Politics, Philosophy and Economics: PPE

BA (Hons)


Are you considering a career as a politician, civil servant or journalist? Keen to study both humanities and social sciences?

With roots in three separate disciplines, this is the course for you. It combines intellectual stimulation with understanding what makes the world tick and is the first degree of its kind in Scotland. As befits this, you can even choose specifically Scottish options in all three areas.

Our supportive and friendly team has received the highest possible rating for its teaching. In your final year, you’ll bring together the different skills you’ve acquired in a dissertation, which covers at least two of the subject areas.

Key information

EU Applicants
The Scottish Government has confirmed that EU students enrolling in the 2017 and 2018 academic year will be entitled to free tuition fees in Scotland. EU Students will be admitted as Scottish/EU fee status students and will retain that status for the duration of their four year degree. EU students will also be eligible for tuition fee support from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS).

  • UCAS: L0V0
  • Qualification: BA (Hons)
  • Study methods: Campus based, Full-time
  • Start date: September
  • Course Director: Dr Matias Margulis
  • Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
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Dr Matias Margulis


History and Politics
Faculty of Arts and Humanities
University of Stirling

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What makes us different?

World-class library and teaching facilities

Studying for a degree means learning in different ways; managing your own time; conducting research; mastering new computer skills. We have the facilities and advice on hand to help you do all this - and do it well.

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Life at Stirling

Of the many reasons students come to Stirling, such as academic reputation and research standards, one factor is always cited: the outstanding beauty of the University's Stirling campus. View our online films to get a picture of what it's like to live and study on our beautiful campus.

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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

Three-year Honours degree

SQA Higher:

GCE A-level:

IB Diploma:
35 points.

BTEC (Level 3):

Essential subjects: To include Politics, Philosophy And Economics

Four-year Honours degree

SQA Higher:
ABBB - one sitting.
AABB - two sittings.

GCE A-level:

IB Diploma:
32 points.

Other qualifications


Year one entry
Scottish HNC/D - Bs in graded units
English, Welsh and NI HNC/D - Merits and Distinctions.

Advanced entry
Not possible.

Access courses:
Access courses and other UK/EU and international qualifications are also welcomed.

Additional information

General entrance requirements apply.
Mathematics Standard Grade (3), National 5 (C), Intermediate 2 (C), GCSE (C) or equivalent required.

If examinations are taken over two sittings, or there are repeats or upgrades, the entrance requirements may be higher.

INTO University of Stirling offers an International Foundation programme for those international students who do not meet the required academic and English-language criteria. This course offers a route to study at University of Stirling through an excellent teaching and learning experience located in the high-quality study facilities on campus. Successful completion of the International Foundation in Media, Humanities and Social Sciences to the required standard provides guaranteed progression to this degree.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS: 6.0 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade C
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 54 with 51 in each component
  • IBT TOEFL: 80 with no subtest less than 17

More information on our English language requirements

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

Fees and costs

Fees 2017/18

Overseas students (non-EU) £ 11,845.00
Scottish and EU students £ 1,820.00
Students from the rest of the UK £6,750 per year for a maximum of 4 years

Fees 2018/19

Overseas students (non-EU) £ 12,140.00
Scottish and EU students £ 1,820.00
Students from the rest of the UK £9,250.00

From 2016/7 onwards, the fees for overseas undergraduates will be held at the level upon entry.

Please note: Scottish and EU students can apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) to have tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Students from the rest of the UK can apply for financial assistance, including a loan to cover the full cost of the tuition fees, from the Student Loan Company.

You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.

Please note there is an additional charge for the conferral of your degree. This will be charged at the rate applicable when you complete your studies. View more information

Cost of Living

Find out about the cost of living for students at Stirling

Payment options

Find information on paying fees by instalments

Structure and teaching

Structure and content

Semesters 1 - 3

In Semesters 1 - 3 you will study the following modules:

  • Politics: Politics of the British Isles - This module explores major institutions and processes in British politics
  • Philosophy: What is it all about? - An introduction to central philosophical problems concerning, for instance, knowledge, mind and body, freedom and determinism, morality and justice, the meaning of life
  • Economics: Introductory Microeconomics - A broad introduction to microeconomics, which analyses how prices are set and resources are allocated in an economy
  • Politics: Political Concepts and Ideas - This module offers an introduction to political theory by exploring ideas and concepts central to the political debate
  • Philosophy: Mind, Value and Reality - An introduction to key metaphysical and ethical issues. What is it to be a person? Are we responsible for what we do? Can we be motivated by anything other than our own self-interest? These and other topics will be considered and some ethical implications explored
  • Economics: Introductory Macroeconomics - Factors affecting the level of national income, unemployment and inflation, the balance of payments and the scope and limitations of government policy on these matters
  • Politics: Introduction to International Politics - This module covers mainstream theories of international relations, analyses key international organisations (e.g. the UN and NATO) and explores contemporary issues and debates in world politics after the Cold War and 9/11
  • Philosophy: From Plato to Existentialism - A philosophical examination of the relationship between the individual and society, looking at the works of Plato, Hobbes, Mill and Sartre
  • Economics: Intermediate Microeconomics - A more formal treatment of the foundations of microeconomic theory - consumer choice and the theory of the firm


Semesters 4 - 8

In Semesters 4 - 8 you will study the following core modules:

  • Politics: Great Political Thinkers - This explores some of the key issues in political theory by focusing on five influential writers: Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Mill and Marx
  • Philosophy: Moral Theory - An examination of the principal theories of normative ethics; or Logic: An introduction to the two formal languages of elementary logic and the logical concepts that they employ
  • Economics: Intermediate Macroeconomics - A more formal treatment of the foundations of macroeconomic theory, including alternative theories of aggregate output, price, interest rates, inflation and unemployment

In Semester 5 you will take modules in each of the three disciplines. In Semester 6 you can either continue to study in each of the three subjects or you can choose from only two subjects. Semester 7 and 8 have further specialisation. (See entries below)


A supervised project (equivalent to two modules) on a topic that combines elements from at least two of the disciplines.

Delivery and assessment

Honours degree classification is based on those advanced modules undertaken in the final two years of the course. In general, (but with the exception of the dissertation) examination and coursework are weighted equally in each module.

Related degrees

Economics; Philosophy; Politics.

Modes of study

Full-time (three modules per semester).
Part-time (one or two modules per semester).

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Why Stirling?



In REF2014 Stirling was placed 6th in Scotland and 45th in the UK with almost three quarters of research activity rated either world-leading or internationally excellent.


Teaching provision in Politics and Economics has been assessed by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education and achieved the highest possible rating of ‘commendable’ in all aspects.

Philosophy was ranked 2nd in Scotland and top ten in the UK, and Economics was ranked 4th in Scotland in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE).

This degree is the first of its kind in Scotland.

International Students

The University of Stirling welcomes applications from all countries.

Study abroad opportunities

You have the opportunity to study abroad through Stirling's well-established connections with several international universities.

Careers and employability

Career opportunities

You will graduate with these advantages:

  • Skills in evaluating arguments
  • Knowledge of how private and public enterprises function
  • Understanding of how resources are allocated
  • Insight into the cultural, intellectual and moral pressures on decision makers
  • Ability to express your own viewpoints clearly and effectively

Graduates are thus equipped for a wide range of careers including:

  • The public service sector
  • Private companies
  • Voluntary organisations
  • The media
© University of Stirling FK9 4LA Scotland UK • Telephone +44 1786 473171 • Scottish Charity No SC011159
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