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The Department aims to promote both an understanding of economic principles and an interest in their relevance to all spheres of life and the global economy.

The turbulent economic conditions of the past few years mean that the study of Economics is more relevant than ever. The Department aims to help pupils understand the causes and consequences of current events and policies, and to ensure that they have the necessary analytical and evaluative skills to question the decisions taken by politicians and business leaders.

Economics is available to students in the Lower and Upper Sixth Forms, who follow the OCR A-level syllabus or the SQA Higher syllabus.


William Donkin

William Donkin

Teacher of Economics


The Economics Department moved into new purpose-built rooms in 2011. As well as creating an Economics centre within the School, the location allows the Department to share resources and ideas with the Geography Department.


VI Form only: The students work towards either an OCR A-Level or a SQA Higher qualification depending on which programme best suits their academic objectives. Both syllabus provides a coherent combination of microeconomic and macroeconomic content, drawing on local, national and international contexts and require the students to contemplate their value and limitations in explaining real-world phenomena. Students must learn how to: interpret and manipulate data; analyse and evaluate a source; use diagrams to illustrate and explain their arguments and write extended discursive essays.


The Economics Department provides numerous opportunities for particularly talented or motivated students to challenge themselves outwith the confines of the curriculum. Through supporting the students in extended writing projects as part of our Cecil Stagg Society and external essay competitions including the Royal Economics Society, we help students to develop their independent research, evaluation skills, and knowledge of the real world.

Our student-led Medical Society provides opportunities for prospective medics to collaboratively apply their scientific knowledge in a medical context. On average, 7% of our Year 13 students have applied for Medicine at university over the last three years.


Through our close links with the Roslin Institute, IGCSE and A Level pupils also get to experience advanced genetics techniques as well as a wide range of the usual practical work offered within schools. Being able to use the Roslin labs has enabled the department to deliver hands on experiments on subject matter elsewhere only able to be taught theoretically.

Ms Williams Head of Biology

Coming from a state school, science was taught very theoretically. Here at Merchiston, we do so many practicals to reinforce our knowledge. This has given me a totally different view on school in general: every day I wake up and I look forward to my lessons

Vincent B Year 11 (S4)

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