ECON 2302 Unit 3


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Unit 3: Markets and Competition



A.  Read the following selections from the Margin Notes by clicking on each link.


B.  Watch these presentations. When you click on one of the links below, a new screen will pop up. Use the scrollbar on the side of the new screen to navigate. You need Adobe Reader to view PDF files.


C.  (Optional) Read the following chapter from the textbook.

Chapter 08


D.  The following Optional Links will help you do better in your course but they are not required.


E.  Activity #2: Amazon vs Barnes & Noble (10 points)To Do Note

An upstart company called Amazon introduced book selling to the Web. Amazon’s success enticed long-time brick-and-mortar bookseller Barnes & Noble to create an online presence with a major web site.

Search both online sites for a paperback copy of Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations.

For each site, find what the total price would be if you purchased the book and had it delivered to your address. Is one company's price cheaper?

Identify the non-price competition variables which would lead you to order from one company rather than the other. (If you've been ignoring the Margin Notes and/or presentations, you will have difficulty identifying the non-price competition variables!)

When you finish your work, write a summary of your findings that includes the 5 points below. Your answers should be thorough, specific, include relevant concepts from the course material and be free of spelling and grammar errors.

  1. both companies' price (Be sure to identify which company was cheaper if it isn't obvious from the prices.)

  2. a discussion of all of the ways the companies compete for your business other than price (non-price competition) [One caution: This is a comparison of Amazon and Barnes & Noble Online ... two online retailers. I realize that Barnes & Noble also has brick-and-mortar stores but they are not relevant to this assignment.]

  3. which company you would buy the book from

  4. which competitive factors (both price and non-price) were important to you in reaching that decision and why

  5. Make specific and detailed connections to the course material you have been studying. Always include course concepts in your work. If you're reading your margin notes and watching the presentations, you'll have plenty of material from which to choose on every activity. (When it comes to making specific and detailed connections to the course material, I always show some leniency in the first assignment. With this second assignment, you need to begin to approach this item in a more scholarly fashion. This is the part of each assignment in which you should show off how much you know. You should have already completed margin notes and power point presentations that deal with relevant theoretical concepts so it should be easy to make those connections. If you don't, then you miss the purpose of the assignment and cannot expect to earn full points for it.)


Activity Submission Instructions

By the deadline shown in the Course Schedule on the main page of the syllabus:
  • Send your summary containing the 5 items requested in the body of a new email to

  • Put only your name and Activity #2 at the beginning of your email.

  • Be careful to use the correct subject line.

  • Late summaries will lose one point per day late, including weekends and holidays.



Copyright 1996 Amy S Glenn
Last updated:   02/14/2018   0130

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