Introduction to Economic Thought

Commerce & Business Administration
Course Code
ECON 1125
Semester Length
15 Weeks X 4 Hours per Week = 60 Hours
Max Class Size
Method(s) Of Instruction
Typically Offered
To be determined


Course Description
The course provides the student with a preliminary approach to exploring fundamental issues of economic analysis, with a focus on understanding the nature of capitalism. Presentation of the ideas of prominent economists, such as Adam Smith, Karl Marx and J.M. Keynes, who have shaped and challenged our understanding of the laws that regulate economic society, will be a prelude to discussing contemporary issues in economic thought.
Course Content
  1. Scarcity, choice and opportunity cost
  2. Pre-capitalist Europe
  3. Adam Smith and the Industrial Revolution
  4. Malthus and Ricardo
  5. The Socialists
  6. Marx's critique of capitalism
  7. Marshall and the Neoclassics - The development of microeconomics
  8. Walrus
  9. Veblen and Galbraith
  10. The great depression and the Keynesian revolution - the emergence of guided capitalism.
  11. Schumpeter
  12. Friedman
  13. Free trade
  14. Perestroika - restructuring the Marxist legacy
Learning Activities

Lectures and seminars.

Means of Assessment
Term Tests 30% - 65%
Written Assignments     0%-35%
Final Examination 30% - 40%
Class participation - instructor evaluation    05% - 10%
Total         100%


Students may conduct research as part of their coursework in this class. Instructors for the course are responsible for ensuring that student research projects comply with College policies on ethical conduct for research involving humans, which can require obtaining Informed Consent from participants and getting the approval of the Douglas College Research Ethics Board prior to conducting the research.

Learning Outcomes

To provide students with a preliminary understanding of alternative approaches to the study of fundamental economic issues, theory and analysis.  At the end of the course, the student will be able to:


  1. demonstrate an understanding of the interaction between the process of economic development and the development of economic ideas;
  2. will demonstrate an understanding of the major differences, both theoretical and ideological, between Classical, Neo-Classical, Marxist and Keynesian economics;
  3. employ the basic tools of economics, such as supply and demand, to analyze the economic problems confronting modern economics.  Selected topics may include free-trade, the relationship between unemployment and inflation and the economic restructuring of Marxist economies.
Textbook Materials

Textbooks and Materials to be Purchased by Students

References will be chosen from the following list, as determined by the instructor.

  • Heilbroner, Robert L. The Worldly Philosophers, Latest Ed.  New York:  Simon and Schuster Inc.
  • Hunt, E.K. and H.J. Sherman. Economics, Latest Ed.  New York:  Harper and Row.
  • Canterbery, E. Ray.  The Making of Economics, Latest Ed.  Belmont, California:  Wadsworth Publishing Company.
  • Ibsen, Four Great Plays by Ibsen;   Voltaire, Candide;   Orwell, Animal Farm.



BC Pre-Calculus 11


No corequisite courses.


Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

These are for current course guidelines only. For a full list of archived courses please see

Institution Transfer Details for ECON 1125
Coquitlam College (COQU) COQU ECON 100 (3)
Langara College (LANG) LANG ECON 1XXX (3)
Simon Fraser University (SFU) SFU ECON 1XX (3)
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU ECON 1XXX (3)
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU ECON 2XX (3)
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) UBCO ECON 122 (3)
University of British Columbia - Vancouver (UBCV) UBCV ECON 1st (3)
University of Northern BC (UNBC) UNBC ECON 1XX (3)
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV ECON 1XX (3)
University of Victoria (UVIC) UVIC ECON 1XX (1.5)
Vancouver Island University (VIU) VIU ECON 1st (3)

Course Offerings

Summer 2023