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Philosophy (MRes)

Our Philosophy (MRes) programme is a distance-learning course. It consists of 60 credits worth of taught modules and a dissertation of 120 credits, equivalent to 30,000 words.

The programme services the needs of philosophy graduates who wish to deepen their understanding of philosophy and develop a detailed research project.

Students can choose from a range of modules covering a variety of different themes and specialist areas, as well as work one-to-one with a supervisor to develop their own dissertation project.


You can apply directly to the University using the Apply Now button at the top of the page. 

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Tuition Fees 2023/24:
Home: £7,800
Tuition Fees 2023/24:
Overseas (distance/online): £10,400
Fees are for the whole course.

Why choose this course?

  1. The programme is based upon an established pool of expertise in related concerns and covers a range of projects undertaken over a number of years
  2. Staff are research active and regularly attend academic conferences.
  3. Study cutting edge areas of academic interest
  4. The staff expertise represents a considerable bank of knowledge and skills that will underpin this programme and will ensure the student experience a high quality educational experience.

What you will learn

Course Overview

By focusing on such areas of Philosophy, the Philosophy (MRes) services the needs of graduates who wish to build upon their first degree in Philosophy or a cognate discipline, e.g. as preparation for a research degree.

The programme also meets the needs of teachers of A-level Philosophy, in that its modules overlap core parts of the A-level Philosophy curriculum, such as Philosophy of Religion, Ethics, and History of Philosophy (covered in the module The Philosophy of Philosophy).

However Philosophy (MRes) is sufficiently broad in extent to be also suitable for anyone who is looking to broaden their acquaintance with, and understanding of, philosophy as it is practiced in the English speaking world today.

In Part I of the course, students complete two taught 30 credit modules (60 credits in total).

  • One is the compulsory module 'Knowledge, Reason, and Reality'.
  • The second taught module can be chosen from among a range of philosophical modules or modules from cognate disciplines.

Modules are built around the research specialism of our academic staff, all of whom are research active and published in their respective fields of expertise.

In Part II, students write a research dissertation of 25,000-30,000 words valued at 120 credits.

Module Topics

Part I

  • Applied Ethics (30 credits; optional)
  • Buddhist Philosophy – Mahayana and Zen Approaches (30 credits; optional)
  • Chinese Conceptions of the Self  (30 credits; optional)
  • Environmental Philosophy (30 credits; optional)
  • Interfaith Encounters: Religious Interaction in a Complex World (30 credits; optional)
  • Islam Today (30 credits; optional)
  • Knowledge, Reason and Reality (30 credits; compulsory)
  • Mind and Body: Descartes and Wittgenstein (30 credits; optional)
  • Moral Philosophy (30 credits; optional)
  • Religious Experience Today (30 credits; optional)
  • The Self: East and West (30 credits; optional).

Part II

  • MRes Dissertation (Philosophy) (120 credits; compulsory).

The programme is delivered via distance learning. There is no requirement to visit our campus, although you are always welcome to do so. The programme consists of online lectures, discussion forums and one-to-one tutorials.

Key Information

Entry Criteria

An honours degree (2:1 or above) in a cognate discipline or an equivalent and appropriate professional qualification or significant and relevant professional experience.

Career Opportunities

The programme will help students to develop skills that are valuable to a wide range of employers, such as the ability to: analyse complex information in a critical manner; present clear and coherent arguments; present complex information in a clear manner.

More particularly, the programme will attract students who are looking to take up future employment opportunities, or are already in employment, in areas or sectors where an understanding of philosophical issues will be of benefit.

This may include voluntary workers, teachers and trainers, academics, community and government-based agencies and projects, intercultural, multi-faith networks dedicated to building community relations, reconciliation and reconstruction schemes with various global agencies and disaster relief bodies.

Additional Costs

Estimates are on the assumption that students buy new copies of the books. Students may also choose to spend money on printing drafts of work.

Students may spend up to £300 per year on books and additional related materials.

Bursary / Scholarship Information

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Bursaries and Scholarships section.

Further Information

Please get in touch with us if you have any questions related to the University or to this course in particular.