ECON 4929 Special Topics In Economics

Instructor Contact:

Karen Gebhardt, PhD


About the Course:

This is a Managerial Economics course. This course applies microeconomic principles and tools to business problems faced by decision makers. It examines decisions related to pricing, products and production, location of firms, vertical and horizontal integration, marketing, uncertainty, market structure, and government regulations and introduces key business communication, accounting and finance principles.

Course Prerequisites:

Requires prerequisite course of ECON 3070 (minimum grade C-).


This course requires proctored examinations. Exams are proctored which will require planning on your part. Proctors are individuals who administer the exam process following the guidelines provided by the University of Colorado Boulder to ensure academic integrity. Some proctoring options require the student to pay a fee.


By the end of the course students should be able to:

  • Illustrate how microeconomic theory applies to business decisions.
  • Apply the supply and demand model to managerial decisions.
  • Demonstrate basic and advanced pricing techniques to increase economic profit.
  • Apply the concepts of present value, net present value and future value to make managerial decision.
  • Compare and contrast managerial decisions associated with different market structures.
  • Discuss how antitrust policy and other regulations affect decision making.
  • Explain how business managers make decisions about final products, production process, and location of the firm and how they make decisions under uncertainty and differing levels of information.
  • Explain key business communication, accounting and finance principles.
  • Use algebra, graphs, calculus, and spreadsheets as tools to make managerial economics.
  • Evaluate business case studies and communicate those evaluations clearly and professionally.

Required Texts:

Textbook: The Economics of Managerial Decisions with access to MyLab, Blair and Rush, 2019, Pearson.

Two business case studies (varies each semester).

Grading  (out of 1000 points):

Quiz (220 POINTS) – There will be twelve (12) 20-point quizzes. The quizzes will be a combination of multiple choice and calculation questions. The lowest one (1) quiz are dropped from the final grade calculation.

Case Study Analysis (160 POINTS) – There will be two (2) 80-point case study analyses. A case study analysis is a critical-thinking assignment requires students to investigate a business problem, examine the alternative solutions, and propose the most effective solution using supporting evidence.

Problem Set, Discussion Posting, or Excel Spreadsheet Exercise (270 POINTS) – There will be ten (10) 30-point problem sets, discussion postings, or Excel spreadsheet exercises. The lowest one (1) problem set, discussion posting, or Excel spreadsheet exercise is dropped from the final grade calculation.

  • Problem sets will be a combination of calculations, graphical analysis, and short answer questions.
  • Discussion postings will occur asynchronously; the instructor will post a discussion question and the student will (1) complete and initial post in response to the discussion question and (2) engage in discussion with classmates.
  • Excel spreadsheet exercises will require students to manipulate and interpret data related to the microeconomics of managerial decisions.

Exams (350 POINTS) – There will be two (2) exams. The midterm exam is worth 150 points and the cumulative final exam is worth 200 points. The exams will a combination multiple choice, calculation, graphical analysis, short answer, and Excel spreadsheet questions.

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Monday – Friday
8:00am to 5:00pm


We are located at the corner of University Avenue and 15th Street in a white brick building.


1505 University Avenue
University of Colorado Boulder
178 UCB
Boulder, Colorado