MA107 Half Unit
Quantitative Methods (Mathematics)
This information is for the 2021/22 session.
Dr James Ward
This course is compulsory on the BSc in Economic History with Economics, BSc in Economics and Economic History, BSc in Environmental Policy with Economics, BSc in Geography with Economics, BSc in International Social and Public Policy and Economics, BSc in Management and BSc in Social Policy and Economics. This course is available on the BSc in Accounting and Finance, BSc in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics, BSc in Economics, BSc in Government and Economics, BSc in Philosophy and Economics, BSc in Philosophy, Politics and Economics, BSc in Politics and Economics and Diploma in Accounting and Finance. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit. This course is available to General Course students.
A-level Mathematics (or equivalent).
Students with A-level Mathematics who are confident of their mathematical skills may, regulations permitting, also consider the full unit MA100 Mathematical Methods.
The aim of this course is to develop the basic mathematical tools necessary for further study in economics and related disciplines. To this end we focus on: techniques of calculus (differentiation, partial differentiation, optimisation and integration), methods of linear algebra (use of matrices), and the solution of difference and differential equations. The ideas are taught systematically, with emphasis on their application to economic problems. Examples are used throughout the course for motivation and illustration.
Specific topics are as follows: sets, functions, equations, graphs. Difference equations, sequences, limits. Differentiation, inverse functions, exponential and logarithmic functions. Partial differentiation, chain rule, homogeneous functions. Optimisation in two variables: unconstrained and constrained. Lagrange multipliers. Vector notation and convexity. Matrix notation, systems of linear equations, inverse matrices. Integration. Differential equations.
This course is delivered through a combination of classes and lectures totalling a minimum of 30 hours across Michaelmas Term. This year, apart from pre-recorded lecture videos, there will be a weekly live online session of an hour. Depending on circumstances, classes might be online.
Written answers to set problems will be expected on a weekly basis.
The course follows M Anthony & N L Biggs, Mathematics for Economics and Finance: Methods and Modelling, CUP, 1996. There are many other books with titles like Mathematics for Economists which may be of some use, but they won't cover the entire course.
Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the January exam period.
Course selection videos
Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.
Important information in response to COVID-19
Please note that during 2021/22 academic year some variation to teaching and learning activities may be required to respond to changes in public health advice and/or to account for the differing needs of students in attendance on campus and those who might be studying online. For example, this may involve changes to the mode of teaching delivery and/or the format or weighting of assessments. Changes will only be made if required and students will be notified about any changes to teaching or assessment plans at the earliest opportunity.
Total students 2020/21: 551
Average class size 2020/21: 18
Capped 2020/21: No
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Problem solving
- Application of information skills
- Application of numeracy skills
- Specialist skills