Economics (McGraw-Hill Economics) Hardcover – 1 Nov 2008
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Honestly, I knew textbook companies were crooks but....
What's missing: chapters on tech and efficiency, developing countries, and the gold-standard and Bretton Woods systems. Also there are worked problems, interactive graphs, and 70 articles on certain histories.
None of this is available for the $140 price. Or maybe it is. Maybe I accidentally threw away my registration card because (silly me) I had no reason to suspect that part of the book was not included with the book. Now, without said card I will have to pony up another $16 to finish buying the book I thought I bought. FU, McGraw-Hill.
A study guide is available separately: ISBN: 978-0-07-336880-1. The study guide contains a summary of each chapter along with short answer, true/false, and multiple choice questions (with answers).
Two of the chapters (11W & 39W) and one supplement (39S) are only available online in PDF form (from mcconnell18e.com). There is no charge to download these chapters. Other free content like quizzes and interactive graphs can be found on the same website.
Premium content--available for a fee on the same website--includes:
- key questions (the same key questions in the text, but no answers!)
- narrated slides (handy to watch before a class, but not a substitute for reading the text)
- iPod content (the same narrated slides in iPod video and audio format)
- Paul Solomon videos (like a mini lecture)
The version I bought from Amazon did not come with a registration code for premium content, but I was able to sign up for $20.00.
If you decide to pay $60~ for the online McGraw Hill's Connect, you don't have to because all the Connect questions are already inside the textbook. If, however, you are required to get the online membership so your teacher can grade you on the online questions, be warned that the questions are vague and hard to understand.
ONLINE MATERIAL PROBLEMS:
The Online Study Questions can grade the multiple choice but it *cannot* grade the short answer questions correctly.
The questions are also ambiguous, for example the Connect questions will ask you to draw a curved PPF graph using a table of data given. Then it will ask you what the X is on a random point on the PPF curve when given a Y-axis along the curve (ie. If y=5 coffee beans, what is x=? on the parabolic PPF curve). To solve that would require Calculus. And then the answer needs to be within .5 of a decimal place.
Sometimes the same, exact question will appear 3x in a row. This is gross oversight.
The textbook glosses over important details such as "opportunity cost" in 2 sentences and is described without examples, other than alluding to free lunches. Instead of explaining definitions and concepts, the textbook teaches it to you as if you're already expected to know.
For example, in teaching the Law of Increasing Opportunity Costs, the textbook uses a graph and states moving from Point A to B will sacrifice x units of Item#1 for x units of Item #2. And then it says that illustrates the Law of Increasing Opportunity Cost, and that's it for the entire explanation in the textbook for that concept.
I highly recommend you go with "William J. Baumol & Alan S. Blinder - MACROECONOMICS: Principles and Policy 11th edition." (They also have a MICROECONOMICS version). The author taught at Princeton University and the textbook is more clear.
Their online APLIA website is significantly better than McGraw Hill's in terms of clearer questions, better software, and accurate descriptions that even explain every correct/incorrect answer. They tie in concepts with examples, explain everything in depth, and easy-to-understand English instead of McGraw Hill's concepts (weak examples) and vague online questions (with no explanation for wrong answers).
Just be aware, the popularity of a textbook doesn't mean the material is well-written.
I am upset they charged me so much for the Connect, when presented with such bad software. This is a complaint among my other class students too. I am letting you other students know what you're getting into. I would avoid the course that has a professor using this textbook, or if you must use this textbook, get the professor that teaches from his lecture notes instead of the book.