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GCSE Economics

Mathematics - Year 7

Click here to return to our Economics curriculum overview

Below you will find more specific information about the curriculum in Economics for students who have chosen this subject for GCSE, explaining to you what students will learn, when, why and how. There is also information about how parents/carers are able to support students in their learning, extra-curricular opportunities in this subject and how it links to other subjects and the wider world.

Subject Key Concepts

#1 Scarcity     #2 Choice    #3 Efficiency    #4 Equity   

#5 Economic well-being     #6 Sustainability    #7 Change    #8 Interdependence     #9 Intervention

Please click here for Subject Key Concepts.

While this information covers a broad range of areas, please do get in touch with the Subject Leader Ms Lawther if you have any questions.

Please click on the questions below to find out more.

Which exam board will students be examined by?


How are groups organised?

Mixed ability class.  The students have five one-hour lessons per fortnight

What characteristics does a successful student have in this subject?

The most successful students in this subject will have a curiosity about current news and events in the UK economy and the world they live in and also what the solutions there might be to some of the problems they see.

What will students learn at this level?

Yr10-Paper 1-How markets work

  1. Economic foundations
  2. Resource allocation
  3. How prices are determined
  4. Production, costs, revenue and profit
  5. Competitive and concentrated markets (inc. labour markets)
  6. Market failure

Yr11-Paper2-How the economy works:

  • Introduction to the national economy
  • Government objectives
  • How the government manages the economy
  • International trade and the global economy
  • The role of money and financial markets

What skills will students develop at this level?

  • Analytical and evaluative skills
  • Diagrammatic skills including: construct graphs from data including supply and demand curves
  • interpreting and use information from graphs and charts to support and justify economic decisions interpret and use economic data to support and justify economic decisions.
  • Quantitative skills relevant to subject content applied in context of economics GCSE including calculating: percentages and percentage changes, including interest on savings; averages including cost; totals including revenue costs and profit; income including gross and net pay

At least 10 % of the total marks for GCSE economics will be awarded for quantitative skills demonstrated at the same level, or higher, than at Key Stage 3.

How will students learn at this level?

  • Practical exercises to develop problem solving and diagrammatic skills
  • News clips of current events to support theory
  • Using the internet to investigate current economic events
  • Numeric exercises
  • Techniques for tackling longer discursive questions and evaluating effectiveness of solutions

How will students’ learning be assessed at this level?

Linear qualification with two final written exams following identical formats, both 1 hour 45 minutes and 80 marks each making up 50 % of GCSE.  They are

Paper 1-How markets work

Paper 2-How the economy works

Section A: 10 multiple choice questions followed by a range of calculation, short and extended response questions.

Section B: five questions involving a mix of calculations, short and extended responses.

When do key assessments take place?

Paper 1 and Paper 2 both examined in May/June of Year 11 (see AQA exam timetable for confirmation of dates)

How can parents/carers support students’ learning?

  • Encourage regular homework habits
  • Watch/keep up to date with current business/economic events in the news at home and abroad
  • Add phone ‘alerts’ from BBC etc to economics/business news stories
  • Encourage to read popular books on economics topics e.g. Nudge etc

What equipment do students need for this subject?

Essential school equipment including a calculator

Four coloured biro for feedback/assessing

Glue stick to organise work in exercise book

How does this subject link to other subjects?

  • English – Reading/understanding content of case studies and wider independent reading outside of the classroom e.g. newspapers, online content etc
  • Definitions of key terms/concepts
  • Maths – Producing diagrams/graphs with given data, using formula for elasticity calculations, percentage changes, understanding of index numbers.
  • Geography – focus on human geography and economic aspects e.g. global warming effects/solutions
  • History – impact of economic events on society e.g. Henry Ford and specialisation, the Great Depression causes/effects

What websites or resources may be helpful to support students’ learning?

Exam Board Information





Economies of scale


Economy – for  broad overview of the working of the economy


Tutor2u Economics Blog – aimed at A’ level but with some interesting articles


What extra-curricular or enrichment opportunities are available for students in this subject at this level?

Economics catch-up/revision sessions currently in SB7 every Wednesday 1.45 lunch-time (subject to change each year)

What sort of careers can this subject lead to?

GCSE Economics offers a wide choice of progression options into further study e.g. A levels or Apprenticeships but also training and relevant employment in business, accountancy etc where it is a valued qualification

What does student work look like in this subject at this level?

2018 was the first year for examination of the new specification.  One sample paper has been provided for Paper 1 and Paper 2 found here:


How does this subject support a broad and balanced curriculum, meeting the needs of all students, and developing traditional core skills?

  • This subject links to a wide range of other subjects, including geography and history and students can apply their knowledge using skills gained across their curriculum from both English and Maths
  • Classes are mixed ability, with students getting both teacher and peer support.  Assessment is through a combination of multiple choice, short and longer questions which enable most students to demonstrate their skills and knowledge effectively.
  • Traditional core written and maths skills are applied during exam responses and practice within class and are at the centre of the subject

How does this subject promote creativity, critical thinking, practice, perseverance and resilience, and making links?

  • Students develop an economists ‘toolkit’ allowing them to use their skills to resolve and provide answers to a range of questions for which there may not be one right answer.  ICT is used to research and present information to aid knowledge acquisition.
  • Students must analyse and evaluate their work and provided balanced responses to the situations presented in case studies supporting their conclusions with information in exam practice
  • Students must practice tasks in class e.g. diagram construction, calculations etc and then learn from any misunderstandings before using their knowledge and skills to attempt exam questions.  Students are encouraged to develop and improve their work
  • Students should be able to use the knowledge they have gained in the subject for their personal benefit to improve financial decision making for example but also in the wider employment world.

How does this subject encourage enrichment and the development of cultural capital, deep learning, and inclusivity?

  • Enrichment and Cultural understanding is embedded within the subject.  The behaviour of governments, companies and individuals are examined and evaluated from an economic and legal perspective but also from an ethical one e.g. taxation.  Environmental concerns and sustainability are a regular focus when looking to resolve economic issues.
  • Deep learning and knowledge is embedded by students having the opportunities to practise their knowledge and skills, helping them to then write an evaluative judgement of the outcomes
  • The subject is inclusive of all students from all backgrounds. Students are able to share their experiences