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 SSC 263 - Microeconomics & Behavior


Microeconomics investigates economic behaviour at the micro level, and thus processes of decision making by individual households and firms. The emphasis of the course is on mainstream neoclassical economics, but attention is also paid to some limitations of this approach, and to how behavioral economics can serve as a substitute or complement.

The introductory weeks (Part 1 in the book) discuss central concepts such as rationality and cost-benefit analysis based on self-interest, and treats the general model of supply and demand. The rest of the course uses the assumption of rationality and self-interested behavior by consumers and firms, to provide the micro-foundations of supply and demand.

The next part of the course (Part 2 of the book) deals with the demand side of the economy, and hence with rational consumer choice theory. We discuss individual and market demand, applications such as intertemporal choice, extensions such as search theory, and challenges to the mainstream approach such as altruistic behaviour and cognitive limitations. The third part (Part 3 in the book) discusses the theory of the firm and market structure. We investigate production and costs and contrast perfect competition with monopoly. Next we discuss the labour market. The course ends with a discussion of general equilibrium, market efficiency, externalities, property rights, and the Coase theorem.


Dr. Kris De Jaegher​




The following is required in order to take this course:

  • SSC 160 Introduction to Economics

  • One of the following courses:

    • ​SCI 110 Elementary Calculus - Concepts & Connections

    • SCI 111 Mathematical Ideas and Methods in Context