Course Syllabus

Welcome to ECON307: International Trade

Specific information about this course and its requirements can be found below. For more general information about taking Saylor Academy courses, including information about Community and Academic Codes of Conduct, please read the Saylor Student Handbook.

 

Course Description

This course is a detailed survey of the theory behind international trade, trade policy issues, and the implications of tariffs and non-tariff barriers for trade and welfare. Covers theory of exchange rates, international finance, and global capital market. 

 

Course Introduction

This course will provide you with an analytical framework for the study of international trade. Historically, international trade has played a critical role in enabling countries to grow, develop, and become economically powerful. Through international trade in goods and services, the economies of different countries are more closely linked to one another now than ever before. At the same time, the world economy is more turbulent now than it has been in decades. Keeping up with the shifting international environment has become a central concern in business strategy and national economic policy. This course uses the same fundamental methods of analysis deployed in other branches of economics, as the motives and behavior of individuals and firms remain the same whether they are in the context of international trade or domestic transactions. You will learn, however, that international trade introduces an entirely new and different set of concerns as well.

This course will cover a broad array of relevant topics. We will explore both theoretical models and empirical studies as we seek to determine a model that best fits "real world" data. This course will frequently compare and contrast competing theories concerning the nature of international trade and the gains or losses thereof. We will work to understand the economic intuition behind technically demanding models and define the assumptions behind various theories before evaluating how well those models fit actual trading economies. We will also explore the relevance and policy implications of various theories/models, especially in terms of growth, income distribution, and development.

This course is comprised of the following units:

  • Unit 1: International Trade Theory
  • Unit 2: International Trade Policy
  • Unit 3: Exchange Rates and Open-Economy Macroeconomics
  • Unit 4: International Macroeconomic Policy

 

Course Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • distinguish between international trade and international finance;
  • discuss the importance of trade in the world and how this has changed over the past decades;
  • describe the current world trading system and the basic rules underlying this system;
  • explain and discuss historic, current, and emerging economic models in the United States and around the world;
  • discuss recent developments in the field of international macroeconomics;
  • use an analytical framework to examine contemporary international economic issues;
  • discuss international trade and the issues arising from the globalization of markets;
  • discuss the concepts of foreign exchange, its importance to individuals, businesses; and the performance of national economies, and how foreign exchange markets work;
  • analyze policy issues related to international trade;
  • describe the legal system governing international economic transactions and international economic relations; and
  • answer the four trade questions: "Why do countries trade?,” "How does trade affect production and consumption in each country?,” "Which country gains from trade?,” and "Within each country, who are the gainers and losers from opening trade?”

Throughout this course, you'll also see related learning outcomes identified in each unit. You can use the learning outcomes to help organize your learning and gauge your progress.

 

Course Materials

The primary learning materials for this course are readings, lectures, video tutorials, and other resources.

All course materials are free to access, and can be found through the links provided in each unit and subunit of the course. Pay close attention to the notes that accompany these course materials, as they will instruct you as to what specifically to read or watch at a given point in the course, and help you to understand how these individual materials fit into the course as a whole. You can also access a list all of the materials used in this course by clicking on Resources in the course's "Activities" menu.

 

Evaluation and Minimum Passing Score

Only the final exam is considered when awarding you a grade for this course. In order to pass this course, you will need to earn a 70% or higher on the final exam. Your score on the exam will be tabulated as soon as you complete it. If you do not pass the exam on your first attempt, you may take it again as many times as needed, following a 7-day waiting period between each attempt. Once you have successfully passed the final exam you will be awarded a free Saylor Certificate of Completion.

Any unit assessments and other types of quizzes in this course are intended to help you to gauge how well you are learning and do not factor into your final course grade. You may retake all of these as many times as needed to feel that you have an understanding of the concepts and material covered. You can locate a full list of these sorts of assessments by clicking on Quizzes in the course's "Activities" menu.

 

Tips for Success

ECON307: International Trade is a self-paced course in which you the learner determines when you will start and when you will complete the course. There is no instructor or predetermined schedule to follow. While learning styles can vary considerably and any particular student will take more or less time to learn or read, we estimate that the "average" student will take 142 hours to complete this course. We recommend that you work through the course at a pace that is comfortable for you and allows you to make regular (daily, or at least weekly) progress. It's a good idea to also schedule your study time in advance and try as best as you can to stick to that schedule.

Learning new material can be challenging, so below we've compiled a few suggested study strategies to help you succeed:

  • Take notes on the various terms, practices, and theories as you read. This can help you differentiate and contextualize concepts and later provide you with a refresher as you study.
  • As you progress through the materials, take time to test yourself on what you have retained and how well you understand the concepts. The process of reflection is important for creating a memory of the materials you learn; it will increase the probability that you ultimately retain the information.
  • Although you may work through this course completely independently, you may find it helpful to connect with other Saylor Academy students through the discussion forums. You may access the discussion forums at https://discourse.saylor.org.


Suggested Prerequisites

In order to take this course, you should:

 

Technical Requirements

This course is delivered fully online. You will be required to have access to a computer or web-capable mobile device and have consistent access to the internet to either view or download the necessary course resources and to attempt any auto-graded course assessments and the final exam.

  • To access the full course including assessments and the final exam, you will need to be logged into your Saylor Academy account and enrolled in the course. If you do not already have an account, you may create one, free of charge, here. Although you can access some course resources without being logged into your account, it's advised that you log in to maximize your course experience. For example, some of the accessibility and progress tracking features are only available when you are logged in.

For additional technical guidance check out Saylor Academy's tech-FAQ and the Moodle LMS tutorial.

 

Fees

There is no cost to access and enroll in this course. All required course resources linked throughout the course, including textbooks, videos, webpages, activities, etc are accessible for no charge. This course also contains a free final exam and course completion certificate.



Last modified: Friday, August 10, 2018, 9:52 AM