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BA Politics, Philosophy and Economics / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course description

Tom Danaher

I visited Manchester after being given a conditional offer.

My instinct told me that this was the place for me.

Tom Danaher / BA Politics, Philosophy and Economics

The BA Politics, Philosophy and Economics course will provide you with the knowledge of significant topics, problems and issues in all three disciplines. You will also join a vibrant intellectual community.

You will learn how key insights can be applied to pressing policy concerns, to gain a rich set of intellectual and critical skills.

You will critically evaluate competing arguments about political events, ideas and institutions. Helping you develop the ability to effectively evaluate economic policies, and economics in its broader institutional and political context.

In Politics, you will analyse the behaviour of government from local, national and international perspectives, providing an understanding and rationale behind policy decisions that affect all of us.

Studying politics shows that you can research and reference your argument and use rhetoric to reinforce your position in a debate.

In Philosophy, you learn to develop and express rational arguments and use logical reasoning and critical analysis to defend your position and critique opposing viewpoints.

Economics gives you the tools to analyse the economic environment around us.

You gain a grounding in quantitative methods such as mathematics and statistics or econometrics. You will develop an understanding of the wider economy from the reasoning behind macroeconomic government policy to the microeconomic behaviour of individual firms.


 You will: 
  • learn how to analyse and evaluate competing arguments about political events, ideas and institutions;
  • gain an understanding of economic systems and theories, and place the study of economics in its broader institutional and political context;
  • develop the ability to formulate rigorous arguments and philosophical positions.

Special features

Leading research

We are proud to be a leading centre for economic research, scholarship and research-led teaching in all areas of the discipline, including microeconomics, macroeconomics, econometrics, financial economics, environmental and resource economics, development economics and industrial/business economics.

World-leading research and teaching in economics has been at the heart of higher education in Manchester since the early days of the University.

William Stanley Jevons (1835 to 1882), who helped build the foundations of modern economics, was one of the first professors at Manchester.

Connect with like-minded students

We have a very active society, which brings together students from all year groups, including alumni.

It's a supportive community that hosts regular socials, as well as academic and career events.

Study abroad

You can apply in Year 2 and if successful, you will put together a package of course units at your host university in consultation with your Academic Exchange Advisor in Manchester.

Paid placement opportunity

You can apply for a paid Q-Step internship during the summer between the second and third year of your course.

Teaching and learning

Course units feature formal lectures and smaller tutorials or seminars where you explore the contents of lectures and recommended reading in greater depth.

Tutorials and seminars are key to improving your written and oral communication skills through group discussions, essay-writing, and presentations.

You are assigned an Academic Advisor who can advise you on selecting course units and career opportunities.

Coursework and assessment

Methods are designed to promote in-depth learning and understanding, including:

  • essays, coursework and other mid-term evaluations;
  • dissertations;
  • presentations and group projects; and
  • exams.

Course content for year 1

Year 1 gives you a solid foundation of Economics, Mathematics and Statistics units.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Critical Thinking PHIL10042 20 Mandatory
Introduction to Political Theory POLI10702 20 Mandatory
Introductory Mathematics ECON10061 10 Optional
Adv Maths - BAEcon & BSc Econ ECON10071 10 Optional
Advanced Statistics ECON10072 10 Optional
Microeconomic Analysis 1 ECON10171 10 Optional
Macroeconomic Analysis 1 ECON10181 10 Optional
Microeconomics 1 ECON10221 10 Optional
Macroeconomics 1 ECON10252 10 Optional
Introduction to Ethics PHIL10021 20 Optional
Introduction to Metaphysics and Epistemology PHIL10622 20 Optional
Introduction to Philosophy of Mind PHIL10631 20 Optional
Introduction to Comparative Politics POLI10201 20 Optional
Introduction to Comparative Politics POLI10202 20 Optional
Making Sense of Politics POLI10301 20 Optional
British Politics: Power and the State POLI10401 20 Optional
Politics of the Global Economy POLI10502 20 Optional
Introduction to International Politics POLI10601 20 Optional
Introductory Statistics for Economists SOST10062 10 Optional
Displaying 10 of 19 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

Year 2 focuses on developing your understanding of micro and macroeconomics principles, mathematical economics and econometrics.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Ideals of Social Justice POLI20881 20 Mandatory
Managerial Economics I ECON20001 20 Optional
Advanced Mathematics ECON20071 10 Optional
Advanced Statistics ECON20072 10 Optional
Econometrics ECON20110 20 Optional
Microeconomic Analysis 2 ECON20172 10 Optional
Macroeconomic Analysis 2 ECON20182 10 Optional
Introduction to Mathematical Economics ECON20192 10 Optional
Economics and History ECON20212 10 Optional
Quantitative Methods ECON20222 20 Optional
Microeconomics 2 ECON20232 10 Optional
Macroeconomics 2 ECON20262 10 Optional
Development Economics IIA ECON20321 10 Optional
Development Economics IIB ECON20332 10 Optional
Economics for Public Policy ECON20431 10 Optional
Jurisprudence LAWS20101 20 Optional
Formal Logic PHIL20042 20 Optional
Ethics PHIL20231 20 Optional
20th Century Analytical Philosophy PHIL20242 20 Optional
Philosophy of Science PHIL20262 20 Optional
Philosophy of Mind PHIL20271 20 Optional
Existentialism PHIL23001 20 Optional
Hegel and Marx PHIL23022 20 Optional
The Politics of (in)Security POLI20332 20 Optional
Questions About International Politics POLI20521 20 Optional
Politics & Society in Britain Since 1940: From Blitz to Brexit POLI20531 20 Optional
Arguing About Politics: Political Theory in the World POLI20602 20 Optional
The Politics of Globalisation POLI20711 20 Optional
The Politics of Development POLI20722 20 Optional
Gender and Politics in Comparative Perspective POLI20742 20 Optional
The Politics of Policy Making POLI20802 20 Optional
How to Conduct Politics Research POLI20902 20 Optional
Environmental Politics POLI20982 20 Optional
Comparative West European Politics POLI21001 20 Optional
Southern European Politics POLI21012 20 Optional
Asia-Pacific Security POLI21041 20 Optional
Market Research SOST20041 10 Optional
Displaying 10 of 37 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

In Year 3, you choose from a range of specialised units, and can do a dissertation in Applied Economics.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Topics in PPE SOCS30001 20 Mandatory
Microeconomics 3 ECON30021 10 Optional
Microeconomics 4 ECON30022 10 Optional
Macroeconomics 3 ECON30031 10 Optional
Macroeconomics 4 ECON30032 10 Optional
Topics in Inequality & Poverty ECON30041 10 Optional
Dissertation in Economics ECON30100 20 Optional
The Chinese Economy ECON30102 10 Optional
Natural Resource Economics ECON30232 10 Optional
Mathematical Economics II ECON30290 20 Optional
Micro Econometrics ECON30342 10 Optional
Mathematical Finance ECON30382 10 Optional
Development Economics IIIA ECON30451 20 Optional
Microeconomic Analysis 3 ECON30501 10 Optional
Topics in Economic History ECON30511 20 Optional
Microeconomic Analysis 4 ECON30512 10 Optional
Macroeconomic Analysis 3 ECON30521 10 Optional
Macroeconomic Analysis 4 ECON30532 10 Optional
Money, Banking & Financial Markets ECON30852 10 Optional
Managerial Economics II ECON31002 20 Optional
Advanced Econometrics ECON31031 20 Optional
Climate Change Economics and Policy ECON32111 10 Optional
Behavioural Economics ECON32152 20 Optional
International Trade and Policy ECON32191 20 Optional
Health Economics ECON32202 10 Optional
Applied Economics Dissertation A (Semester 1) ECON32211 20 Optional
Applied Economics Dissertation B (Semester 2) ECON32212 20 Optional
Dissertation Semester 1 PHIL30001 20 Optional
Dissertation Semester 2 PHIL30002 20 Optional
Dissertation (40 credit) PHIL30030 40 Optional
Language and Analysis PHIL30351 20 Optional
Philosophy of Psychology PHIL30362 20 Optional
Philosophy of Action PHIL30552 20 Optional
Personhood and Freedom of the Will PHIL30711 20 Optional
Philosophy of Mathematics PHIL30721 20 Optional
The Politics of the European Union POLI30032 20 Optional
Russian Politics POLI30071 20 Optional
The Politics and Philosophy of Nationalism POLI30192 20 Optional
Gender, Sex and Politics POLI30232 20 Optional
Elections and Voters in Britain POLI30242 20 Optional
Political Morality and Dirty Hands POLI30271 20 Optional
Chinese Politics POLI30281 20 Optional
Public Policy Problems POLI30291 20 Optional
Dissertation A POLI30300 40 Optional
Ethical Issues in World Politics POLI30321 20 Optional
Political Ideologies in Modern Britain POLI30361 20 Optional
Dissertation B POLI30380 20 Optional
The Politics of Hate POLI30452 20 Optional
Introduction to International Political Economy POLI30721 20 Optional
Gender, War & Militarism POLI30792 20 Optional
Africa & Global Politics POLI30862 20 Optional
War and Genocide in the 20th Century POLI30892 20 Optional
Ideologies of Global Capitalism POLI31002 20 Optional
War Memories and Reconciliation in East Asia POLI31012 20 Optional
American Politics: Why Do They Do That? POLI31061 20 Optional
Contemporary Parliamentary Studies and the British Political Tradition POLI32041 20 Optional
Postcolonial Politics POLI32061 20 Optional
Between War and Peace POLI32071 20 Optional
Race, Ethnicity, Migration POLI32162 20 Optional
Theory & Method in Demography SOST30012 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 60 course units for year 3

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: