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Back to Firm Level Economics: Consumer and Producer Behavior

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Firm Level Economics: Consumer and Producer Behavior by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

2,399 ratings

About the Course

All goods and services are subject to scarcity at some level, which requires that society develop some allocation mechanism to determine who gets what. Over recorded history, these allocation rules were usually command based, meaning that the king or the emperor would decide. In contemporary times, most countries have turned to market-based allocation systems. In markets, prices act as rationing devices, encouraging or discouraging production and encouraging or discouraging consumption to find an equilibrium allocation of resources. To understand this process, businesses construct demand curves to capture consumer behavior and consider supply curves to capture producer behavior. The resulting equilibrium price “rations” the scarce commodity. You will be able to: • Describe consumer behavior as captured by the demand curve and producer behavior as captured by the supply curve • Define equilibrium and explain the impact of taxes and price controls on market equilibrium • Explain elasticity of demand • Describe cost theory and how firms optimize given the constraints of their own costs and an exogenously given price This course is part of Gies College of Business’ suite of online programs, including the iMBA and iMSM. Learn more about admission into these programs and explore how your Coursera work can be leveraged if accepted into a degree program at

Top reviews


May 12, 2017

In the beginning I thought this was going to be a very basic course, but the way the professor explained the topics really make it interesting a practical, going beyond the classical economic theory.


Sep 11, 2019

This was awesome. I did not know Firm Level Economics when I joined this course. The explanations were simple and Prof DeBrock explained really difficult concepts in a very easy to understand manner.

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Feb 15, 2017


By Kira

Feb 8, 2020

Content was informative and not too difficult, but I do have a lot of Algebra, Geometry, and Calculus background. I didn't like the peer reviews as much. They are fun to do, but waiting for grades from peers gets cumbersome and you usually have to beg for reviews. On top of that, you're too subject to the peer's understanding of the content. On one of the assignments one of the peers clearly had no clue about content, didn't read the professor's criteria for grading, and graded well in the wrong. Fortunately, the lowest scores are dropped. Otherwise, I would've raked the peer over the coals with support. I personally wish they'd drop the peer-reviewed assessments, but still plan on working towards an mba. Some level of calculus required might be good too or at least a middle school refresher of slopes.

By Liz L

Aug 7, 2017

Overall, I thought the course was really well done. I thought the lectures made the material very easy to digest, both in terms of presentation and amount of time allocated to each lecture. I found the additional readings very helpful (except for McAfee). However, I found some of the assignment and quiz questions confusing, in that they did not provide enough detail about what the question was really looking for in terms of a complete answer. Otherwise, I learned a lot and plan on taking the next course in the series.

By Melvin P

Sep 26, 2017

A good introduction of microeconomics, but I feel that the content of this course leans towards the theoretical and it didn't have any depth on the various topics (this is coming from someone who studied engineering and took some courses on finance and accounting). I must applaud Prof. Larry DeBrock to be a great lecturer. His enthusiasm and use of real world examples (even if they lacked depth) captured my attention throughout the course.

By Daniel K O

Jun 15, 2018

Larry does a great job explaining concepts and making them relatable to every day life. The occasional "field trips" give a real world perspective on how economics plays a hand everyday in the world around us. The only issue comes in the peer reviews where you can end up on the short end of the stick and not have anyone review your assignments for the week at all.

By Andre A M

Oct 27, 2020

Doesn't cover Consumer Theory where you optimize using budget constraints, doesn't cover Producer Theory isoquants and isocosts, most concepts are intuitively and theoretically explained through generic graphs. Okay if you are required to take it for the iMBA only, but not a complete course per se as in "regular" microeconomics courses.

By Felix B

May 3, 2018

Well organized, perfectly flexible class with a nice professor. As a total stranger to this topic I really learned a lot and wasn't overwhelmed. 5 stars if you communicate from beginning on that the readings are optional but that it is highly recommended to read at least parts of them. Had a bit of a time issue in the first week.

By John S

Feb 28, 2019

Peer review took awhile for Module #4, alittle stressful as the deadline looms. Not a infrastructure issue, even emails to individuals were barely successful, need to improve on my part to do it earlier or how to influence peer reviews.

By Bruno J L A S

Jun 21, 2016

I really enjoyed this course and definitely recommend it. The instructor was great. I am removing one star because I feel that it needs a little bit more of real problem solving and a small amount more of mathematical derivations.

By Adeyinka O

May 1, 2023

The content is deep, and the presentation is clear and practical. I have a better understanding of concepts and principles encountered in some previous classes both at undergraduate and graduate level.


Sep 20, 2020

A background knowledge of microeconomics would most likely help many. The lectures were awesome but acing the quizzes might be difficult for anyone with little foreknowledge in microeconomics.

By P. N K

Jul 10, 2020

Everything is fine but regarding my economics subject, where i got some lagg while understanding because somewhat the examples are varies from one country to another country.

By Sanne S

Jan 4, 2018

Really liked this course. Only thing I'd wish to change would be to get an explanation of the answers to the assignments after they've been reviewed by the other peers.

By Yash S M

Jul 28, 2020

Excellent for beginners. Four modules basically cover all the basics needed to understand economics specially at Firm level when its a short run scenario.