Have you a natural interest in having a deep understanding about certain topics? Are you a critical thinker and like to debate your understanding and research? You might tick all the boxes in adding to your degree with a postgraduate course in Philosophy.
It can be tough to begin your research into a new course but below are the main details to get you started.
What is philosophy?
Philosophy is a way of thinking about certain subjects. These include ethics, thought, existence, time, meaning and value. The idea of philosophy is to deepen understanding. It teaches critical thinking, close reading, clear writing and logical analysis and uses these to understand the world we live in and our place within that world.
There are quite a number of postgraduate Philosophy courses to be found around the UK. Quite a few give the option of studying part time or full time and while some may have different titles, they cover the majority of the same material. Examples of courses you can find are:
MA in Philosophy
Courses that offer a Masters in Philosophy will help students to gain an advanced general grounding in Philosophy, forming a good basis for further research. A wide range of topics are covered from pre-Socrates to present times. Both contemporary and historical areas are covered and students will engage in the key concepts, arguments and texts from across the philosophical spectrum.
Literature and Philosophy
A course in Literature and Philosophy is exactly what it says and combines the two subjects in looking at the cooperation between English and Philosophy. Students will draw on ideas from literature, philosophy, psychology and intellectual history. Subjects such as the autonomy of the work of art, literature as philosophy, ethics and literature and modernism and modernity may all be covered among others.
Philosophy of Mind Cognitive Science
Courses which combine Philosophy with a specific area are also available as postgraduate degrees. Courses in Philosophy of Mind Cognitive Science explore issues such as the nature of intentionality, physicalism, rationality and interpretation, computation, perception and consciousness.
All of the above courses will help you to gain critical thinking skills, communication skills, writing skills and research skills which can help you in all career paths you may want to explore.
Like most courses, the entry requirements may differ from course to course and University to University. The majority of these postgraduate purses require students to have an Honours degree (2.1) in Philosophy or in a related field, however, each University website and course overview will list their exact requirements for each course.
It is important to note that some Universities consider applications on an individual basis and may not always require you to meet the exact requirements.
A postgraduate degree in Philosophy can open many doors in different types of careers. The skills developed through one of these courses can carry over into many fields. Jobs may include:
- Public relations and communications
- Social worker
- Humanitarian worker
- Civil service administrator
- Advice worker
- Charities administrator
- Local government
- Civil service
- Public relations agencies
- Law firms
- Publishing companies
It is difficult to pinpoint a particular wage of those who have studied a Philosophy degree as it opens so many doors. Jobs obtained with such a degree are very broad across many fields so there are no particular figures that can be used. By reading through the typical employers and the job opportunities section, it may give you a better idea if you research the particular route you’re interested in.
Skills and Requirements
- Critical thinker
- Problem solver
- Work off your own initiative
- Strong written and oral communication
- Good presentation skills
- Willingness to debate
- Ability to interpret and analyse information