"An Introductory Microeconomics In-class Experiment to Enhance Critical Thinking and the Integration of Modern Theory" Free Download

DAVID G. RABOY, George Mason University -Schar School of Policy and Government

This paper presents an in-class experiment used as a teaching tool in an introductory microeconomics class at the undergraduate college level. It is directed at a critical but challenging concept for principles students — constrained utility maximization and a methodology to intuit preferences. The experimental project is nested in the literature pertaining to the current transition in microeconomic theory motivated by contributions from behavioral economics and transactions-cost economics, among other elements; modern pedagogical models; experimental economics; and experiments as in-classroom teaching tools. While not dispositive as to the general efficacy of in-class experiments, the paper provides an example of an alternative instructional approach which is helpful to students under strictly defined protocols. The benefits to students include heightened understanding of the core subject topic, greater interest in the subject matter, a closer connection to real-world economics, and enhanced critical thinking capabilities.


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Editor: William Walstad, University of Nebraska at Lincoln


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Advisory Board

Economics Educator: Courses, Cases & Teaching eJournal

Associate Professor of Economics, University of Nebraska at Lincoln - Department of Economics

Associate Professor of Economics, SUNY Oswego - Department of Economics

Dean, Kelce College of Business, Pittsburg State University, Emeritus Professor of Economics, Mississippi State University - College of Business

Professor of Economics, University of Richmond - E. Claiborne Robins School of Business

Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Economic Education, Purdue University - Department of Economics