The Principles from Marshall to Mankiw: Historical Changes to Methodological Discussion in Introductory Economics Textbooks

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Title The Principles from Marshall to Mankiw: Historical Changes to Methodological Discussion in Introductory Economics Textbooks
Creator Melanie Long
Subject Senior thesis; economics
Description There is increasing recognition among economists that the current methods of teaching economics need to incorporate greater pluralism and attention to methodological issues. An understanding of current and past pedagogy is necessary to address these concerns. To provide such a perspective, this project compares the treatment of economic methodology in two sets of principles textbooks: the first major economics text used by introductory students (Alfred Marshall's Principles of Economics) and a sample of modern economics textbooks. The analysis explores differences in how each text describes the scope, methods, and degree of objectivity of economics, concluding that modern texts portray economics as a broadly explanatory and methodologically self-sufficient discipline while Marshall took a more interdisciplinary and qualified approach. These results are discussed within the framework of Kuhnian scientific revolutions and Etienne Wenger's concept of reification, and the pedagogical implications of the texts' portrayals of economic methodology are discussed.
Publisher Westminster College
Date 2014-04
Type Text; Image
Language eng
Rights Management Digital copyright 2014, Westminster College. All rights Reserved.
ARK ark:/87278/s6z356tc
Setname wc_ir
Date Created 2014-05-27
Date Modified 2014-06-11
ID 1094067
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s6z356tc
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