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Thinking Like an Economist: A Guide to Rational Decision Making | [The Great Courses]

Thinking Like an Economist: A Guide to Rational Decision Making

Economic forces are everywhere around you. But that doesn't mean you need to passively accept whatever outcome those forces might press upon you. Instead, with these 12 fast-moving and crystal clear lectures, you can learn how to use a small handful of basic nuts-and-bolts principles to turn those same forces to your own advantage.
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Publisher's Summary

Economic forces are everywhere around you. But that doesn't mean you need to passively accept whatever outcome those forces might press upon you. Instead, with these 12 fast-moving and crystal clear lectures, you can learn how to use a small handful of basic nuts-and-bolts principles to turn those same forces to your own advantage.

Requiring no previous economics background, Professor Bartlett presents some of the fundamental principles and concepts that shape the lenses through which economists view the world. He then shows you how to use these simple analytical tools to understand what you see through those lenses. By learning to identify the many varied situations in which economics affects your life and how to wield the tools that can help you make the wisest choices in those situations, you'll enhance not only your understanding of daily life but your own success in living it.

Packed with case studies, helpful strategies, economic insights, and more, this series will equip you with a reliable toolkit for thinking more like an everyday economist and approach the issues in your own life with a more educated, seasoned eye. And after these dozen lectures with Professor Bartlett, things really will look very different. You'll see how basic economic ideas like incentives, risks, rewards, and rationality are not just the province of professional economists, government policymakers, or your local bank's loan officer, but instead lie at the root of nearly every decision you must make in your daily life.

Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.

©2010 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2010 The Great Courses

What Members Say

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  •  
    Jason Lopez 10-20-14
    Jason Lopez 10-20-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Economists as Kindergartners"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend but only for a few of the "nuggets" relevant to everyday life that one encounters throughout the series.


    What other book might you compare Thinking Like an Economist: A Guide to Rational Decision Making to and why?

    "Skepticism 101: How to Think like a Scientist" and "Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me)"


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The sections on game theory, relative value and risk had some good information


    Could you see Thinking Like an Economist: A Guide to Rational Decision Making being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    In several key areas the professor engages the listener in descriptions of actions that are well-documented but proceeds to state that their cause is a mystery. In each case the scientific literature relevant to the answer can be found but is apparently unknown to the professor, although most were addressed in non-economic disciplines. (i.e. cognitive dissonance) Also, his lecture on the tragedy of the commons seemed to indicate that the solution is a larger and more complex common resource, government, which leaves the stakeholders more disparate then in the localized example given.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cynthea Wellings 03-09-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A difficult subject made easy!"

    I have found this the best set of lectures on economics so far. The presenter paces himself. explains a concept and then gives an anecdote. This has enabled me to comprehend relatively difficult concepts with ease.
    I own a small business and have never really understood a lot of the terms used in the modern press that relate to finance. I wish I had learned this information at the beginning of my career. It would have helped me enormously.
    I give this 5 stars.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    PHIL San Diego, CA, United States 03-19-14
    PHIL San Diego, CA, United States 03-19-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Clear, useful, accessible"

    It was a pleasure to listen to this. I never found myself zoning out or wondering (as I often do) when the speaker will cut through the fuzzy jargon and get to the point. The points are all set out. This has helped me think more clearly in my own decisions, and express myself more clearly in my own business teaching.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shrut NEW YORK, NY, United States 02-27-14
    Shrut NEW YORK, NY, United States 02-27-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    "Great Narration!"
    Would you listen to Thinking Like an Economist: A Guide to Rational Decision Making again? Why?

    Yes. It has great examples with lessons that can be inculcated in life.


    Have you listened to any of Professor Randall Bartlett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    This is the best of the "Great courses" that I have heard so far. Great narration and awesome examples. Something for everyone to learn.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    V. Taras 07-08-15
    V. Taras 07-08-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great for beginners, nothing you for an economist"

    Strictly speaking, there is really nothing new in this book for people who either took courses in economics or read some of the popular books on the topic. It's really a very superficial presentation of some of the fundamental assumptions of economics. However, if you have no prior training or exposure to economics and would like to learn some basics, this is a fun series of non technical lectures that you will probably enjoy and learn from.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Skaneateles, NY, United States 07-06-15
    John Skaneateles, NY, United States 07-06-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Economics for dummies"

    This is a very basic introduction to Economics. So much so that much of it is just common sense and not at all enlightening. You would not know that from the lecturer who presents his material as if pulling back the curtain on the secrets of the universe. I found his delivery somewhat grandiose and corny. He must have repeated the phrase "think like an economist" a thousand times. Ok, we get it, it's an economics course, no need to constantly repeat it!

    I don't know a whole lot about economics and yet I don't think I learned anything new in this course. It might be good if you know absolutely nothing about economics and rational decision making but I doubt most people buying The Great Courses on Audible fall into this category.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fabrizio 06-08-15
    Fabrizio 06-08-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Potentially life-changing."

    I cannot say this for myself, since I am since long a fan of Freakonomics and interested in behavioral economics, but to those who are looking for something that could really change their lives for the best, this is absolutely a must.
    Clear, actionable and with the right tempo and digressions.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Diviner WA 06-05-15
    J. Diviner WA 06-05-15 Member Since 2013
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    "It is a pleasure listenning to this course."

    Although this is a non fiction title, listening to Prof Bartlett is captivating as well as very informative. Even that I do posses some above average knowledge on economics and underlying mathematics, this course opened for me a new and surprisingly clear perspective of the world we live in. Listen to this course and you will see life through the eyes of an economist.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melissa 05-06-15
    Melissa 05-06-15 Member Since 2015
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    3
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    "Very eye opening!"

    I learned quite a bit from this! I will definitely buy more of these lectures in the future. Thank you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Synesthë 04-21-15
    Synesthë 04-21-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    "Very interesting and informative"

    I loved it! Great if you're a fan of the Freakonomics books. Would definitely recommend. Also, the instructor is very clear and easy to follow.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • mr
    west sussex, United Kingdom
    7/3/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Could not be better."

    Complex topic covered simply, easy to follow and useful. The lecturer is fantastic, excellent delivery and content.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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