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ES20011: Intermediate microeconomics 1

[Page last updated: 02 August 2022]

Academic Year: 2022/23
Owning Department/School: Department of Economics
Credits: 6 [equivalent to 12 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 120
Level: Intermediate (FHEQ level 5)
Semester 1
Assessment Summary: CW 30%, EX 70%
Assessment Detail:
  • Coursework (CW 30%)
  • Examination (EX 70%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Requisites: Before taking this module you must ( take ES10001 OR take ES10010 ) AND ( take ES10005 OR take MA10207 OR take ES10158 )
Learning Outcomes: By the end of this unit, students should have a clear understanding of the conceptual issues underlying optimisation problems facing the consumer and the firm, both under the assumptions of certainty and uncertainty. They should have developed further their understanding of microeconomics from 1st year and be in a good position to build on the knowledge gained in this course should they take the ES30025 Advanced Microeconomics course in final year.

Aims: The aim of this unit is to build on first year microeconomics by providing a more in-depth and rigorous approach to microeconomic analysis. It serves as part of a year long course in intermediate microeconomics, although it can also be taken as a self contained unit. The emphasis will be on consumer theory, both in the context of certainty and uncertainty, and production theory as applied to the perfectly competitive firm. The importance of intuition in motivating and explaining economic problems is stressed throughout the unit.

Skills: Students should gain the
* ability to frame and solve consumer and firm optimisation problems in a formal manner.
* ability to parameterise relevant aspects of economic problems.
* ability to interpret results.
* ability to put forward policy prescriptions on the basis of analysis.

Content: The course is roughly based on the 1st half of the key text: Varian, H.R., Intermediate microeconomics, A modern approach, WW Norton & Company, 2006. The topics covered are:
* consumer theory
* intertemporal choice
* uncertainty & information
* competitive markets
* game theory.

Programme availability:

ES20011 is Compulsory on the following programmes:

Department of Economics
  • UHES-AFB03 : BSc(Hons) Economics (Year 2)
  • UHES-AAB03 : BSc(Hons) Economics with Study year abroad (Year 2)
  • UHES-AKB03 : BSc(Hons) Economics with Year long work placement (Year 2)
  • UHES-AFB04 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Mathematics (Year 2)
  • UHES-AAB04 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Mathematics with Study year abroad (Year 2)
  • UHES-AKB04 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Mathematics with Year long work placement (Year 2)
  • UHES-ACB04 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Mathematics with Combined Placement and Study Abroad (Year 2)
  • UHES-AFB01 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Politics (Year 2)
  • UHES-AAB01 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Politics with Study year abroad (Year 2)
  • UHES-AKB01 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Politics with Year long work placement (Year 2)
  • UHES-ACB01 : BSc(Hons) Economics and Politics with Combined Placement and Study Abroad (Year 2)
  • UHES-ACB03 : BSc(Hons) Economics with Combined Placement and Study Abroad (Year 2)

ES20011 is Optional on the following programmes:

School of Management
  • UMMN-AFB02 : BSc(Hons) Accounting and Finance (Year 2)
  • UMMN-AKB02 : BSc(Hons) Accounting and Finance with Year long work placement (Year 2)


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2022/23 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2023/24 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2022/23.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change in accordance with normal University procedures.
  • Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.
  • Find out more about these and other important University terms and conditions here.