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In a world where people are increasingly asked to employ tools that cut across disciplines, the PPE major offers an interdisciplinary education that combines broad and rigorous training in the foundations of our allied disciplines. Apart from taking some basic courses in Psychology, Philosophy, Politics, and Economics, each PPE major is required to specialize in a concentration of their choice. Each concentration tends to focus a bit more on a subset of the four constituent PPE disciplines: psychology, philosophy, economics, or political science. For example, students choosing the Distributive Justice concentration will focus on both factual and evaluative questions about the existence and working of just institutions, and what obligations individuals or groups have toward one another. Distributive Justice focuses more on Political Philosophy, though students are encouraged to take courses in legal studies, politicial science and economics that bear on questions of distributive justice. Students choosing the Choice and Behavior concentration, by contrast, will tend to focus more on modeling, explaining, or predicting individual and social behavior, and are encouraged to include classes in Psychology, Economics, but also Sociology and Political Science.
Since inception at Penn, PPE has been popular and today it is one of the largest majors in the College of Arts and Sciences. The major is intended to prepare its graduates for careers as diverse as public policy, consulting, business, journalism, law, and international affairs, among others. It is an excellent pre-law major and it also offers suitable preparation for graduate study in any of the constituent disciplines. As you explore your major options, take the time to consider how you might be interested in focusing the major and the kinds of opportunities a PPE major affords.
Having a chat about PPE
Students interested in having a conversation about PPE are encouraged to make an appointment with PPE's Associate Director.
You can talk to current majors both through:
- the University's Major Advising Program or
- by reaching out to current members of PPE's Undergraduate Advisory Board.