Examine humanity’s most fundamental ideas, challenge assumptions about our world, and develop core academic skills with our BA Philosophy with Foundation course.
This four-year programme includes a foundation year that leads directly into the three-year course. It provides an excellent route into a degree in philosophy if you do not have the typical entry qualifications.
Set your mind to tackling big topics: how one should live, what humans can know, and the nature of reality. We encourage you to confront your deepest beliefs in a philosophical way, engage with intellectual challenges, and enhance your global and multi-cultural awareness.
Experts from the Department of Philosophy will introduce you to central philosophical principles, concepts, problems, texts and figures. Discover the basic rudiments of philosophical argument, and explore topics that interest you — including mind, religion, ethics, language, crime and punishment, morality, and non-Western philosophy.
Studying philosophy allows you to develop wide-ranging, transferable skills. You will:
- think critically and evaluate arguments
- challenge your own ideas and those of others
- enhance your skills in verbal and written argument.
Your learning will be enhanced by teaching from experts, in a department where 96% of research outputs were rated to be of international quality in the Research Excellent Framework 2014.
Your learning structure
The aim of the foundation year is to prepare you for your philosophy degree. As you progress, each stage builds on your prior learning:
- Foundation year: gain a thorough grounding in study at higher education level. Core modules will develop key skills to support your learning.
You will complete two skills-based modules: Foundation in Academic Skills develops your academic writing, research, referencing, critical thinking, teamwork, study techniques and study management; and Persuasive Writing explores how writing shapes our lives, and how it’s used for social media, journalistic and political persuasion.
Two additional modules develop skills specific to your degree: Identities explores identity in relation to national/race identity, gender, changing identities and sense of self, examining everything from texts and objects to film and cultural documents; and Perspectives enhances your ability to study and understand problems, events, objects and texts from a variety of perspectives.
- First year: familiarise yourself with the core topics of philosophy, and the concepts and methods of critical thinking, basic logic, and the psychology of reasoning.
- Second year: acquire a deeper awareness of current philosophers, and the skills of argument and presentation. Greater emphasis is placed on developing your skills of research and enquiry. You will learn to present public arguments effectively, and respond to questions and challenges.
- Third year: take the opportunity to develop full mastery of philosophy. Underpinned by independent learning, you will reflect on your personal effectiveness, self-awareness, and personal goals.
Dynamic learning environment
In 2020, we achieved a 96% overall satisfaction score for BA Philosophy in the National Student Survey.
You will be taught in small, interactive seminar groups which encourage discussion and debate with teaching staff and fellow students. Philosophy is a flexible degree, allowing you to shape your studies to your interests. You can also select modules from outside the Department.
Outside of lectures, you can also benefit from our vibrant social culture. Join our student-run Philosophy Society, who arrange a host of social events including film nights, sports activities and study sessions.
Placement opportunities with BA Philosophy with Foundation
A work placement can provide you with a chance to put your newly acquired knowledge and skills into practice, and gain valuable, real-world experience.
At any point in your degree, you can undertake a placement in a company or charity relevant to your final-year studies. For example, a previous student worked in a zoo to explore the ethical treatment of animals.
In your second or final year, you can spend a term studying abroad at one of our partner institutions in the USA, Europe, Canada, Japan or Australia. This is a great way to enhance your studies, make new friends and experience life in a different country.
To find out more, visit our Study Abroad site.