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EC989: Behavioural Economics

  • Alexander Dobson

    Module Leader
  • Lory Barile

    Module Lecturer
15/18 CATS - Department of Economics
Spring Module

Principal Aims

To broaden students' knowledge of how psychological and experimental findings influence economic modelling, especially in relation to preferences and judgement in situations involving risk and time. To broaden students' knowledge of the way models and theories are empirically or experimentally tested.

Principal Learning Outcomes

By the end of the module the student should have the theoretical and empirical tools and knowledge to analyse the problems and particularities related to individual Behaviour and Economic Choices that cannot be explained by the standard Economic rational agent-based theory.


The syllabus may cover, but is not limited to, the following areas:

1) Effect of reference dependent preferences, loss aversion, present bias and social preferences, in the labor, in the financial and in other important markets.

2) The relationship between choice utility and subjective wellbeing.

3) Effect of macroeconomic variables on subjective wellbeing.

The course will have an emphasis on the empirical identification of the different models, but it does not require an advanced econometric knowledge.


Core Module
C8P7 - Year 1
Optional Module
L1P6 - Year 1, L1P7 - Year 1, C8P8 - Year 1
Pre or Co-requisites
15 CATS - None
18 CATS - Basic knowledge of econometrics and microeconomics theory.


Assessment Method
15 CATS - Coursework (100%)
18 CATS - 2 hour exam (100%)
Coursework Details
4000-word essay (100%)
Exam Timing

Exam Rubric

Time Allowed: 2 Hours

Answer TWO questions. All questions carry equal weight (50 marks).

Approved pocket calculators are allowed

Read carefully the instructions on the answer book provided and make sure that the particulars required are entered on each answer book. If you answer more questions than are required and do not indicate which answers should be ignored, we will mark the requisite number of answers in the order in which they appear in the answer book(s): answers beyond that number will not be considered.

Previous exam papers can be found in the University’s past papers archive. Please note that previous exam papers may not have operated under the same exam rubric or assessment weightings as those for the current academic year. The content of past papers may also be different.

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