Undergraduate 

Philosophy MA/BSc/LLB/MA(SocSci)

PHILOSOPHY

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.

David Bain

We host reading parties for students, usually in the Highlands, and have a flourishing undergraduate Philosophy Society.

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 covering in more depth the core areas of philosophy studied in first and second years, as well as a wide range of options taught by specialist researchers. 

In year 4 you will have the opportunity to write a dissertation.

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 2018

About entry requirements

SQA Highers

The 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 in first sitting (by end of S5).

We adjust the standard academic and non-academic entry requirements at both S5 and S6 for eligible applicants who complete one of our pre-entry programmes. Criteria for eligibility include attending a Scottish target secondary school, living in a priority Scottish postcode, are currently living or have spent time living in care. For more information about your eligibility and our pre-entry programmes, please see: Access Glasgow.

The minimum academic entry requirements indicate the minimum grades that must be achieved, by the end of S5, for an offer to be considered. For some degree programmes, offers (either conditional or unconditional) may be made below the standard academic entry requirements. Where a conditional offer is made, the S5 & S6 cumulative requirements detail the grades that would be necessary by the end of S6. Students must also meet any subject and non-academic requirements stated.

The University of Glasgow will accept Highers and/or Advanced Highers toward academic entry requirements. Where Advanced Highers are required this is stated.
For our full SQA Higher Admissions Policy please see: Entry requirements: Scottish Highers

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 indicate the minimum grades the university will accept for entry to this programme. Students must also meet mandatory subject requirements and any non-academic entry requirements (interviews, auditions, aptitude tests).

For more information on our A-level admissions requirements please see: Entry requirements: A-levels

For more information on our IB admissions requirements please see: Entry requirements: IB

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 or AAABB.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: S5 minimum requirement = ABBB. (These are the minimum Grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order 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 received and the number of applicants who have met the Standard Academic Entry Requirements). Applicants who are made a conditional offer must achieve the Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements noted below.
  • Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements: AAAAAB.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Higher English AND a Higher humanities OR language subject at grade A/B or B/A.

We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants, from AABB at S5/S6, based upon completion of a pre-entry programme. For pre-entry programme eligibility and adjusted grade requirements, see Access Glasgow.

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: 34 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include three HL subjects at 6,6,5 including English AND a humanities subject (or language). While HL6 is preferred for English and Humanities/Language subjects, SL6 will be considered for ONE of the subjects.

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 academic entry requirements: S5 minimum requirement = AABB. (These are the minimum Grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order 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 received and the number of applicants who have met the Standard Academic Entry Requirements). Applicants who are made a conditional offer must achieve the Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements noted below. 
  • Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements: AAAAAA.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Higher English OR a humanities subject at grade B or above.

We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants, from AABBB at S5/S6, based upon completion of a pre-entry programme. For pre-entry programme eligibility and adjusted grade requirements, see Access Glasgow.

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: 34 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Must include three HL subjects at 6,6,6. Applicants must have English and a humanities subject. Whilst HL6 is preferred for both these subjects SL6 may be considered for ONE.

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 subject required for all science degrees. We expect that students will pass the practical assessment of A-level sciences. Must include Mathematics at Grade B or above.

Highers

  • Standard S5 academic entry requirements: AAAA or AAABB.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: S5 minimum requirement = ABBB. (These are the minimum Grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order 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 received and the number of applicants who have met the Standard Academic Entry Requirements). Applicants who are made a conditional offer must achieve the Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements noted below. 
  • Standard S6 Academic Entry Requirements: AAAAAB.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Minimum of two science subjects, one of which is relevant to the programme applied for. Must include Mathematics at Grade B or above. 

We adjust these entry requirements for eligible applicants, from AABB at S5/S6, based upon completion of a pre-entry programme.Ffor pre-entry programme eligibility and adjusted grade requirements, see Access Glasgow.

International Baccalaureate

  • Standard academic entry requirements: 36 points.
  • Minimum academic entry requirements: 34 points.
  • Other mandatory requirements: Three HL subjects at 6,6,5. Applicants must have a minimum of two science subjects, one of which is relevant to the programme applied for. While HL6 is preferred for both science subjects, SL6 may be considered for ONE. Mathematics at SL6 or HL6 (Mathematics Studies is NOT accepted). 

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

Please note that attaining the academic entry requirements below is not a guarantee of an offer since offers are made taking into account academic requirements and a review of the performance in the LNAT and personal statements.

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

Highers

Please note that attaining the academic entry requirements below is not a guarantee of an offer since offers are made taking into account academic requirements and a review of the performance in the LNAT and personal statements.

  • Standard S5 Academic entry requirements (attainment by the end of S5): AAAAA Highers. Must include English. These are the minimum grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order to be considered for an unconditional offer, subject to consideration of LNAT score and personal statement. In making unconditional offers preference may be given to where Highers have been obtained in relevant (Arts or Social Science) subjects.
  • Minimum S5 Academic entry requirements (attainment by the end of S5): AABBB Highers. Must include English. These are the minimum grades which an applicant must have obtained by the end of S5 (cumulative S4 and S5) in order to be considered for a conditional offer based on S6 results and subject to consideration of LNAT score and personal statement. In considering the minimum requirements one C can be compensated for (eg AAAAC or AAABC). Applicants who are made a conditional offer are required to achieve the Standard S6 Academic entry requirements noted below.
  • Standard S6 Entry Requirements (attainment by the end of S6): Evidence of academic development by obtaining two Advanced Highers or a mix of Advanced Highers and additional Highers. Grades must be at a minimum of As and Bs. In making offers, preference may be given to where students have obtained Advanced Highers and Highers in relevant (Arts or Social Science) subjects. In cases where applicants attend a school which does not offer relevant Advanced Highers, offers may be made on Highers alone but applicants will be expected to demonstrate academic development in terms of the number of additional Highers taken and grades obtained. Compensation of grades is not made on offers set. It is not possible to specify in advance what conditions will be set when making conditional offers as applications are competitive and offers will depend on a number of factors including the number of applications received, the relative academic qualifications of applicants and performance in the LNAT and personal statements.

International Baccalaureate

Please note that attaining the academic entry requirements below is not a guarantee of an offer since offers are made taking into account academic requirements and a review of the performance in the LNAT and personal statements.

  • 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)

Law National Admissions Test (LNAT): Applicants to all LLB degrees (apart from those applying for the fast track M115) are required to take the LNAT test. 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 questions (40 minutes). 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 can be found at: www.lnat.ac.uk.

LNAT deadlines

  • 20 January 2018: UK/EU students
  • 30 June 2018: international (non-EU) students

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. Our recent Philosophy graduates have been employed by:

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

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/Theatre Studies: VW54
  • KIS
    Philosophy/Theology & Religious Studies: VV56
  • KIS
    Portuguese/Philosophy: 7A3W
  • KIS
    Sociology/Philosophy: LV65
  • KIS
    Spanish/Philosophy: V5R4

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 2017 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 2017-18 as being domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and paying annual tuition fees of £9,250 per annu

more information

RUK Excellence Scholarship 2017

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

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

How to apply

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.