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Behavioural Economics

What is behavioural economics?

Behavioural economics, a term coined by Richard Thaler in 2008, refers to the role that psychological, emotional, cultural and social factors play in decision-making in an economic context. As detailed by Social Science Space (2017), the concept explores human traits and behaviours such as irrationality, self-control and personal motivation to show how they can affect individual, economic decisions. More broadly speaking, behavioural economics also impacts on the actions taken by the wider society, as well as economic trends and outcomes, and even public policymaking (Partington, 2017).

The reading text compares classical economics with behavioural economics and focuses on how nudge theory can benefit society. The listening text focuses on how behavioural economics impacts government policy and the criticisms of nudge theory.

Reading Skills

Behavioural Economics

By A. Watson (2022)

Behavioural economics differs from traditional or classical economics in a number of ways. Firstly, behavioural economics disputes the idea that individuals are rational, with beliefs, thoughts and choices which align with what benefit them the most and are shaped around new information. Instead, it suggests that human behavioural tendencies and psychological realities such as framing, heuristics, and biases impact our decisions. Secondly, behavioural economics deals with the inconsistency between desires and outcomes, and by recognising that humans are not always reasonable in their thoughts and actions, we are able to analyse the circumstances that led them to make mistakes, as well as the mistakes themselves (Economics Online, 2020). One example that is often used to show these differences is the UK’s vote to remain in or leave the EU. Some believe that intense emotions and strong impulsiveness, as in behavioural economics, and not rational logic, as in classical economics, can help to explain how narrow the results were (Partington, 2017).

One of the key constructs of behavioural economics is nudge theory. Again coined by Richard Thaler, nudge theory centres around the idea that consumer behaviour is influenced by small, subtle, and indirect suggestions, which can lead individuals to make a decision often at the benefit of an organisation or political party (Burt, 2019). The way these decisions are presented is known as the choice architecture, which encourages people to feel they are making wiser, more-informed decisions, yet still maintain their freedom of choice (ING, 2018). According to Pettinger (2022), effective nudges can reduce market failure, increase the efficiency of resource use, and…

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Reading Test: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 773-word text discusses behavioural economics. It provides a definition of the key term, it analyses how different this type of economics is from classical economics, it looks at nudge theory along with examples of successful nudges and criticisms of the theory and it ends by considering how society can benefit through both types of economics.  The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; reference words; open answer questions; citations; and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Writing Summary: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 773-word text discusses behavioural economics. It provides a definition of the key term, it analyses how different this type of economics is from classical economics, it looks at nudge theory along with examples of successful nudges and criticisms of the theory and it ends by considering how society can benefit through both types of economics. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Listening Skills 

Video Example

A 1 minute example of the 10.00 minute behavioural economics lecture.

The impact that behavioural economics has on government policy. [lecture transcript]

By Academic English UK

Hello, and welcome to today’s lecture about how behavioural economics impacts government policy. I’ll start today’s lecture with a definition of behavioural economics, and more specifically nudge theory. After this, I’ll provide some examples of the different types of successful nudges. Following this, I’ll look at some criticisms of nudge theory and then I’ll finish with a summary of my key findings.

Let’s begin with a definition of behavioural economics. Behavioural economics examines the principles of psychology and sociology and their impacts on the economic choices made by individuals. These choices can have such a profound impact in a host of areas from education and health to crime and finance that policymakers have begun to observe how subtly encouraging, incentivising and steering individuals in a certain direction can influence their behaviour enough to determine government policy, state the Local Government Association (2013). In particular, there’s been growing interest in the concept of nudges, which is what today’s lecture will focus on.

So, what’s nudging? A nudge is a minimally-disruptive way of indirectly altering an individual’s behaviour so that they’re subtly guided into making a decision, yet not coercive enough that it impacts on day-to-day activities. Mills (2020) asserts that it’s based on the theory that as individuals aren’t thought to act rationally, experts can analyse this irrational, unconscious behaviour and influence it in such a way that it benefits a third party. Nudges are typically devised by a nudge department, or a Behavioural Insights Team, as named in the UK. According to Economics Online (2020), governments and policymakers are able to expertly persuade the general public into making more optimal decisions as they have more time available to think about different choices, have more information to base their choice on, and don’t rely on simple heuristics, such as… 

This is just a part of the 1278 word text – Buy the download below for the whole text.

 

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Listening Test: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 10-minute lecture talks about how behavioural economics impacts government policy. It defines behavioural economics and nudge theory, it analyses the different types of nudges, it puts forward some successful examples of nudge theory before looking at some of the criticisms of the theory, and it ends with a brief summary. The listening test includes: open answer questions; gap fill summary; true, false, not given; a matching exercise; a gap fill completion activity; and a summary identification task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] / Video [10.00]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Behavioural Economics Lesson Book [new 2022]

Behavioural Economics PDF Book

AMAZING VALUE – Four lessons in one book: reading test, reading to writing summary writing, listening test & speaking seminar. Example TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

 

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More Reading Tests [All new for 2022]

Air Pollution

Reading Test: Air Pollution [new 2022]

This 756-word text explains how ambient air pollution is a serious environmental health problem around the world. It talks about how air pollution is measured, the causes and effects of air pollution and the current measures that are being implemented to reduce air pollution. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; summary identification exercise; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

Reading & Summary Writing Lesson: Air Pollution (new 2022)

This 756-word text explains how ambient air pollution is a serious environmental health problem around the world. It talks about how air pollution is measured, the causes and effects of air pollution and the current measures that are being implemented to reduce air pollution. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

 Listening Test: Air Pollution [new 2022]

This short 10:50 lecture introduces the global cost of air pollution. It talks about the most polluted cities around the world, it explains how much air pollution costs developing countries and it puts forward measures to decrease air pollution at a global, national and individual level. The listening test includes: open answer questions; true, false, not given; multiple choice; and a gap fill summary. (ExampleLevel ***** [B2/C1]  / Video [10.50]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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 Seminar Speaking: Air Pollution [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Buy Now, Pay Later

Reading Test: Buy Now, Pay Later [new 2022]

This 793-word text defines Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL), it talks about the users and the providers of the platform, it explains the benefits and the drawbacks of BNPL and it looks at what can be done to improve this way of purchasing products. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; summary identification exercise; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

Reading & Summary Writing Lesson: Buy Now, Pay Later (new 2022)

This 793-word text defines Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL), it talks about the users and the providers of the platform, it explains the benefits and the drawbacks of BNPL and it looks at what can be done to improve this way of purchasing products. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

 Listening Test: Buy Now Pay Later [new 2022]

This short lecture defines Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL), discusses the market share of different countries, introduces Klarna the largest provider of BNPL, explains why Klarna is so successful and looks at the issues with BNPL using Klarna as an example. The listening test includes: open answer questions; true, false, not given; multiple choice; and a gap fill summary. (ExampleLevel ***** [B2/C1]  / Video [10.14]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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 Seminar Speaking: Buy Now Pay Later [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Global Debt

Reading Test: Global Debt [new 2022]

This 775-word text defines global debt, explains how to measure global debt and compares the level of debt in some countries. It talks about the difference between emerging markets and advanced economies in terms of debt, it discusses the reasons for the current debt issues and it compares past and present financial crises. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; summary identification exercise; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

Reading & Summary Writing Lesson: Global Debt (new 2022)

This 775-word text defines global debt, explains how to measure global debt and compares the level of debt in some countries. It talks about the difference between emerging markets and advanced economies in terms of debt, it discusses the reasons for the current debt issues and it compares past and present financial crises. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

 Listening Test: Global Debt [new 2022]

This short 10:51 lecture defines global debt, looks at the current trends regarding debt and explains how global borrowing works. It discusses why global borrowing has increased, puts forward some reasons why debt could be sustainable and looks at what’s happening with inflation. The listening test includes: open answer questions; true, false, not given; multiple choice; and a gap fill summary. (ExampleLevel ***** [B2/C1]  / Video [10.51]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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 Seminar Speaking: Global Debt [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Microchips

Reading Test: The microchip crisis [new 2022]

This 773-word text discusses the current microchip shortage. It looks at the cause and effects of this crisis, it talks about the world’s reliance on the largest two manufacturers, and it puts forward solutions to mitigate this issue. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; summary identification exercise; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

Reading & Summary Writing Lesson: The microchip crisis (new 2022)

This 773-word text discusses the current microchip shortage. It looks at the cause and effects of this crisis, it talks about the world’s reliance on the largest two manufacturers, and it puts forward solutions to mitigate this issue. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

 Listening test: The global microchip crisis [new 2022]

This short lecture explains why there is a global shortage of microchips. It talks about why silicon is used to manufacture microchips, the challenge of producing microchips, the costs involved in production, and the profits the largest manufacturers need to make. The listening test includes: open answer questions; true, false, not given; multiple choice; and a gap fill summary. (ExampleLevel ***** [B2/C1]  / Video [7.14]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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 Seminar Speaking: The global microchip crisis [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Primark

Reading Test: Primark: a case study [new 2022]

This 760-word text explains how Primark’s business model has led to it becoming a very successful business. It talks about Primark’s plans for expansion, it puts forward the reasons why Primark does not sell its products online and it explains how Primark intends to move towards more sustainable and ethical practices. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

Reading & Summary Writing Lesson: Primark (new 2022)

This 760-word text explains how Primark’s business model has led to it becoming a very successful business. It talks about Primark’s plans for expansion, it puts forward the reasons why Primark does not sell its products online and it explains how Primark intends to move towards more sustainable and ethical practices. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with two sample summaries, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

 Listening test: How ethical is Primark? [new 2022]

This short 07.25 lecture introduces the concept of fast fashion, it explains how Primark can buy and sell its garments so cheaply, it looks at Primark’s labour conditions and garment workers’ rights, and it discusses Primark’s carbon footprint. The listening test includes: open answer questions; multiple choice; true, false, not given and a gap fill summary. (ExampleLevel ***** [B2/C1]  / Video [7.25]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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 Seminar Speaking: Primark [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Aviation Decarbonisation

Reading Test - Aviation Decarbonisation: Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) [new 2022]

This 788-word text looks at the environmental impact of aviation. It talks about sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) as an alternative to conventional jet fuel, it explains how SAF is produced and it discusses the issues that have been raised with SAF. The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions; summary identification exercise; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

 Writing Summary - Aviation Decarbonisation: Sustainable Aviation Fuel [new 2022]

This 788-word text looks at the environmental impact of aviation. It talks about sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) as an alternative to conventional jet fuel, it explains how SAF is produced and it discusses the issues that have been raised with SAF. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

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Listening Test - Aviation Decarbonisation: Hydrogen Planes [new 2022]

This short lecture talks about aviation decarbonisation. It looks at the connection between aviation and global average temperatures, it explains how hydrogen is a solution to reduce COemissions, it discusses the processing of hydrogen and how it would work in reality, and it examines the challenges of hydrogen-powered planes. The listening test includes: open answer questions; true, false, not given; multiple choice; and a gap fill summary. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] / Video [10.25]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Seminar Speaking: Aviation Decarbonisation [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Aviation Decarbonisation Lesson PDF Book

 

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Digital Marketing

Reading Test: Marketing Theories [new 2022]

This 1000-word text looks at the three most common marketing models: the marketing mix (7ps), the PESTLE model and Porter's 5 forces.  It evaluates the advantages and disadvantages of each model and questions their relevancy in today's market . The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; open answer questions;  citations; reference words and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B1/B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Writing Summary: Marketing Theories [new 2022]

This 1000-word text looks at the three most common marketing models: the marketing mix (7ps), the PESTLE model and Porter's 5 forces.  It evaluates the advantages and disadvantages of each model and questions their relevancy in today's market. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B1/B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP 

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Listening Test: Digital Marketing Strategies [new 2022]

This short lecture talks about marketing strategies. It looks at how companies build brand awareness and customer retention through SEO building, PPC advertising, email and social media campaigns, influencer and affiliate marketing strategies. The listening test includes: gap fill completion; true, false, not given; multiple choice; open answer questions and a gap fill summary. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] / Video [10.30]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

MEMBERS ONLY

Seminar Speaking: Digital Marketing [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Marketing Lesson PDF Book

AMAZING VALUE - Four lessons in one book: reading test, reading to writing summary writing, listening test & speaking seminar. Example TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Behavioural Economics

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Reading Test: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 773-word text discusses behavioural economics. It provides a definition of the key term, it analyses how different this type of economics is from classical economics, it looks at nudge theory along with examples of successful nudges and criticisms of the theory and it ends by considering how society can benefit through both types of economics.  The reading test includes: matching headings to paragraphs; true, false, not given; reference words; open answer questions; citations; and a vocabulary task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Writing Summary: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 773-word text discusses behavioural economics. It provides a definition of the key term, it analyses how different this type of economics is from classical economics, it looks at nudge theory along with examples of successful nudges and criticisms of the theory and it ends by considering how society can benefit through both types of economics. The summary task includes: note-taking worksheet with key, summary writing exercise with one sample summary, and a critical thinking worksheet with suggested answers(Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Listening Test: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This 10-minute lecture talks about how behavioural economics impacts government policy. It defines behavioural economics and nudge theory, it analyses the different types of nudges, it puts forward some successful examples of nudge theory before looking at some of the criticisms of the theory, and it ends with a brief summary. The listening test includes: open answer questions; gap fill summary; true, false, not given; a matching exercise; a gap fill completion activity; and a summary identification task. (Example) Level ***** [B2/C1] / Video [10.00]MP3 / PPT link in download / TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Seminar Speaking: Behavioural Economics [new 2022]

This is a speaking seminar sheet that provides a range of questions for students to discuss together after they have done the reading and listening texts. The seminar provides students with an opportunity to discuss the content, share their opinions and build confidence in speaking. Level ***** [B2/C1]  TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

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Behavioural Economics PDF Book

AMAZING VALUE - Four lessons in one book: reading test, reading to writing summary writing, listening test & speaking seminar. Example TEACHER MEMBERSHIP / INSTITUTIONAL MEMBERSHIP

 

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