Anything That Interests Me! :)

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Basic List of Books to Prepare Freshies for NUS Economics

Basic List of Books to Prepare Freshies for NUS Economics 

OK, this is going to be a very strange post, because basically it's a response to a request by someone who is going to enter NUS FASS this year. 

It's a very basic list of books to prepare freshies for NUS Economics. 

I hope this helps you, but the reality is that nothing actually really prepares you for the real mental toughness and intellectual rigour of studying at NUS, and especially studying Economics - which in the immortal words of some people I respect - is a subject that has "physics-envy" (and thus has a lot of mathematics in it), and is a subject that is a load of abstraction in university.

So having given a nice disclaimer which basically states that nothing actually really prepares you, here is a list that could potentially help you prepare for NUS Economics (or any bachelor of social science Economics in almost any university). 

Good luck! Do please note that this is the list that I myself have studied, read, and ... well regurgitated at some point or other. Good luck once again!

Stock & Watson, Introduction to Econometrics. 
(Honest to goodness, if this does not scare you off studying Economics, then clearly you are made of stern stuff.)

Robert Barro, Macroeconomics 
Abel & Bernanke & Croushore, Macroeconomics

Krugman & Obstfeld, International Economics: Theory and Policy

Pindyck & Rubinfeld, Microeconomics

Roger Backhouse, The Penguin History of Economics

Prentice-Hall, Mathematical Economics (or basically any mathematical economics textbook)

Roger Backhouse is very famous in the field of Economic History, which is my favourite subject. Full of interesting twists and turns, this is one of the best introductory books to understanding Economics as a discipline. Suffice to say that this book is purely for enjoyment and intellectual pleasure. This is because post-modern Economics as we know it is basically a mathematics course. There's a joke in this regard... then again, discretion is the better part of valour!

Also, you should consider reading - other than my blog - Mankiw's blog, and Dr Wong WK's blog. Yes, I'm biased: 

Good luck, and all the best for your academic journey!

Hope this helps :)

Anything that interests me!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Tempora mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis...

The first time I heard the Latin phrase, "tempora mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis" I was watching an episode of that really funny television series (on DVD, as I'm still quite young) Yes, Prime Minister. For those of you in the know, yes it was indeed the infamous or the famous Sir Humphrey. The Cabinet Secretary went on to say that times change, and we change with the times.

(The other funny thing Sir Humphrey said was, "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses", which in his own translation is "if you had kept your mouth shut, we might have thought you were clever"!)

It actually got me thinking that it's quite true. Times do change, and we have to change with the times. Often we are too easily seduced by the old and the charming past - and while it is good to keep in touch with the legacy of the past and good to be reminded of where we came from and what we have done before, it might be a good idea to think of how we can adapt ourselves to new and changing circumstances. 

Now, I'm far from saying that the past is not important. After all, I did read Economic History. There are lots of lessons to be learnt, and certainly where we are today is the product of what we did yesterday. It also brings the sobering reminder that what we do today determines our tomorrows. That should be a good reminder of the importance of the past and what we have learnt from it. 

However, not keeping up with current knowledge and current events and trends is not doing oneself a service. 

So I've started keeping myself up to date and trying to see what interests youngsters these days, and some can be quite interesting and some can be quite ugly. 

Let's share a bit of leisure stuff that I have recently picked up from asking some teenagers about what interests them before I get back to work again...

(Don't judge me! :))


Yeah, these people are new leisure to me. That's because I quote Latin phrases!

Anything that interests me!

Tempora mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis...

As promised, here I am blogging once again. I'll take this as an opportunity to share some of the strange things floating around in my head, as well as some rare nuggets of information or knowledge that might be useful to you some day (then again, no, not really). Once in a while I will write about NUS, USP, and university stuff again because that's what most of my readers like, since I started this blog when I was at university. That seems like a really long time ago!

Tempora mutantur, nos et mutamur in illis

is in the next post, not this one! :)