MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) has released a new version of Principles of Microeconomics in the innovative OCW Scholar format designed for independent learners. Created under the direction of Professor Jonathan Gruber, 14.01SC Principles of Microeconomics uses conceptual, mathematical and graphical approaches to microeconomic principles presented through lecture videos, recitation materials and interactive concept quizzes. Microeconomics addresses topics including supply and demand, utility and pricing.
Gruber has taught at MIT since 1992. In 1997 and 1998, Gruber served as deputy assistant secretary for economic policy at the Treasury Department. He was a key architect of Massachusetts' ambitious health care reform effort, and in 2006 became an inaugural member of the Health Connector Board, the main implementing body for that effort. During the 2008 election cycle, he was a consultant to the Clinton, Edwards and Obama presidential campaigns and was called by The Washington Post, "possibly the [Democratic] party's most influential health-care expert."
"The fundamentals of microeconomics are critical to understanding many of today's most pressing issues," Gruber says. "I hope this resource will allow many thousands of independent learners to understand economic forces more clearly."
OCW Scholar courses represent a new approach to OCW publication. MIT faculty, staff and students work closely with the OCW team to structure the course materials for independent learners. These courses offer more materials than typical OCW courses and include new custom-created content. To supplement the traditional text that is used in the MIT class, 14.01SC is also the first OCW Scholar course to be published in association with an openly available textbook, Principles of Microeconomics by Libby Rittenberg and Timothy Tregarthen, published by Flat World Knowledge.
The first five of a planned 15 OCW Scholar courses were launched by MIT OpenCourseWare in January 2011, and have collectively received more than 800,000 visits in less than a year. The initial OCW Scholar courses included Classical Mechanics, Electricity and Magnetism, Solid State Chemistry, Single Variable Calculus and Multivariable Calculus.
Linear Algebra and Differential Equations were published earlier this year, and Principles of Microeconomics is the third of seven OCW Scholar courses that will be published in 2012. Other upcoming OCW Scholar courses include Introduction to Psychology, Fundamentals of Biology, Introduction to Electrical Engineering and Computer Science I, and Introduction to Computer Science and Programming. OCW Scholar courses are published on the OCW site with the support of the Stanton Foundation.