Short take-home exercises will be assigned approximately once a week, due the following week. These exercises will cover materials from the required Mishkin textbook chapters, the accompanying on-line notes for these chapters, and the in-class discussions of the assigned "key in-class discussion questions" for these chapters. Each take-home exercise will typically include five multiple choice questions on basic concepts together with a sixth question of a more challenging nature (e.g., data analysis, web research of a topical issue, and so forth).
The percentage of total points earned on take-home exercises will be pro-rated to 20 percent of your overall course score, with each student permitted to omit their worst take-home exercise point score.
The questions on the midterm and final exams will be similar in nature to these assigned take-home exercises. [Recall from the Econ 353 home page that at least twenty five percent of the midterm and final exam questions will relate to the key in-class discussion questions and the points raised in the accompanying class discussions of these questions.]
Exercises will be posted on-line at least one week in advance of the due date, and a notice about this posting will be sent out via the Econ 353 class mailing list. Bubble sheets for recording multiple-choice answers will be passed out in class. Bubble sheets can also be directly obtained at the Economics Undergraduate Office (Heady 174) during regular office hours (M-F, 8:00am--5:00pm).
Please put the following info on Side 1 of your bubble sheet: your name, student ID number, the words "Econ 353 Exercise XX" in the top margin (with appropriately filled in exercise number in place of XX), and your answers.
To ensure your exercise grade is correctly and officially recorded as part of your cumulative course grade, a number 2 pencil must be used to mark your multiple-choice answers on your bubble sheet, and your filled-in bubble sheet (plus your answer sheets for any additional questions) must be received by me at the beginning of class on the exercise due date prior to the discussion of the exercise answers.
The start of the discussion of the exercise answers will be the effective dividing line between on-time and late assignments. The bag of collected exercise answer sheets will be sealed at this time. The intent of this policy is to help ensure that student grading is fair and accurate. Your cooperation is appreciated.
Each student must take responsibility for ensuring that their exercise answer sheets are completed and turned in on time. If you need to miss class on the exercise due date, you must use one of the following two means to ensure that your exercise answers are officially recorded:
Do NOT leave your completed exercise answer sheets in my department mailbox (or that of the TA) since there is no guarantee these mailboxes will be checked prior to class. Also, do NOT email your answers to me or the TA and expect us to fill in a bubble sheet for you, except by prior arrangement in conditions of a verifiably serious medical emergency (or equivalent) preventing you from using option (1) or (2) above.
If all else fails, recall that your lowest exercise grade will be omitted from your total exercise point score, so missing ONE exercise will not hurt your total exercise point score.
I encourage students to work together in study groups on the assigned take-home exercises and also to prepare for the midterm and final exams. "Working with a study group" on an assigned exercise could mean anything from just getting together to discuss the exercise to actually working closely together to solve the exercise in a form ready for turning in. In any case, however, each student will be required to pass in SEPARATE exercise answer sheets in his or her own handwriting for grading purposes.
Since I do not grade on a curve (e.g., I am willing to award all A's if warranted), helping your fellow students to understand the material is a win-win situation because teaching is absolutely the best way to learn and because helping someone else to get a better grade in no way diminishes your own chances of doing well.
On the other hand, free riding on others' work for the assigned exercises will surely hurt you in the end. The problems from the midterm and final exam will reflect the type of problems assigned in take-home exercises, and a low score on these exams will vastly outweigh any additional points you may earn on the assigned exercises by simply copying (without understanding) what someone else has done.
Thank you for your cooperation!