Economic decision-making is rational and self-interested.

Economic decision-making is rational and self-interested. In other words, the decisions we make are made to make us better off.  Because of scarcity, the limits of resources to fulfill our wants, we have to monitor costs and usually make an optimal decision within the limits of time and money.  Rational decision-making uses a logical method of analysis to select the best choice from among the feasible alternatives.

This discussion will address the following Module Outcomes:

  • MO1: Define economics and the role of scarcity, choice, and opportunity cost in economics. (CO1)

For your initial post in this discussion, please think about a recent large purchase you have made or one you might make in the future, e.g. a house, a car, a refrigerator, etc.

Post your answers to the following questions:

  • What were the most important features and functions of the purchase?
  • In the end, what feature led (will lead) you to your final decision?
  • Looking back, was it the best decision you could have made, or has further information made you question your decision or what new information might make you believe, in hindsight, that you made a bad decision?

Now, consider and write down how an engineer may be responsible for the economic performance of projects and products.

  • How would making a decision about a project, a building, a part design, a machine, or any product by an engineer be similar to the decision process we have just discussed for something personal?
  • How would their decision process be comparable to yours?
  • How would it be different?

Your initial post should be 300 to 500 words,

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