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PPE and SPS applicants watch

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    (Original post by tomek J.)
    I don't think one can judge the quality of a course by the number of famous people it produced - this is a matter of prestige, in which, I admit, PPE clearly has an advantage over SPS. But this is partly because
    1.) PPE exists much longer than SPS
    2.) Oxford admits more people for PPE than Cambridge does for SPS

    SPS has not yet established itself as a well-known course.

    I'm a postgrad. so I take a greater interest in the research output, well more so than undergrad students would (or should).

    The dept. at Oxford is more than a country mile better regarded for Politics than its equiq. at Cambridge, I can say that for sure. Oxford has, alongside IR/Gov at the LSE, easily the most prestigious dept. of Gov/Politics in Europe and outside the US.

    So, SPS isn't likely to match up, in terms of 'prestige' to Oxford's PPE degree for that reason.

    Oh and, if you cannot see the connection between Pol, Phil and Econ...you really ought to hit the library-now!
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    (Original post by LMH PPE Grad)
    Caveat that with the virtues of being able to take another subject via the Cambridge Tripos system ie History or Economics with more academic credibility
    Are you saying here that one who completes the first tripos of SPS can then go on to do tripos II in economics? Surely you'd have to formally demonstrate competence in mathematics?
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    (Original post by J.S.)
    I'm a postgrad. so I take a greater interest in the research output, well more so than undergrad students would (or should).

    The dept. at Oxford is more than a country mile better regarded for Politics than its equiq. at Cambridge, I can say that for sure. Oxford has, alongside IR/Gov at the LSE, easily the most prestigious dept. of Gov/Politics in Europe and outside the US.

    So, SPS isn't likely to match up, in terms of 'prestige' to Oxford's PPE degree for that reason.

    Oh and, if you cannot see the connection between Pol, Phil and Econ...you really ought to hit the library-now!

    Srely this only stands if people are doing politics? SPS may not be able to match up interms of prestige in terms of politics, but of course it must in the other disciplines which Oxford doesn't offer. In any case, I would say that both courses are good (which as an SPSer is understandable!), and that it depends on your interests. If someone wants to specialise in politics, maybe if they really care about the prestige they should do PPE. However, I would say that the SPS students are different to PPE ones due to their interests, which for me suggests that the universities are not really competing for the same students.
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    Are you saying here that one who completes the first tripos of SPS can then go on to do tripos II in economics? Surely you'd have to formally demonstrate competence in mathematics?
    Well, just because someone does SPS, it doesn't mean they aren't competent in maths...I have 2 maths A-Levels! Also, can we quit this talk of 'more credible' courses. It is ridiculous. If people want to do History or Economics, they should apply to do so and leave SPS free for those who calue it and are not using it as a means to get in to Cambridge. Also, I would advise peopel to look at the applications and acceptances stats...it is one of the harder arts/humanities subjects to get into. Of course, this may have something to do with the quality of applicants and many other factors, but it is certainly tough to get in to. Many people do change at Cambridge, but that is because they change their interests etc. I have a real problem with people who try and play the game like that though, before they even get there
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    Ok; you say tomato - if you really do believe SPS is better than PPE that is your prerogative, but I think that is like saying a Ford is better than a Mercedes it's an opinion, but most would disagree. You just need to look at what the letters stand for to get the message; Politics, Philosophy and Economics versus Social and Political Sciences.

    Cambridge is the home of a bona fide Economics degree which is the real deal - SPS I still think is a contrived answer to PPE (which was the original joint honours Social Science degree at Oxbridge). If SPS suited you and the apparently greater numbers that prefer it to PPE then that's great. However I would suggest that those who think that a degree incorporating Politics, Philosophy, and Economics is a less valuable degree than one incorporating Politics, Sociology and Psychology are wrong. To use Oxford lingo one would be worthy of being called Modern Greats the other a mish-mash of quasi-academic fads.



    (Original post by tomek J.)
    ok, you obviously have no idea what you are talking about. If you did, you'd know that one only studies Sociology in the first year, and that in the 2nd year you can specialise on Politics OR Sociology/Psychology. Apart from that, SPS is certainly NOT a "poor man's PPE" - the person who invented that must have been very poor indeed (that is, in his head). In fact, SPS is even harder to get into than PPE - and that's a fact which I am sure even you will be able to understand.
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    (Original post by LMH PPE Grad)
    Ok; you say tomato - if you really do believe SPS is better than PPE that is your prerogative, but I think that is like saying a Ford is better than a Mercedes it's an opinion, but most would disagree. You just need to look at what the letters stand for to get the message; Politics, Philosophy and Economics versus Social and Political Sciences.

    Cambridge is the home of a bona fide Economics degree which is the real deal - SPS I still think is a contrived answer to PPE (which was the original joint honours Social Science degree at Oxbridge). If SPS suited you and the apparently greater numbers that prefer it to PPE then that's great. However I would suggest that those who think that a degree incorporating Politics, Philosophy, and Economics is a less valuable degree than one incorporating Politics, Sociology and Psychology are wrong. To use Oxford lingo one would be worthy of being called Modern Greats the other a mish-mash of quasi-academic fads.
    It's not about one being better than the other, because they are entirely different courses, which is my point. I know myself that PPE is far more prestigious as a stand alone subject, compared to SPS, but both are good Oxbridge degrees. Equally, they attract different students. It is like comparing english Lit at one uni to english lit+lang at another, to my mind.
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    Agreed; I do think that the two are marketed though as the same/ similar packages and that is why the issue arises. If there are people who think they are I agree with you that they are wrong. Personally I think PPE has more to offer as an all round educational experience, but that's why I went that way. There are others, who (like you) went the other way for exactly the right reasons and that's great too. And I think that's a good ending point.

    (Original post by ladyvice)
    It's not about one being better than the other, because they are entirely different courses, which is my point. I know myself that PPE is far more prestigious as a stand alone subject, compared to SPS, but both are good Oxbridge degrees. Equally, they attract different students. It is like comparing english Lit at one uni to english lit+lang at another, to my mind.
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    (Original post by LMH PPE Grad)
    Agreed; I do think that the two are marketed though as the same/ similar packages and that is why the issue arises. If there are people who think they are I agree with you that they are wrong. Personally I think PPE has more to offer as an all round educational experience, but that's why I went that way. There are others, who (like you) went the other way for exactly the right reasons and that's great too. And I think that's a good ending point.
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    (Original post by ladyvice)
    Srely this only stands if people are doing politics? SPS may not be able to match up interms of prestige in terms of politics, but of course it must in the other disciplines which Oxford doesn't offer. In any case, I would say that both courses are good (which as an SPSer is understandable!), and that it depends on your interests. If someone wants to specialise in politics, maybe if they really care about the prestige they should do PPE. However, I would say that the SPS students are different to PPE ones due to their interests, which for me suggests that the universities are not really competing for the same students.

    Yes I agree, and also, if you're seeking an undergrad. qualification this (i.e. the research output) is hardly relevant anyway.
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    (Original post by ladyvice)
    Well, just because someone does SPS, it doesn't mean they aren't competent in maths...I have 2 maths A-Levels! Also, can we quit this talk of 'more credible' courses. It is ridiculous. If people want to do History or Economics, they should apply to do so and leave SPS free for those who calue it and are not using it as a means to get in to Cambridge. Also, I would advise peopel to look at the applications and acceptances stats...it is one of the harder arts/humanities subjects to get into. Of course, this may have something to do with the quality of applicants and many other factors, but it is certainly tough to get in to. Many people do change at Cambridge, but that is because they change their interests etc. I have a real problem with people who try and play the game like that though, before they even get there
    I wasn't suggesting sps'rs do not have competence in maths. But considering that A level maths is not a pr req for sps (is it?), then surely it makes it a lot less possible for a tripos I sps'r to do the econ tripos II.

    I would advise against relying too much on acceptance figures and application figures, because as you well know, some colleges are more popular than others.....Some VERY competetive courses (according to the university wide stats) attract very low numbers of applications at certain colleges.

    I would think very few people apply for a course that they dont intend to complete - the majority of those who change do so for genuine reasons.....otherwise the tutor would see right through them.
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    I wasn't suggesting sps'rs do not have competence in maths. But considering that A level maths is not a pr req for sps (is it?), then surely it makes it a lot less possible for a tripos I sps'r to do the econ tripos II.

    I would advise against relying too much on acceptance figures and application figures, because as you well know, some colleges are more popular than others.....Some VERY competetive courses (according to the university wide stats) attract very low numbers of applications at certain colleges.

    I would think very few people apply for a course that they dont intend to complete - the majority of those who change do so for genuine reasons.....otherwise the tutor would see right through them.
    well your last point isn't true. it isn't always 'easy for tutors to see through them', as if someone has gained access to do one course but like another, then presumably their interest will appear sufficiently high for them to appear keen on the change. In any case, i agree that most people i know who have changed have changed for genuine reasons. and perhaps this debate is pointless; as long as someone is capable to do the course, who really cares?
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    so what kind of students does SPS attract? I am applying for SPS next year.. I ve been told PPE is more 'rigid' as a course.. true?
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    (Original post by greenrevolt)
    so what kind of students does SPS attract? I am applying for SPS next year.. I ve been told PPE is more 'rigid' as a course.. true?
    well, as regards my assumptions about PPE students, they are second hand (albeit from a good friend), so please do correct me, any Oxford scum out there who are doing the course Basically, SPS students are more interested in soc anth, soc and psychology, which of course in itself says a lot, as opposed to phil, pol and economics. In any case, I have met quitre a few PPE students and I would say that the maoin diference to me was poltics. In SPS, maybe because of the combination of courses, I have found people to be more left wing, very into grass roots politics and generally a bit 'too cool for school'...not in a bad wqay at all, but they are very 'right on'. Whilst with many of the PPE students I have met, some have been like this, but others a bit more serious and a lot more Tory. But to be honest, I would imagine that people on both courses are going to eb pretty interesting and interested.

    As to the course, SPS students do about 3 essays a fortnight, and i have heard on this site that PPE students do 2 essays a week. however, of course, the work itself could be of varying quality and expectations....sorry does this actually help? I am going to stop now, becasue even to me, I am rambling. maybe a fag will help. ciao mwah xxx
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    I'm sorry if I was a little drastic about defending SPS, but I suddenly felt like the little SPS child surrounded by the big PPE bullies ....

    I also heard that Oxford is supposed to be better for Politics than Cam, but the problem is that in PPE only a third of the degree is Politics, while you can specialise on it in the SPS course, so if you really want to do Politics than isn't Cam better?
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    and what is it with this prestige anyway? does it mean you are more likely to get a job if you did PPE only because it's more well-known?
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    (Original post by tomek J.)
    and what is it with this prestige anyway? does it mean you are more likely to get a job if you did PPE only because it's more well-known?
    Well, yes. PPE has an exceptional employability record.
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    (Original post by hildabeast)
    Well, yes. PPE has an exceptional employability record.
    does it mean I am from the beginning less likely to get a job because I am doing SPS and not PPE? Í'm starting to panic...
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    Any Oxbridge degree will help you get a job, really.
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    Snoopy's getting worried on his roof...
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    (Original post by Tek)
    Any Oxbridge degree will help you get a job, really.
    concur entirely
 
 
 
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