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EC121-12 Mathematical Techniques A

Undergraduate Level 1
Module leader
Emil Kostadinov
Credit value
Module duration
10 weeks
Study location
University of Warwick main campus, Coventry
Introductory description

This module provides an introductory treatment on univariate and multivariate calculus, compounding and discounting, constrained optimization and matrix algebra, appropriate for joint honours degrees with Economics.

Module web page

Module aims

To provide the mathematical techniques for a thorough and rigorous study of economic analysis, econometric methods and applied economics subjects, appropriate to joint honours courses with Economics. The module forms part of the first year core cluster EC120 Quantitative Techniques, which is made up of one module in Mathematical Techniques (A (EC121) or B (EC123)), one module in Statistical Techniques (A (EC122) or B (EC124)) as well as Computing and Data Analysis (EC125).

Outline syllabus

This is an indicative module outline only to give an indication of the sort of topics that may be covered. Actual sessions held may differ.

The module will typically cover the following topics:
Revision of basic algebra; Introduction to calculus; Series (AP, GP, present value calculations); Exponential & logarithmic functions; Functions of two variables (calculus, constrained optimisation, applications); Integration; Difference equations; Applications in economics

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • acquire the tools of quantitative methods necessary to study core and optional first and second year modules in economics for the single honours course in Economics.
  • develop further their techniques of statistical methods and statistical modelling;
  • generate an awareness and analysis of data and of data handling.
Indicative reading list

Please see Talis Aspire link for most up to date list.

View reading list on Talis Aspire

Subject specific skills

Analytical thinking and communication
Analytical reasoning
Concepts of Simultaneity and Endogeneity
Analysis of optimisation

Transferable skills

Numeracy and quantitative skills
Written communication skills
Oral communication skills
Mathematical, statistical and data-based research skills

Study time

Type Required
Lectures 10 sessions of 2 hours (17%)
Seminars 4 sessions of 1 hour (3%)
Demonstrations 4 sessions of 1 hour (3%)
Private study 92 hours (77%)
Total 120 hours
Private study description

Private study will be required in order to prepare for seminars/classes, to review lecture notes, to prepare for forthcoming assessments, tests, and exams, and to undertake wider reading around the subject.


No further costs have been identified for this module.

You do not need to pass all assessment components to pass the module.

Students can register for this module without taking any assessment.

Assessment group D3
Weighting Study time
Test 1 12%

50 minute online test

Test 2 12%

50 minute online test

6 x problem sets (1% each) 6%
Online Examination 70%

A paper which examines the course content and ensures learning outcomes are achieved.

~Platforms - AEP

  • Online examination: No Answerbook required
  • Students may use a calculator
Assessment group R3
Weighting Study time
Online Examination - Resit 100%
  • Online examination: No Answerbook required
Feedback on assessment

The Department of Economics is committed to providing high quality and timely feedback to students on their assessed work, to enable them to review and continuously improve their work. We are dedicated to ensuring feedback is returned to students within 20 University working days of their assessment deadline. Feedback for assignments is returned either on a standardised assessment feedback cover sheet which gives information both by tick boxes and by free comments or via free text comments on tabula, together with the annotated assignment. For tests and problem sets, students receive solutions as an important form of feedback and their marked assignment, with a breakdown of marks and comments by question and sub-question. Students are informed how to access their feedback, either by collecting from the Undergraduate Office or via tabula. Module leaders often provide generic feedback for the cohort outlining what was done well, less well, and what was expected on the assignment and any other common themes. This feedback also includes a cumulative distribution function with summary statistics so students can review their performance in relation to the cohort. This feedback is in addition to the individual-specific feedback on assessment performance.

Past exam papers for EC121


At least a grade A in GCSE Mathematics, or equivalent.

Post-requisite modules

If you pass this module, you can take:

  • EC208-15 Industrial Economics 1: Market Structure
  • EC228-15 Political Economy: Theory and Applications
  • EC226-30 Econometrics 1
  • EC220-15 Mathematical Economics 1A
  • EC203-30 Applied Econometrics
  • EC333-15 Topics in Financial Economics: Theories and International Finance
  • EC333-15 Topics in Financial Economics: Theories and International Finance
  • EC221-15 Mathematical Economics 1B


This module is Core optional for:

  • Year 1 of UIPA-L1L8 Undergraduate Economic Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • Year 1 of UPHA-L1CA Undergraduate Economics, Psychology and Philosophy
  • Year 1 of UPHA-V7ML Undergraduate Philosophy, Politics and Economics

This module is Core option list A for:

  • Year 1 of UECA-3 Undergraduate Economics 3 Year Variants
  • Year 1 of UECA-LM1D Undergraduate Economics, Politics and International Studies
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R1L4 Undergraduate French and Economics (4-year)
  • Year 1 of UPHA-V7ML Undergraduate Philosophy, Politics and Economics

This module is Core option list B for:

  • Year 1 of UIPA-L1L8 Undergraduate Economic Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R4L1 Undergraduate Hispanic Studies and Economics (4-year)
  • Year 1 of ULNA-R3L4 Undergraduate Italian and Economics (4-year)

This module is Core option list C for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R2L4 Undergraduate German and Economics (4-year)

This module is Core option list D for:

  • Year 1 of ULNA-R9L1 Undergraduate Modern Languages and Economics (4-year)