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  Unit One: Overview | Introducing Growth & GDP | Per Capita Income | Distribution of Income | Growth & Policy

  Introducing Economic Growth


  Students will use materials from Commanding Heights Online to explore factors related to growth and distribution of income in a national economy. They will confront the measurement challenges inherent in comparing income and growth, both within and across nations. They will then examine the 20th-century narrative histories of specific national economies and look at selected statistical indicators. They will ask whether these indicators reflect, explain, or contradict the historical accounts of growth or shrinkage. They will look for patterns among these indicators and apply reasoning skills to develop plausible explanations for patterns they see. They will develop arguments, supported by evidence from the Commanding Heights site and elsewhere, about apparent relationships involving policy, economic growth, and the distribution of income.

  Objectives for this Unit

  By the end of Unit One: Introducing Economic Growth, students will be able to:
  • Define gross domestic product (GDP) and per capita income, and apply these ideas to the problem of comparing national economies on the basis of wealth;
  • Explain the limitations of per capita income in assessing the economic well-being of a nation and, given pertinent facts, apply a substitute strategy to assess the distribution of income within the nation;
  • Calculate the annual rate of growth in GDP within a nation, and determine whether the economy is expanding or contracting;
  • Report characteristics of the dominant economic policy in force in a specific nation at a particular moment in the 20th century;
  • Report the presence or absence of patterns in GDP, per capita income and income distribution associated with particular economic policies;
  • Argue the effect of policy on growth by appropriately integrating accurate statements of historical evidence with assertions about patterns they see or preferences they hold.

  Unit One: Overview | Introducing Growth & GDP | Per Capita Income | Distribution of Income | Growth & Policy

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