Brasenose Oxford Ppe Personal Statement



We admit nine PPE students each year.

Although a background in Mathematics is not formally required for admission, PPE applicants should have sufficient interest in, and aptitude for, mathematics to cope with the mathematical elements of the course. Mathematics is a particular advantage for the Economics component of the course, as well as for the first year logic course in philosophy, and for first and second year courses in politics.

In recent years over 90% of the applicants who were offered places for PPE had studied Maths to at least AS-Level, or equivalent. You may like to consider taking Maths to AS-level, or an equivalent qualification, even if you do not pursue it further. It is useful at least to have learnt the basics of differentiation before starting your university course in PPE, whether as part of a formal, examined mathematics course or more informally; the same would be true of elementary probability theory and statistics.

The Course

Students study all three subjects in the first year. The PPE Preliminary Examination is taken at the end of the first year. Students can then choose to continue with all three branches or to drop one of them. Second year work mainly covers core papers in the branches chosen, followed in the third year by further subjects from a wide range of options permitting considerable specialization. PPE is a flexible course; it permits everything from an even blend of the three subjects, to a strong concentration (amounting to around two-thirds of the work for the final examination) on one of them. PPE at Brasenose has a reputation for challenging, exciting work, undertaken in a mixture of tutorials and class teaching.

Anyone reading PPE can expect to be taught by most of the tutors below at some point during their degree.

Dr Dave Leal has a particular interest in ethics and philosophy of religion, but also teaches logic, early modern philosophy, epistemology, and philosophy of mind. Dr ChristopherTimpson, a philosopher of science, particularly of physics, has interests in philosophy of mind and language and in the history of 20th Century Anglophone philosophy. Dr Elias Dinas is a political scientist and is interested in comparative political behaviour and political socialisation. Dr Andrea Ruggeri is a political scientist and is interested in international relations and comparative, his research focuses on civil wars, peacekeeping, and political violence. Professor Rui Esteves's research is focused on topics of international finance, institutional economics, and public finance in a historical perspective. Dr Ferdinand Rauch's research interests consider different empirical applications of microeconomic theory, mainly in the areas of international trade and regional and urban economics.

Read more about PPE at Oxford. 


Former Brasenose PPEists can be found among other places in Parliament, the Bank of England, the Treasury, the Foreign Office, international organisations, banking and finance, domestic and multinational business, consultancy, teaching and academia, and the media. Some of them are ambassadors, barristers, film producers, schoolteachers, writers, and university professors all over the world.


St Hugh's College

I chose to study PPE because I've never been good at narrowing myself down to one subject area. Before coming to Oxford I studied a mix of sciences, arts and humanities, and I was keen to continue to study a wide range of disciplines using a variety of different methods. The list of options once you reach second year is huge, and this is a good demonstration of how the university trusts and supports you in moulding the degree into what you want it to be. Initially this seemed a little daunting, as choosing what areas to focus my reading on, and being entirely in charge of my work timetable took some time to get used to. But, since Oxford terms are very intense, it didn't take me long to get settled in, and quickly I started to appreciate the freedom the course offers, as it let me always focus on my interests. Discussing these with some of the world's leading academics has been incredibly stimulating, and I really do feel like I'm learning depth as well as breadth.

Whilst studying here I have taken part in college rowing and netball, and joined a student think-tank researching policy, with people who are also passionate about similar topics to me - for example this term we are researching policy regarding human trafficking. There is so much to get involved with here, as there is such a wealth of opportunities - in two weeks I will even be going to Hamburg for an international PPE conference, which is very exciting!

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