PPE Core Courses

PPE Core Courses

  • Economics: ECON 401: Intermediate Microeconomics
  • Gateway: PPE 300: Introduction to Political Economy
  • Capstone: PPE 400: Senior Seminar in Political Economy (Honors students take PPE 401-2 instead)
  • Econ 401: Intermediate Microeconomics
    This course deals with the theoretical analysis of consumers, firms, markets, and price determination. The analysis is rigorous, using the tools of algebra, geometry, and elementary calculus in constructing models. Prerequisites include one term of calculus. ECON 401 is a prerequisite for many other courses offered in Economics. Concentrators in economics are required to elect this course and are encouraged to complete it early in their concentration program. Both lecture and section will meet twice a week. Students should bring the lecture coursepack to lecture.
  • PPE 300: Introduction to Political Economy
    This is the gateway course for students interested in the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics concentration, as well as any other students interested in exploring issues of political economy. Political economy is the integrated study of the relationships of government, political processes, property, production, markets, trade, and distribution from the standpoint of assessing these arrangements with respect to the interests and progress of humanity.  It explores the relations between individual action and collective outcomes as they shape and are shaped by environmental conditions, institutions, social norms, ideologies, and strategic and communicative interaction, paying special attention to the consequences of these relations for politics, law and economic policies, aggregate economic outcomes, and justice and human welfare.  Political economists often use formal tools such as game theory and rational choice theory, and analytic frameworks, such as prisoner’s dilemmas and principal-agent problems, to analyze these relations.  This course will introduce students to these tools and frameworks, exploring their powers and limitations.  Readings will be drawn from classical and contemporary sources in political theory and economics.  There will be 3 papers and a final examination.
  • PPE 400: Senior Seminar in Political Economy
    This is the capstone seminar for non-Honors students in the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics concentration.  A particular issue or theme in political economy will be selected for intensive, investigation from multiple perspectives:  normative, empirical, formal, and interpretive.  Discussion will stress integration of these perspectives and how each affects the questions, conceptual frameworks, and methodological choices of the others.  Students will undertake short writing exercises and oral presentations, and write a substantial research paper.
  • PPE 401: Honors Senior Seminar in Political Economy
    Students formulate a question, undertake a literature review, develop the prospectus, and write a core draft chapter of an honors thesis during this course taken during the Fall Term of their Senior year, with the final thesis submitted in April.