MA PhilosophyFind a programme
|Faculty||Faculty of Arts|
|Awards available||MA , PG Diploma (Postgraduate Diploma)|
One year full-time;
two years part-time
|Location of programme||Clifton campus|
|Part-time study available||Yes|
|Start date||September 2022|
The MA in Philosophy will give you a thorough grounding in the core knowledge and skills required for philosophical research, while also allowing you to pursue your own philosophical interests in depth.
Bristol ranks as one of the top ten philosophy departments in the UK, and as the strongest department in the UK for Mathematical Logic and Philosophy of Biology and as amongst the top two or three for General Philosophy of Science; Decision, Rational Choice and Game Theory; and Philosophy of Mathematics (Philosophical Gourmet Report, also QS University Rankings). Our staff have diverse research interests and expertise across a wide range of philosophical areas (see our research pages).
The MA is an exciting programme that provides an opportunity to design a path to match your philosophical interests. You will take three core taught units plus three additional units that you will select from a range of options. Your dissertation is an opportunity to work on an extended and original piece of research on a topic of your choosing, with guidance from a research supervisor. You will develop a deep knowledge and understanding of key areas of philosophy and a sophisticated ability to critically evaluate and assess philosophical theories.
You will be an active member of the department’s flourishing research culture and will be encouraged to take part in our regular research seminars, workshops and reading groups (see our events pages). There is also a dedicated weekly postgraduate seminar with a friendly and supportive environment.
Virtual open week
This programme was covered in our Philosophy and Religion webinar.
Fees for 2022/23
We charge an annual tuition fee. Fees for 2022/23 are as follows:
- UK: full-time
- UK: part-time (two years)
- Overseas: full-time
Following the recent changes to fee assessment regulation, Channel Islands and Isle of Man students will no longer be charged a separate tuition fee. From the 2021/22 academic year they will be charged the same fees as Home students.
Fees are subject to an annual review. For programmes that last longer than one year, please budget for up to a five per cent increase in fees each year. Find out more about tuition fees.
University of Bristol students and graduates can benefit from a ten per cent reduction in tuition fees for postgraduate study. Check your eligibility for an alumni scholarship.
Funding for 2022/23
Funding and studentship opportunities are listed on the Faculty of Arts funding pages.
Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.
The programme consists of six taught units and a dissertation of 15,000 words.
The unit Philosophical Writing and Research Seminar equips students with analytical tools and argumentative strategies essential for graduate level study and research in philosophy. Skills learnt in this unit are transferable into a vocational context and as such are highly valued by employers.
The two further mandatory units will study some key central areas of philosophy including metaphysics, epistemology, moral philosophy, and other areas of value theory.
The remainder of the taught element of your programme is made up of three optional units. There will be a choice of available specialist units. You will also be able to take advantage of our range of units available at undergraduate level via a Personal Option Unit where you may undertake the teaching of an undergraduate level unit to guide your development of a masters level assignment. You also have the option to undertake guided independent research into an agreed topic of your choice, working with a project supervisor.
Following the taught element, you would work on a dissertation on an approved topic of your choosing, with most of the work on this taking place over the summer. This is your chance to produce an extended piece of original philosophical research, guided by one-on-one supervisions by a member of academic staff.
Visit our programme catalogue for full details of the structure and unit content for our MA in Philosophy.
An upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent) with a minimum average of 65%. This is usually in philosophy, however other students can apply and should evidence their aptitude and interest in the application.
See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.
English language requirements
If English is not your first language, you need to meet this profile level:
Further information about English language requirements and profile levels.
Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.
Students who have completed the MA in Philosophy have gone on to careers as counsellors, journalists and teachers of philosophy. A number of MA graduates have gone on to study at MPhil/PhD level and develop careers as philosophy academics.
Expected application closure date
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REF 2014 results
- 31% of research is world-leading (4*)
- 51% of research is internationally excellent (3*)
- 17% of research is recognised internationally (2*)
- 1% of research is recognised nationally (1*)
Results are from the most recent UK-wide assessment of research quality, conducted by HEFCE. More about REF 2014 results.