jessicasulty
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Is it worth taking at A-Level and University? How useful is it, is it interesting, what kind of person is suited for it? etc.
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Asolare
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(Original post by jessicasulty)
Is it worth taking at A-Level and University? How useful is it, is it interesting, what kind of person is suited for it? etc.
I'm speaking for pure philosophy here (NOT philosophy and ethics) and at A Level:

- It's relatively difficult in terms of essay writing - you will need to be able to tune your essay skills
- The content is pretty interesting, some of the ideas might seem a bit outdated but nevertheless it's still interesting.
- It's deemed as a '''hard a level''' (though I don't like such words) so it is well respected by universities that care about such a thing.
- It's incredibly useful for helping you write better essays definitely; and for opening your perspective to new ideas in the world as well as debating to an extent

Anyone with an interest in it will do very well as long as you work hard on your essay skills.
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jessicasulty
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(Original post by Inexorably)
I'm speaking for pure philosophy here (NOT philosophy and ethics) and at A Level:

- It's relatively difficult in terms of essay writing - you will need to be able to tune your essay skills
- The content is pretty interesting, some of the ideas might seem a bit outdated but nevertheless it's still interesting.
- It's deemed as a '''hard a level''' (though I don't like such words) so it is well respected by universities that care about such a thing.
- It's incredibly useful for helping you write better essays definitely; and for opening your perspective to new ideas in the world as well as debating to an extent

Anyone with an interest in it will do very well as long as you work hard on your essay skills.
What kind of content do you do/learn about? And do you think it's useful to do and english A-Level alongside it?
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M14B
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Very good in my opinion
Flexible too
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jessicasulty
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(Original post by M14B)
Very good in my opinion
Flexible too
What do you mean by flexible?
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Asolare
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(Original post by jessicasulty)
What kind of content do you do/learn about? And do you think it's useful to do and english A-Level alongside it?
So in year 1 you do:

Epistemelogy - Study about knowledge really; you learn about how we classify ''knowledge'', how we gain knowledge, how we gain concepts and whether we perceive/really do know anything about our world.
Philosophy of Religion - God. You look at ontological, teleological, cosmological arguments, as well as problem of evil, problem with God's attributes, problem of free will, religious language andddd something else that I'm forgetting.

In year 2 you do moral philosophy and philosophy of mind but I don't know enough about that yet

English Lit or Lang? Either way it's entirely your decision, but lit. is also a great essay based subject that's a '''hard''' a level.
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BankOfPigs
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I didn't do it at A-level but I am now doing a joint degree in Philosophy at university.

First thing to say is that philosophy is very varied. Most people think of it purely in terms of an essay subject (which it certainly can be) yet certain branches in analytic philosophy (computability theory, Logic) heavily resemble theoretical computer science and mathematical analysis so that's something to be a aware. These modules are quite heavily proof based and you would benefit hugely from having a good grasp of Maths (single / further are both good).

If they aren't your cup of tea, you can focus more on continental philosophy which is more essay based, although do note that most university courses will make you do a module in Logic.
I would argue that philosophy essays have a slightly higher emphasis of sound argument and logic over evidence based reasoning. I wouldn't say that this is necessarily harder than essays in History or social sciences but more that it is a differently style. There's a fair amount of rigour that you would have to develop in terms of argument, and studying philosophy is naturally very good at developing sound reasoning. Ethics is fantastic to learn about but is also a slightly different type of subject than conventional philosophy.

Regarding A-level, I'm not sure how 'well respected it is'. For a start, it's not in the 'facilitating subjects' listed for most universities. In fact when i was playing to university I was told explicitly to avoid taking philosophy A-level and just apply straight to a degree course. They said that they would rather me take another essay subject such as English Literature.

Honestly if I could recommend anything, I would say to do Maths A-level and English (Lit) A-level, perhaps history / FM if you are interested. They are both hugely useful subjects, great for Philosophy at Uni but also very diverse so you choose other things too.
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M14B
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(Original post by jessicasulty)
What do you mean by flexible?
It combines well with sciences, humanities, arts everything.
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up the levs
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im thinking of doing philosophy as well but at the college its called "theology philosophy and ethics". is there a big difference?
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jessicasulty
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(Original post by BankOfPigs)
I didn't do it at A-level but I am now doing a joint degree in Philosophy at university.

First thing to say is that philosophy is very varied. Most people think of it purely in terms of an essay subject (which it certainly can be) yet certain branches in analytic philosophy (computability theory, Logic) heavily resemble theoretical computer science and mathematical analysis so that's something to be a aware. These modules are quite heavily proof based and you would benefit hugely from having a good grasp of Maths (single / further are both good).

If they aren't your cup of tea, you can focus more on continental philosophy which is more essay based, although do note that most university courses will make you do a module in Logic.
I would argue that philosophy essays have a slightly higher emphasis of sound argument and logic over evidence based reasoning. I wouldn't say that this is necessarily harder than essays in History or social sciences but more that it is a differently style. There's a fair amount of rigour that you would have to develop in terms of argument, and studying philosophy is naturally very good at developing sound reasoning. Ethics is fantastic to learn about but is also a slightly different type of subject than conventional philosophy.

Regarding A-level, I'm not sure how 'well respected it is'. For a start, it's not in the 'facilitating subjects' listed for most universities. In fact when i was playing to university I was told explicitly to avoid taking philosophy A-level and just apply straight to a degree course. They said that they would rather me take another essay subject such as English Literature.

Honestly if I could recommend anything, I would say to do Maths A-level and English (Lit) A-level, perhaps history / FM if you are interested. They are both hugely useful subjects, great for Philosophy at Uni but also very diverse so you choose other things too.
Thanks for helping! For A-Level I'm picking Maths, English Lit, PRE (Philosophy, Religion and Ethics) and Economics. I was thinking about history but to be honest I really don't enjoy it very much or find it as fascinating which is why I decided not to pick it.

What is the other subject you're doing alongside philosophy and what do you hope to do after uni, if you don't mind me asking?
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Asolare
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(Original post by BankOfPigs)
I didn't do it at A-level but I am now doing a joint degree in Philosophy at university.

First thing to say is that philosophy is very varied. Most people think of it purely in terms of an essay subject (which it certainly can be) yet certain branches in analytic philosophy (computability theory, Logic) heavily resemble theoretical computer science and mathematical analysis so that's something to be a aware. These modules are quite heavily proof based and you would benefit hugely from having a good grasp of Maths (single / further are both good).

If they aren't your cup of tea, you can focus more on continental philosophy which is more essay based, although do note that most university courses will make you do a module in Logic.
I would argue that philosophy essays have a slightly higher emphasis of sound argument and logic over evidence based reasoning. I wouldn't say that this is necessarily harder than essays in History or social sciences but more that it is a differently style. There's a fair amount of rigour that you would have to develop in terms of argument, and studying philosophy is naturally very good at developing sound reasoning. Ethics is fantastic to learn about but is also a slightly different type of subject than conventional philosophy.

Regarding A-level, I'm not sure how 'well respected it is'. For a start, it's not in the 'facilitating subjects' listed for most universities. In fact when i was playing to university I was told explicitly to avoid taking philosophy A-level and just apply straight to a degree course. They said that they would rather me take another essay subject such as English Literature.

Honestly if I could recommend anything, I would say to do Maths A-level and English (Lit) A-level, perhaps history / FM if you are interested. They are both hugely useful subjects, great for Philosophy at Uni but also very diverse so you choose other things too.
Actually, it's listed on Cambridge's website as one of the most facilitating ''arts'' a levels you can take - alongside foreign languages, history and english literature: http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/admissions...l-combinations

I think you were probably told to avoid it at A Level for the same line of reasoning that law prospective students are told to avoid A Level - because it is taught completely differently to degree level I imagine.
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BankOfPigs
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(Original post by jessicasulty)
Thanks for helping! For A-Level I'm picking Maths, English Lit, PRE (Philosophy, Religion and Ethics) and Economics. I was thinking about history but to be honest I really don't enjoy it very much or find it as fascinating which is why I decided not to pick it.

What is the other subject you're doing alongside philosophy and what do you hope to do after uni, if you don't mind me asking?
That's a very good combination, I personally did Maths, Further Maths, Economics and English Lit. If you don't like history and plan to go into philosophy or a joint philosophy degree I think that's perfectly fine!

I'm doing a degree in Mathematics and Philosophy (you can see that Maths bias :P), mostly because of how flexible future career options are. I personally think that doing a pure philosophy degree isn't that strong in terms of career prospects, despite what they might say, but the exact same could be said about history in my opinion. I would honestly reccommend doing philosophy as a joint course. I'm hoping to work in the civil service.
(Original post by Inexorably)
Actually, it's listed on Cambridge's website as one of the most facilitating ''arts'' a levels you can take - alongside foreign languages, history and english literature: http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/admissions...l-combinations I think you were probably told to avoid it at A Level for the same line of reasoning that law prospective students are told to avoid A Level - because it is taught completely differently to degree level I imagine.



Sorry in that case. You are right though, I was told not to take it at A-level because it was very different to university, although the way I was told made it seem this difference was very negative.

Do note that different universities will have different 'facilitating subjects'. e.g: http://russellgroup.ac.uk/for-studen...l-and-college/ don't have philosophy.

At least when I applied to Uni, the 'well accepted' subjects were really just Maths/FM/Natural sciences / History/Geography/Languages, but maybe things have changed since 2 years ago.
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Abstract_Prism
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'Why would you like fries with that?'
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Asolare
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(Original post by BankOfPigs)
Sorry in that case. You are right though, I was told not to take it at A-level because it was very different to university, although the way I was told made it seem this difference was very negative.

Do note that different universities will have different 'facilitating subjects'. e.g: http://russellgroup.ac.uk/for-studen...l-and-college/ don't have philosophy.

At least when I applied to Uni, the 'well accepted' subjects were really just Maths/FM/Natural sciences / History/Geography/Languages, but maybe things have changed since 2 years ago.
Ah I didn't realise that universities varied that much on facilitating subjects, apologies . Either way, based upon her other subjects - primarily Maths & English - I can't see whether she decides to do philosophy or not having too much of an impact; unless of course she's aiming for incredibly elite universities.

I do believe the current pure philosophy A Level has become more difficult - I did the old spec in 2012/2013 and I've resat it for 2015/2016 and it is a lot harder this time around in terms of essay writing skills, so perhaps there's an attempt by examiners to make it more facilitating for university But who knows.

(Original post by Abstract_Prism)
'Why would you like fries with that?'
I chuckled.
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xavii10
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(Original post by up the levs)
im thinking of doing philosophy as well but at the college its called "theology philosophy and ethics". is there a big difference?
thats the spruced up name for RE at a level
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