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Before you write

5 - Map Out The Subject.

How do all the things you are learning fit together?

How is this subject structured?

You need to really understand the parts

In economics we study Macro and Micro economics. “Macro” refers to the economy of a country as a whole. “Micro” refers to the economic behaviours of individual people, households and businesses.

Often in business we refer to a “Top-down view” and a “Bottom-up view.” This is a similar type of thing. We can look at a situation as a whole and we can look at the individual aspects of that situation. To understand that situation well we generally need to analyse it in both ways. This allows us to manage it better.

We believe that it is important to think about your subject in the same way. In a “micro” sense you need to know what each model you are taught does. You need to know how to apply it to, say, analyse a situation.

In a “macro” sense you need to know how the models fit into the subject. This means you need to understand when you use a particular model. Sometimes, to analyse a particular situation, more than one model is taught.

Teachers select particular models and theories, to use in their subject, that have been developed by academics or industry researchers. For some topics in a particular subject there can be many theories that have been developed over the years. Sometimes a model falls out of favor and may be replaced by another. The bottom line is that there are often many that your teacher can chose from.

Your teacher may teach you more than one model covering a particular topic in their subject. Sometimes these models “overlap” meaning that while they cover some similar ground they also both cover some new ground.

To do well in an assignment you need to:

  • Know which model to use.
  • Know how to apply the model.
  • Provide sufficient “evidence” (detail) to show you are using it well to fully answer the question or sub-question.

We recommend that you “Map out” your subject to better understand what to include in your report or essay. This means to carefully think through what each of the different models is there for. It has been taught for a reason and you need to understand in what situations you use the model. This helps ensure that you are using the right model to answer assignment questions.

A mind-map is a great way to map out the subject. You can use it to help you ensure that the structure of the subject is crystal clear.

Ask your teacher to clarify any models that are unclear. This includes any models that are overlapping. This helps take away the confusion about which model to use and when to use it.


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