KCL Politics of the International Economy vs. Exeter PPE Watch

username1362995
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Hi everyone

I've recently got an offer from both the University of Exeter (for PPE) and King's College London (for Politics of the International Economy (PIE)). And have absolutely no idea which one to firm.

I understand that in the world university rankings, King's is 30th, but is also 30th or so in the country compared to Exeter's 10-15th (despite being 150th in the world rankings). I know rankings aren't the most reliable thing to go on, could someone explain this to me?

I live in London, and I would prefer King's accommodation and location-wise simply because I can live at home - far cheaper and requires less hassle. But is Exeter PPE a far better choice academically than King's PIE? I know PPE is a competitive and respected course, but does this count for Exeter as much as it does for PPE in Oxford/Warwick?

Basically, is there a significant difference between Exeter PPE and King's PIE in terms of academic standards, and if so, which is better? I'm really not interested AT ALL in partying/nightlife etc, I'm mostly interested in which choice is the best for the future. Also, since PIE is a new course at King's, I can't really find that much information about it.

Thanks for your help
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Origami Bullets
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Politics of the International Economy is essentially a degree in International Political Economy, or IPE. This is basically a fairly narrow branch of politics, and the problem is that if you find that you don't like IPE, your options are a bit limited. I know that I just didn't get on with the IPE module that I did at another uni in second year. I'd recommend that you read Global Political Economy by Robert O'Brien and Marc Williams before you start to make any decisions. It's the introductory textbook that is very widely used for IPE studies.

Exeter's PPE course will give you a lot more room for maneuver in terms of the modules that you can choose to study - personally I'd choose Exeter for that reason.
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Катя
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(Original post by Origami Bullets)
Politics of the International Economy is essentially a degree in International Political Economy, or IPE. This is basically a fairly narrow branch of politics, and the problem is that if you find that you don't like IPE, your options are a bit limited. I know that I just didn't get on with the IPE module that I did at another uni in second year. I'd recommend that you read Global Political Economy by Robert O'Brien and Marc Williams before you start to make any decisions. It's the introductory textbook that is very widely used for IPE studies.

Exeter's PPE course will give you a lot more room for maneuver in terms of the modules that you can choose to study - personally I'd choose Exeter for that reason.
Could you explain IPE in one or two sentences?
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polscistudent88
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(Original post by Катя)
Could you explain IPE in one or two sentences?
Not easy, especially because there are very different approaches that study very different topics. You might generally understand it as the study of how international relations and the global economy are intertwined and influence the one the other...

OP, I support the idea of a PPE. IPE at the undergrad level might me too strict... And cannot see how potential employers might see it... And Exeter is a very strong dept...

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Ripper-Roo
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PPE because it's broader.

But read the module outlines and trust your gut instinct
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username1362995
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(Original post by polscistudent88)
Not easy, especially because there are very different approaches that study very different topics. You might generally understand it as the study of how international relations and the global economy are intertwined and influence the one the other...

OP, I support the idea of a PPE. IPE at the undergrad level might me too strict... And cannot see how potential employers might see it... And Exeter is a very strong dept...

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Thanks very much for your help. Initially when I went to the King's open day, we were told "essentially what we are going to teach you is PPE." Looking at the course structures online, I didn't see much difference, though if it makes a difference at employment level then that is more what I'm concerned about.

But that textbook looks rather dense with information. :eek: Are they all like that?
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by Катя)
Could you explain IPE in one or two sentences?
It's essentially where politics meets economics, so you're looking at things like trade, globalisation and development. To give you a flavour, the chapters of that book that I mentioned above are
- approaches to global political economy (i.e. what is it)
- methods and theories
- forging a world economy 1400-1800
- the industrial revolution, Pax Britannica and imperialism
- the 20th century: world wars and the post-1945 order
- international trade
- transnational production
- the global financial system
- global division of labour
- gender
- economic development
- global environmental change
- ideas
- security
- governing the global political economy
- issues in contemporary IPE theory
(yes I just got my copy of the textbook out!)

Essay titles that I was allowed to choose from included (for context, this was a second year module)
- By the 1970s the unsustainability of the Bretton Woods System became increasingly apparent. Evaluate the factors which led to the collapse of the BWS and its impact on the subsequent evolution of the international political economy
- Critically assess the relationship between neoliberal globalisation and development using any one of the theoretical approaches in IPE studied in this course
- "IPE theories fail to assess the implications of gendered structures and relations in a globalised political economy". Critically respond to this statement.
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Катя
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(Original post by Origami Bullets)
It's essentially where politics meets economics, so you're looking at things like trade, globalisation and development. To give you a flavour, the chapters of that book that I mentioned above are
- approaches to global political economy (i.e. what is it)
- methods and theories
- forging a world economy 1400-1800
- the industrial revolution, Pax Britannica and imperialism
- the 20th century: world wars and the post-1945 order
- international trade
- transnational production
- the global financial system
- global division of labour
- gender
- economic development
- global environmental change
- ideas
- security
- governing the global political economy
- issues in contemporary IPE theory
:coma: that sounds so good

OP, have you looked at the course modules?
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by Kemalist)
Thanks very much for your help. Initially when I went to the King's open day, we were told "essentially what we are going to teach you is PPE." Looking at the course structures online, I didn't see much difference, though if it makes a difference at employment level then that is more what I'm concerned about.

But that textbook looks rather dense with information. :eek: Are they all like that?
Yep, I'm afraid undergraduate textbooks are rather like that - or worse. You get used to them though. If you really want to scare yourself, spend half an hour or so on google scholar (journal articles).

The advantage with PPE is that it rather does what it says on the tin, and employers know what they're getting. With PIE, I only know off the top of my head what's going to be involved because I'm about to graduate with a degree in politics.

Having had a glance at the Exeter degree, you'd have the chance to do IPE modules at some point, but you'd also be able to do other things, rather than deciding what to specialise in at this stage. Personally I think specialising into one field of politics so early is bonkers - normally this sort of specialisation only occur at masters level, once you've got a decent overview of your subject as a whole and have been allowed to explore (and fall in love with!) one area from a range that you have studied.
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by Катя)
:coma: that sounds so good

OP, have you looked at the course modules?
Very much a matter of personal opinion of course - I found it dire! The problem that I have with the Kings course is the lack of ability to switch to another path if it turns out that it wasn't as good as it looked in the first place.
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username1362995
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I have had a look at the course modules. I have to say that some of the King's modules look very similar to Exeter modules, though truthfully far more limited.

Is every single module concerned with IPE though? For example in King's year 3, there is an optional module called "religion in politics." Would this be a module simply regarding religion in politics or will it be linked to IPE?
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by Kemalist)
I have had a look at the course modules. I have to say that some of the King's modules look very similar to Exeter modules, though truthfully far more limited.

Is every single module concerned with IPE though? For example in King's year 3, there is an optional module called "religion in politics." Would this be a module simply regarding religion in politics or will it be linked to IPE?
Are you looking at this? http://www.kcl.ac.uk/prospectus/unde...printable/true

I'm struggling to find a module at Kings that is called exactly Religion and Politics, but I would think that this would be a likely candidate for the sort of thing that you would be studying
http://www.kcl.ac.uk/artshums/depts/.../5aat2830.aspx
All of the other modules listed for all of the other years are very IPE, so I doubt that they'd have a complete wildcard on the list (else I'd think that http://webcache.googleusercontent.co.../6aat3830.aspx was a likely candidate)
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username1362995
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Thanks. I guess I'll ask them about the variety of options at their respective open days.

Religion & Politics is in the year 3 batch by the way
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