Philosophy, Politics and Economics (3 year)

Course Overview

Which ideas to you think rule the world? How can we understand the economy as a moral construct? Is unscrupulous banking at the root of the world's problems? Why is politics necessarily about the distribution of wealth? What is and should be the role of the state in the economy, if any at all? Do you want to know more about the philosophy of governance that dominates the world today? If these questions of Philosophy, Politics and Economics are of interest to you then you interest us.

Teaching and Assessment

In order to structure an academically coherent and intellectually rigorous programme, the degree is built around compulsory and optional modules. (Have a look at our module booklet for full information on modules).

The programme is delivered through lectures, tutorials and seminars. You will usually receive nine hours minimum scheduled contact time with your teachers every week. Every degree involves choices, options will be available and if first choices are not secured then the alternative will be as good. Full attendance at lectures, seminars and personal tutorials (personal tutorials are obligatory). All Arts and Humanities programmes include independent learning which requires initiative and hard work. 

We will challenge you with demanding teaching and assessment. Assessment includes essay, coursework and examination, presentations and a dissertation.    

Key Features

  • Swansea is the only University in Wales, and one of the few universities in the UK to offer Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). 
  • Whilst our programme certainly considers the likes of Aristotle, Smith and Marx, these thinkers are all “white, dead, men” and do not reflect the diversity of ideas that inhabit our world. The Swansea PPE programme, then, in addition to teaching the canon of Western thought, also takes very seriously the ideas of non-Western, contemporary and women thinkers. 
  • In contrast to other PPE programmes our students develop a solid understanding of the three subjects individually, but also grasp how each subject could help us understand the other subjects.
  • A unique feature to PPE at Swansea is the option of the Welsh Assembly Placement Scheme during your final year of study.
  • Our students have an academic mentor who provides pastoral support and guidance on issues that may affect their well-being.
  • Research in these departments is world class and the quality of our research feeds right into our teaching.
  • Students have the option of studying a Semester Abroad during their second year. Destinations include: USA, Canada, China, Hong Kong and Singapore.


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

FHEQ 4 Degree / HECert

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
HUP100Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Fundamental Questions of Philosophy
HUP101Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Ethics, Justice, and Society
MN-1010Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Maths 1 for Economics
MN-1011Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Micro-economics 1
MN-1012Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Statistics 1 for Economics
MN-1512Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Macro-economics 1
Optional Modules
Optional Module Choices  

Choose Exactly 20 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select ONE of the following modules

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
PO-118Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20War and Peace in the Nuclear Age
PO-119Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Politics and the People

Year 2 (Level 5)

FHEQ 5 Degree / HEDip

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
MN-2021Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Micro-economics 2
MN-2023Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Economic History and Industrial Development
PO-219Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Global Political Economy: From Mercantilism to Neoliberalism
Optional Modules
Optional Modules 

Choose Maximum Of 70 credits from the following Modules:

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
AM-245Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20John F. Kennedy and America
AM-251Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20America in Crisis: Political Culture and Society from the Tet Offensive to the Tea Party
AM-252Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10America in Crisis: Political Culture and Society from the Tet Offensive to the Tea Party
CLC209Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Decision and Responsibility: The Tragic Predicament
HUA206Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Contemporary Wars and Conflicts
HUP201Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Fundamental Issues in Moral and Political Philosophy
MN-2027Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Development Economics 1
MN-2028Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Econometrics 1
MN-2527Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Macro-economics 2This module is a pre-requisite for all macro eonomics modules in Year 3. It can be subsituted for MN-2023 if desired.
MN-2528Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Econometrics 2Requires MN-2028 Econometrics 1
MN-2529Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15European Economic Integration
MN-2544Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Economic DevelopmentRequires MN-2027 Development Economics 1
MNE213Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Intermediate Macro-Economics
MNE214Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10The British Economy
MNE216Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)10Econometrics 1
MNE217Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Econometrics 2
PO-2001Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)10Fundamental Issues in Moral and Political Philosophy
PO-209Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The State and Political Institutions
PO-232Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Empire Strikes Back: War, Strategy and the Use of Force in the Post Cold War Era
PO-234Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Elections and Voting
PO-235Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Global Justice and Human Rights
PO-237Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Latin American Politics through Film
PO-238Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Normative Models of Democracy: Contemporary Perspectives
PO-239Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Moralities of War and Peace
PO-256Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Genocide
PO-281Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20British Politics and Public Policy

Year 3 (Level 6)

FHEQ 6 Degree / Honours

Students choose 120 credits from the following:

Compulsory Modules
Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule Name
HUP304Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Philosophy and the Social Sciences
PO-345Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Contemporary Political Economy: Competing Perspectives on Global Capitalism
Optional Modules

Choose Maximum Of 30 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : Select one of the following

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
MN-3001Semester 1 and Semester 230Economics Independent Study Project
PO-3000Semester 1 and Semester 220The National Assembly for Wales
PO-395Semester 1 and Semester 220Dissertation (PO-325)
Optional Modules 

Choose Exactly 60 credits from the following Modules:

NOTE : If you select PO-396 YOU MUST ALSO select PO-397

Module CodeSemesterCreditsModule NameGuidance
AM-330Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20America and the Bomb
AM-338Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Clear and Present Danger: Terrorism and America
HIH396Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20From Machiavelli to Mussolini: Government and society in Western political thought
HUA300Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The Rise of Brazil
HUA306Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20The Aftermaths of War
HUP301Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Religion, Science, and Superstition
MN-3027Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Mathematical Economics
MN-3028Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Econometrics 3Only if Econometrics 1 and 2 were studied in year 2
MN-3031Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Labour Economics
MN-3048Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Advanced Economic Analysis
MN-3054Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)15Econometrics 2
MN-3531Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Public Choice
MN-3532Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Econometrics 4Requires MN-3031 Labour Economics 1
MN-3533Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)15Economies of the Middle and Far East
PO-3110Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Visions of Democracy
PO-3114Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20The International Politics of Space
PO-3117Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Politics and International Development
PO-3121Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Parliamentary Studies
PO-3316Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Shadow Wars: US Presidents and covert action from the Cold War to Obama
PO-392Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Contemporary Security
PO-396Semester 1 (Sep-Jan Taught)20Researching Politics 1
PO-397Semester 2 (Jan - Jun Taught)20Researching Politics 2


PPE is a Single Honours degree focusing on the longstanding interactions and inter-relationships between philosophical, political and economic thought. The BA PPE programme offers a uniquely coherent, integrated, interdisciplinary and contemporary examination and critique of the traditions of thought, which inform Western (but also beyond) philosophy, politics and economics. The programme provides students with both a solid foundation in the three subjects and a strong focus on their crucial intersections. We strongly believe that grasping these intersections is key to build you a better understanding of our complex world.


Entry Requirements

Our standard entry requirement is BBB (UCAS tariff points 120) or equivalent. All offers are made following a review of the application form, predicted/achieved grades and subjects, the reference and personal statement.  We also accept a range of advanced level qualifications including BTEC Diploma DMM; International Baccalaureate 32; Welsh Baccalaureate - grade equivalent to A-level; Access to Higher Education and Open University qualifications, and Extended Project.

International students, please visit: For applicants whose first language is not English, we require a minimum IELTS score of 6.0.

How To Apply

EU/UK candidates apply here.

International students apply here.

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2018/19 are as follows:

UK/EU International
BA (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £15,050

Fees for full time Undergraduate UK/EU students may be increased in subsequent years of study by an inflationary amount determined by Welsh Government.

Fees for full time Undergraduate International students will increase by 3% for each subsequent year of study.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

There are no additional costs.

Student Quotes

"Studying PPE at Swansea has been an amazing experience. The subject matter is diverse and interesting and whilst the workload can be heavy at times, the different perspective each subject teaches is invaluable.  The three subjects interact and combine to give a deeper more complete understanding of issues in a unique way, which often leads PPE students to fresh and innovative opinions. The lecturers are genuinely passionate about their subject and are always happy to talk and help with any issues. The programme provides a great selection of modules to allow you to tailor it to your particular interests, if you are willing work hard then PPE has a lot to offer, and Swansea is a great place to study it. The National Assembly internship option is unique to Swansea and absolutely priceless for any student considering a career in politics. The setting is fantastic with the stunning beach; unparalleled social life and the Gower just round the corner. I would recommend Swansea to anyone and PPE to anyone with a real interest in the interactivity of nations, power, people and resources.

 Joe Wilson, BA Philosophy, Politics and Economics



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Philosophy, Politics and Economics

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