Tufts University: George Norman - Economics - Professor ratings, reviews and much more | JumboAccess
Professor Norman is perhaps one of the best teachers I have encountered at Tufts. His lectures follow power point slides which are clear and concise and are typically posted on Blackboard well before the class in which they are used. He closely follows the textbook as well, so between the slides and the book it is completely unambiguous what he will be looking for you to understand come test time.
As for the tests, they are straightforward, with class averages usually in the low 80s. They consist of a handful of multiple choice, around five or so, a few problems to be worked out and occasionally a short essay or two. Attending recitation helps - he generally gives the TAs practice tests to go over in the session right before a test that very closely resemble the questions and format that will appear.
You do not need to be an Economics major to enjoy this class. Professor Norman has a clear desire to provide his students with a conceptual understanding of economics as opposed to covering as many chapters in the book as possible. He is more than willing to take time to answer questions, even in the middle of lectures. Frequently communicates with the class over e-mail, even going as far to provide hints at problem set questions that seem to be confusing many students.
Expect to cover micro - "small scale" topics including supply and demand, monopolies, and price discrimination - in greater detail than macro - "big picture" things like inflation, job growth, and fiscal policy.
Workload is really up to the student. Professor Norman requires very little, only assigning four or five problem sets throughout the entire semester. The power point slides are clear enough that it is possible to go by them alone if you are pressed for time otherwise, but the textbook can be rather helpful since nine times out of ten the chapters contain exactly the same material as the slides only in more depth.
The biggest challenge in this class for most people will be the hurdles involved with wrapping your mind around the very basics and learning to think like an economist. Thankfully, Professor Norman is very helpful in this regard and as mentioned earlier is more than willing to assist and answer any questions you may have. The textbook is also very useful, but if you can understand what is going on without it you probably will not have to open it all semester long.
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