I am currently a PhD candidate in the Behavioral Decision Research division of Carnegie Mellon University’s Social and Decision Science department; as a practitioner of social science, I can confidently attest to the value of the LSE’s MSc. in philosophy of the social sciences.

While my experience at the LSE has contributed to my development as a scholar in a variety of ways, there is one very fundamental advantage enjoyed by students of this program, that I think is similarly responsible (in many ways) for the way in which I now approach my work: Although the statement may be a bit broad, I think scholarship in general is about asking questions: why is our world the way it is?  How might we go about studying it further?  Ought we intervene?  Irrespective of a scholar’s field, one must be motivated by these deep questions, whose answers are admittedly quite complex.  Regarding the particular domain of social science, the LSE (I believe) is unique in its ability to give students an appreciation for the vast array of questions which motivate enquiry.  In a basic way, the MSc. program affords its graduates a sort of ‘view from above.

While there are many objective measures a prospective student might adopt for discovering the appeal of this course (faculty strength, departmental ratings, placement record, etc.), when I reflect on the impact the LSE had on me, it is the more abstract quality—the change in my approach—for which I am grateful.