Birkbeck, University of London has opted into the TEF and received a Silver award.
Come and explore some of the most profound questions it is possible to ask, with some of the most eminent philosophers in the country. What makes something good or just? Is the human mind just a lump of grey matter? Can I know that I'm not trapped inside The Matrix? Do we have free will? Does God exist? Does science provide us with a special kind of knowledge? Who decides what counts as beautiful?
This prestigious degree provides a thorough grounding in the central areas of philosophy for students from all educational backgrounds. It fosters independent judgement, original thought and the ability to analyse complex ideas and arguments. It offers a wide range of option modules, with some offered at King's College London (KCL).
Arts and humanities at Birkbeck are ranked fifth best in London, 18th in the UK and 87th globally in the 2019 Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject.
Birkbeck's Department of Philosophy is a leading centre for philosophical research in the UK. All of our established members of academic staff are active researchers, and the Department’s excellence in both teaching and research is consistently reflected in UK and international surveys.
In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), Philosophy at Birkbeck was ranked 15th in the UK, with a research environment judged conducive to producing internationally excellent research.
In the Philosophical Gourmet Report 2014-2015, Philosophy at Birkbeck was ranked among the strongest in the UK, and was highly ranked in philosophy of action, philosophy of art, seventeenth-century philosophy and feminist philosophy.
The Department of Philosophy has its own library at 30 Russell Square. The main philosophy collection is held in the Birkbeck Library, which has an extensive range of books and online resources.
- The Department of Philosophy is a member of the University of London’s Institute of Philosophy. Students in the Department therefore belong to a large, intercollegiate community of philosophers, and are welcome at a range of seminars, lectures, talks and conferences.
For information about course structure and the modules you will be studying, please visit Birkbeck’s online prospectus.
Modules run over the course of an academic year.
- Level 4 modules are assessed by a combination of coursework (either short writing assignments or logic exercises) and a short-answer examination.
- Level 5 modules are assessed by a combination of essay (2000 words) and a take-home, short-answer examination.
- Level 6 modules are assessed entirely by essay (3000 words).
How to apply
You can no longer submit a new application for courses starting in 2019.
If you already have a 2019 application and are in Clearing, you can add this course as a Clearing choice in Track – contact the university or college first to check they have places.
If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:
15 January*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!
You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.
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Points of entry
The following entry points are available for this course:
- Year 1
If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests. If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.
|UCAS Tariff||120 points||The UCAS tariff score is applicable to you if you have recently studied a qualification that has a UCAS tariff equivalence.|
We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.
Alternative entry routes:
Access to Higher Education Diploma with a minimum of 15 credits achieved at Merit or Distinction in humanities or social science units.
Holders of Birkbeck's Certificate of Higher Education in Philosophy may be considered for entry into the second year. Each case will be considered on its own merits by the Department of Philosophy.
You can progress onto this degree if you successfully complete the foundation year of our BA Arts and Humanities or Social Sciences with Foundation Year courses. This is an ideal route onto an undergraduate degree if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied this subject, or if you didn't achieve the grades you need for a place on this degree.
Additional entry requirements
Fees and funding
|Channel Islands||£9,250||Year 1|
|Northern Ireland||£9,250||Year 1|