Module code: ECO2048

Module Overview

The module provides an introduction to linear algebra and considers a variety of applications of matrices of relevance to economics, using computational methods now standard in the profession.

Module provider


Module Leader

RONDINA Luca (Economics)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Matrix algebra: vectors and matrices; matrix operations: addition, subtraction, multiplication, inversion; notation, Solution to a set of linear equations

  • Representation of simple economic models in matrix form

  • Applications of Markov processes to questions of economic mobility and demographics

  • Social networks

  • Basic game theory

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment

If the group project is failed or not submitted, a shorter individual version should be submitted in the resit period.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

Their understanding of basic matrix algebra, its use in standard software packages (i.e. MATLAB) and some selected but varied applications to real-world socio-economic themes.

Thus the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • 10 Individual coursework assignments,   (worth 30% of the final mark). Each question is designed to test student’s knowledge, understanding and application of key concepts and techniques introduced in the module.

  • A final group project which allows students to analyse a topic in depth by using techniques and concepts assimilated during the module (submission deadline in January, worth 70% of the final mark). Each project will consist of a Matlab code, a written report and an assessment of individual performances in the group. The assessment is designed to evaluate the skills in Matlab progamming, the ability to gather, analyse and interpret information on a particular topic and to use this knowledge to produce a written report. It also assesses the ability to work in a group, and evaluate individual performances in their team.

Formative assessment and feedback

Students receive verbal feedback during lectures (in which multiple choice questions and real-world examples in economics are both attempted and discussed). Video tutorials will provide formative assessment and feedback on individual assignments and exercises. In these they receive guided explanations of structured exercises and individual guidance. Videos may also be used to deliver solutions of assignments, explaining concepts and procedures involved when the proposed solution code requires further clarifications. Computer lab feedback sessions deliver extensive formative assessment and feedback, possibly in small groups.

For the assignments, on top of video instructions and explanations, students will receive feedback on the discussion forums on Surreylearn.

Module aims

  • provide students with an appreciation of the variety of applications of simple matrix algebra in economics and other social sciences
  • develop confidence in applying those methods with the use of standard software packages (i.e. MATLAB), while at the same time building a basic understanding of programming techniques.  

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Understand and be familiar with simple vector and matrix notation and basic matrix operations KC
2 Be able to solve a set of simultaneous linear equations KC
3 Be able to manipulate matrices using standard software packages KCPT
4 Understand some important applications of matrix algebra in economics KC
5 Have a basic understanding of basic programming techniques

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

  • develop skills in both data analysis and written presentation

  • develop appreciation of the variety of applications of matrices in economics

  • develop understanding of the use of standard software packages (i.e. MATLAB) in the analysis of economic data and models

  • develop understanding of basic programming techniques

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • 2 hour lecture per week x 11 weeks

  • Guided computer video-tutorials with practical exercises

  • 1 hour computr lab feedback session per week x 10 weeks

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: ECO2048

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Economics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.