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Top-down, middle-out, and bottom-up processes: A cognitive perspective of teaching and learning economics

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  • Ling-po Shiu

    ()
    (The Chinese University of Hong Kong)

  • Chor-yiu Sin

    ()
    (Hong Kong Baptist University)

Abstract

The pedagogical value of graphical representations and analyses (GR and GA) in economics education is examined in a framework of top-down and bottom-up processes of thinking. We argue, with the support of two illustrative examples, that they are useful to the extent that they provide bridges between economic theories and facts. We also note that over-reliance on GR and GA may lead to misconceptions on the students' part. Hence, the challenge for educators and students of economics is to connect GR and GA upwardly with theories and downwardly with the empirical world.

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Article provided by Economics Network, University of Bristol in its journal International Review of Economics Education.

Volume (Year): 5 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 60-72

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Handle: RePEc:che:ireepp:v:5:y:2006:i:1:p:60-72

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  1. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1994. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 772-93, September.
  2. Kayaalp, Orhan, 1993. "Economic text and acquisition of economic literacy: There is a cognitive remedy," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 295-301.
  3. William Wascher & David Neumark, 2000. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1362-1396, December.
  4. Alan B. Krueger & David Card, 2000. "Minimum Wages and Employment: A Case Study of the Fast-Food Industry in New Jersey and Pennsylvania: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1397-1420, December.
  5. Dennis Yanchus & Xavier de Vanssay, 2003. "The Myth of Fair Prices: A Graphical Analysis," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(3), pages 235-240, January.
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