Politics, Philosophy and Economics, or PPE, is a programme founded on the belief that students will benefit greatly from studying the works of economic, social, political, and philosophical thought on a combined course. The aim of this course is to provide students with the skills they need to succeed in a variety of career paths and future academic pursuits. Students will establish a solid foundation of what studying PPE at university looks like, as well as a firm understanding of the subject itself. The PPE course will be taught by three specialist tutors throughout the programme for each of the three subjects.
Cambridge is a city on the River Cam in eastern England, home to the prestigious University of Cambridge, dating to 1209. University colleges include King’s, famed for its choir and towering Gothic chapel, as well as Trinity, founded by Henry VIII, and St John’s, with its 16th-century Great Gate. Cambridge is internationally renowned for its academic excellence, its beautiful college architecture and its prestigious and rich history. Students will experience living in actual student accommodation in historic Cambridge University colleges.
Students on the Philosophy, Politics & Economics programme will stay in halls at Gonville & Caius College, Jesus College, Sydney Sussex College, Christ College, St. Catherine’s College, and Magdalene College depending on how many are in the group. Students on this course will join other students on the Academic Insights programme for meals, activities and excursions.
Su Min is a Teaching Fellow at the University of Cambridge, having been awarded a MPhil and BA from Cambridge in Economics. Su Min teaches microeconomics and primarily its applications in the real world, as well as political economics (how politics and economics interact). His research focuses on political economics and seeks to ask the general question about how political manoeuvres, particularly winning elections, influences economic policy, for better and for worse.
In this module, students will explore the history of philosophy, from the great teachings of Socrates to modern-day philosophers like Rene Descartes. We will explore general, moral and elementary philosophy in order to establish a broad understanding of the study of philosophy and how it has informed the way great thinkers have and continue to perceive the world we live in. This introductory module will form the basis of further knowledge building on the topic throughout the programme.
During the politics module, students will explore the theory of politics as an introduction to political theory, as well as the practice of politics as an introduction to comparative government and politics overall. They will also have the opportunity to explore political analysis as an introduction to empirical and quantitative methods in politics. They will further extend this foundational knowledge of politics throughout the programme in later modules.
The economics component of this programme allows students to explore microeconomics (the functioning of the market economy), versus macroeconomics (dealing with national output and employment, exchange rates and policy issues). In this part of the course, they will also have the chance to explore mathematical and statistical techniques used in economics and will be expected to apply mathematical thinking and problem-solving to practical problems.
After an introduction to each subject, students will focus on other modules, looking in detail at British politics and government from 1900 to the modern day, exploring some of the UK’s most controversial leaders such as Thatcher, Churchill and Blair. They will study the ethics of philosophy, exploring consequentialism, liberalism, virtue ethics, moral absolutism and moral nihilism. Participants will learn about the development of the world economy, giving them the opportunity to consider issues affecting industrial countries, developing countries, and economies in transition to the market. The next module will focus on look at different world politics in comparative government, helping them understand political events and developments in different countries, concluding with a look at The Republic, a Socratic dialogue authored by Plato around 375 BC. It concerns justice, the order and character of the “just city-state”, as well as “the just man”. The Republic is Plato’s best-known work and has proven to be one of the world’s most influential works of philosophy and political theory, which is why it remains an important piece of literature to explore in relation to both politics and philosophy. By the end of this unit, students will have an understanding of this influential piece of literature, as well as its influences on past and current politics and philosophy.
The weekly timetable includes morning and afternoon academic sessions, visits and activities, guest speakers and a formal dinner, as well as the final graduation ceremony.
|AM||Arrivals||Philosophy: Introduction to Philosophy||Philosophy: Ethics||Philosophy: Knowledge and Reality||Politics: Introduction to Politics||Politics: Contemporary Government||Option 1 - Full-Day excursion|
|Lunch Break and Tours of Colleges||Lunch Break and Tours of Colleges||Lunch Break and Tours of Colleges||Lunch Break and Tours of Colleges||LunchLunch Break and Tours of Colleges|
|PM||Arrivals||Philosophy: Early Modern Philosophy||Debate: Preparation/ 1:1 Sessions||Philosophy: Philosophy as a Tool for Social Change||Politics: Theory of Politics||Debate Preparation||Option 2: Afternoon Tea in the City|
|Tour of the City||Chauffered Punting||Escape/Survival Game||Visit to a Museum||Free Period|
|Dinner in College||Dinner in College||Traditional Oxbridge Formal Dinner||Dinner in College||Dinner in College||Dinner in College|
|Eve||Ice-Breaker Games||Fireside Chat with Mentors||Guest Speaker||Quiz Night||World Music Dance Party|
|AM||Full Day Excursion: Oxford/Cambridge||Politics: Rise of Populism||Economics: Introduction to Economics||Economics: Strategic Management||Economics: Social Economics||Debate Preparation||Departures|
|Lunch Break & College Tours||Lunch Break & College Tours||Lunch Break & College Tours||Lunch Break & College Tours||Lunch Break & College Tours|
|PM||Politics: Politics in the 21st Century||Economics: Money and Banking||Debate Preparation/ 1:1 Sessions||Economics: Development Economics||Final Debate||Departures|
|Build a tower||British Sports Day||Self-Guided Punting||Free Period||Graduation Ceremony|
|Dinner in College||Dinner in College||Traditional Oxbridge Formal Dinner||Dinner in College||Gala Dinner|
|Eve||Dinner in College||Free period||Free period||Cake & Canvas||Talent Show||Final Party Night!|
Outside of lessons, we are proud to offer a busy and diverse social programme to help you get the most out of your time in Cambridge. This includes activities such as punting on the River Cam, zorb football and a murder mystery night in the college.
There are also two excursions during the programme, one day trip to visit Oxford and its constituent colleges, as well as an optional day out in London, seeing the city’s most famous landmarks as well as some free time for shopping. Those who choose not to travel to London are invited to afternoon tea in Cambridge.
Activities and excursions are run by our team of friendly mentors – whose main job is to maximise your enjoyment.