The International baccalaureate (IB) programme is highly prestigious and it’s an amazing pre-university qualification that many students earn for as it is a sure-shot ticket to excellence. Its undoubtedly a highly challenging course that demands a whole lot from students in terms of academics and extra-curricular activities.
IB programme offers a wide range of subjects for students to explore and this undoubtedly widens their horizon and encourage them to be broad-minded. This approach gives them ample time to decide what they would like to specialise in and the large amount of exposure that they get encourages them to think from various perspectives.
One of the subjects offered to students in the IB programme is Economics. IB programme in general is a challenging academic journey and every subject has its own obstacles and hurdles in learning along the way, which students need to pass by with resilience. This is the primary reason why Economics tuition in Singapore has gained lots of attention easily and students seek help now more than ever.
There are various tuition agencies which have a sizeable number of top economics tutors who are willing to teach students and guide them in a personalised manner. Students often doubt themselves of their own capabilities and are unsure of how to tackle economics exam in general.
So, here are some ways students can prepare themselves for IB economics exam in Singapore!
Similar to other syllabus, the basics of IB economics covers the fundamentals of microeconomics and macroeconomics. Beyond this, the thorough understanding of global economy is essential as well.
The broad topics covered in Microeconomics include:
- Demand & Supply
- Competitive Market Equilibrium
- Maximizing Behaviour of Consumers and Producers
- Elasticity of Demand and Supply
- Market Failure–Externalities and Common Pool or Common Access Failures
- Market Failure–Public Goods
- Market Failure–Asymmetric Information, market power
- The Market’s Inability to Achieve Equality
The broad topics covered in Macroeconomics include:
- Aggregate Demand and Aggregate Supply
- Macroeconomic Objectives
- Economics of Inequality and Poverty
- Demand Management (Demand-Side Policies)—Monetary Policy
- Demand Management—Fiscal Policy
- Supply-Side Policies
The concepts covered in Global economy are:
- Benefits of International Trade
- Trade Protection
- Arguments for and Against Trade Control/Protection
- Exchange Rates
- Balance of Payments
- Sustainable Development
- Way of measuring Development
- Economic Growth
Students often lack the understanding as to what their syllabus beholds for Economics and they are unsure of how to build their foundation. The step prior to developing exam skills is to essentially learn the subject material in depth. A comprehensive understanding of subject material is essential to apply the knowledge, solve case studies and write essays.
Revision is an important component of studies in general as its probably the one and only effective way to reinforce the material that has been learnt.
Our memory fades easily over time unless and until we try our best to continuously revisit the topics being learnt. By doing so, we strengthen our neurological connections and what once was in storage of short-term memory would soon become long-term memory.
PRACTICE TIME MANAGEMENT
The biggest problem with economics examination is time management. Writing with speed and accuracy, as well with presentable handwriting and completing the paper with having enough time to spare for checking seems to be a task that’s near impossible to accomplish.
During an economics exam it may always seem like a race against time and this is hence the reason behind compromised quality of essays in exam paper. Though students may be knowledgeable and may have the capacity to write well, their ability to perform well in an examination may be compromised if they do not know how to strategise well and write rapidly for their essays.
Planning is important
Writing an economics essay requires proper planning and without it, the writing would turn out clumsy and may not be succinct. This causes examiners to be distracted by unnecessary pieces of information which does not link back to the concept being asked about nor answer the question being asked.
Economics tutors would hence emphasise the importance of planning out before starting the essay. A thorough planning should comprise of,
- A stance (For or Against the statement given in the question)
- Point of Arguments
- Point of balance
- Facts and figures that support the arguments (For substantiation and credibility)
- Appropriate diagrams (ex. demonstrating growth and recession with AS-AD diagram)
- Link back to the questions and stance taken
Planning does not have to be detailed but the gist of the essay should be summarised. This provides clarity for students and it’s a much better approach then diving into writing immediately.
The stress response begins at the amygdala, and the distress signal is sent to the brain’s hypothalamus. A series of reactions in the body leads to the production of cortisol which triggers a flight or fight response whereby various physiological changes occur (increased heart rate, dilation of pupils, etc.).
These events can deplete the body’s essential resources and does not allow for the mind to process information and store information that needs to be internalised. Cognitive studies have shown that chronic stress plays an important role in memory retention problems and its hence the reason why students are encouraged to divert their mind from textbooks and assessment papers and involve themselves in extra-curricular activities.
It is absolutely necessary for students to be calm and to pay attention to details in the case-study and questions, as well as to write with speed and accuracy without letting exam anxiety consume them in its entirety.
Economics is a useful subject and should students be interested in it and should they do well, it will open up a wide range of career options for them which will give them a great amount of exposure and experience in future.
It would be wise for students to seek help from their Economics tutors if they are struggling to do well. It may be a difficult journey but it’s possible to excel if students work hard with persistence and hard work.