This is a free course offered by the Saylor Foundation.
'Math for Economists will help you assemble a toolkit of skills and techniques to solve fundamental problems in both macroeconomics and microeconomics. The material covers both precalculus and calculus concepts and should help you identify the best approach to solving problems. For example, an economist may be called upon to determine the right mix allocation of capital to a production process. The tools in this course will help you evaluate the options and select from the best alternatives. Advanced courses in economics typically utilize mathematical techniques beyond basic calculus; so, gaining practice in fundamental skills can serve as a good basis for further study. Of note, this course applies precalculus and calculus; this is different from “applied math,” which economists typically use to refer to probability and statistics.
This course begins with a survey of basic optimization tools and then applies them to solve problems over several periods in time. These optimization tools describe feasible choices and then direct you to the best possible solution. In essence, they will help you evaluate an economic environment and determine the best course of action. The role of risk in financial decisions is explored in relation to individual choices and macroeconomic processes. The equitable distribution of resources is then considered. In other words, this class will explore whether an optimal solution is indeed also fair to the participants and society. A specific application, game theory, is presented as one of the major recent advances in economic theory. The final topic returns to microeconomic problems such as taxes, elasticity, and specific types of supply and demand curves.
The materials included in the course offer a framework that you can use to apply quantitative skills. You should liberally use Saylor course materials (MA001, MA003, MA005, ECON103/MA101, and MA102) to refresh their general techniques. This course fits into the major as a bridge between quantitative theory and specific applications to problems in economics. Completing this course can greatly help students successfully build a toolkit for the intermediate courses, ECON201 and ECON202.'