Behavioural and Experimental Economics

Department of Economics, Business School

College of Social Sciences


Code 24240

Level of study Third/Final year

Credit value 10

Semester 1

Pre-requisite modules Microeconomics A – 03338 and Microeconomics B - 03342

Other pre-requisites None

Module description

The module provides a foundation in behavioural economics and the role of experimental methods in economics. The traditional approach in economics is to explain market outcomes and economic decision-making using simple theoretical models based on perfectly rational, self-interested agents who maximise their well-being by carefully weighing up the costs and benefits of different alternatives. Behavioural economics, on the other hand, aspires to relax these stringent assumptions and develop an understanding of how real people actually make decisions. Analogously, experimental economics also contrasts with the approach that, until recently, was more standard. It uses laboratory techniques as a supplement or alternative to drawing data exclusively from the field.

The module will introduce students to behavioural and experimental economics, discuss these fields from a methodological perspective and examine several areas of economic analysis in which they are applied.

Teaching and learning methods

2 hour lectures per week