Microeconomics for Public Affairs

Description: Lecture, three hours; discussion, one hour. Introduction to principles of microeconomics with focus on social and policy problems. Study of decisions by firms and individuals, and implications for allocation of resources. Application of economic models to public issues such as social safety net, minimum wage, education, inequality, and poverty. Letter grading.

Units: 5.0
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Overall Rating 3.3
Easiness 2.9/ 5
Clarity 3.0/ 5
Workload 3.1/ 5
Helpfulness 3.4/ 5
Most Helpful Review
Winter 2020 - Yes, this course is challenging; however, there has been significant improvement from what I heard the class was like last year. This was my first economics course ever and I felt like I was actually gaining something from the course and that it wasn't as terrible as previous reviews had made it seem. Professor Bau does go quite fast in her lecture, but everything is very on par with what is in the textbook so if you even skim the readings or read the summary at the end of each chapter, you'll understand her lectures a lot better. There is also a free PDF of the textbook online, albeit a different version, but it didn't make a difference to me. Her problem sets are difficult; however, she encourages group work and the midterm and final is basically the same thing as the problem sets, just with different numbers. 9 people got perfect scores on the midterm, pre-curve, which just shows how the course is not impossible. Also, there is extra credit on the problem sets and I went to my TAs office hours a lot, and she basically helped me do every problem set. Furthermore, she is so helpful during office hours and even has a tutor if anyone needs the extra help. I would take the other reviews with a grain of salt regarding the whole final exam thing because her hands truly were tied when the Academic Senate first released the statement that professors had to give a final exam. She has been really understanding and flexible the entire quarter and ended up letting us choose to use our midterm exam grade to be our final exam grade as well. Honestly, if you walk in knowing that you will have to actually work hard in the course, you'll do well. The curve is also really good like she understands that the course is hard and tells us that if we get around a B on the midterm, we're in a good spot.
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