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A Level Philosophy

Course outline

Philosophy is about asking, and attempting to answer, fundamental questions such as

  • What is knowledge?
  • Do we see the world as it is, or is our perception of the world misleading?
  • Does God exist and what is the problem of evil?
  • What is the nature of mind and can we explain the mental purely in terms of the physical?
  • What is moral goodness, and what is the nature of moral language?

This engaging and thought-provoking course helps you to develop knowledge and understanding of the content, including through the use of philosophical analysis (conceptual analysis and argument analysis).

The course covers:

  • Epistemology (what is knowledge):
    • The Tripartite view
    • Perception
    • Direct/Indirect Realism
    • Idealism
    • Reason
    • Innatism
    • Empiricism
    • Intuition/deduction thesis
    • Limits of Knowledge
    • Scepticism
    • Reliablism
  • Moral Philosophy
    • Utilitarianism
    • Moral realism/anti realism
    • Meta ethics
    • Applied Ethics
    • Aristole Virtue ethics
    • Kantian Deontological ethics
  • Metaphysics of God
    • Ontological and teleological arguments for the existence of God
    • Cosmological arguments and the problem of evil
    • Religious language
  • Metaphysics of Mind
    • Dualist theories
    • Physical theories
    • Functionalism

By the end of the course you will be able to analyse and evaluate the philosophical arguments within the subject content to form reasoned judgements. As a result, the course blends well when combined with other A Levels such as Psychology, Sociology, Law and English Literature, and even some of our science subjects such as Physics and Biology.

How to apply for this course

Apply now to study an A Level Programme in 2024/25

You will select your individual subjects when you complete the application.

Want to find out more first?

Get in touch by hitting the button below and filling out our enquiry form.

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Location Date
Chaucer Street

Start: Monday 2nd September 2024

Course code: C000450 / Q034655


AQA A Level Philosophy


2 years

Level Level 3
Entry requirements

2 year programme

  • To study 3 A Levels you’ll need at least 5 GCSE’s at grades 9-4 including GCSE English Language or English Literature at grade 6 and GCSE Maths at grade 4 or above
  • To study 4 A Levels you’ll need at least 6 GCSE’s at grades 9-7 including GCSE English and GCSE Maths at grade 7 or above

The programme of study is for 2 years, and you will be expected to be achieving a minimum of grade D in all subject assessments by the end of year 1 to progress to your 2nd year.

Applicants with predicted GCSE grades 1 or 2 points below the entry requirement for an A Level:

If your predicted grades do not meet the entry requirements for either 1 or 2 of your chosen A Level subject choices, don’t worry we will still make you a conditional offer. We advise that you think about a second choice of course as a back-up plan. You can meet with us for a supportive, friendly and impartial discussion to look at other courses that Nottingham College has to offer. For more information contact High Pavement Sixth Form admissions by telephone on 0115 9100 100 or email at

Applicants who choose 4 subjects but only have the entry requirements to study 3:

If your predicted grades do not meet the entry requirements to study 4 A Level subjects, don’t worry we will still make you a conditional offer for all 4. At your ‘Get Ready for College’ day you will undertake tasters in your subjects and at this point you can discuss your options with subject staff at the event, to help you finalise your subject choices. Final A Level choices however will be made at enrolment in August when your GCSE results are confirmed.

Teaching & assessment

Two exams lasting three hours each consisting of a combination short answer and extended writing.

Assessment objectives:

  • AO1: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the core concepts and methods of philosophy, including through the use of philosophical analysis
  • AO2: Analyse and evaluate philosophical arguments to form reasoned judgements.

A Level Philosophy hones your skills of analysis and your ability to construct solid arguments. These transferable skills make it ideal preparation for most academic university courses and job training schemes. In particular Law, Politics and the Social Sciences.

Additional information

Students aged 16-18 don't have to pay tuition fees.

If you are aged 19 or over you may still be eligible for funding. Check out our Financial Help pages to find out more!

If you are an EU/EEA or Swiss National, please visit our EU Settled Status scheme page for more information.