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CIA4U outline

Bright Future Academy

4433 Sheppard Avenue East, 2nd Floor, Room 202

Toronto, Ontario M1S 1V3

CIA4U – Analyzing Current Economic Issues


Course Title: Analyzing Current Economic Issues
Course Code: CIA4U
Grade: 12
Course Type: University Preparation
Credit Value: 1
Any 3U or 3M level Canadian and World Studies, English or Social Studies and Humanities course
Curriculum Policy Document:
Canadian and World Studies, The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 11 and 12, 2005 (Revised)

Text: Economics Now, Oxford University Press Canada © 2002.

ISBN: 0195414454   ISBN-13: 9780195414455

Department: Business
Course Developer: Frank Qin
Development Date: May 2013

Course Description:

This course investigates the nature of the competitive global economy and explores how individuals and societies can gain the information they need to make appropriate economic decisions. Students will learn about the principles of microeconomics and macroeconomics, apply economic models and concepts to interpret economic information, assess the validity of statistics, and investigate marketplace dynamics. Students will use economic inquiry and communication skills to analyze current economic issues, make informed judgments and present their findings.

Overall Expectations: CIA4U

By the end of this course, students will:

Economic Decision Making

Overall Expectations

explain the cause and nature of the three types of choices that all economic systems must make;

explain the nature of Canada's economic growth and determine whether and/or how this growth furthers the economic goal of efficiency;

analyse the changing importance of the public and private sectors of the economy and what this means for the achievement of the macroeconomic goals of freedom and equity;

analyse the causes and consequences of economic instability and the effectiveness of stabilization policies designed to help Canadians achieve an appropriate level of economic security.

Economic Stakeholders

Overall Expectations

describe economic stakeholder groups and the criteria each uses to make economic decisions;

explain the economic rights and responsibilities of "the economic citizen";

compare the ways and the degree to which different types of economic systems satisfy the needs of stakeholders.

Self-Interest and Interdependence

Overall Expectations

explain how stakeholders use self-interest to make choices that maximize economic wellbeing;

describe how groups of stakeholders and markets within an economy are interdependent and may be affected simultaneously by a change;

assess the ways in which, and the degree to which, people in Canada and other countries have become interdependent in the global economy;

analyse examples of conflicts of self-interest that prevent the achievement of economic goals.

Economic Institutions

Overall Expectations

describe the nature and functions of Canada's private economic institutions;

describe the nature and functions of Canada's public economic institutions;

analyse the nature and functions of international economic institutions and their impact on the Canadian economy.

Methods of Historical Inquiry and Communication

Overall Expectations

use methods of economic inquiry to locate, gather, evaluate, and organize different types of current economic information from a variety of sources;

analyse various economic choices, using the concepts, models, and processes of economic inquiry;

communicate the results of economic inquiries, using appropriate economic terms, concepts, and models, and a variety of forms.


Unit details:


Titles and Descriptions

Time and Sequence

Unit 1

Economic Reasoning

The first unit of this course begins by having students explore basic economic concepts such as production possibilities curves, scarcity, choice, and opportunity cost. The second half of the unit deals with different types of economies, including traditional, command, market and mixed, and also looks at key figures in economics like Adam Smith and Karl Marx.

15 hours

Unit 2

Demand, Supply and Price

The second unit takes an in-depth look at the all important aspects and determinants of market demand, market supply, and market price. The laws of demand and supply are covered, as is the concept of price elasticity.

15 hours

Unit 3

Microeconomics: The Analysis of Markets

In this unit, students learn through examples the role of production and costs. Production under perfect and imperfect competition is examined with topics such as profit maximization, monopolies, and oligopolies being covered in depth. Student close out the unit with an analysis of the market for labour, learning about demand and supply shifts, wages and other labour market issues.

15 hours

Unit 4

Measuring Macroeconomic Performance

Now that students have learned the basics and have an understanding of microeconomics, they begin to explore large-scale economic phenomena. This unit sees students learning about GDP, including the expenditures and income approaches. They will also learn to calculate a country’s GDP. Other major topics such as unemployment and inflation are covered in detail.

15 hours

Unit 5

Boom, Bust and Equilibrium: Economic Instability and Fiscal Policy

Students learn about economic fluctuations and fiscal policy in this unit. The aggregate demand and aggregate supply model is covered and students learn how to draw and use sketch-graphs to show how certain factors will affect the AD curve. The potential effects of shocks to the economic system, such as changes in government spending, changes in net exports, and changes in investment are also explored. The second half of the unit delves into fiscal policy. Both expansionary and contracttionary fiscal policies are covered, and topics such as the multiplier effect, automatics stabilizers, and the pros and cons of fiscal policy are analyzed.

16 hours

Unit 6

Boom, Bust and Equilibrium: Money, Banking and Monetary Policy

This unit carefully examines three major topics: money, banks and the money creation/destruction process, and monetary policy. Students learn about the evolution and importance of money, the measurement of the money supply, and the money market. A thorough look at banks and the multi-bank system is then undertaken, and formulas for monetary expansion are learned. The last section of this unit sees students learning about central banks and monetary policy, as well as how this policy affects the real economy.

16 hours

Unit 7

Canada in the World Economy: International Trade Finance and Economic Growth

In the last unit of the course, students learn about Canada as a trading nation, and the benefits and strains of international trade. Principles of International Trade Theory are explored, as are trade barriers and international trade policies. Balance of payments issues, the value of the Canadian dollar, and fluctuating exchange rates are examined in the second section of the unit, with students learning how to read foreign exchange rate tables. Lastly, economic growth is covered in the final section. The significance, measurement, and sources of economic growth are looked at in detail, and students also learn about topics such as promoting capital investment and technological progress.

16 hours


Final Evaluation

The final assessment task for this course is a two hour proctored final exam worth 15% of the final mark.

2 hours



110 hours


Teaching / Learning Strategies:

Students learn best when they are engaged in a variety of ways of learning. Business studies courses lend themselves to a wide range of approaches in that they require students to discuss issues, solve problems using applications software, participate in business simulations, conduct research, think critically, work cooperatively, and make business decisions. When students are engaged in active and experiential learning strategies, they tend to retain knowledge for longer periods and to develop meaningful skills. Active and experiential learning strategies also enable students to apply their knowledge and skills to real-life issues and situations. Some of the teaching and learning strategies that are suitable to material taught in business studies are the use of case studies and simulations, teamwork, brainstorming, mind mapping, problem solving, decision making, independent research, personal reflection, seminar presentations, direct instruction, portfolios, and hands-on applications. In combination, such approaches promote the acquisition of knowledge, foster positive attitudes towards learning, and encourage students to become lifelong learners. Since the over-riding aim of this course is to develop an accounting literacy in all students, a wide variety of instructional strategies are used to provide learning opportunities to accommodate a variety of learning styles, interests and ability levels. These include:

Currency Analysis

Problem solving

Decision Making


Direct Instruction

Data Analysis

Case studies

Answering Questions about Readings


Using Charts and Tables

Discussion Groups

Multimedia Presentations

Independent Research

Guided Internet Research

Using Business Glossaries

Other strategies used include; Guided Exploration, Problem Solving, Graphing, Visuals, Direct Instruction, Independent Reading, Independent Study, Ideal Problem Solving, Model analysis, Logical Mathematical Intelligence, Graphing Applications, and Problem Posing.

Assessment and Evaluation Strategies of Student Performance:

Assessment is the process of gathering information that accurately reflects how well a student is achieving the curriculum expectations in a subject or course. The primary purpose of assessment is to improve student learning. Assessment for the purpose of improving student learning is seen as both “assessment for learning” and “assessment as learning”. As part of assessment for learning, teachers provide students with descriptive feedback and coaching for improvement. Teachers engage in assessment as learning by helping all students develop their capacity to be independent, autonomous learners who are able to set individual goals, monitor their own progress, determine next steps, and reflect on their thinking and learning.


Teachers will obtain assessment information through a variety of means, which may include formal and informal observations, discussions, learning conversations, questioning, conferences, homework, tasks done in groups, demonstrations, projects, portfolios, developmental continua, performances, peer and self-assessments, self-reflections, essays, and tests.


As essential steps in assessment for learning and as learning, teachers need to:

• plan assessment concurrently and integrate it seamlessly with instruction;

• share learning goals and success criteria with students at the outset of learning to ensure that students and teachers have a common and shared understanding of these goals and criteria as learning progresses;

• gather information about student learning before, during, and at or near the end of a period of instruction, using a variety of assessment strategies and tools;

• use assessment to inform instruction, guide next steps, and help students monitor their progress towards achieving their learning goals;

• analyse and interpret evidence of learning;

• give and receive specific and timely descriptive feedback about student learning;

• help students to develop skills of peer and self-assessment.


Teachers will also ensure that they assess students’ development of learning skills and work habits, using the assessment approaches described above to gather information and provide feedback to students.

The Final Grade:

The evaluation for this course is based on the student's achievement of curriculum expectations and the demonstrated skills required for effective learning. The percentage grade represents the quality of the student's overall achievement of the expectations for the course and reflects the corresponding level of achievement as described in the achievement chart for the discipline. A credit is granted and recorded for this course if the student's grade is 50% or higher. The final grade for this course will be determined as follows:

  • 70% of the grade will be based upon evaluations and assessments of learning conducted throughout the course. This portion of the grade will reflect the student's most consistent level of achievement throughout the course, although special consideration will be given to more recent evidence of achievement. All assessments of learning will be based on evaluations developed from the four categories of the Achievement Chart for the course.


  • 30% of the grade will be based on a final evaluation administered at the end of the course and may be comprised of one or more strategies including tests and projects.. This final evaluation will be based on an evaluation developed from all four categories of the Achievement Chart for the course and of expectations from all units of the course. The weighting of the four categories of the Achievement Chart for the entire course including the final evaluation will be as follows.


Knowledge & Understanding

Thinking, Inquiry & Problem Solving









Assessment of Learning through the course:

Unit tests 35% + Assignments/Projects 25% = 70 %

Final Evaluation:

Final examination 15% + final assignment/project 15% = 30%


The Report Card:

The report card will focus on two distinct but related aspects of student achievement; the achievement of curriculum expectations and the development of learning skills. The report card will contain separate sections for the reporting of these two aspects.

A Summary Description of Achievement in Each Percentage Grade Range
and Corresponding Level of Achievement

Percentage Grade Range

Achievement Level

Summary Description


Level 4

A very high to outstanding level of achievement. Achievement is above the provincial standard.


Level 3

A high level of achievement. Achievement is at the provincial standard.


Level 2

A moderate level of achievement. Achievement is below, but approaching, the provincial standard.


Level 1

A passable level of achievement. Achievement is below the provincial standard.

below 50%

Level R

Insufficient achievement of curriculum expectations. A credit will not be granted.

Program Planning Considerations for Canadian and World Studies:

Teachers who are planning a program in Canadian and World Studies must take into account considerations in a number of important areas. Essential information that pertains to all disciplines is provided in the companion piece to this document. The areas of concern to all teachers that are outlined include the following:

  • The Role of Technology in the Curriculum
  • English as a Second Language (ESL) and English Literacy Development (ELD)
  • Antidiscrimination Education in the English Program
  • Literacy, Numeracy, and Inquiry/Research Skills
  • Career Education

Considerations relating to the areas listed above that have particular relevance for program planning in Canadian and World Studies are noted here.

The Role of Technology in the Curriculum. Information and communications technology provides a range of tools that can significantly extend and enrich teachers' instructional strategies and support students' learning in Canadian and world studies. These tools include simulations, multimedia resources, databases, and this online course. ICT can be used to bring the global community into the local classroom. Through Internet websites and CD-ROM technology, students can now access primary resources held in museums, libraries, archives, and public institutions across the country and around the world. ICT resources allow secondary students to conduct more far-ranging and authentic research than ever before. Applications such as databases, spreadsheets, word processors, and presentation software can be used to support various methods of inquiry. The technology also makes possible simulations of complex systems that are useful for problem-solving purposes or when field studies on a particular topic are not feasible.

English As a Second Language and English Literacy Development (ESL/ELD). Young people whose first language is not English enter Ontario secondary schools with diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds. Some may have experience of highly sophisticated educational systems, while others may have had limited formal schooling. All of these students bring a rich array of background knowledge and experience to the classroom, and all teachers must share in the responsibility for their English-language development. Students who come to Ontario from other countries will find the study of the subjects within Canadian and world studies particularly useful. Through this study, they can develop an understanding of Canadian economics, geography, history, law, and politics that will help them to become well-informed Canadian citizens.

Antidiscrimination Education in Canadian and World Studies. The Canadian and world studies curriculum is designed to help students acquire the "habits of mind" essential for citizens in a complex democratic society characterized by rapid technological change, economic, political, and social change. Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of the rights, privileges, and responsibilities of citizenship, as well as willingness to show respect, tolerance and understanding towards individuals, groups, and cultures in the global community and respect and responsibility towards the environment .They are also expected to understand that protecting human rights and taking a stand against racism and other expressions of hatred and discrimination are basic requirements of responsible citizenship. In Canadian and world studies, students learn about the contributions of a variety of peoples, in the past and the present, to the development of Canada and the world. The critical thinking and research skills acquired in Canadian and world studies courses will strengthen students' ability to recognize bias and stereotypes in contemporary as well as historical portrayals, viewpoints, representations, and images. Learning activities and resources used to implement the curriculum should be inclusive in nature, reflecting diverse points of view and experiences, including Aboriginal perspectives. They should enable students to become more sensitive to the experiences and perceptions of others.

Literacy, Numeracy, and Inquiry/Research Skills. Success in Canadian and world studies courses depends in large part on strong literacy skills. Many of the activities and tasks students undertake in Canadian and world studies courses involve the use of written, oral, and visual communication skills. For example, students use language to record their observations, to describe their inquiries in both informal and formal contexts, and to present their findings in oral presentations and written reports. The language of Canadian and world studies courses includes special terms associated with the subjects that the program encompasses. The study of these subjects will thus encourage students to use language with greater care and precision and will enhance their ability to communicate effectively. The Canadian and world studies curriculum also builds on and reinforces certain aspects of the mathematics curriculum. For example, clear, concise communication may involve the use of various diagrams, charts, tables, and graphs to organize, interpret, and present information. In all courses in Canadian and world studies, students will develop their ability to ask questions and to plan investigations to answer those questions. They need to learn a variety of research methods in order to carry out their investigations; they also need to know which methods to use in a particular inquiry. Students will learn how to locate relevant information from a variety of sources, such as books, newspapers, field studies and interviews, climate maps, aerial photographs and satellite images, diagrams and charts, and electronic sources.

Career Education. The knowledge and skills students acquire in Canadian and world studies courses will be useful in a variety of careers. For example, the study of economics increases students' awareness of the ways in which local and global events and trends affect not only the economy but also their own career opportunities. A background in geography, history, politics, or law can lead to employment in fields such as law, politics, resource management, information technology, teaching, recreation, hospitality and tourism, and journalism. Students should be made aware of these possibilities and encouraged to explore areas of interest to them.



Economics Now, Oxford University Press Canada © 2002.

ISBN: 0195414454   ISBN-13: 9780195414455