St. Cloud State University General Education Goal Area 8 Designation

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St. Cloud State University General Education Goal Area 8 Designation Global Perspectives

Academic Affairs Use Only:

Response Date: ______________________ Proposal Number: _________________

Effective Date: ______________________

1. Prepared by: Nathan Hampton

Phone: 308-3825 Email:

2. Requesting Unit: Economics
3. Department, Course Number, Title: Economics 205, Principles of Macroeconomics
4. New Course  Existing Course 
5. Will this course be flagged as a diversity course?  No

Already Designated as Diversity  Diversity Proposal Accompanying This Form

6. Will this course also satisfy another General Education Goal Area?  No  Yes

If “Yes” specify which goal area.

Goal Area 5
7. Course bulletin description, including credits and semesters to be offered:

Economic decision-making, market processes, measurement and determination of aggregate prices and employment, money and banking processes, fiscal policy, and monetary policy. May be taken before or after 206. 3 Cr. F, S, Sum.

8. Indicate the clientele for whom this course is designed. Is the course for general education only, or

does it fulfill general education and other program needs for this or another department? Obtain

signatures from any affected departments.

The course fulfills general education and other program needs of this and other departments:

(1) students satisfying old GE Area 3 or new LE Goal Area 5, (2) students in College of Business since course is in the pre-business core, and (3) students majoring in economics since course is in the major core.
9. Indicate any changes that must be made in offerings or resources in your department or other

departments by offering this course.

10. For new courses or courses not yet approved for General Education, indicate any other SCSU departments

or units offering instruction that relates to the content of the proposed course.


11. Courses designated as General Education are included in the assessment plan for the Goal Area(s)

for which they are approved. Courses for which assessment is not included in the annual GE assessment report for two years will be removed from the General Education Program.

 The Requesting Unit understands and recognizes the above conditions.

12. Provide a concise explanation of how the following goal is a “significant focus” of the proposed course.

Goal Area 8: Global Perspectives

Develop a comparative perspective and understanding of one’s place in a global context.

Scarcity is a universal condition affecting all individuals, cultures, and societies. Thus all individuals, cultures, and societies must make choices. In macroeconomics, the consequences of these choices are measured for the nation as a whole through aggregate measure of output (GDP), prices (CPI), and employment. The similarities among all countries in measuring economic activity are developed. By comparing these measures across various countries, students gain an appreciation of their place in a global context. And when comparing each nation’s choices in response to scarcity and other macroeconomic problems, students discover that historical, cultural and political-economic factors condition either the options available or the choices made.
13. In order for a course to be designated as fulfilling Goal Area 8, it must address at least 4 of the 5 student learning outcomes (SLOs) below. Check the SLOs below that are focused on in the proposed general education course.
 1. Explain how they are connected and related to people elsewhere in the world.

 2. Describe similarities and differences among global places and populations.

 3. Analyze how political, economic or cultural elements influence relations among the world’s states, peoples, or societies.

 4. Analyze specific international issues and propose and evaluate responses.

 5. Articulate a vision of their individual roles and responsibilities in a common global future.

14. Discuss how each Student Learning Outcome checked above is achieved in this course. (Note: Although

descriptions of typical assignments or types of assignments may be part of this discussion, it is not

appropriate to submit copies of actual assignments.)

1. Production, consumption, and resource allocation decisions are shown to have both a domestic component as well as having impact on other people elsewhere in the world. Students are given primarily homework assignments where they have to show the components of spending, income, and employment and recognize that for the US, exports and imports account for 25% of the total spending.

Students explore and learn about the patterns of voluntary trade among countries in terms of objective measure (trade balance, balance of payments, foreign exchange rates, etc.), and develop the ability to explain why the volume of trade both fluctuates and increases. In written assignments, students are to show how differences in natural and human characteristics are the reason people trade, as well as how trade makes every participant in trade better off than if they do not trade, because the citizens of both countries enjoy higher standards of living. Since trade requires specialization (or producing more of a good than if you did not trade), this creates an interdependence and reliance among the trading partners. Thus students can show that cooperation and agreement is necessary for improved living conditions and growth.

2. Students compare countries in terms of their political-economic structures, their policy environment, their resource base, the extent to which they use markets to organize economic activity, and indicators of economic performance (growth rates, inflation rates, and unemployment rates), etc. Correlation of economic performance to indicators of economic and social progress is carefully examined through assigned paper or test questions. Discussions of how various societies address economic and social problems (as measured by an index of economic freedom, as well as the degree of bureaucratization and levels of corruption) arise throughout the course.

Students are given short paper assignments where they choose a country and then find its macroeconomic data on output, prices, employment, living conditions, social, political and economic freedoms, primary religion, and other differences. Also students compare the macroeconomic data in the US to the same economic data of other countries to rank countries by macroeconomic performance measurements (growth rate, inflation rate, unemployment rate).

3. Despite learning about factual differences among people in terms of output, wages, and other standard economic measurements, students also learn that most of the differences in those measurements is caused by political differences or due to various historical tendencies. Students learn standardized policy solutions, which often entail changes in political organization and decision-making structures, and learn how political or cultural differences make one solution more likely to be successful than another. Differences between rich (developed) versus poor (non-developed) counties are analyzed.

As mentioned in #1 above, differences in natural and human conditions are shown as the reason people trade, some of the human differences are cultural, historical or political. Readings and assignments will show students what these differences are and how they impact trade. A commonly measured difference is the Index of Economic Freedom that is updated every year by The Heritage Foundation as a composite index of 10 specific freedoms such as trade freedom, business freedom, investment freedom, and property rights covering 183 countries. Students are then to explain the link between economic freedom and economic opportunity and prosperity.

4. Trade policies of various countries, trade agreements (NAFTA, G-8 countries, etc.), and the influence of contemporary events such as the most recent financial market turbulence are learned by students. Students analyze the impact of China’s rise as a major economic power. Students learn the principles of exchange rate determination, and what causes changes in international financial flows.

The specific issues change every year, but students are given homework and test questions to analyze international trade issues and policy responses to current problems. For example, the current financial crisis, Greece’s debt crisis, proposed controls on greenhouse gas emissions, and the maturation of China’s and India’s economies are treated as shocks to an economy which may require fiscal policy or monetary policy response.

5. Students learn about their role as consumers and producers and how their decisions impact other countries. Students learn the value of free trade and the importance of both imports and exports for their own well being as well as the well being of others. Measures of output such as Gross Domestic Product are shown to increase when the connection with other countries that are different from us also increases.

Through readings and basic class assignments, student are required to compare the US economy to the rest of the world and recognize that the US is responsible for one-fourth (25%) of the total output produced in the world. Furthermore, students must show that as members of the world’s largest market, maintaining its openness and this country’s tradition and history of supporting free trade has major impacts on the welfare of other countries and their citizens.
15. List or attach the Course Outline (adequately described and including percentage of time to be allocated

to each topic). Curriculum Committees may request additional information. Topics larger than 20% need

to be broken down further. Indicate in your course outline where the Student Learning Outcomes

checked above are being met.

(10%) 1. Introduction to Macroeconomics

A. Scarcity, Resources, Output, Utility (SLO #2)

B. Circular Flow Diagram – the flow of output and resources

C. Real versus Nominal measurements and Performance Measurements (SLO #2 and #3)

(10%) 2. Production Possibility Frontier: Why People Trade.

A. Output choices, input choices, productivity (SLO #1 and #3)

B. Constant versus Increasing Opportunity Cost

C. Efficiency, Unemployment, Growth (SLO #2 and #3)

D. Specialization and Trade (SLO #1, #3, and #5)

(10%) 3. Markets: How People Trade

A. Producer or Seller Behavior in a Market – Supply (SLO #2)

B. Consumer or Buyer Behavior in a Market – Demand (SLO #1 and #3)

C. Interaction of Buyers and Sellers (SLO #3)

D. Buyer and Seller Adjustment to Changing External Influences (SLO #1 and #4)

(10%) 4. Market versus Non-Market Decision-Making

A. Market outcomes with good information

B. Markets for Inputs (SLO #1 and #2)

C. Restrictions on Market Prices

D. International Trade – Exports and Imports (SLO #1, #3, and #5)

E. Taxes (SLO #2)

(10%) 5. Performance Measurement 1: Growth Rate

A. Gross Domestic Product (SLO #1 and #3 and #5)

B. Nominal GDP vs Real GDP (SLO #2 and #3)

C. Growth Rate in US and Rest of World (SLO #1 and #2 and #3)

D. GDP as measure of output, welfare, standard of living, etc. (SLO #5)

(10%) 6. Performance Measurement 2: Inflation Rate

A. Consumer Price Index

B. Calculation and Accuracy of the Inflation Rate

C. Inflation Rate in US and Rest of World (SLO #1 and #2 and #3)

(10%) 7. Performance Measurement 3: Unemployment Rate

A. Labor Force (SLO #3)

B. Full Employment and Unemployment (SLO #3 and #4)

C. Unemployment Rate in US and Rest of World (SLO #1 and #2 and #3)

(10%) 8. Aggregate Supply and Demand: Connecting the Performance Measurements

A. Aggregate Demand – Nominal GDP – Total Spending (SLO #3)

B. Aggregate Supply – Resource Availability (SLO #3 and #4)

C. Full Employment Output (SLO #3)

D. Macroeconomic Problems and Self-Correction Mechanisms

(10%) 9. Fiscal Policy

A. Fluctuations in Macroeconomic Performance (SLO #4)

B. Contractionary Fiscal Policy (SLO #3 and #4)

C. Expansionary Fiscal Policy (SLO #3 and #4)

D. Multiplier Effect (SLO #3 and #4)

E. Policy Lags and the Political Process

(10%) 10. Monetary Policy

A. Money (SLO #1 and #2 and #3)

B. Federal Reserve System ((SLO #4)

C. Money Supply and Macroeconomic Performance (SLO #3 and #4)

D. International Exchange Rates (SLO #3 and #4)


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