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This course is open for applications.

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Tariff points:
Health and Social Sciences
Three years full-time; four years sandwich
Full-time; sandwich; part-time
Study abroad:
Programme leader:
Dr Katrina Mitcheson and Dr Charlotte Alderwick
Key fact:
This course gives you the broad grounding you need for your own philosophical work, and the inspiration to tackle life's big issues for yourself.

Page last updated 30 November 2018


Why study philosophy?

By examining life's fundamental questions, philosophy helps to shape the way we think about the world.

What are the ethical, political and social questions we need to ask ourselves? What can we know? And how can we change the world using our knowledge?'

Exploring questions such as these hones and develops your thinking skills, and provides a strong springboard into many professions. 

Why study at UWE Bristol?

BA(Hons) Philosophy is a diverse and distinctive degree that will give you the broad grounding you need for your own philosophical work, and the inspiration to tackle life's big issues for yourself.

Studying in a close-knit group of students and lecturers, you'll engage with the history of philosophy, from its beginnings in ancient Greece to the great minds of 19th, 20th and 21st century European philosophers.

You'll learn how to analyse complex issues from different perspectives, present logical, reasoned arguments, and communicate concepts and opinions with clarity and precision. 

Benefit from a diverse range of work-based learning opportunities from teaching philosophy in schools, to organising your own philosophy conference.

Apply your knowledge and expertise on a work placement and add to your experience with the option of spending a year studying in Europe or America.

With options for final year specialisms that include links with sociology, politics and robotics, you'll develop the skills and knowledge that will equip you well for your career and life in general.

Where can it take me?

Our philosophy graduates are in demand across journalism, law, banking, the creative industries and all kinds of business management.

You could work in non-governmental organisations (NGOs) or specialise in teaching, research, counselling or healthcare, among many other areas.

Accreditations and partnerships:



The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

Year one

You will study:

  • Critical Thinking (Philosophy)
  • Theories of Knowledge
  • Ancient Philosophy
  • Problems of the Self
  • The Death of God and the Meaning of Life.

Study exchange (if applicable) 

If you choose the study exchange option, you'll spend the first and/or second semester of Year two studying at another university.  

See the Placements and Fees sections for more information. 

Year two

You will study:

  • Metaphysics
  • Developing Self and Society (Philosophy)
  • Nature and Use of Research (Philosophy).

Plus up to four optional modules (the number depending on credit requirements) from:

  • Hellenistic Philosophy
  • Early Modern Philosophy
  • Feminist Philosophy
  • Marxist Philosophies
  • Theoretical Ethics
  • Applied Ethics
  • Philosophy of Art I
  • Philosophy of Art II
  • Nineteenth Century German Philosophy.

Placement year (if applicable)

If you study on the four year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work or study placement after Year two.

Depending on which you choose, you'll either complete a placement learning or learning and development module.

See the Placements and Fees sections for more information.

Final year

You will study:

  • Philosophy Project and Placement Module.

Plus up to five optional modules from (the number depending on credit requirements) from:

  • Ethics of Technology
  • Philosophy of Nature
  • Philosophy of Mind
  • Advanced Philosophical Texts
  • Film and Philosophy
  • Medieval Philosophy
  • Phenomenology: The Philosophy of Experience
  • Social Pathology and the Paradoxes of Modernity in the Frankfurt School
  • Religion and Politics
  • Democracy in theory and Practice
  • Power, Desire and Agency; Debates in 20th Century French Philosophy
  • Europe and Decolonisation.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

This structure is for full-time students only. Part-time students study the same modules but the delivery pattern will be different.

Learning and Teaching

A diverse course of study, from pre-socratic to contemporary philosophy, covering questions from how we can have knowledge of the external world to how we should live our lives and adapt to technological change. 

You'll get a solid foundation in the central issues of philosophy and develop your own unique path of study based on your interests and strengths.

Attend lectures, seminars and workshops, and work on projects on your own and in groups.

Join our close-knit study community, develop as an independent learner, and be taught, mentored and encouraged by our enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff.  

Passionate about philosophy and working at the forefront of the subject, many lecturers are current writers and bring contemporary philosophical issues into their teaching.

Partake in the practice of philosophy itself, and develop your own philosophical knowledge.

Our staff are there to support and guide you. You'll get regular feedback on your work and we'll ask you for regular feedback on your modules.

Join a staff-student committee, where you'll get to influence discussions that affect your learning experience.

Our Student Adviser Service can help with everything from ensuring you're enrolled on the correct modules, to paying fees.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Percentage of time you'll spend in different learning activities, each year: 

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study% check

Interesting projects

Experience teaching philosophy yourself through a project we run with local schools.

Come along to our World Philosophy Day to find out about the latest research we're working on.  

Join our thriving, student-run Philosophy Society to hear from speakers from other universities, and take part in topical debates and activities. Find out more at UWE Bristol Philosophy Society.

Learn from experts

Expand your knowledge and learn from practitioners at the lectures and conferences we organise. You'll find plenty going on at the University, and at local art centres and other venues.


We'll assess you using a mix of essay coursework, formal exams, oral presentations and independent project work.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.

Percentage of time you'll spend on different assessment methods, each year:

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment% check



Students who go on work experience tend to graduate with better degrees. Experience also hones your skills, industry knowledge and professional network, making you a sought after graduate.

If you study on the four year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work or study placement after Year two.

You can take part in work placements and other work experience in both Year two and your Final year.

You can also teach philosophy in local schools, to build extra skills and experience for your CV. 

Study year abroad 

You'll also have opportunities to study overseas on courses that are taught in English and are relevant to your degree. The study year abroad is not a paid placement. 

Study exchange 

Study exchange allows you to take the first and/or second semester of Year two at a different university. Unlike the study year abroad, you'll complete modules to achieve equivalent credits. These modules will be decided in advance with your programme leader. 

Explore our global study partners to find out which institutions participate in our exchange programme.

Study facilities

Learn in modern, well-equipped facilities to support your study of philosophy including our dedicated subject library.

You'll also have 24 hour access to our main university library, which has spaces for silent and group study, and rooms you can book. 

You'll have use of books, trade press, academic journals, and industry databases both on and off campus.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.


Careers / Further study

You will graduate with critical thinking, argumentation and communication skills that employers value highly.

You could go into a diverse range of sectors, including teaching, academic research, law, finance, the creative industries, healthcare, social work, not-for-profit organisations (NGOs) or the civil service.

Many students also progress to postgraduate study in philosophy, law and other subjects.

Get inspired

Our award-winning careers service will develop your employment potential through career coaching and find you graduate jobs, placements and global opportunities.

We can also help find local volunteering and community opportunities, provide support for entrepreneurial activity and get you access to employer events.

Visit our employability pages to learn more about careers, employers and what our students are doing six months after graduating.

Hear about Vashti's work in setting up Deki, a charity helping to reduce poverty in the developing world

See also:

The Guardian - the rise in stock of Philosophy graduates

New York Times - in a new generation of students, many opt for the life examined


Full Time Course

FeesAmount (£)
Home/EU-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee9250
Home/EU-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1156
International-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee13500
International-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1688

Indicative Additional Costs

FeesAmount (£)
Additional Course Costs - Full Time - Home/EU - Indicative Maximum Cost Per year473

Part Time Course

FeesAmount (£)
Home/EU-Part Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1156
Offshore-Part Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)1156

Supplementary fee information

Your overall entitlement to funding is based on how long the course is that you're registered on. Standard funding is allocated based on the standard number of years that your course lasts, plus one additional year.

You'll apply for funding each year that you study and Student Finance will take into account how long the course is in each year that you apply. So if you register for the four year course and then transfer to the three year course, the number of years you can apply for funding will change. Student Finance will reassess your funding based on how many years you have been in study, not just those years for which you received student finance.

Always seek advice before taking any action that may have implications for your funding.

Learn more about funding.

Additional costs

Additional costs are for items you could need during your studies that aren't covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, textbooks, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Learn more about costs.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 120
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics, or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required. Points from A-Level General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff. You must have a minimum of two A-Levels.
  • Relevant subjects: Philosophy, RE, Politics, Sociology, English, Psychology, History, Biology, Chemistry or Physics.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; to include 30 level 3 credits at merit.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

We recognise the individual nature of each application and our typical offer should be viewed as a guide. UWE Bristol welcomes interest from applicants who may not have the standard entry requirements. We will consider evidence of your relevant personal, professional or educational experience where it demonstrates an ability and potential to succeed on the course. Please include details of any relevant experience in your application.

If you don't meet the entry requirements of this course, you may be eligible for Foundation Year entry into this or other related degree courses.

Please read the general information about entry requirements.

UWE Bristol's International College

If you are an international student and do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course, you can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

Offer Types

If you have not received your exam results, your offer from UWE Bristol will be conditional and will be subject to you achieving the tariff points/grades required for your course.

If you have already satisfied the academic entry requirements of your chosen course, you are likely to be made an unconditional offer. Please note that UWE Bristol will only make unconditional offers if you have already achieved your qualifications.

To make sure our applicants are academically prepared for when they start their studies at UWE Bristol, we do not make unconditional offers to those that are still studying their Level 3 qualifications (such as A-levels, BTEC, Access or equivalent). We hope that this will encourage our applicants to value their academic achievements as much as we do.

If you receive an offer for this course, you may be invited to attend an Offer Holder Day in February or March. These are a great opportunity to find out what it's really like to study here. You'll experience taster lectures or workshops, meet your course tutors, current students and other offer holders.

How to apply

Read more about undergraduate applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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