Undergraduate 

Philosophy MA/BSc/LLB/MA(SocSci)

Philosophy students

Philosophy is the systematic attempt to arrive at clear answers to profound questions about issues such as knowledge, life, morality, science and human nature using reason and argument

We host reading parties for students in the Highlands, and have a flourishing undergraduate Philosophy Society. We are home to the Centre for the Study of Perceptual Experience.

Programme structure

Year 1

You will be introduced to key problems in moral and political philosophy, and in philosophy of mind and knowledge. In moral philosophy you will consider questions such as the objectivity of morality and the application of ethics to the study of difficult practical problems. In political philosophy you will consider the nature of our obligation (if any) to obey the government and where this obligation comes from. You will also consider theories concerning the relationship between the mind and the world: how do we come to know about the existence of a reality outside of the mind? Is the mind distinct from the body? The course will also examine how we can distinguish between good and bad arguments.

Year 2

You will focus on two courses, the first of which addresses some moral and political matters that arise from the relationship between society and the self. The second is based around issues in the theory of knowledge and questions of language and meaning; you will also begin the study of logic.

You will also study other subjects in years 1 and 2: see Flexible degrees.

Years 3 and 4

If you progress to Honours (years 3 and 4) you will choose courses giving you an in-depth knowledge of core areas like epistemology, metaphysics, formal logic, moral philosophy, philosophy of mind and political philosophy. You will also take high-level specialist courses linked to the active research of lecturers and researchers in the subject.

In year 4 you will have the opportunity to write a dissertation, working one-to-one with a member of staff on a topic of your choice.

Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Legal statements: Disclaimer.

Our international links

We encourage our students to study abroad (usually during year 3). We have an Erasmus exchange scheme with the University of Barcelona and our Philosophy students have also studied in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Denmark and Finland. See Study abroad.

Entry requirements

Academic entry requirements
for entry in 2019

About entry requirements

SQA Highers

The S5 Standard Academic Entry Requirements represent the grades which, if attained in addition to successfully meeting mandatory subject requirements and any non-academic entry requirements (interviews, auditions, aptitude tests), will normally result in an offer being made. Students must achieve the standard entry requirements by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5).

The S5 Minimum Academic Entry Requirements represent the minimum grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order for them to be considered for a conditional offer based on S6 results. Not all applicants who achieve the Minimum Academic Entry Requirements will be made an offer. This will depend on the number of applications we have received for a degree programme and the number of applicants who have met the Standard Academic Entry Requirements.

Where an applicant is made a conditional offer based on S6 results, the S6 Standard Academic Entry Requirements represent the cumulative grades that must be attained by the end of S6, in addition to meeting any mandatory subject and non-academic requirements. All degree programmes allow applicants to “double count” Highers and Advanced Highers in the same subject when calculating cumulative grades. A Grade B in an Advanced Higher will be regarded as another Grade A at Higher Level and a Grade C at Advanced Higher will be regarded as another Grade B at Higher Level. All degree programmes require grades in a minimum of four different subjects.

Advanced Highers

Advanced Highers are a qualification of increased importance to the University, which recognises that applicants with these qualifications find the transition to university easier and perform better in their university exams. Many of our degrees specify Advanced Highers as part of the S6 Entry Requirements.

If a school is unable to offer specific Advanced Higher subjects applicants will be made bespoke offers which will normally require the applicant to attain additional relevant Highers in S6.

Adjusted Entry Requirements

We adjust the Standard Academic Entry Requirements for eligible applicants who complete one of our widening participation pre-entry programmes. Criteria for eligibility include attending a Scottish target secondary school, living in a priority Scottish postcode area, current or previous experience of living in care or estrangement from family support.

For more information about your eligibility and our pre-entry programmes see: Access Glasgow.

Admissions Policy

A-levels and International Baccalaureate

The Standard Academic Entry Requirements represent the grades at which any possible offer would be made. Students must also meet mandatory subject requirements and any non-academic entry requirements (interviews, auditions, aptitude tests).

The Minimum Academic Entry Requirements represent the minimum grades that the University will accept for entry to the degree programme. Students must also meet mandatory subject requirements and any non-academic entry requirements (interviews, auditions, aptitude tests).

Admissions Policies

  • See our full A-level Admissions Policy
  • More information on our International Baccalaureate admissions requirements
  • Applicants to subject-combinations with Psychology must meet the Psychology degree programme entry requirements.

    MA (Hons)

    A-levels

    • Standard academic entry requirements: AAB.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: One A-level arts, humanities or language subject.

    Highers

    • Standard S5 academic entry requirements: AAAA/AAABB.
    • Minimum S5 academic entry requirements: ABBB.
    • Standard S6 academic entry requirements: AAAAAB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Higher English at Grade A or B AND a Higher Humanities or Language subject at Grade A or B.

    We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants who complete  one of our widening participation pre-entry programmes: see Access Glasgow.

    • Adjusted S5 academic entry requirements: AABB/ABBBB.
    • Adjusted S6 academic entry requirements: AABB-BBBBB.
    • Adjusted mandatory requirements: Higher English at Grade B AND a Higher Humanities or Language subject at Grade B.

    Accepted humanities and languages Highers

    Higher applicants to Arts MA degrees must attain, or have attained, grades A/B or B/A at Higher in English Higher and another humanities/language/social science Higher subject at their first sitting to have their application considered. The accepted humanities/languages/social science Higher subjects are listed below:

    • Business Management
    • Cantonese
    • Classical studies
    • Drama
    • Economics
    • English
    • English for Speakers of Other Languages
    • French
    • Gaelic
    • Geography
    • German
    • History
    • Italian
    • Latin
    • Mandarin
    • Media
    • Modern Studies
    • Music
    • Philosophy
    • Politics
    • Psychology
    • Religious Education
    • Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies
    • Sociology
    • Spanish
    • Urdu

    International Baccalaureate

    • Standard academic entry requirements: 36 points.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: 32 points.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Three HL subjects including English AND a Humanities or Language subject (SL6 will be considered for ONE).

    European qualifications

    Typical entry requirements for European qualifications: European requirements: Arts, Science, Engineering, Accountancy, Social Sciences [pdf]

    A-level and IB applicants can expect offers to be between the minimum and standard entry requirements depending on demand for places on the degree.

    Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

    MA (SocSci) (Hons)

    A-levels

    • Standard academic entry requirements: AAB.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: One A-level arts, humanities or language subject.

    Highers

    • Standard S5 academic entry requirements: AAAAB.
    • Minimum S5 academic entry requirements: AABB. 
    • Standard S6 academic entry requirements: AAAAAA.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Higher English OR a Higher Humanities subject at Grades A or B.

    We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants who complete  one of our widening participation pre-entry programmes: see Access Glasgow.

    • Adjusted S5 academic entry requirements: AABBB. 
    • Adjusted S6 academic entry requirements: AAABB-BBBBBB.
    • Adjusted mandatory requirements: Higher English OR a Higher Humanities subject at Grade B.

    Accepted humanities and languages Highers

    Higher applicants to Social Sciences MA (Soc Sci) degrees must attain, or have attained, EITHER English Higher OR another humanities/language/social science Higher subject to have their application considered. The accepted humanities/languages/social science Higher subjects are listed below.

    • Business Management
    • Cantonese
    • Classical studies
    • Drama
    • Economics
    • English
    • English for Speakers of Other Languages
    • French
    • Gaelic
    • Geography
    • German
    • History
    • Italian
    • Latin
    • Mandarin
    • Media
    • Modern Studies
    • Music
    • Philosophy
    • Politics
    • Psychology
    • Religious Education
    • Religious Moral and Philosophical Studies
    • Sociology
    • Spanish
    • Urdu

    International Baccalaureate

    • Standard academic entry requirements: 38 points.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: 32 points.
    • Other mandatory requirements: HL6 English and a Humanities subject at HL6/SL6.

    European qualifications

    Typical entry requirements for European qualifications: European requirements: Arts, Science, Engineering, Accountancy, Social Sciences [pdf]

    Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

    BSc (Hons)

    A-levels

    • Standard academic entry requirements: AAB.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: BBB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Minimum of one relevant Science A-level, including practical assessment. Mathematics A-level at Grade A.

    Highers

    • Standard S5 academic entry requirements: AAAA/AAABB.
    • Minimum S5 academic entry requirements: ABBB. 
    • Standard S6 academic entry requirements: AAAAAB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Highers in two Science subjects one of which is relevant to the programme. Entry from S5 requires Higher Mathematics at Grade A. Entry from S6 requires a minimum of Grade B Higher Mathematics by the end of S5 AND Advanced Higher Mathematics at Grade B.

    We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants who complete  one of our widening participation pre-entry programmes: see Access Glasgow.

    • Adjusted S5 academic entry requirements: AABB/ABBBB.
    • Adjusted S6 academic entry requirements: AABB-BBBBB.
    • Adjusted mandatory requirements: Highers in two Science subjects one of which is relevant to the programme. Higher Mathematics at Grade B.

    International Baccalaureate

    • Standard academic entry requirements: 36 points.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: 32 points.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Minimum of two relevant Science subjects at HL: SL6 will be considered for one. Mathematics at HL6 or SL6.

    European qualifications

    Typical entry requirements for European qualifications: European requirements: Arts, Science, Engineering, Accountancy, Social Sciences [pdf]

    Accepted Science subjects

    Accepted Science subjects:

    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Computing Science
    • Engineering Science
    • Environmental Science
    • Geography
    • Human Biology
    • Lifeskills Mathematics
    • Mathematics
    • Mathematics of Mechanics
    • Physics
    • Statistics

    Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

    LLB (Hons)

    A-levels

    • Standard academic entry requirements: AAA.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: N/A.
    • Other mandatory requirements: A-level English OR GCSE English Literature & Language. LNAT (see below).

    Highers

    • Standard S5 academic entry requirements: AAAAA.
    • Minimum S5 academic entry requirements: AAABB.
    • Standard S6 academic entry requirements: AAAAAA including two Advanced Highers at Grades BB.
    • Other mandatory requirements: Higher English. Applicants with conditional offers based on S6 results are encouraged to study Advanced Highers in Arts or Social Science subjects. LNAT (see note below).

    We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants who complete  one of our widening participation pre-entry programmes: see Access Glasgow.

    • Adjusted S5 academic entry requirements: AAABB.
    • Adjusted S6 academic entry requirements: AAABB-BBBBBB.
    • Adjusted mandatory requirements: Higher English at Grade B. LNAT (see note below).

    International Baccalaureate

    • Standard academic entry requirements: 38 points.
    • Minimum academic entry requirements: 34 points.
    • Other mandatory requirements: English at HL6. LNAT (see below).

    Law National Admissions Test (LNAT)

    With the exception of applicants to the LLB (Fast Track), applicants to all LLB degrees who do not already hold an undergraduate degree are required to take the Law National Admissions test (LNAT) by 20 January 2019. The LNAT is run by a consortium of UK universities and comprises a two-hour on-screen test made up of multiple-choice (80 minutes) and essay (40 minutes) questions. It is designed to assess verbal reasoning skills and command of written English. The test can be taken by applicants at centres throughout the UK and overseas. Information on how to sit the test, together with practice papers, can be found at: www.lnat.ac.uk.

    Please note: all A-Level, International Baccalaureate, and other EU entry requirements must be achieved in first sitting.

    English language requirements

    For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

    International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training):

    • overall score 6.5
    • no sub-test less than 6.0
    • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)

    Common equivalent English language qualifications:

    • ibTOEFL*: 90; no sub-test less than: Reading: 20; Listening: 19; Speaking: 19; Writing: 23
    • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
    • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
    • PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
    • IGCSE: English as a First Language (0500/0522): C in Reading and Writing, plus 1 in Listening, 2 in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
    • IGCSE: English as a Second Language (0510/0511): A in Reading and Writing, plus A in Listening, 2/B in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
    • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests

    * Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.

    For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.

    Pre-sessional courses
    The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

    FAQs

    What do I do if...

    my language qualifications are below the requirements?

    The University's School of Modern Languages and Cultures offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

    my language qualifications are not listed here?

    Please contact the Recruitment and International Office: Elaine.Shortt@glasgow.ac.uk

    If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:


    Visa requirements and proof of English language level

    It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.

    For further information about English language, please see School of Modern Languages and Cultures: English for Academic Study.


    Career prospects

    You will develop many transferable skills and attributes which will be valuable in your future career. These include the ability to evaluate arguments and interpret texts, the facility to be analytical, the skill to think and write clearly and precisely, and the capacity to question assumptions. Some of our graduates go on to study for postgraduate degrees in Philosophy and some of these progress to teach in universities. Others go on to a wide range of careers. Examples of recent destinations for Philosophy graduates include:

    • Hydrogen Group, recruitment consultant
    • Beijing School, English teacher
    • Hopscotch Films, TV researcher
    • Guardian online, audience editor
    • Civil Service fast track (treasury and MoD)
    • Solicitor
    • Water Industry Commission, regulation analyst
    • International Organisation for Migration Iraq, project support officer.

    Degrees and UCAS codes

    When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:

    MA (Hons)

    • KIS
      Philosophy: V502
    • KIS
      Business & Management/Philosophy: NVF5
    • KIS
      Celtic Civilisation/Philosophy: QV55
    • KIS
      Celtic Studies/Philosophy: QVM5
    • KIS
      Classics/Philosophy: QV85
    • KIS
      Comparative Literature/Philosophy: QVF5
    • KIS
      Computing Science/Philosophy: GV45
    • KIS
      Digital Media & Information Studies/Philosophy: GV55
    • KIS
      Economic & Social History/Philosophy: VVJ5
    • KIS
      Economics/Philosophy: LVD5
    • KIS
      English Language/Philosophy: QV3N
    • KIS
      English Literature/Philosophy: QV3M
    • KIS
      Film & Television Studies/Philosophy: VW56
    • KIS
      Gaelic/Philosophy: Q5V5
    • KIS
      Geography/Philosophy: LV75
    • KIS
      German/Philosophy: RV25
    • KIS
      History of Art/Philosophy: VVH5
    • KIS
      History/Philosophy: VVC5
    • KIS
      Italian/Philosophy: RV35
    • KIS
      Mathematics/Philosophy: GV15
    • KIS
      Music/Philosophy: VW53
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Central & East European Studies: VR85
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Politics: LVF5
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Psychology [*]: CVV5
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Russian: RV75
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Scottish History: VVD5
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Spanish: V5R4
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Theatre Studies: VW54
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Theology & Religious Studies: VV56
    • KIS
      Portuguese/Philosophy: 7A3W
    • KIS
      Sociology/Philosophy: LV65

    BSc (Hons)

    • KIS
      Mathematics/Philosophy: GVD5

    LLB (Hons)

    • KIS
      Common Law/Philosophy: MV95
    • KIS
      Scots Law/Philosophy: MV15

    MA(SocSci) (Hons)

    • Business & Management/Philosophy: NV25
    • KIS
      Business Economics/Philosophy: LV15
    • KIS
      Central & East European Studies/Philosophy: RVT5
    • KIS
      Economic & Social History/Philosophy: VV35
    • KIS
      Economics/Philosophy: LVC5
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Politics: LV25
    • KIS
      Philosophy/Sociology: LVH5

    [*] Applicants to subject-combinations with Psychology must meet the Psychology degree programme entry requirements.

    Fees and funding

    Tuition fees

    How and when you pay tuition fees depends on where you’re from: see Tuition fees for details.

    Scholarships

    We offer a wide range of scholarships to our undergraduates, including both home/EU and international students. The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That’s why we’ve invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding in recent years.

    RUK Access Bursary 2018 Entry

    The bursary supports talented students who might not be able to take a place at University for reasons of financial hardship and  available to new entrant full-time undergraduate students of the University of Glasgow who are fully registered for Session 2018-19 as being domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and paying annual tuition fees of £9,250 per annum.

    more information

    RUK Excellence Scholarship 2018

    The RUK Excellence Scholarship of £1,000 for each year of study will be awarded to first degree entrants who have attained AAA or better in one sitting at A Level (or equivalent). 

    more information

    Thomas and Margaret Roddan Trust

    The Thomas and Margaret Roddan Trust offers bursaries of £500-£3000 to students experiencing financial hardship. As a University of Glasgow student, you are eligible to apply if you have your ordinary residence in Scotland or outside the United Kingdom, and are either an undergraduate in your second year or above, or a postgraduate pursuing a taught or a research degree.

    more information

    The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database

    How to apply

    If you’re seeking full-time study you must apply through the Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

    UCAS deadlines

    The deadlines for applications to Medicine, Vet Medicine and Dentistry is 15 October each year. The deadline for applications to all other degree programmes is 15 January each year.

    The University of Glasgow does not usually accept any applications after these UCAS deadlines. It is the applicants' responsibility to ensure the accuracy of their application prior to submission, and requests from applicants to correct erroneous application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be accepted after these UCAS deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.

    • 15 October: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or applying to Oxford or Cambridge
    • 15 January: all other UK/EU applicants (unless otherwise stated on the UCAS website)
    • 30 June: international (non-EU) students.

    Apply at www.ucas.com or through your school or college.
    Contact UCAS on 0871 468 0468.

    UCAS tariff points

    The University does not frame its offers in terms of UCAS tariff points.

    How soon will I receive a decision?

    We will usually respond before the end of March.

    If your qualifications meet our requirements and we believe you could benefit from study at Glasgow, you will receive an unconditional offer.

    If you haven’t yet gained the necessary passes for entry to your chosen subject(s), we may look at the qualifications you are taking when you apply and make you a conditional offer.

    Will I be interviewed?

    An interview will be part of the selection process for: Community Development, Dentistry, History of Art & Art-world Practice, Medicine, Music, Nursing, Teaching, and Veterinary Medicine & Surgery. You may also be interviewed if you’re applying for entry into Year 2 in any subject.

    Is deferred entry available?

    For Dentistry, Nursing and Veterinary Medicine programmes we are unable to consider applications for deferred entry. In other cases deferring may be possible but it’s not granted automatically.

    University Transfers

    Transfers from another University to the University of Glasgow will only be considered under the following circumstances:

    1. The applicant has a genuine personal circumstance (illness, bereavement or other family situation) which requires the student to move back to their home town to be closer to family; AND
    2. The applicant would have met the University of Glasgow entrance requirements at the time he/she went to the other institution. In exceptional circumstances, a student may be admitted if he/she was marginally below the University of Glasgow entrance requirements, and they have performed above average at the other institution.

    Widening participation

    We want to help talented applicants from all backgrounds to study at Glasgow. See our range of widening access pre-entry programmes at Widening Participation.

    Apply at www.ucas.com or through your school or college.
    Contact UCAS on 0871 468 0468.

    94%

    Philosophy students think the course is intellectually stimulating

    Data published by Unistats, March 2018.