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Economics

Economics is a very popular subject, both at IGCSE and A level, at DESC.  We offer the Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) IGCSE Economics programme and the AQA A level Economics programme. Both CIE and AQA Economics programmes are accepted by universities and employers as proof of knowledge and understanding of Economics.


CIE IGCSE Economics

Successful Cambridge IGCSE Economics candidates gain lifelong skills, including:

  • an understanding of economic theory, terminology and principles
  • the ability to apply the tools of economic analysis
  • the ability to distinguish between facts and value judgements in economic issues
  • an understanding of, and an ability to use, basic economic numeracy and literacy
  • the ability to take a greater part in decision-making processes in everyday life
  • an understanding of the economies of developed and developing nations
  • an excellent foundation for advanced study in Economics.

The IGCSE course is examined by two written papers at the end of Year 11.

The assessment has two components:

PaperAssessedQuestions
Paper 1: - 45 mins
- Multiple choice
Candidates answer 30 multiple choice questions.

Weighted at 30% of total available marks.
Paper 2: - 2h 15 mins
- Structured questions
Candidates answer one compulsory question, which requires them to interpret and analyse previously unseen data relevant to a real economic situation, and three optional questions from a choice of six.

Weighted at 70% of total available marks.

Candidates must take both papers.


AQA A level Economics

At A level the content is split into two main sections, the first section introduces students to micro-economic issues and the second section covers mainly macro-economic issues. At this stage of the course students will learn to appreciate that micro-economics and macro-economics are not entirely distinct areas of study. They will be aware that micro-economic principles often provide fundamental insights into understanding aspects of the macro-economy. Similarly, that economic issues and problems often contain both a micro-economic and macro-economic dimension.

We expect our A level Economics students to:

  • develop an interest in and enthusiasm for the subject
  • appreciate the contribution of Economics to the understanding of the wider economic and social environment
  • develop an understanding of a range of concepts and an ability to use those concepts in a variety of different contexts
  • use an enquiring, critical and thoughtful approach to the study of economics and develop an ability to think as an economist
  • understand that economic behaviour can be studied from a range of perspectives
  • develop analytical and quantitative skills, together with qualities and attitudes which will equip them for the challenges, opportunities and responsibilities of adult and working life

The A level course is examined by three written papers at the end of Year 13:

PaperAssessedQuestions 
Paper 1: Markets & Market Failure- written exam: 2 hours
- 80 marks
- 33.3% of A level
- Section A: data response questions requiring written answers, choice of one from two contexts worth 40 marks
- Section B: essay questions requiring written answers, choice of one from three worth 40 marks
Paper 2: National and International Economy- written exam: 2 hours
- 80 marks
- 33.3% of A level
- Section A: data response questions requiring written answers, choice of one from two contexts worth 40 marks
- Section B: essay questions requiring written answers, choice of one from three worth 40 marks
Paper 3: Economic Principles and Issues- written exam: 2 hours
- 80 marks
- 33.3% of A level
- Section A: multiple choice questions worth 30 marks
- Section B: case study questions requiring written answers worth 50 marks