Economics is a subject offered by both commercial and some science students in all Secondary schools in Nigeria. Students in the arts and sciences may choose to take it, but those in the business field must choose it. The candidate should be aware of the subject’s approved WAEC syllabus as one of the strategies for passing the WAEC economics.
We were able to determine that students should have the WAEC syllabus for Economics 2023/2024 at their disposal, which is the current academic session, and work in conjunction with the information provided in the syllabus in order to focus their efforts on the most likely examination questions.
The WAEC Economics syllabus merely serves as a guide for students on how to approach exams, what to expect during exams, and how the exams are set up so that students are not caught off guard.
There will be two papers, Paper 1 and Paper 2, both of which will be in a composite paper that must be taken in one sitting.
Paper 1: will have fifty multiple-choice questions that must be answered in one hour and will be worth 50 marks.
Paper 2: will consist of eight essay-type questions in two sections: Sections A and B. Section A will consist of two data response questions.
Candidates must select one question from Section A and any three questions from Section B to complete a total of four questions in their responses. 80 marks will be given for a 2-hour paper.
WAEC Economics syllabus
1. DEFINITION AND SCOPE OF ECONOMICS
- Scarcity and Choice,
- The scale of Preference,
- Opportunity Cost,
- Production Possibility Curve.
- Economic activities – Production, Distribution and Consumption.
- Classification of economic activities – Primary, Secondary and Tertiary and their relative contributions in terms of output/income, employment, savings, investment and foreign exchange.
2. FACTORS OF PRODUCTION
- capital and,
Their meaning, characteristics and importance.
3. TYPES AND BASIC FEATURES OF ECONOMIC SYSTEMS
- (a) Types – capitalism, socialism and mixed economy.
- (b) Basic features of each
- (c) Advantages and disadvantages of each
- (d) Economic problems of society and the approaches for solving them under each of the systems.
4. BASIC TOOLS OF ECONOMIC ANALYSIS
- Tables, graphs and charts.
- Some basic statistical measures and representations
- arithmetic mean,
And their simple applications.
- Concept of demand and law of demand,
- the demand schedules and curve,
- reasons for exceptional demand curves,
- types of demand (derived, composite, joint and competitive);
- factors determining a demand for goods and services
- the price of the commodity,
- prices of other commodities,
- price expectation, etc.
- The distinction between a shift of and movement along a demand curve;
- concept of elasticity of demand.
- Types of elasticity of demand and their measurement
- – price,
- income and cross elasticities of demand:
- importance of the concept of elasticity of demand to consumers, producers and government.
- Concept of Supply and Law of Supply,
- supply schedules and curves,
- types of Supply
- complementary and,
- Factors determining supply
- prices of other commodities,
- climatic factors, etc.
- The distinction between the shift of and movement along the supply curve.
- Concept and measurement of elasticity of supply and its importance to producers and government
7. THEORY OF CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR
- The utility concepts
- total utility,
- average utility,
- marginal utility and,
- the calculation of utility schedules.
- The law of diminishing marginal utility,
- the relationship between total utility, average utility and marginal utility.
- The concept of equilibrium of a consumer. Determination of consumer equilibrium.
- The effects of changes in price on consumer equilibrium.
- The relationship between marginal utility and the demand curve.
8. THEORY OF PRICE DETERMINATION
- The Concept of the market; interaction between demand and supply.
- Price determination under free and regulated markets.
- Equilibrium price and quantity in product and factor markets.
- The effects of changes in supply and demand on equilibrium prices and quantities.
- Introduction to the algebraic determination of equilibrium price and quantity.
- Price controls: maximum and minimum price regulations- meaning and their effects; rationing, black market (parallel market)
9. THEORY OF PRODUCTION
- Production: division of labour and specialization:
- The scale of production (Internal and External economies),
- concept of total, average and marginal productivity and law of variable proportions.
10. THEORY OF COST AND REVENUE
- (i) Cost concepts:
- total cost,
- average cost,
- marginal cost,
- variable cost,
- fixed cost;
- short run and long-run costs.
- (ii) Distinction between economist’s and accountant’s view of cost (opportunity cost and money cost).
- (iii) Revenue concepts:
- total, average and marginal revenue;
- Marginal revenue Product.
11. MARKET STRUCTURES
- Concept of a market,
- characteristics of various market structures,
- determination of price and output under different structures
- perfect competition and imperfect competition (monopoly and monopolistic competition).
- Review of cost and revenue concepts.
- Price discrimination.
12. BUSINESS ORGANIZATIONS
- Types and basic features of business enterprises
- Sole Proprietorship;
- Joint- Stock companies (Private and Public),
- Statutory Corporation,
- Joint ventures.
- Sources of funds.
- General and basic problems of business enterprises.
- Privatization and Commercialization as solutions to problems of public enterprises.
- Indigenization and nationalization policies.
13. DISTRIBUTIVE TRADE
- Process of distribution,
- role of producers,
- role of wholesalers, retailers and co-operatives:
- the role of government agencies in product distribution and,
- the problems of distribution and their solutions.
14. POPULATION AND LABOUR MARKET
- Population – determination and implication of size and growth of population,
- Rural-urban migration,
- Malthusian theory of population
- Geographical, age, sex and occupational distribution.
- Importance and problems of the census.
- Population and economic development (under–population, optimum population and over-population).
- Labour Market
- Concept of the labour Force and human capital,
- efficiency and mobility of labour,
- factors affecting the size of the labour force, particularly the population characteristics (age, sex, occupation, education, etc.)
- supply of and demand for labour: wage determination. Concept of unemployment and underemployment, Trade Unions, Employers’ associations and Government policies on labour and wages.
- Concept of the labour Force and human capital,
- Structure (e.g. food crops, export crops, livestock, fisheries):
- systems of agriculture (peasant, commercial, co-operative and state farming);
- importance of agriculture to the national economy: marketing of agricultural products (commodity boards).
- Agricultural policies (minimum agricultural prices)
- problems of agriculture and remedies.
- Meaning and types of industry.
- Definition of industrial concepts:
- industry and industrial estates.
- Location of industry,
- Role of industrialization in economic development.
- Strategies of industrialization.
- Problems of industrialization.
- The link between agricultural and industrial development.
17. NATIONAL INCOME
- Meaning of major national income concepts e.g.
- Gross Domestic Product,
- Gross National Product.
- Net National Product, etc.
- Different ways of measuring national income and their problems.
- Uses and limitations of national income data; trends and structure of national income.
18. MONEY AND INFLATION
- (a) Money – definition and historical development-barter and its problems, types, characteristics functions.
- Supply of and demand for money, the value of money and the price level.
- (b) Inflation:
- effects and control.
19. FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS
- Types (traditional, Central Bank, Commercial Bank, Development Bank, Merchant Bank, and Insurance Companies, Building Societies) :
- development and functions of financial institutions.
- Money and capital markets;
- types and functions
20. PUBLIC FINANCE
- Fiscal policy and objectives of public finance:
- Sources of government revenue.
- types (direct and indirect),
- demerits and incidence;
- Principles/canons of taxation;
- Rates of taxation (proportional, progressive and regressive)
- direct and indirect taxation:
- incidence and effects of taxes, composition/structure of public expenditure (recurrent and capital expenditure):
- effects of public expenditure.
- Government budget and the national debt.
21. ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AND PLANNING
- Meaning of economic development,
- the distinction between economic growth and development,
- characteristics and problems of developing countries, elements of development planning (objectives of planning, and problems of planning).
- Types of plans (short-term, medium-term, prospective or long-term, rolling plan etc.).
22. INTERNATIONAL TRADE AND BALANCE OF PAYMENTS
- (a) International Trade:
- differences between domestic and international trade,
- the basis of international trade,
- absolute and comparative cost advantage,
- terms of trade (definition and measurement) commercial policy (objectives) and instruments – tariffs (types) and direct control.
- Trend and structure of West African countries’ external trade.
- (b) Balance of Payments:
- role of money in international transactions,
- meaning and components of the balance of payments, the balance of payments disequilibrium,
- balance of payments adjustments (exchange rate policy exchange control, monetary and fiscal policies) and financing (the use of reserves and international borrowing).
23. ECONOMIC INTEGRATION
- Economic Integration (objectives, levels of and features).
- Development and problems of economic integration in West Africa- ECOWAS
24. INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ORGANIZATIONS
- Development and role of:
- – Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC)
- – Economic Commission for Africa (ECA)
- – International Monetary Fund (IMF)
- – International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD)
- – African Development Bank (AfDB)
- – United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) etc. relevance of such organizations to West African Countries.
25. MAJOR NATURAL RESOURCES
- The development of major natural resources (petroleum, gold, diamond, timber, groundnut etc) affects West African economies (positively and negatively).
WAEC Economics Textbooks
Here is the list of WAEC recommended textbooks for Economics;
- Aderinto, A.A et al (1996) Economics: Exam Focus, Ibadan: University Press Plc.
- Black, J. (1997) Oxford Dictionary of Economics, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Eyiyere, D.O. (1980) Economics Made Easy, Benin City, Quality Publishers Ltd.
- Fajana, F et al (1999) Countdown to SSCE/JME Economics, Ibadan: Evans.
- Falodun, A.B. et al (1997) Round-up Economics, Lagos: Longman.
- Kountsoyiannis, A. (1979) Modern MicroEconomics, London: Macmillan.
- Lawal, O.A. (1985) Success in Economics, London: John Muray.
- Lipsey, R.G. (1997) An Introduction to Positive Economics, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Samuelson, P and Nordhaus, W. (1989) Economics, Singapore: McGraw-Hill.
- Udu E and Agu G.A. (2005) New System Economics: a Senior Secondary Course, Ibadan: Africana FIRST Publishers Ltd.
- Wannacott and Wannacott (1979) Economics, New York: McGraw-Hill.
- Brownson-oton Richard (2010) What is Micro-Economics? Niky Printing and Publishing coy.