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BSc Philosophy, Politics and Economics (Four Year Programme)


UCAS code: L0V0

Programme requirement:
 A level Mathematics at grade A* or International Baccalaureate Diploma with a minimum of 7 in Higher level Mathematics

Usual standard offer:
A level: grades A*AA, with an A* in Mathematics

International Baccalaureate: Diploma with 38 points including 7 6 6 at Higher level (with 7 in Mathematics)

Other qualifications are considered

For further details, see lse.ac.uk/ug/apply/phl

Applications 2015:

First year students 2015:


First year:

(* half unit)

Second year:

Third year:

Fourth year:

Please note that not every course is available each year and that some courses may only be available with the permission of the course convenor and/or may be subject to space.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to exceptional circumstances or events outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses or programmes of study and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the lse.ac.uk/cal/ug/updates page.

Programme details

First year

You will take either Quantitative Methods (Mathematics), which provides you with the basic mathematical knowledge required for core economics courses, jointly with Quantitative Methods (Statistics), which develops the elementary statistical tools necessary for further study in economics with an emphasis on the applicability of these methods; or you will take Mathematical Methods, an introductory level course for those who wish to use mathematics extensively in social science. You will also have a choice of either Introduction to Political Science, which offers an introduction to politics in a globalised world, with a focus on how political science tries to understand and explain cross-country and cross-time differences, or Introduction to Political Theory, which combines classical theory with modern ways of explaining and understanding international relations. Reason, Knowledge and Values: An Introduction to Philosophy gives a critical introduction to some central problems and classic texts of philosophy. This course also includes a supplementary five-week Philosophy and Argumentative Writing seminar, which provides intensive training in writing skills. You will take Economics A or Economics B, depending on your economics background. Economics B is only for students with A level Economics or equivalent. Along with all LSE students, you take LSE100 (which commences in the Lent term), an interdisciplinary course that introduces students to fundamental elements involved in thinking like a social scientist.

Second year

You will take either Introduction to Political Science or Introduction to Political Theory, whichever option you did not study in your first year. Formal Methods of Philosophical Argumentation combines logic with probability theory and makes these formal methods relevant to argumentation analysis and the study of scientific reasoning.

If you studied Quantitative Methods (Mathematics) and Quantitative Methods (Statistics) in your first year, then you will take Introduction to Econometrics, which aims to present the theory and practice of empirical research in economics. You will also take Microeconomic Principles I, an intermediate course in the analysis of the behaviour of individuals and firms.

If you studied Mathematical Methods in your first year, then you will take Elementary Statistical Theory, which provides a precise treatment of introductory probability theory, statistical ideas, methods and techniques. You will also have the choice of either Microeconomic Principles I or the more mathematical Microeconomic Principles II. LSE100 continues in the Michaelmas term. In Lent, you start your own tailor-made interdisciplinary course: Philosophy, Politics and Economics: Interdisciplinary Research Seminar. This will engage you with leading academics and practitioners working in PPE and will train you in presentations and public speaking.

Third year

You will take one government option, one philosophy option and Macroeconomic Principles, which examines economic growth, consumption, investment, unemployment, inflation, monetary and fiscal policy, financial markets and international macroeconomics. 

If you studied Quantitative Methods (Mathematics) and Quantitative Methods (Statistics) in your first year, then you will take either a government, philosophy or economics option.

If you studied Mathematical Methods in your first year, then you will take either Introduction to Econometrics or Principles of Econometrics, which provides an intermediate-level introduction to the theory and practice of econometrics.

Philosophy, Politics and Economics: Interdisciplinary Research Seminar will continue for the Michaelmas and Lent terms.

Fourth year

Politics, Philosophy and Economics: Applications focuses on contemporary public policy topics and explores their political, economic and philosophical dimensions. You also choose any two LSE second- or third-year options from the government, philosophy or economics lists, or outside options with permission. For your final course, you will complete Philosophy, Politics and Economics: Capstone and Research Project. This involves group work on an applied public policy project (in Michaelmas term) and an individual research project (in Lent term).