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A Level Philosophy - New Linear A Level at Barton Court Grammar School

Course description

Studying Philosophy at A Level gives you access to a wide range of career and higher education opportunities. It is a subject that is well regarded by both universities and employers alike. Philosophy combines well with Mathematics and Science subjects to create an attractive portfolio of qualifications, enabling you to move on to a university science-based course, including Medicine. Combined with English and a modern foreign language it would provide a good basis for an arts, social science or language based degree.

Course content

This course allows a wide range of perspectives to be understood, investigating ideas from ancient cultures through to the 21st Century. We use a range of contemporary case studies and resources, and encourage students to question, develop analytical skills, and express viewpoints clearly in written responses. There are four units in this course, with an online Anthology to support your understanding and evaluation of the following areas:

Unit 1 Epistemology: ‘What can we know?’ An exploration of perception (realism and idealism); knowledge (the relationships between belief, truth, and justifications); rationalism, reason, empiricism, intuition and deduction; the limits of knowledge (scepticism)

Unit 2 Moral Philosophy ‘How do we make moral decisions?’ An exploration of moral philosophy and ethical theories used to justify actions, including Utilitarianism, Kantian Ethics, Aristotle’s Virtue Ethics, ethical language applied to a range of contemporary issues and case studies

Unit 3 Metaphysics of God ‘Can the existence of God be proved?’ An exploration of the logic and evidence that is used to justify or challenge a belief that God exists, including the ontological, design and cosmological arguments; the problem of evil and suffering; exploring religious language

Unit 4 Metaphysics of Mind ‘Are my mind and body separate?’ An investigation into the relationship between mind and body, including understanding issues relating to dualism, materialism, funtionalism and identity.

Entry requirements

Sixth Form entry requirements, including English Language and Literature at grade 6.


Units are assessed at the end of the course by two three-hour examinations. 

Future opportunities

Philosophy provides an excellent foundation for a number of popular careers including journalism, law, social work, international relations, public services including the police service, education, health services, medicine, politics, and business.

Further information

Speak to Ms Cullimore, Lead Teacher of RPE, or go to

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 02 November 2016
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years