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BA (Hons) Economics and Philosophy

Hone your analytical skills on the complex intersection of economics, human nature and our place in the world

Year of entry: 2023/24

UCAS code

LV15

Institution code

Y50

Length

3 years full-time

Typical offer

AAB (full entry requirements)

Start date

September 2023(semester dates)

UK (home) fees

£9,250 per year

International and EU fees

£21,950 per year

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Explore the ethical implications of financial decisions and train your mind as you question the fundamental principles that underpin society.

Economic forces affect every aspect of our lives, from the price of coffee to our structures of our government. Study these pressures under the guidance of world-class researchers and analyse the philosophical implications of economic theory. Who bears the burden of financial stability? Can great wealth ever be ethical? Is it permissible to weigh the poverty of some against the greater happiness of the whole?

You'll learn with a diverse and international student body and with opportunities to study abroad you can develop a truly global perspective. Our active Club of Politics, Economics and Philosophy (PEP) encourages debate beyond the classroom. The skills you will develop in thinking across boundaries and engaging critically with a range of material are highly valued by employers.

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Studying in the School of Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the University of York

International reputation

As one of the first Schools to offer a Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) degree, we have established a strong reputation around the world.

Flexibility

With degrees in PPE, Economics and Philosophy, Economics and Politics, and Philosophy and Politics you can choose the right degree to develop your strength across these interconnected disciplines.

Course content

You'll benefit from a solid grounding in the core subjects of Economics and Philosophy and build an understanding of the connections between these subjects through our interdisciplinary module Rationality, Morality and Economics

You'll choose from a large range of option modules that will help you tailor the course to your own interests, meaning you can develop your strengths in your second and third years.

You also have the option of taking the Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) dissertation - an extended piece of work in which you'll be able to apply the analytical skills you have developed across these disciplines. 

Course transfer within PPE

It is reasonably easy to transfer between the courses in the School of PPE, subject to space being available on the course you want to move to and providing you have the required qualifications. It is relatively easy to change within the first few weeks of the first year. After this, you may have to wait until the start of the second year, and at that point you can move only into a course for which you have taken the relevant first year introductory modules.

Study abroad

There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:

Placement year

The university-wide placement scheme gives you the chance to work for a year as part of your degree to prepare you for the world of work. Previous placements have included GlaxoSmithKline, HSBC, British Airways, DAI and Lloyds Bank.

Year 1

Your first year will be split between Economics and Philosophy.

The economics modules will provide you with modules focusing on the mathematical and statistical skills necessary for advanced study of the discipline. In philosophy you will take modules that introduce you to the methods of thinking and writing that underpin philosophy, central areas of philosophical study and key figures and works from the history of philosophy.

Core modules

  • Principles of Economics

Option modules

You will also take five option modules. Examples from previous years have included:

Philosophy

Economics

The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.

Academic integrity module

In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.

Year 2

Your second year will also be split equally between Economics and Philosophy.

Core modules

You will take core modules which may include:

  • Microeconomic Theory
  • Macroeconomic Analysis and Policy
  • Econometrics

Option modules

You will also take three option modules. Examples from previous years have included:

Economics

Philosophy

The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.

Year 3

In your final year you will be required to take one module in Economics and Philosophy. Beyond this, you are free to choose modules from either discipline - or even elective modules from other departments.

Dissertation

You may choose the PPE dissertation as one of your option modules. This is supervised over all three terms and assessed in the Summer Term.

Examples of previous dissertation titles include:

  • A Feminist Critique of Drone Warfare
  • A Politico-economic Analysis of the 2012-13 Financial Crisis in Cyprus
  • Is it Wrong not to Vote? 

Core modules

Option modules

You will also take five option modules. Examples from previous years have included:

PPE

Economics

Philosophy

The options available to you will be confirmed later in the year. For further information please get in touch.

Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.

Learning by design

Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.

Students who complete this course will be able to:

  • Identify issues and situations in society where concepts and principles from Economics and Philosophy can provide insight, and confidently apply those concepts and principles as appropriate.
  • Apply flexibly the methods of logical and mathematical reasoning used by economists, with an understanding of the purpose and scope of such models, and use proficiently statistical, econometric and computer-based techniques for analysing data, including in applying and testing economic models.
  • Develop and articulate systematic, logical arguments for and against the alternative solutions considered in relation to a particular problem, subjecting key concepts and principles to critical scrutiny.
  • Engage with, and draw on, academic and professional research in Economics and Philosophy, with an ability to distinguish different themes within it, and to synthesise ideas across disciplinary boundaries.
  • Use interdisciplinary thinking to reflect upon and engage with issues arising in modern societies, thereby acquiring a deeper understanding of the connections between economics and philosophy by drawing on the complete set of skills developed in these disciplines.
  • Improve academic and personal performance by developing initiative, self-organisation and time management skills, as well as the ability to assimilate advice and feedback in individual or collaborative work.
  • Clearly present, explain and communicate complex ideas in a variety of modes including verbal, written and technical.
  • Demonstrate informed sensitivity to cultural and historical context in interpreting and responding to the work and ideas of others.

Fees and funding

Annual tuition fees

UK (home) International and EU
£9,250 £21,950

UK (home) or international fees?

The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status.

Fees for subsequent years

  • UK (home) fees may increase within the government fee cap in subsequent academic years. We will notify you of any increase as soon as we can.
  • International fees are subject to increase in subsequent years in line with the prevailing Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation rate (up to a maximum of 10%).

More information

For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.

Additional costs

There are no mandatory additional fees, but we do recommend that you set aside some money for photocopying. Course books will be available from the Library and online reading packs are available for most modules, but you may wish to buy your own copies. 

Funding

We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2023/24 throughout the year.

Living costs

You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.

Teaching and assessment

You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.

Teaching format

We teach in two main ways: seminars and lectures. The main focus of your coursework will be conducted in seminar groups, normally of 10-15 students. In seminars you will produce and discuss your own work, under the guidance of a module tutor. Seminars are normally accompanied by lectures, attended by all of the students taking the module.

In the first year, you will take introductory modules alongside students from a wide range of degree courses. In the second and third year modules, lectures are smaller - often with as few as 20 students.

Timetabled activities

In your first year, you can expect:

Lectures8 hours per week
Seminars3-4 hours per week
Workshops0-2 hours per week
Practicals0-2 hours per week

These figures are representative of a typical week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.

Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practice completion of assessment tasks, or revision.

In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.

Teaching location

The School of Philosophy, Politics and Economics is located in Derwent College, on Campus West. Teaching on this course takes place at various locations across Campus West including the Physics and Electronics Building and the newly opened Spring Lane Building.

About our campus

Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.

Assessment and feedback

The majority of your assessments will be either unseen examination papers or essays, which will vary depending on the department running the module. Most Economics modules for example are assessed by exams, but in Philosophy there is more of a mixture of exams and essays.

Assessments occur throughout the three years of study, usually in the term immediately after the module has been taken. There are three assessment periods during the academic year: Week 1 of the Spring Term, Week 1 of the Summer Term and Weeks 5 to 8 of the Summer Term.

Percentage of the course typically assessed by coursework and exams

Year 1Year 2Year 3
Written exams83%63%83%
Coursework17%37%17%

The figures above are based on data from 2016/17. Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.

Students in a seminar
Students in a lecture

Careers and skills

The interdisciplinary nature of Economics and Philosophy provides transferable skills that are highly sought after by employers. With our diverse student body and opportunities for internships and study abroad, you'll be well prepared to enter the global marketplace.

The Club of PEP also provides a platform for students to meet with experts and industry insiders through their careers branch, YorkWorks.

Career opportunities

  • Central and local government
  • Private industry
  • Creative arts and media
  • Teaching
  • Social work
  • Law
  • Journalism
  • Accountancy
  • Banking
  • Publishing

Transferable skills

  • Analytical and problem solving skills
  • Debating and clear expression of ideas
  • Development and structuring of arguments
  • Processing information
  • Time management
  • Working collaboratively in a diverse environment
  • Working and learning independently
  • Ability to understand numerical and written information

Entry requirements

Typical offer
A levels

AAB including Mathematics

Access to Higher Education Diploma 36 credits at Distinction and 9 credits at Merit or higher plus Level 3 units in Mathematics or in conjunction with an alternative Level 3 Mathematics qualification
BTEC National Extended Diploma DDD including Mathematics or in conjunction with an acceptable alternative Level 3 Mathematics qualification
Cambridge Pre-U D3, D3, M2 including Mathematics
European Baccalaureate 80% overall including 80% in Mathematics
International Baccalaureate 35 points, including 6 in Higher level in Mathematics (either Analysis and Approaches or Applications and Interpretations).
T levels We are currently not accepting T Levels for this course unless an additional A Level (or equivalent qualification) in Mathematics has been taken.
International foundation programme Foundation Certificate from our International Pathway College or an appropriate alternative.
Other qualifications We welcome applications from mature students (ie those aged over 21), and usually admit a number each year. In all cases we look for evidence of ability, interest and commitment, but we may not require specific formal qualifications. In most cases, we prefer to interview mature candidates before offering them a place.
Other international qualifications Equivalent qualifications from your country

Alternative offers

Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.

Criteria Adjustment
Widening participation If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Black Access Programme, Next Step York, Realising Opportunities, YESS, YorWay to York. More about widening participation.
Contextual offers If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.
EPQ If you achieve A or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.

English language

If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:

Minimum requirement
IELTS (Academic and Indicator) 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component
C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency 176, with a minimum of 169 in each component
Duolingo 120, minimum 105 in each component
GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language) Grade C / Grade 4
PTE Academic/PTE Academic Online 61, with a minimum of 55 in each component
TOEFL 87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component
Trinity ISE III Merit in all components

For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.

If you've not met our English language requirements

You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.

The length of course you need to take depends on your current English language test scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.

After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.

Applying

To apply to York, you will need to complete an online application via UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

Next steps

Contact us

Get in touch if you have any questions

Dr Sara Van Goozen

Learn more

School of Philosophy, Politics and Economics

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