Melissd678
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Hi !
I am struggling to choose between PPE and economics.
- I like maths, I am going to do further maths A-level next year but I also don't see myself doing a very Mathematical degree, only one that has some maths.
-I want to make sure that the degree I choose has good job prospects and I have been told Economics opens more doors than PPE.

So I am struggling currently to choose between the two. I am also thinking of applying to Oxbridge so I need to start preparing for my entrance assessments but I wont be able to do that if I don't choose my degree. What would you advise I do? What has your experience been like if you have been in the same position?
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BenRyan99
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PPE is a jack of all trades, master of none type degree, if you'll forgive the expression. It's very broad. Only the very good people will be able to successfully get a good job in any one of these three fields because you'll have covered so much less than just a single honours student.

For example, if you wanted to become an economist and so basically have to do a MSc, I'm sure you'll get in but it'll be tough catching up having covered 1/3 of what your peers will have. This is why only the good people who do it can do really well in a specialised field. These people certainly exist and I've met many of them in the economics industry for example but all did PPE at Oxford, think I've only met one non-oxford person who did PPE and was a professional economist (went to Warwick).

Bear in mind that this is just my experience so I doubt will be fully representative, it's not like I can know everyone haha. I'm sure there are lots of very successful PPE students, it's just in my experience over various economic and banking internships and a grad role, I've basically never met a non-oxford PPE economist at a top government department/bank/Financial institution/consultancy.
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leviticus.
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If you don't want to do a very mathematical degree then you shouldn't apply for economics at Cambridge. Economics (aside from econ research) doesn't open up more prospects than PPE (arguably opens up more like politics etc), especially if they're both from top tier universities as for high finance careers banks and funds couldn't care less what the actual degree is as long as its from a target school. Economics at UCL, Durham, LSE, Warwick is very mathematical too; practically an applied maths degree.
PPE it is by process of elimination since if you want good job prospects (in finance) its best to go to the aforementioned schools. Also, PPE at Oxford requires pretty high GCSE grades and if you don't like philosophy/logic (think game theory, blotto etc) then don't study it.
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leviticus.
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(Original post by BenRyan99)
PPE is a jack of all trades, master of none type degree, if you'll forgive the expression. It's very broad. Only the very good people will be able to successfully get a good job in any one of these three fields because you'll have covered so much less than just a single honours student.

For example, if you wanted to become an economist and so basically have to do a MSc, I'm sure you'll get in but it'll be tough catching up having covered 1/3 of what your peers will have. This is why only the good people who do it can do really well in a specialised field. These people certainly exist and I've met many of them in the economics industry for example but all did PPE at Oxford, think I've only met one non-oxford person who did PPE and was a professional economist (went to Warwick).

Bear in mind that this is just my experience so I doubt will be fully representative, it's not like I can know everyone haha. I'm sure there are lots of very successful PPE students, it's just in my experience over various economic and banking internships and a grad role, I've basically never met a non-oxford PPE economist at a top government department/bank/Financial institution/consultancy.
would be surprised if UCL/LSE PPE doesn't make it into summers at Investment banks since they're both targets (and place at top banks more than Oxford) and people that do PPE tend to want to do finance. Ik of atleast 12 people from non-oxbridge PPE who made into investment banking/asset management. Cannot speak for government/research stuff.
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BenRyan99
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(Original post by leviticus.)
would be surprised if UCL/LSE PPE doesn't make it into summers at Investment banks since they're both targets (and place at top banks more than Oxford) and people that do PPE tend to want to do finance. Ik of atleast 12 people from non-oxbridge PPE who made into investment banking/asset management. Cannot speak for government/research stuff.
As I implied in my post, I'm more speaking from an economist/macro research perspective and this was my experience. I also said the struggle was more for PPE students who want to specialise in one of the subjects whereas your speaking about a very generalist path like IB.

OP, the previous poster is definitely right in terms of working for an IB, subject doesn't matter unless going for a very quantitative role and entry doesn't require too much specialist knowledge so you certainly won't be at a disadvantage as opposed to doing Econ. Only the uni you go to matters.
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leviticus.
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(Original post by BenRyan99)
As I implied in my post, I'm more speaking from an economist/macro research perspective and this was my experience. I also said the struggle was more for PPE students who want to specialise in one of the subjects whereas your speaking about a very generalist path like IB.

OP, the previous poster is definitely right in terms of working for an IB, subject doesn't matter unless going for a very quantitative role and entry doesn't require too much specialist knowledge so you certainly won't be at a disadvantage as opposed to doing Econ. Only the uni you go to matters.
I see, my bad, atleast the IB point is poignant enough for OP to see now anyway. Its shocking to see how many people blindly apply to econ thinking it'll land them Goldman, especially in today's world when there's so much info available.
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Mona123456
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(Original post by Melissd678)
Hi !
I am struggling to choose between PPE and economics.
- I like maths, I am going to do further maths A-level next year but I also don't see myself doing a very Mathematical degree, only one that has some maths.
-I want to make sure that the degree I choose has good job prospects and I have been told Economics opens more doors than PPE.

So I am struggling currently to choose between the two. I am also thinking of applying to Oxbridge so I need to start preparing for my entrance assessments but I wont be able to do that if I don't choose my degree. What would you advise I do? What has your experience been like if you have been in the same position?
Hi there,

I do E&M at Oxford, in first year the PPE-ists take the same Econ course as E&Mers, then from second year PPE-ists can drop Economics, whilst E&Mers can’t. At top Universities like Oxford, even for bipartite / tripartite courses, you’ll probably cover most/all the same content as straight Economists at other Universities (obviously depending on which modules you take in later years, too). PPE and E&M are both very employable, and depending on the modules you choose, you can definitely pursue a MSc/academia in economics.

Oxford’s economics courses are less mathematical than Cambridge’s; Cambridge Economics turns into something resembling an applied statistics degree in later years. E&M is pretty mathematical but fine, PPE is less mathematical. I love maths, took FM A level, and haven’t had too much difficulty with the maths in E&M in first year; second year and third year modules can get much more mathematical though, but you can choose to tailor the degree to your interests, if you’d rather not do too much maths. Both E&M and PPE have a balance of essays and maths - in first year PPE is a bit more essay based and E&M is a bit more maths based, but in later years you can tip the scales to suit your preferences in either course.

In general, I’d say look at courses beyond Oxbridge and think about which of those you’d prefer. Economics/E&M courses are likely to be a fair bit more mathematical than PPE. If you think the reading and essays will suit you, PPE might be a better fit. If you’re more mathematically inclined, Economics or a mostly Economics based course might suit you better. Try and do some reading around politics and philosophy to see if you like those, or would rather specialise more in economics.

Best of luck!
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