The MA (Hons) in Philosophy is a four-year course run by the Department of Philosophy. During your degree, you will be trained in precise and effective reading, as well as clear thinking and writing required for philosophical study.
In the first two years, as a sub-honours student, you will study some of the great books in philosophy, and be introduced to the fundamental questions discussed by philosophers from ancient Greece to the present day, exploring both theoretical and practical questions. This will lay the foundations required for an Honours degree.
Alongside Philosophy, in the first year of your studies, you will be required to study an additional two subjects. In the second year you will usually carry on at least one of these subjects, sometimes two. Find out more about more about how academic years are organised.
During your final two years, as an Honours student, you will focus your studies on your particular philosophical interests, and will be able to choose from a wide variety of advanced options, including:
- epistemology (the study of knowledge)
- formal logic
- philosophies of logic, mind and language
- ethical and political theory
- philosophies of film, creativity, law and religion
- texts in the history of philosophy.
Final year students may also choose to write a dissertation on a philosophical topic chosen in consultation with teaching staff. Students can work on the dissertation for either one semester or the whole year.
The University of St Andrews operates on a flexible modular degree system by which degrees are obtained through the accumulation of credits. More information on the structure of the modules system can be found on the flexible degree structure webpage.
Graduates in Philosophy from St Andrews can expect to have acquired a highly developed sense of independent critical thinking and judgement, and be able to communicate ideas and arguments clearly and effectively.
Find out more about studying Philosophy at St Andrews.