Group Project Peer Review: 15% (students will not receive credit for the final paper without completing the peer review assignment)
Group Project Final Paper & Briefings: 40%
Class Test: 25%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

One 2-hour lecture,
One1-hour tutorial per week.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


First year International Studies sequence or any first year Arts sequence