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International Studies - PPS

The University of Cambridge offers a well designed course in Politics, Psychology & Sociology. In the part second of this course, students may specialize in one of the three pathways: Psychology, Sociology, and Politics and international Studies. Students have an option to take a combination of both Sociology and Psychology subjects in their second and third year.

In part second, if students specialize in International Studies and Politics then they will take papers in international politics, comparative politics and the history of political thought. The nature of politics and the importance of processes, institutions and ideas in shaping political developments are explored using historical and philosophical arguments, theories of international relations and contemporary political analysis.

In the third year, students are allowed for a rising choice of specialization comprising a series of papers in the politics of specific areas of the world and some papers from other disciplines. The evaluation includes dissertation, long essays and conventional examinations.

In the part second, psychology pathway offers an opportunity to concentrate on developmental and social psychology. Apart from the research methods, students may explore the development of psychopathology, gender, social behaviour, family relationships and influences biological and cognitive psychology, personality and social behaviour in large and small group.

The course in completely recognized by the British Psychological Society, therefore, students who choose this option graduate with the 'graduate recognition' required to pursue a career in psychology for example, academic, forensic, clinical and educational psychology. Consequently, they complete independent research projects.

In the part second of sociology, students may combine social theory and the empirical analysis of particular institutions and societies. Students may explore the economics and cultures of different societies, social organization and theories that have shaped students understanding. In the third year, students may take interdisciplinary papers. They may also take papers from other disciplines. In the part second 'A', students select to carry out their own sociological research project. In the part second 'B', students may choose a dissertation.

Students are taught to think critically and independently irrespective of their background. They are prepared to differentiate good arguments from bad arguments. Students have an excellent opportunity to undertake research projects and write a dissertation and essays on questions that interest them. The undergraduate course in Politics, Psychology & Sociology attracts students from abroad, especially, Southeast Asia and Europe. It also draws attention of students from ethnic minorities and state schools than other arts courses. The undergraduate community is one of the most diverse and interesting communities at Cambridge.


In the part first, evaluation is basically through a three-hour exam for each paper. However, some of the optional papers comprise other forms of assessment. The evaluation in the part second based upon the pathway chosen but comprises exam papers and an opportunity to carry out a dissertation or a research project.

Changing Course

At the end of the first or second year, students may transfer onto PPS from other subjects. On the other hand after completing the part first or part second of PPS, students may transfer to another course such as history, management studies, archaeology and anthropology, law, etc.

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