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Peer Review

Flash and QuickTime Movies for Principles of Microeconomics - Pure Competition

by Larry Reynolds


Overall Numeric Rating:

4.5 stars
Content Quality: 4.75 stars
Effectiveness: 4 stars
Ease of Use: 4.75 stars
Reviewed: Jan 23, 2013 by Business Editorial Board
Overview: This short video presentation provides an overview of the characteristics of a purely competitive market. The lesson is presented in sequential steps that use the supply/demand curve taking the learner through the salient features of market output showing price elasticity and equilibrium, rules for short-run profit maximization, factors around marginal revenue and marginal cost, and concludes with an overview of how a company can increase profits by producing and selling at a price that exceeds the marginal costs. The presentation can be used by students to study independently about the subject of pure competition and as a supplement to a class lecture on the subject.
Type of Material: Presentation
Recommended Uses: The material is presented as a typical economics lesson. It can be used to reinforce learning as as support to a class lecture. It can lead to further study and mastery through research and the application of “real world” data. Further study could include computer-based simulations, case studies, and group research to allow students the opportunity to explore purely competitive principles in a relevant and interactive environment. Teachers can pose questions to empower students to conduct further research. Questions might be: How are price and output levels determined in the overall market and for the individual firm? Explain fully how the firm will decide how much to produce and what to charge in order to maximize its profits or minimize its losses both in the short run and the long run. Why does marginal cost determine the willingness of a firm to sell at differing prices? What is the maximum amount any firm should be willing to lose?
Technical Requirements: Viewed in IE 9.0.8112 and Google Chrome 24.0, Requires Flash plug-in, (Presentation runs best in Chrome)
Identify Major Learning Goals: * Identify the characteristics of a purely competitive market. * Differentiate the factors that created price elasticity and equilibrium * Recognize how a company can maximize profits in the short-run. * Gain an understanding of the conditions required for purely competitive markets.
Target Student Population: High school and/or undergraduate college students.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills: Would need at least a basic introduction to the concept of Supply and Demand and graphing labels as well as a basic foundation in algebra.

Evaluation and Observation

Content Quality

Rating: 4.75 stars
Strengths: • Complete description, simple to operate and review, visually appealing. • Decent graphics and narrative describing the dynamics of the formulas. • Shows a nice overview of elasticity and short turn profit margin. • Could easily be incorporated into a lecture. It is general enough so that any instructor might use it--or parts of it.
Concerns: • Audio is a little fast and could improve in quality.

Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool

Rating: 4 stars
Strengths: • Concept is visually effective in helping to understand the concept. • The format of this module makes for a very effective as a teaching tool as it is portable and adaptable.
Concerns: • Basic concept is present but will likely require a few reviews to fully understand the labels and/or concepts. • Prerequisite knowledge at the beginning would be helpful. • A clear and slow narration would be very effective allowing the learner to think and assimilate the content.

Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty

Rating: 4.75 stars
Strengths: • Can be reset and reviewed as needed. • The presentation provides navigation buttons to move forward or backward between slides. Nice use of color to identify stationary and moving points.
Concerns: • It is certain that one time through the tutorial will not be enough to understand the concept. • It is vague how this flash video might promote student discovery, or how students might actively engage with this content if presented in the classroom. • It would be nice if real world scenario's were included to reinforce learning.

Other Issues and Comments: • Good representation of an economic concept, but may need additional explanation. • An introduction at the beginning of the presentation to include the purpose of the video and learning objectives. • Could use closing remarks at the end to provide closure for the learner.