IGCSE Economics: Important Topics, Tips to Remember, Command Terms & More


IGCSE Economics Topics

  • Economic problem: This include the basic problem of the economic activity, and the factors that influencing the problem in the econimic sectors. This is the most basic topic in the syllabus.
  • The Allocation of Resources: The fundamental principles of resource allocation are considered through the price mechanism in a market economy. The core is consist of topics like the market equilibrium, disequilibrium and elasticity of demand and supply.
  • Microeconomic Decision Makers: The microeconomy is an important area of study, and the approach to learning taken here is through the role of the major decision makers: banks, households, workers, trade unions and firms.
  • Governments and the Macroeconomy: Governments have different macroeconomic aims, and conflicts often arise between the choice of measures used to achieve them. To applied the required application need to examine the variable which create a disharmony among the factors and also need to measure.
  • Development of Economic: The economic development bring changes in the factors like change in population, Standard of living, etc. Therefore, the effects of changes in the size and structure of population and of other influences on development in a variety of countries are explored.
  • International Trade and Globalization: The importance of trade between countries and the growth of globalization is explored. Principles such as specialization, the role of free trade, the role of multinational companies, foreign exchange rates and balance of payments stability are considered.

2.Factors of Production

3. Opportunity Cost

4. Production Possibility Curve

ALLOCATION OF RESOURCES 5. Microeconomics and Macroeconomics

6. The role of markets in allocating resources.

7. Demand

8. Supply

9. Price Determination

10.  Price Elasticity of Demand

11. Price Elasticity of Supply

13. Market economic system

14. Market failure

15. Mixed economic system


17. Households

18. Workers 

19. Trade unions

20. Firms

21. Firms and production

22. Firms, cost, revenue and objectives

23. Market structure

ROLE OF GOVERNMENT IN AN ECONOMY 24. The role of government

25. The macroeconomic aims of government

26. Fiscal policy

27. Monetary policy

28. Supply side policies

29. Economic growth

30. Employment and Unemployment

31. Inflation and deflation

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT 32. Living standards

33. Poverty

34. Population

35. Differences in economic development between countries

INTERNATIONAL TRADE AND GLOBALISATION 36. International specialization

37. Free trade and protection

38. Foreign exchange rates

39. Current account of Balance of Payments

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IGCSE Economics Assessment Outline

Paper 1 – Multiple Choice: 30% Weightage 45 minutes, 30 marks

Candidates must answer all 30 multiple-choice questions. Candidates fill out the multiple-choice answer sheet provided. the question are drived from the six parts of the syllabus content. The questions may include calculations. Calculators are permitted in the exam.

The paper assesses the following assessment objectives:

  • AO1: Knowledge and understanding
  • AO2: Analysis

Paper 2 – Structured Questions (Written paper): 70% Weightage, 2 hours 15 minutes, 90 marks

Candidates answer one compulsory question in Section A and three questions from a choice of four in Section B. Candidates write their answers in the answer booklet provided. Candidates should be aware of the marks assigned to each part of the question. These are printed on the test paper. Candidates should use them as a guide to the level of detail and length of response that is expected, as well as to help them manage their time effectively. Calculators are allowed in both sections of the examination.


Command Terms in IGCSE Economics

  • Analyse: examine in detail to show meaning, identify elements and the relationship between them
  • Calculate: work out from given facts, figures or information
  • Define: give precise meaning
  • Describe: state the points of a topic / give characteristics and main features
  • Discuss: write about issue(s) or topic(s) in depth in a structured way
  • Explain: set out purposes or reasons / make the relationships between things evident / provide why and/or how and support with relevant evidence
  • Give: produce an answer from a given source or recall/memory
  • Identify: name/select/recognise
  • State: express in clear terms


IGCSE Economics Important Tips to Remember Before Start Writing the Answers

  • The structured questions in Paper 2 will be centred on those command terms, which will serve as a guiding element for students to understand the question’s demand.
  • The two-mark question begins with a definition, which requires accurate key terms with precise meaning.
  • The four-mark question begins with identify and explain, which requires the identification of two key factors and a brief explanation of those factors.
  • The six-mark question begins with an analysis, using a demand and supply diagram or a Production possibility curve, which requires labelling the axes and variables, movement/shift in the demand and supply curve or PPC, which carries four points, and the written analysis, which includes the economic interpretation and reasoning for the graph, which carries two marks.
  • The eight-mark question begins with the discuss/evaluate section, which requires balanced arguments covering both arguments for and against the given statement, as well as key economic terminology as needed.
  • For the other sub-questions in section B, use the same approach for 2, 4, 6, and 8 marks.


IGCSE Economics Reference Textbook


Cambridge IGCSE® and O Level Economics Textbook

Key Features:

  • Author: Susan Grant
  • Series: Cambridge International IGCSE
  • Paperback: 392 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Edition: 2nd edition (February 28, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 110844038X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1108440387


IGCSE Economics Workbook


Cambridge IGCSE® and O Level Economics Workbook

Key Features:

  • Paperback: 134 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 2 edition (8 March 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1108440401
  • ISBN-13: 978-1108440400
  • ISBN-13: 9781108440400


IGCSE Economics Grades

  • Grades A*, A, B, C, D, E, F or G indicate the standard a candidate achieved at Cambridge IGCSE.
  • A* marked as the highest and G marked as the lowest.
  • Those who performed under marked as grade G and called Ungraded

In specific circumstances, candidates may see one of the following letters on their statement of results:

  • X (NO RESULT).

These letters do not appear on the certificate.

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How would you choose IGCSE subjects?

IGCSE offers more than 70 subjects to choose from. Students are required to take a minimum of 5 or a maximum of 14 subjects. The core subjects are English, Mathematics and Science. Students can choose other subjects ranging from social sciences (commonly Accounting, Business Studies, Economics, Sociology) to Arts and Technology (commonly Computer Studies, ICT, Art and Design)

Students are awarded one IGCSE certificate for each subject. The number of subjects needs to be taken varies from school to school and also depends on individual preference.

Can students have extra paper for rough work in the IGCSE exam?

Students should write all their answers and work on the question paper.

Can you retake IGCSE ?

Yes, a student can retake the IGCSE if the results he/she got is not satisfactory or if the grade noted on the score card is ‘U’. Regardless of age or previous scores, a student can retake the IGCSE exams any number of times.

Do International Universities accept IGCSE?

Definitely! Almost every university, a student would want to apply to, will accept an IGCSE Diploma. It is an internationally recognized Secondary Education Qualification.

How can I take the IGCSE course online?

IGCSE courses can be taken online by registering with any online tutoring education company. Classes can either be as groups or as 1 on 1 session. In an online classroom setup, the class may comprise 35 students who are given access to the course content through an online learning platform. The content may be broken down into weekly lessons and each week objectives will be introduced to help students stay on track. These online tutoring programs help students to gain practical experience of digital technologies and also have the flexibility to take up an online course between their other commitments. 

The other mode of delivery would be individual 1 on 1 tutoring where the students get personalized attention from a tutor for the subject chosen. This helps the tutor identify the specific needs of the child, his learning abilities and skills as well. The child is able to overcome the challenges he or she would probably encounter in a classroom set up. The helps build confidence in the child and makes learning enjoyable.

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