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'National happiness' in economics

Published 27/04/2015

Teenagers will be required to learn about the global financial crisis for the first time
Teenagers will be required to learn about the global financial crisis for the first time

Sixth-formers taking A-level economics are to learn how "national happiness" and public wellbeing are used to measure the nation's economic growth.

A new course in the subject will also see teenagers required to learn about the global financial crisis for the first time.

The qualification, offered by Pearson's Edexcel exam board, covers the factors that led to the worldwide downturn, the role of banking regulation and the responses to the crisis, comparing these with how the Great Depression was dealt with.

It is also the first time that the course has covered "national wellbeing" and "national happiness", the exam board said, with students comparing these measures of economic performance with more traditional methods and examining the benefits and limitations of comparing living standards between countries and over time.

The course is due to be introduced in to schools and colleges from this September , and follows a major overhaul of exams carried out by the coalition Government in a bid to toughen up qualifications.

Mark Anderson, UK managing director at Pearson, said it was important that the A-level " reflect the realities of the ever-changing economic world".

"We know that students and teachers are eager to study the biggest financial crisis to take place in our lifetimes and it's so important that tomorrow's business leaders understand and debate these key economic events," he said.

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