A High School Economics Guide

Supplementary resources for high school students

Definitions and Basics

Demand, from the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics

One of the most important building blocks of economic analysis is the concept of demand. When economists refer to demand, they usually have in mind not just a single quantity demanded, but what is called a demand curve. A demand curve traces the quantity of a good or service that is demanded at successively different prices.

The most famous law in economics, and the one that economists are most sure of, is the law of demand. On this law is built almost the whole edifice of economics. The law of demand states that when the price of a good rises, the amount demanded falls, and when the price falls, the amount demanded rises….

Microeconomics, from the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics

The strength of microeconomics comes from the simplicity of its underlying structure and its close touch with the real world. In a nutshell, microeconomics has to do with supply and demand, and with the way they interact in various markets….

In the News and Examples

A Little History: Primary Sources and References

Indifference curves, diminishing marginal utility, and the demand curve: Gradations of Consumers’ Demand, Book III, Chapter III from Principles of Economics, by Alfred Marshall

There is an endless variety of wants, but there is a limit to each separate want. This familiar and fundamental tendency of human nature may be stated in the law of satiable wants or of diminishing utility thus:—The total utility of a thing to anyone (that is, the total pleasure or other benefit it yields him) increases with every increase in his stock of it, but not as fast as his stock increases. If his stock of it increases at a uniform rate the benefit derived from it increases at a diminishing rate. In other words, the additional benefit which a person derives from a given increase of his stock of a thing, diminishes with every increase in the stock that he already has.

Advanced Resources

Related Topics

Elasticity of Demand



Markets and Prices

Aggregate Demand