We are a friendly, active department, with an established reputation for excellence in teaching and research. With 13 permanent members of staff, we are larger than many philosophy departments in the UK. Our interests cover a wide range of topics within the Analytic or Anglo-American philosophical tradition.
The principal research areas of the department are:
The department enjoys an outstanding reputation in the UK and internationally. In the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise, 30% of the department's research was classed as 4* (world-leading), 35% as 3* (internationally excellent) and 30% as 2* (internationally recognised.)
In the recent 2011 Philosophy Gourmet Report, we were judged to be the best department in the UK for one sub-discipline, the 2nd best in two further sub-disciplines, the 3rd best in three sub-disciplines, and the 4th best for another sub-discipline. Click here for further details.
Our research strength informs our teaching at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels. We offer a Single Honours Degree in philosophy, as well as a wide range of Joint Honours Degrees with other departments. The undergraduate curriculum is designed so that students can gain full advantage from the research expertise of individual members of staff. In addition, undergraduate students gain from working in close contact with members of the department, both through individual essays tutorials and small seminars of around 10-12 students. Our undergraduate programme continues to be very popular and attracts well-qualified applicants.
We have a flourishing postgraduate community of both MA and MLitt/PhD students. We offer a general MA in Philosophy, along with specialist MA programmes in Philosophy and History of Science, and Philosophy and Law. Philosophy postgraduates can use the Arts Faculty Graduate Centre with its excellent computer and working facilities. In addition, the University's Student Finance Office offers information about a number of postgraduate scholarships and bursaries. The department has a strong track record in bidding for bursaries and scholarships.
Postgraduates benefit from the wide range of philosophical activities in the department. The department holds a weekly research seminar, with invited speakers. In addition, the philosophers of science within the department hold a regular seminars in philosophy and history of science, incorporating joint seminars in philosophy of physics with the Bristol physics department and in philosophy of mathematics and logic with the mathematics department, as well as seminars in the history and sociology of science.
The department occupies a fine Victorian house, within a short walk of other departments, the library, Senate House and the Student Union. Surrounding the University are the historic and attractive areas of Clifton, Redland and Cotham, where most of our students choose to live, either in Halls of Residence, postgraduate flats or private accommodation. The city of Bristol itself offers the attractions and facilities of a large city, as well as parks and green space, and easy access to the surrounding countryside of Gloucester, Somerset, Wiltshire, Wales, Devon and Cornwall.