The University of Southampton
Social Sciences: EconomicsPart of Social Sciences

L0V1 BA Philosophy, Politics and Economics (3 years)

Introducing your course

A Philosophy, Politics, and Economics degree at Southampton offers you the chance to explore fundamental and far-reaching issues concerning human welfare and social justice, political ideals and economic realities. To do so, it will provide students with knowledge and understanding of central theoretical and methodological issues in the study of philosophy, politics, and economics, as well as formal and informal techniques for evaluating ideas and the information or evidence which supports them.

The flexible curriculum will enable you to balance your choice of modules according to your own interests, while also ensuring that you graduate with skills essential to a successful career or further study.


What is this? (More Information) This information is based on historical data and may have been aggregated. Find out more.

Programme Structure

The programme is normally studied over three years full-time. However, it may also be taken on a part-time basis for a period of not less than four and not more than eight academic years. Study is undertaken at three levels (each corresponding to one year of full-time study, excluding study abroad).

The programme is divided into modules (courses devoted to specific topics). Single modules have a credit value of 15, while double modules have a credit value of 30. Full-time students take 120 credits at each level, 60 credits in each semester. Some modules are compulsory, though many are optional. If a module is core, it is compulsory and you must pass it in order to progress to the next level of the degree.

You must take at least 30 credits (equivalent to two single modules) in each of your subjects at each level, inclusive of any compulsory modules. So long as you take any compulsory modules, you make take the remaining credits in the subject area(s) of your choice or up to 15 credits per semester outside of Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

View the programme specification document for this course

Entry Requirements

Typical entry requirements

A Levels:
GCE A-level

AAB or ABB with B in AS Mathematics. Applicants doing an Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) will also be made an alternative offer one grade below the standard offer, conditional on an A grade in the EPQ.

A grade B in A level Physics or Statistics can be substituted for grade B in AS level Mathematics.

We accept all A levels except General Studies.

International Baccalaureate34 or 32 points overall, 17 or 16 at higher level including 5 in either Standard or Higher Level Mathematics.
Selection process:

UCAS application and some interviews.

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.


Typical course content

The modules on offer can vary from year to year but the following is a list of those which are typically available. Some modules have pre-requisites, i.e. require you to have taken certain other modules at an earlier stage. Information about the modules, including their pre-requisites, can be found on the relevant module pages.

Given the scope for module choice, the variety in teaching, learning, and assessment methods, and the support on offer (see below), the programme is both flexible and inclusive. Any student who meets the entry requirements should be able to access the curriculum and demonstrate achievement of all the intended learning outcomes.

Innovation modules outside of your subject area

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Year 1


Students who have Economics A-level take ECON1003 and those who do not have economics A-level take ECON1001.

Students have who Mathematics A-level (grade B) take ECON1008 and those who do not take ECON1005.


Year 2

All students must either complete PHIL2014 Logic or back-track and complete PHIL1016 Reason and Argument.

Year 3

All students must complete either ECON3023 Dissertation in Economics or PHIL3013 Dissertation in Philosophy or PAIR3003 Dissertation in Politics and International Relations. All these modules are 30 credits and take place over semesters 1 and 2 (15 credits per semester).

If you choose ECON3023, you must take ECON3007 Applied Microeconomics 3 and ECON3008 Macroeconomics Policy 3.

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Fees & funding

Tuition fees

NameYear of entryMode of studyUK/EUInternationalChannel Islands
BA Philosophy, Politics and Economics2018Full-time£9,250£16,536£9,250
View the full list of course fees


Scholarships, bursaries or grants may be available to support you through your course. Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or your country of origin. These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.

Explore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this programme typically also have to pay for:

Printing and copyingWhere possible, coursework such as essays, projects. dissertations is likely to be submitted on line. However, there are some items where it is not possible to submit on line and students will be asked to provide a printed copy. The University printing costs are currently: A4 - 5p per side (black and white) or 25p per side (colour) A3 - 10p per side (black and white) or 50p per side (colour) Please Note: Paper sizes not recognised by the printing devices will prompt you to select the size and then charge a minimum of 50p per black and white copy and a maximum of £1 per colour copy. You can pay for your printing by using the money loaders or by using print copy payment service by going to Please remember that we are unable to refund any credit that has not been used by the end of your course, so please consider this when topping up your printing/copy account You will be given a printing allowance of £1 per 7.5 ECTS PHIL towards the costs of printing lecture handouts and/or practical scripts. The University Print Centre also offers a printing and copying service as well as a dissertation/binding service. Current printing and copying costs can be found at: They also provide a large format printing service, e.g. Academic posters. Details of current costs can be found at:£0.05-1.00

There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the University:

StationeryYou will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationary items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc. Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
BooksWhere a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.
EquipmentIT - Computer Discs or USB Drives: Students are expected to provide their own portable data storage device.
EquipmentIT - Software Licences: All software is provided
EquipmentIT - Hardware: It is advisable that students provide their own laptop or personal computer, although shared facilities are available across the University campus.
PlacementsIncluding Study Abroad Programmes: Students on placement programmes can expect to cover costs for health and travel insurance, accommodation and living expenses; travel costs; visa costs. This will vary depending on which country you are travelling to. Specific details on what additional costs there will be are detailed in the individual module profiles which can be found under the modules tab of the programmes details of your programme.

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

Career Opportunities

A degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics equips you with the skills you need to enter a wide range of careers, including business, law, medicine, journalism, teaching, IT, the civil service, advertising, film and television, and finance.

Employability is embedded into modules from the first year onwards and right from the first lecture. We explain the skills which are taught throughout the modules and offer a number of optional employability modules.

Philosophy, Politics and Economics BA (Hons) will be available for the first time from 2014. But evidence provided by related degree programmes confirm that the skills you will develop - in statistical analysis, logic and mathematics, critical thinking, reasoning and argumentation - are in high demand. The 2013 Destination of Leavers of Higher Education (DLHE) survey found that 100% of our Philosophy and Economics BA graduates were in work or study six months after finishing their degree, with 100% of those in full-time employment occupying professional or managerial roles.

Learning & Assessment

We employ a wide variety of teaching methods and provide a range of opportunities for learning, so as to facilitate a progressively deeper understanding of the subject and foster independent learning. They include:

  • Lectures
  • In-class discussion
  • Small group tutorials and seminars
  • Consultation with academic staff
  • Research supervision
  • Independent study


Methods of assessment include:

  • Essay
  • Exam
  • Textual commentaries
  • Research proposal
  • In-class test
  • Individual presentation
  • Group presentation
  • Group research project
  • Dissertation
  • Problem sets and exercises
  • Annotated bibliography
  • Reading log
  • Reflective statement and peer evaluation
  • YouTube videos, and other creative uses of media
  • Essay plan

Breakdown of study time and assessment

Proportion of time spent in scheduled learning, teaching and independent study
Learning, teaching and assessment stage123
Scheduled learning & teaching study23%18%23%
Independent study77%82%77%
Placement study0%0%0%
Proportion of assessment by method
Learning, teaching and assessment stage123
Written exam assessment41%39%14%
Practical exam assessment3%5%0%
Coursework assessment56%56%86%

Study Locations

Student life

Avenue campus

Only a few minutes walk from Highfield Campus, Avenue provides a purpo...Find out more

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