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Politics and Economics at LSE vs pure Economics at Edinburgh

Primarily looking to know which option would be better for job prospects. Would it be worth splitting the degree with politics in order to be in London? I know that pure economics degrees have a good earning potential so I’m worried that a joint degree may affect that.
Also I prefer mathematical over theoretical economics, and I know LSE economics can be very quantitative. Therefore I’m wondering which degree would be overall more maths-heavy.
Original post by jlocordner332
Primarily looking to know which option would be better for job prospects. Would it be worth splitting the degree with politics in order to be in London? I know that pure economics degrees have a good earning potential so I’m worried that a joint degree may affect that.
Also I prefer mathematical over theoretical economics, and I know LSE economics can be very quantitative. Therefore I’m wondering which degree would be overall more maths-heavy.

I think you need to be a bit clearer on your desired outcomes, and what is actually studied on an economics degree.

Firstly, you say you prefer mathematical content over theoretical economics... yet mathematics in economics is largely used in a theoretical sense so I'm not really sure what you're meaning here? Only a section of statistics (not mathematics) is actually applied rather than theoretical in an economics degree (econometrics), and this is largely covered in just the final year of the degree, the rest of the maths/stats content is theoretical.

Secondly, you've asked which is better for job prospects.... yet haven't said what kinda of jobs you're even interested in, so how can we assess which degree sets up for that better? Do you mean banking, consulting, civil service, economics industry, etc?

But to answer what I think are your questions, unless you're planning on being an economist after university, the university you study at is often much more important than the niche differences in degree subject (e.g. straight economics Vs economics joint honours). In this case, LSE would be the stronger option for most careers popular with economics grads, despite the joint honours.
Original post by jlocordner332
Primarily looking to know which option would be better for job prospects. Would it be worth splitting the degree with politics in order to be in London? I know that pure economics degrees have a good earning potential so I’m worried that a joint degree may affect that.
Also I prefer mathematical over theoretical economics, and I know LSE economics can be very quantitative. Therefore I’m wondering which degree would be overall more maths-heavy.

The LSE degree is much better for employment. I wonder what you want to do?

LSE BSc Economics and Politics Maths is not that difficult if you've studied A-Level Maths and especially A-Level Further Maths. :smile:

https://www.lse.ac.uk/resources/calendar2020-2021/courseGuides/MA/2020_MA107.htm

Specific topics are as follows: sets, functions, equations, graphs. Difference equations, sequences, limits. Differentiation, inverse functions, exponential and logarithmic functions. Partial differentiation, chain rule, homogeneous functions. Optimisation in two variables: unconstrained and constrained. Lagrange multipliers. Vector notation and convexity. Matrix notation, systems of linear equations, inverse matrices. Integration. Differential equations.

Statistics

https://www.lse.ac.uk/resources/calendar2020-2021/courseGuides/ST/2020_ST107.htm

The elementary statistical tools necessary for further study in management and economics with an emphasis on the applicability of the methods to management and economic problems. Topics covered are data visualisation and descriptive statistics, probability theory, discrete probability distributions, continuous probability distributions, sampling distributions of statistics, point estimation, interval estimation, hypothesis testing, contingency tables and the chi-squared test, correlation and linear regression

The Econometrics is just using Software and performing data analysis and calculations. Also, it is just A-Level Further Maths standard. :biggrin:
Reply 3
Original post by BenRyan99
I think you need to be a bit clearer on your desired outcomes, and what is actually studied on an economics degree.

Firstly, you say you prefer mathematical content over theoretical economics... yet mathematics in economics is largely used in a theoretical sense so I'm not really sure what you're meaning here? Only a section of statistics (not mathematics) is actually applied rather than theoretical in an economics degree (econometrics), and this is largely covered in just the final year of the degree, the rest of the maths/stats content is theoretical.

Secondly, you've asked which is better for job prospects.... yet haven't said what kinda of jobs you're even interested in, so how can we assess which degree sets up for that better? Do you mean banking, consulting, civil service, economics industry, etc?

But to answer what I think are your questions, unless you're planning on being an economist after university, the university you study at is often much more important than the niche differences in degree subject (e.g. straight economics Vs economics joint honours). In this case, LSE would be the stronger option for most careers popular with economics grads, despite the joint honours.

Surely doing a weaker and non-quantitative subject such as politics would be viewed less favourably to a straight economics degree, even if it came from Edinburgh
Original post by N_G_99028
Surely doing a weaker and non-quantitative subject such as politics would be viewed less favourably to a straight economics degree, even if it came from Edinburgh

Graduate employers don't care about what subjects you studied except for certain specialist roles. I realise this is something 6th formers tend to obsess over but I really can't overstate how little employers actually care what subject you studied (and they care even less whether your degree title was BA or BSc, despite that occupying an unrealistic amount of space in most school leaver's minds!).
Original post by N_G_99028
Surely doing a weaker and non-quantitative subject such as politics would be viewed less favourably to a straight economics degree, even if it came from Edinburgh

Unless it's a specialist role then no. Almost all investment banking, asset management and consulting internship programmes and graduate schemes have no requirements or preferences on what subject you study at university. I even worked in a IB M&A team with music graduates. So to think they would care about the distinction between economics Vs economics & politics simply reflects a misunderstanding of the recruitment landscape in these fields.

In finance, if you want to be an economist, then sure, you have to do economics/maths at uni. If you want to be a quant then you normally need a postgrad in maths/physics/CS/Engineering, most trading also require a STEM degree. If you want to work in tech teams then you'll probably have to do CS, legal teams require law degrees, etc. But outside of these, most roles have no preference over subject, and definitely not BA Vs BSc or Econ Vs Econ & Pol.
(edited 8 months ago)
Reply 6
Original post by BenRyan99
Unless it's a specialist role then no. Almost all investment banking, asset management and consulting internship programmes and graduate schemes have no requirements or preferences on what subject you study at university. I even worked in a IB M&A team with music graduates. So to think they would care about the distinction between economics Vs economics & politics simply reflects a misunderstanding of the recruitment landscape in these fields.

In finance, if you want to be an economist, then sure, you have to do economics/maths at uni. If you want to be a quant then you normally need a postgrad in maths/physics/CS/Engineering, most trading also require a STEM degree. If you want to work in tech teams then you'll probably have to do CS, legal teams require law degrees, etc. But outside of these, most roles have no preference over subject, and definitely not BA Vs BSc or Econ Vs Econ & Pol.

Would it be possible to enter quantitative and specialist economist type roles in the finance sector/civil service with a politics and economics degree provided you study a masters in economics? Would it also depend on what uni you studied the ug pol and econ and the masters?
Original post by N_G_99028
Would it be possible to enter quantitative and specialist economist type roles in the finance sector/civil service with a politics and economics degree provided you study a masters in economics? Would it also depend on what uni you studied the ug pol and econ and the masters?

In terms of entering economist roles, you can enter civil service economics roles with a joint-economics degree (e.g. politics and economics) straight after undergrad without a master's. The requirement is that at least 50% of your degree is in economics, so politics and economics is fine - though you may want to pick more economics based optional modules. For context, the civil service also accepts PPE graduates for economics roles too without a MSc. You may want an MSc, but it's certainly not necessary, and often the GES will pay for you to do one after a year or two.

In terms of private sector economist roles, it really depends on the firm and the role. For some, they use the same as public sector roles - at least 50% of an undergrad degree in economics, MSc not required. Some state this while also mentioning that a master's is preferred - so you'd meet the minimum requirement without a MSc but might find it harder to get these roles. Some require a master's, though in these cases having a joint undergrad is absolutely fine, if you've got an MSc Economics they wouldn't care whether you undergrad is in single or joint honours economics.

For 'quantitative' roles, I'm not sure what you mean by this, you'll have to be more precise.

With respect to the importance of where you study your degrees, it's difficult to judge whether someone who's successful in recruitment processes are more successful because of a better uni or because they were more skilled (which can also relate to the uni course too). I don't think the civil service really care where you study as long as you meet the minimum entry requirements and pass all their recruitment tests & interviews. There's far less roles available in private sector economist roles and these tend to be much much better paid, and given they're not the government, the recruitment processes can vary quite a lot between firms. But typically I think it's fair to say that the quality of economics courses and the unis you study at are more important in the private sector.
Reply 8
Original post by BenRyan99
In terms of entering economist roles, you can enter civil service economics roles with a joint-economics degree (e.g. politics and economics) straight after undergrad without a master's. The requirement is that at least 50% of your degree is in economics, so politics and economics is fine - though you may want to pick more economics based optional modules. For context, the civil service also accepts PPE graduates for economics roles too without a MSc. You may want an MSc, but it's certainly not necessary, and often the GES will pay for you to do one after a year or two.

In terms of private sector economist roles, it really depends on the firm and the role. For some, they use the same as public sector roles - at least 50% of an undergrad degree in economics, MSc not required. Some state this while also mentioning that a master's is preferred - so you'd meet the minimum requirement without a MSc but might find it harder to get these roles. Some require a master's, though in these cases having a joint undergrad is absolutely fine, if you've got an MSc Economics they wouldn't care whether you undergrad is in single or joint honours economics.

For 'quantitative' roles, I'm not sure what you mean by this, you'll have to be more precise.

With respect to the importance of where you study your degrees, it's difficult to judge whether someone who's successful in recruitment processes are more successful because of a better uni or because they were more skilled (which can also relate to the uni course too). I don't think the civil service really care where you study as long as you meet the minimum entry requirements and pass all their recruitment tests & interviews. There's far less roles available in private sector economist roles and these tend to be much much better paid, and given they're not the government, the recruitment processes can vary quite a lot between firms. But typically I think it's fair to say that the quality of economics courses and the unis you study at are more important in the private sector.

Forgive me but im not the best informed regarding the variety in economics related professions. When I refer to ‘quantitative’ roles I certainly mean roles that involve much more mathematical and statistical aspects than traditional finance roles like IB analysts. In terms of economist-related roles I would presume those which primarily involve econometrics. While I’m aware all economists use statistical data and mathematical calculations in the workplace, I’m not entirely sure of the degree to which they do and I would certainly be interested in the more quantitative-based economist roles if a dual degree allows it provided an MSc in Economics is also obtained.
Reply 9
Original post by BenRyan99
In terms of entering economist roles, you can enter civil service economics roles with a joint-economics degree (e.g. politics and economics) straight after undergrad without a master's. The requirement is that at least 50% of your degree is in economics, so politics and economics is fine - though you may want to pick more economics based optional modules. For context, the civil service also accepts PPE graduates for economics roles too without a MSc. You may want an MSc, but it's certainly not necessary, and often the GES will pay for you to do one after a year or two.

In terms of private sector economist roles, it really depends on the firm and the role. For some, they use the same as public sector roles - at least 50% of an undergrad degree in economics, MSc not required. Some state this while also mentioning that a master's is preferred - so you'd meet the minimum requirement without a MSc but might find it harder to get these roles. Some require a master's, though in these cases having a joint undergrad is absolutely fine, if you've got an MSc Economics they wouldn't care whether you undergrad is in single or joint honours economics.

For 'quantitative' roles, I'm not sure what you mean by this, you'll have to be more precise.

With respect to the importance of where you study your degrees, it's difficult to judge whether someone who's successful in recruitment processes are more successful because of a better uni or because they were more skilled (which can also relate to the uni course too). I don't think the civil service really care where you study as long as you meet the minimum entry requirements and pass all their recruitment tests & interviews. There's far less roles available in private sector economist roles and these tend to be much much better paid, and given they're not the government, the recruitment processes can vary quite a lot between firms. But typically I think it's fair to say that the quality of economics courses and the unis you study at are more important in the private sector.


https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7393918
Reply 10
Original post by artful_lounger
Graduate employers don't care about what subjects you studied except for certain specialist roles. I realise this is something 6th formers tend to obsess over but I really can't overstate how little employers actually care what subject you studied (and they care even less whether your degree title was BA or BSc, despite that occupying an unrealistic amount of space in most school leaver's minds!).

So why do certain degrees have graduates who earn more money than others?? eg Econ and medicine >> languages or philosophy for example
Reply 11
Original post by artful_lounger
Graduate employers don't care about what subjects you studied except for certain specialist roles. I realise this is something 6th formers tend to obsess over but I really can't overstate how little employers actually care what subject you studied (and they care even less whether your degree title was BA or BSc, despite that occupying an unrealistic amount of space in most school leaver's minds!).

so why do some degrees have graduates who earn more money eg medicine and Econ graduates make more money than languages and philosophy grads
Original post by idek101
So why do certain degrees have graduates who earn more money than others?? eg Econ and medicine >> languages or philosophy for example


Medicine grads are not generally applying to grad schemes, they are going on to become doctors in the NHS which has a fixed rising payscale. This is a meaningless comparison as a result.

Economics degrees having a correlation with higher income may simply reflect that the kinds of students who want to study economics also want to pursue more lucrative roles and are less likely to pursue lower paying roles in other sectors. Whereas philosophy or language grads may be happier taking a lower paying but still stable role in a job that they enjoy more which may be in e.g. academia, the arts or heritage sector, or using the language they studied.

Correlation does not imply causation...
(edited 1 month ago)

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