Monday, January 7, 2013

Forecast Question for Data Response Unit 1 (Data Response): Congestion


Good morning folks! Sorry for the long delay. I was away for the whole weekend for my friend’s wedding.

As have been mentioned, this will be the continuation from the previous post. What will be the most anticipated line-up CONGESTION questions?

Question (a) (6m)


  • Reasons for the increase in the number of private cars. Data reference e.g. % of increase (2m). Any possible two reasons (rise in income, cheaper in real term, increase in lengths of roads built etc) (4m)

Question (b) (6m)


  • Relationship between private cars and bus travel. Define XED (1m). Mention that both are substitutes (1m) with reference to extract (1m). Both have positive XED (1m). Explain their relationship e.g. higher ticket fares and hence more choose private cars (1m). Diagram/ own numerical example (1m)

Question (c) (8m)


  • Whether bus travel is a normal good or inferior good. Define YED (1m). Mention that normal good has YED > 0 (1m) and inferior good has YED < 0 (1m). Say bus travel is normal good (1m) supported by reference (1m). Diagram (1m). Evaluation (2m) e.g. argue that it is neither as evidenced by some rich people who also commute to work by bus

Question (d) (14m)


  • Methods to reduce congestion. Provide any three solutions e.g. BUILD MORE ROADS, CONVERTING HARD SHOULDERS TO MOTORWAYS, CONGESTION CHARGE, FUEL TAX, SUBSIDIES FOR PUBLIC TRANSPORT, CAR SHARING LANES etc (8m). Evaluations (3+3) or (2+2+2)

Question (e) (14m)


  • Benefits of increased subsidy for bus and rail travel. Define subsidy (1m). Diagram of subsidy (3m) (can be more depending on the details shown on diagram). Provide two benefits (4m) e.g. keeping them afloat, protect jobs, reduce congestion etc. Evaluations (3+3) or (2+2+2)


  • Effectiveness of fuel tax to reduce congestion. Define/ identify this as indirect tax (1m). Diagram of fuel tax (3m) (can be more depending on details added). Mention that it is effective for two reasons (4m) e.g. revenue to improve public transport, people discouraged to drive etc. Evaluations (3+3) or (2+2+2) e.g. regressive, PED fuel < 1 so people are paying anyway, inflation, street protests etc

Other important notes:

1. Try to make sure that you have at least 25 minutes to cater for the last two 14m questions. What to do if on average you have less than 6 minutes for each 14m question? Are you going to revisit Section A to further improvise your answers by providing lengthier explanations? Or you do the same thing onto the first three Data Response questions? It is none of the above. BELIEVE IT OR NOT, POINTS CARRY MORE WEIGHTAGE THAN ELABORATIONS. Key points, even if it is only 1/2 WORDS, AUTOMATICALLY you get 1 mark. Long winded elaboration carries another 1 marks. So, if I were you, I will (Step 1) define all key words, (Step 2), draw diagram, (Step 3) OUTLINE POINTS ONLY and (Step 4) OUTLINE POINTS even for evaluations

For illustration, economic effects of higher fuel price:

Inflation (1m). All firms will be adversely affected because of higher logistic costs (1m)……..

Regressive effect (1m). Poor people are more badly affected than the rich because they need to    devote a large percentage of their monthly income onto fuel than the rich (1m)……..

2. If the question REQUIRES DIAGRAM, PLEASE PROVIDE. But, if the question does not mention anything, you can get full marks WITH OR WITHOUT DIAGRAM

3. Keep a good habit of monitoring the time for every question that you advance into. A simple and very effective strategy but yet often overlooked by those who complain about insufficient time

Examination strategy for Unit 1 can be a very very lengthy post if I am serious about going deep into that which I think, may not be possible. Hope these two postings help! Cheers folks J

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