About our Department, People, and Research
Philosophy involves a critical examination of our most fundamental beliefs about truth and reality, right and wrong. It challenges many of our assumptions about what we know and how we should live. It is a discipline concerned with how different views of the world clash or fit together, and with how far different perspectives (moral, scientific, religious, metaphysical, personal) may be reconciled.
The Philosophy Department is part of the thriving School of Humanities, which has a strong interdisciplinary tradition and attracts large numbers of undergraduate and graduate students from the UK and overseas.
Our department is well known for our friendly and co-operative atmosphere, in which students and staff get to know each other on an individual basis.
We are a lively and productive centre of research with an international reputation for excellence. There is a flourishing Philosophy Society at which undergraduates and graduates meet regularly to hear visiting speakers and discuss a wide range of philosophical topics.
The Department of Philosophy at the University of Reading is a centre of international excellence in research. In the latest Leiter Report on graduate programmes in philosophy, we were ranked in the top ten departments in the UK, equal also to departments in the USA such as Carnegie-Mellon, Georgetown, and the University of Virginia. In ethics, we were ranked higher than any UK departments apart from Oxford and Cambridge.
We run many events throughout the year dedicated to stimulating and fostering research. There is a full visiting speaker programme in which leading researchers from around the world present their work to staff and students; a work in progress programme in which staff discuss their current research; a graduate seminar for research students; a regular staff-student reading group, as well informal reading groups on recent and classic books; the well-known annual Ratio conference, sponsored by the leading international philosophy journal edited in the Department; and various other speaker events and seminars throughout the year.