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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Introduction to Economic Theories by Erasmus University Rotterdam

217 ratings
53 reviews

About the Course

Wondering why economists have not predicted serious financial crises? Shocked by economic assumptions of human behavior as self-centered and focusing only on what can be measured? Asking yourself if there are no sensible economic alternatives to free markets? Then you are at the right place to learn economics! This is the first online course that teaches economics from a pluralist perspective. Economic pluralism means that a plurality of theoretical and methodological viewpoints is regarded as valuable in itself and is simply the best way in which economics can make progress in understanding the world. This MOOC will illustrate economic pluralism not only in substance but also in form. You will see not only me, a Professor of Economics, but also a pop-up Prof of our business school, who illustrates the actor perspective of firms, government and civil society. And you will meet an online student, based in Greece, who will help you through the tutorial videos in which I will explain key concepts, tools and techniques. I will not limit myself to the dominant theory, as almost every other course does. Instead, I will introduce you to four very different economic theories for the whole set of standard topics in microeconomics and macroeconomics. The theories are presented every time from broad and more interdisciplinary to narrow and more mathematical. The four theories that I like to introduce you to are Social Economics, Institutional Economics, Post Keynesian economics and, at the very end of each topic, Neoclassical Economics, for the special case of ideally functioning markets. But not everything is different in this course. Like every economics course, it includes numbers, diagrams, tables, equations, and some calculations. Why would you go through the effort of learning the basics of four theories instead of one? Because it will help you to see why many economists cannot predict crises, whereas others can see signals but are often not being listened to because they do not belong to the dominant school of thought. It will also enable you to see that it is just one theory claiming economic agents to be self-centered and focusing on the measurable only. Other economic theories go well beyond these limitations. And, finally, the pluralist approach will provide you with policy alternatives to neoliberalist policies promoting free markets. The objective of this course is twofold. First, to enable you to understand different economic viewpoints, linked to important traditions in economic thought, and basic economic concepts belonging to these theoretical perspectives. Second, to enable you to do some basic economic calculations that are important in economic life, such as calculating an inflation rate, and in economic policies, such as estimating the rough gains from trade for both trading partners, and in economic arguments, such as in calculating utility maximization with given prices and budgets. Please note that if you do all course elements, total course load is likely to be 4 ECT (approx. 134 hours). I hope you will enjoy the course!...

Top reviews

Jan 24, 2018

Excellent course on Theories on economics which has given un the insight of economics via various theory. Really useful to understand many financial aspects / issues on different prospective

Aug 31, 2018

Excellent module... Lots of insights... Without much economics background,this course has enlightened me for further research in various topics ..very good facilitators..

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1 - 25 of 53 Reviews for Introduction to Economic Theories

By alberto a

Jan 8, 2018

I watched the first couple of lectures and it seems messy and unorganised. Worst part is the absence of references whatsoever. Critiques to what they called neoclassical theory, which I suppose is the mainstream one, are based mainly on straw man.

For example the lesson on households talks mainly about gender stereotypes, which of course are interesting, but then it really makes me wonder what the professor wanted to discuss. Second, and worst of all, with a completely cooked up example the professor claims neoclassical economics posits gender stereotypes are good for the economy, whereas with some other theory this is not true anymore. This is ludicrous at best. This is really not what economics is about. Look up for a course on history of economic thought instead. There are plenty available online, or better, get a book.

By Amit V

May 7, 2018

Wonderfully compiled course. I had no interest in economics prior to this, and now I am quite happy I did this.

By Sahibzada A

Jan 13, 2019

The course is designed in a good way to learn the topics covered with the convenience of downloading the videos and watching it again and again until you grasp the essence. The Tutorials were also helpful as well as the Pop-up Professor with good insights. The self paced learning environment was supportive in completing the course without worrying too much about the deadlines.

By James T

Sep 27, 2020

Lessons are simple enough to follow but may require some extra reading to fully understand some concepts, but overall it's a good introduction to economics.

By Hugo E V

Aug 3, 2020

I love this course! It succeeded my expectations. I am currently finishing my Masters in Finance Dissertation, and I wanted to learn the basics of the Economic Theories. This course made me reach that goal, and it enhanced my understanding on where is world economy heading. Thank you very much Professors Irene Van Staveren, Rod Van Tulder and Maria Dafnomili.

By Shantanu A H

Aug 2, 2019

This course has been highly helpful in understanding how theories have policy implications and the need for triangulation to solve the societal problems. Economic theories have been explained very well and will be very helpful for people who aim to understand economic theories and ways to take forward the theories.

By Alexey K

Aug 16, 2017

This course provides a comprehensive understanding of the economy from a pluralist perspective, changes your vision of modern macroeconomics and all business-models in general, gives you a large number of answers to the common question "why?". Strongly recommended.


Jan 25, 2018

Excellent course on Theories on economics which has given un the insight of economics via various theory. Really useful to understand many financial aspects / issues on different prospective

By Vinayak R S

Dec 31, 2018

A very simple way of teaching here, with all relevant examples, clarity of communication and diagrams, graphs, made this easy to understand conceptually.

By ravi d

Nov 30, 2018

this course provide step by step guide to the economics i loved it

By Amanda G

Jun 7, 2020

Easy to achieve a passing grade on assignments, however you will be required to do your own research.

By Sophia O

Feb 28, 2021

It was a very promising concept for a course, comparing multiple economic theories and challenging traditionally accepted neoclassical thinking. However it was very difficult to complete without additionally renting the textbook. The videos spent too long on very easy and basic concepts, writing out simple arithmetic, and then breezed over the more complex concepts and definitions, which then were the subject of the graded quizzes. The essays were an interesting activity, but the word count was quite short compared to what the prompts asked and it was difficult to fully expand on the theories and apply them to real-world situations. Also definitely needs some updating-- the tutorial videos with the student Skyping in had very choppy audio and video quality.

If I had come to this course with a better foundational knowledge of post-Keynesian and neoclassical economic theories, it might have been easier to follow along. The course instructors clearly intended this to be introductory level, and it did succeed at that in some ways, but I think it might have been better off to formulate this as an additional course to take after taking basic Econ 101.

By Alejo A A

Apr 19, 2020

This course offers an introduction to economics from four different perspectives (social , institutional, Post-Keynesian and Neo-Classic economics). It offers a pluralist perspective, this means, "pluralist" in the sense that looks at some issues from different angles (which makes it very interesting).

The courses are very interesting and with a light touch of humour. With a more dedicated effort on small details (such as some small typos and errors in tests, and improvement of the pedagogy in somme aspects) this could make an even better course!

By Aarti W

Feb 4, 2018

It was a very enriching and wonderful learning experience for me... Many concepts of economics were clarified in clear and lucid manner.This was my first online course and I really enjoyed listening to the lectures and tutorial videos were great too.

Thank Ypu for the enlightenment.

By Virginia P S N

Mar 26, 2018

Extremely good! I have been looking for a different career path because I was feeling that my interests and skills were not been contemplated in my original field, natural science. I dare now to say that I found my way. Irene is an amazing instructor and an inspiring figure!

By Zoha A

Apr 27, 2021

Excellent course on economics.

For me, as an engineer who didn't have any background on the topic very very helpful, comprehensive enough to let me understand the basics of theories, and it was quite challenging. I am really glad that I took it.


Aug 31, 2018

Excellent module... Lots of insights... Without much economics background,this course has enlightened me for further research in various topics ..very good facilitators..

By Mariana M M

May 25, 2020

Thank you Irene, Rob and Maria! For someone with a Science/Medical background, this course was constant source of surprises and "aha" moments.

By Pierre D E

Oct 5, 2020

Learning with Coursera was a great journey and an excellent boost for my career, and I'm looking forward to go deeper with their offers.

By Liliana P G

Nov 17, 2020

I really enjoy the journey of this course, excellents professors i really get to differentiate the economic theories

By Ajay K K

Dec 15, 2019

It was a great learning experience . Course materials and tutorials were easy to follow. Thank you

By Yash K S

May 5, 2020

I enjoyed learning this course!! Thank you professor and also pop-up professor!!

By Sandesh N

Mar 8, 2021

Excellent Programme, enough time to go through each week.

By Koduri C

May 30, 2020

very nicely taught but takes time in peers reviewing

By Yashasva S

May 19, 2020

It was helpful, really nice course for beginners.