edexcel micro 14 marker techniqueWatch
Tip: an externalities question always comes up in unit 1 section B as a 14 marker, so please be prepared to illustrate your answer with a diagram (an externalities diagram), as it will state it in the question usually. However, please note there is usually another 14 marker that comes up as well as the externalities 14 marker. The structure applies for both 14 markers.
I will show you how the marks are allocated for both types of 14 markers down below.
Example of a model question and answer for 14 mark externalities question:
Q: There is likely to be a major house-building programme in South-East England over the next few years. Using examples, evaluate the likely costs of this housebuilding programme. Illustrate your answer with a diagram (14 marks).
- Define private costs (cost borne by a producer) and then give an example of a private cost relevant to the question e.g. bricks, cement, wages for labour workers *1 mark*
- Define external cost (cost borne to a third party outside of the transaction) *1 mark* and then give 2 examples of external costs relevant to the question and make sure you state whichstakeholder e.g. community, producers, consumers, local residents the cost will impact on:
1) Local wildlife - there will be less fields if more houses are being built, impacts on the animals and their habitats. *1 mark*
2) Noise pollution (never ever just state pollution, describe what type of pollution) from the building works, will impact on local residents. *1 mark*
- Draw an externalities diagram - you will have learnt 2 types, positive and negative. Draw only one that is relevant to the question. In this case, the question is talking about costs therefore do a negative externalities diagram. If there question was about benefits, then do a positive externalities diagram. *4 marks*
Evaluation: think of possible external benefits that the theory has ignored, worth 6 marks so do 3 evaluation points. Again, state which stakeholder has benefitted from external benefits.
- Local community benefitted as more houses are being built, therefore they have a place to live - less crime, less poverty. *2 marks*
- Government's tax revenue increases because people will be paying council tax once the houses are built and have people living in there. *2 marks*
- Once houses are built with people living in there, they are most likely to visit their local shops - local shops benefit because they will be getting more profit if there are more consumers in their area. *2 marks*
- Time scale: in the short run, there will only be noise pollution only for the period of time the builders are working, in the long run there won't be noise pollution from the builders once they have finished building.
- Magnitude: depends on how many house are actually being built, is it only 5 or 50 houses built? If its only a little amount of houses being built, may not be really beneficial.
- Difficult to measure the marginal external cost: e.g. how much noise pollution impacts local community?
Example of a model question and answer for a normal 14 mark question which is not an externalities question:
Q: Discuss the possible economic effects of an increase in university tuition fees on the market for higher education (14 marks).
- Students: A decrease in number of young people going to university. *2 marks*
- Universities: Increased funds for staff salaries. *2 marks*
- Students may consider local university so as to reduce accommodation costs / option of studying overseas. *2 marks*
- Government: Reduction of government funding for universities / could reduce budget deficit. *2 marks*
Evaluation: worth 6 marks therefore make 3 evaluation points (2+2+2).
- Students: Students from low income backgrounds get financial support so may not be discouraged from going to university. *2 marks*
- Government: It may take time before government finances improve since time lag before graduates repay loans / some graduates may evade repaying loans / some graduates are out of work so do not repay loans / significant amount of funds raised as many people graduate each year. *2 marks*
- Increased role for market forces: development of the idea that market forces have a greater influence in higher education and there is less role for the government / there is a danger of market failure due to under-consumption. *2 marks*
Tips to getting full marks: ALWAYS refer back to the case study, use the data provided to back up your points - they're there for a reason so utilise them!
Hope this helps and answers your question