Teaching Resources

Why Breaking Bad?

The need for a Breaking Bad-based teaching resource becomes even more acute when taking into account the show’s popularity, and its direct appeal to undergraduate students. Currently, statistics provided by the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) show that Breaking Bad received its highest ratings from males and females under eighteen and between eighteen and twenty-nine years of age, precisely the age group in which most of our undergraduate students fall. Moreover, Breaking Bad ranks fifth in IMDB’s Top 250 TV Shows and second among one hundred shows reviewed by The Hollywood Reporter according to Duncan et. al (Forthcoming).

Teaching with Breaking Bad

Duncan, Muchiri, and Paraschiv (forthcoming) provide a background to teaching principles of economics using Breaking Bad. All of the clips listed in their Appendix are featured on this site, but with more detailed descriptions and cross-referencing of topics. Since acceptance in the Journal of Economics & Finance Education, additional clips have been identified and are available on this site. Our hope is that educators will submit additional clips that they use in the classroom to grow this resource further.

We have streamlined Appendix B to show how Breaking Bad can be used in the classroom. Check out example uses of Breaking Bad in the classroom for the clips Owners, Not Employees and Cooking Again. If you are using Breaking Bad in the classroom, and would be willing to share your resources, please reach out to the authors.

More Resources

In economics, especially in principles courses, online teaching resources that connect educators and students are becoming less difficult to find. Recent efforts in this direction document economic concepts that appear in dialogues and scenes of popular TV shows, include The Big Bang Theory, Shark Tank, Parks and Recreation, The Office , Seinfeld , and Modern Family. There are also a number of academic papers that outline economic concepts in shows, but don’t provide online resources (Adam Ruins Everythingsuper heroes, and contemporary film)

While these shows encompass a wide array of economic concepts, there are also online resources that aggregate clips from various movies and tv shows. The two largest sites are the Economics Media Library and Dirk’s Media Library. Beyond tv shows and movies, there are websites dedicated to country music and even Broadway shows.

Critical Commons

None of the clips shown on this website are actually hosted on this website, by the authors, or their respective universities. All clips are hosted on Critical Commons, which provides the necessary framework to comply with copyright concerns. No viewer of this website (nor Critical Commons) is required to create an account, but instructors can create a special account that will allow them to download the files for their local drives.

Having your Critical Commons account tagged as an instructor account requires only providing your university-affiliated email during the registration process. Once approved, you’ll be able to login to Critical Commons and download each video to your computer or share a link directly to the video hosted on Critical Commons.