Philosophy BA (Hons)

Course code V500

What is special about this course?

If you're interested in exploring views, ideas, theories, practices and behaviours, BA (Hons) Philosophy is the course for you. Socrates, one of the most famous philosophers of all times, said "I cannot teach anybody anything. I can only make them think.": that is a core strength of philosophical studies. In developing your ability to think well, you will be able to spot errors in reasoning, analyse complex issues and arguments, build a strong case and make a point with clarity and precision.

Philosophy seeks to understand, and particularly to question, ideas concerning the nature of reality, value and experience that play a pervasive role in understanding the world and ourselves. The philosophy discipline focuses on problematic concepts, such as existence, reason and truth, which occur in every sphere of human enquiry, but more specifically on problematic concepts that belong to particular areas of thought and practice, such as politics, economics, religion, science and ethics.

In today’s COVID related situation, we regularly see political decision-makers flanked by scientists. The Philosophy of Science is interested in analysing why science seems to be so successful in explaining reality. With scientists playing an ever-increasing role in decision-making processes at all levels we have to ask: are scientists the new priests of society?

Throughout the course you will apply this type of analytical and critical thinking to a range of 21st century issues such as: Is humanity headed in the right or wrong direction? What is the best way for a person to attain happiness? Will religion ever become obsolete? What is the future of artificial intelligence? Is there a meaning to life and, if so, what is it?

Special features

  • Join regular meetings of the philosophy reading group, where you will discuss or present papers with fellow students and staff
  • You will be encouraged to participate in organisations that actively focus on issues in society and to put your views and beliefs into action
  • Tailored modules and curriculum which improve your experience and ability to successfully undertake the course

Accommodation

We offer modern student accommodation at a number of our locations.

Entry requirements

  • 3 Scottish Highers at grade BBC or above, or
  • 2 A levels at grade BC or above
  • At least two of these must be from the list of relevant subjects
  • Applicants with other relevant qualifications or experience will be considered on an individual basis

Access routes

SWAP Access courses
If you are eligible to undertake Scottish Wider Access Programmes (SWAP), please visit our SWAP access list for further information on grade profiles and available subjects.

Year 1 - CertHE

You will study the following core modules:

  • Thinking and writing for study, work and life
  • Problems in philosophy

Other modules may include:

  • Philosophy and film
  • Logic and philosophy

In addition to these philosophy modules, you will also be able to choose two modules from our range of humanity subjects.

Year 2 - DipHE

Modules at this level might include:

  • Knowledge: a philosophical analysis
  • Moral philosophy
  • Anthropology of religion

In addition to these philosophy modules, you will also be able to choose two modules from our range of humanity subjects.

Year 3 - BA

Modules at this level might include:

  • Philosophy of science
  • Philosophy of religion
  • Continental philosophy
  • Research project

In addition to these philosophy modules, you will also be able to choose an option module from our range of humanity subjects.

Year 4 - BA (Hons)

You will complete a philosophy dissertation.

Other modules at this level might include:

  • Scottish tradition in philosophy
  • Philosophy of language
  • Neurons, brains, and minds: a philosophical investigation
  • Existential philosophy and literature

How will I study my course?

  • Full-time
  • Part-time (structured)
  • Part-time (unstructured)
  • You will learn through a combination of scheduled video conference lectures and tutorials, and online study via the university’s virtual learning environment (VLE), with support from your tutors. There is normally a weekly two-hour timetabled video conference lecture for each module.

How long will my course last?

  • Full-time: 4 years @ 40 hours per week
  • Part-time: 8 years @ 20 hours per week
  • Part-time (unstructured): variable

Where can I study my course?

  • Argyll
  • HTC - you may choose to study at Dingwall or Paisley, subject to availability
  • Inverness
  • Outer Hebrides
  • Moray
  • North Highland
  • Orkney
  • Perth
  • Shetland
  • West Highland

Start date

  • September

Fees

For students normally domiciled in Scotland, with a term-time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

This includes

  • EU nationals with settled or pre-settled status in the UK,
  • EEA/Swiss nationals with settled status in the UK
  • EEA/Swiss nationals with pre-settled status who are self-employed or migrant workers in the UK.
Degrees2021-222022-23
Full-time (120 credit modules) per year £1,820 £1,820
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year £645 £645
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module) £215 £215

Rest of UK students

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland, including Channel Islands and the Isle of Man) and with a term time address in Scotland studying this course full time, the following fees apply:

Full-timeLevel2021-222022-23
Year 1 CertHE £9,000 £9,250
Year 2 DipHE £9,000 £9,250
Year 3 Degree £9,000 £9,250
Year 4 Honours free free

4th year free only for students studying full-time, on continuous study, who have paid for the previous three years at the University of the Highlands and Islands.

Part-time (per 20 credit module) - £1,542.

Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

There are a number of funding options available to UK students to help you pay for your studies and your cost of living while studying.

EU/EEA and Swiss nationals without settled or pre-settled status in the UK

Following the UK’s departure from the European Union, the Scottish Government confirmed that EU/EEA and Swiss nationals, who do not have settled or pre-settled status, will be considered as international for fee purposes.  For 2022-23, students will get an automatic scholarship of £3,000 per annum and the 4th year of study will be free for those studying full-time, on continuous study, who have paid for the previous three years at the University of the Highlands and Islands.

This includes EEA/Swiss nationals with pre-settled status who are not self-employed or migrant workers in the UK.

Year Level 2021-22 Full-time With scholarship 2022-23 Full-time
With scholarship
Year 1 CertHE £12,360 £9,360  £13,020  £10,020  
Year 2 DipHE £12,360 £9,360  £13,020  £10,020  
Year 3 Degree £12,360 £9,360 £13,020  £10,020  
Year 4 Honours Free Free Free  Free 

Students will need Student Route visa sponsorship to study on the UK.

International students

For students who do not normally reside in the UK or European Union and with a term-time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

  2021-222022-23
Full-time (120 credit modules) per year £12,360 £13,020
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year** £6,180 £6,510
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module)** £2,060 £2,170

Part-time study is not open to international students requiring Student Route visa sponsorship to study in the UK.

Further information on international course fees.

A no fee increase guarantee is available for self-funding full-time and structured part-time rest of the UK, EU and international undergraduate students for continuous study for the same award, up to the permitted standard time limit for the relevant award.

Funding

External scholarships and financial support may be available. Contact the relevant UHI partner college for more information.

What can I do on completion of my course?

Philosophy graduates are found working for almost every type of employer in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors, from arts-based areas like publishing, the media, journalism, advertising and teaching, through to computing and IT.

Once you have successfully completed this course, you might like to consider careers in:

  • local government and the Civil Service
  • advertising, marketing and public relations agencies
  • management consultancies
  • secondary schools, further education colleges and higher education institutions
  • law firms
  • publishing companies
  • charities
  • banking and insurance companies
  • accountancy firms
  • recruitment agencies

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Philosophy BA (Hons)

I want to start in Aug/Sep 2022

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands. We operate a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.