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What our students say

We are proud of our Department, but think it best to let our students tell you about it:

BA, MA in Philosophy

I chose to study for a BA in Philosophy at York as the course taught on a wide range of topics and I was unsure where my philosophical interest lay.

The three-year undergraduate course was a great experience and I enjoyed every second thoroughly. The staff were always incredibly welcoming and encouraged all their students to attend their office hour sessions for an informal chat and would always make time to see me if I ever had any questions or problems with my work.

The Philosophy Department also offers a great social community for its students. The Philosophy Society is a fantastic way to meet other students who have a keen interest in discussing philosophical problems in a more laid-back environment.

Following my undergraduate course, York, for me, was the obvious choice for postgraduate study. The MA course York offers is the perfect bridge between an undergraduate course and postgraduate research. It offers a nice balance of taught modules and independent research modules. Furthermore, students have the opportunity to present at and organise their own conference, offering invaluable practical experience in both public speaking and working as part of a team. Students are also required to attend weekly talks from guest lecturers, providing a useful way to meet and talk to lecturers from other institutions. There are many opportunities within the wider postgraduate humanities community to attend talks, reading groups, and workshops, spanning a diverse range of topics. This offers the opportunity for students to expand their knowledge base further than that just offered by their programme. The variety of modules offered means the course has provided me with a variety of transferable skills to prepare me for either an academic or a professional environment. 

Jamie Cawthra

MA by Research, PhD in Philosophy

I first arrived here to do my MA by Research, as I was sure I wanted to progress to a PhD. This made the University of York an obvious choice - the Philosophy department has an excellent reputation for research. This is well-deserved - there’s a great atmosphere around the department, with regular seminars for postgrads to share their work. There’s also a community around the university as a whole, thanks particularly to the academic melting pot that is the Humanities Research Centre.

This community extends out of the campuses, though. One of the best things about researching here is the strong links to other universities that the White Rose College of Arts and Humanities provides. I’ve met students at Leeds, Sheffield and Hull to share ideas and suggestions. From there I was put in touch with researchers in Michigan and Oklahoma, which has been very exciting.

Any graduate with an interest in research should consider the PhD here, or, for more recent graduates, the MA by research at York. The MRes made me much more confident about tackling the PhD, and I didn't hesitate to remain in York to do so.

Suki Finn

PhD in Philosophy

I chose York for my PhD in Philosophy because it offered invaluable teaching experience as a Graduate Teaching Assistant and is a leading research institution worldwide.

I receive such fantastic support from the department, first and foremostly through my amazing supervisors who are experts in their field, and also through the research groups and reading groups held for staff and postgraduates. The department has a friendly atmosphere where I have felt comfortable to present my ideas to faculty members and have always received helpful feedback.

The PhD has been intellectually stimulating and has prepared me thoroughly for a career in academia. I have received training as a researcher and a teacher, and have developed both academically and personally due to the nurturing environment at York. If you want to flourish, then I encourage you to apply to York!

Graduate Diploma in Philosophy

I'm a mature student returning to learning via the Graduate Diploma.

It's a pleasure to study at York.  The campus setting is lovely and the facilities are excellent.  It's easy to get here from home by public transport and the fine ancient city of York is a short bus ride away.

After a first term alongside first-year undergraduates I picked the modules I fancied, and at part-time pace I was able to sit in on several other well-taught modules to round out my philosophical education.  

The staff in the department have been very welcoming to someone who has been away from formal education for a while.  Many of them are leaders in their particular fields, and discussion is open and rewarding.  And there's an active programme of optional reading groups and socialising together with many postgrad students immersed in subjects from Berkeley to Modern Film, so the atmosphere has been buzzing. 

BA, MA and PhD in Philosophy

I chose York to study Philosophy because it seemed to provide the best course, and it is also one of the top universities in Britain which was important to me.

Being an undergraduate philosophy student at York was a really great experience. The undergraduate course was fantastic; after the first year of compulsory modules I was able to hand pick all of the courses which would make up the second and third year of my degree.

The Masters course at York also has plenty of choice. As well as the most substantial piece of work - the dissertation - students also complete a 'project', working with members of staff who set the projects based on their research interests. I found this element of the course particularly interesting.

The Department houses a friendly, approachable and supportive staff; many of whom are leading experts in their fields. It is a fantastic intellectual environment with reading groups, visiting lectures and research seminars, allowing valuable engagement with other world-leading philosophers.

The facilities available to me during my time as an undergraduate were good; there were plenty of study spaces and computer rooms spread across campus as well as a number of bars and catering outlets. As a Philosophy postgraduate the facilities are really excellent. The brand new Berrick Saul building for History, Linguistics, English, History of Art and Philosophy postgraduate students offers a fantastic study space as well as kitchen facilities and social spaces.

Daniel Brigham what our students say. (c) Ian Martindale

MA in Philosophy

I particularly liked the broad course content offered by the Philosophy Department at York, as well as the combination and balance of taught and research elements.

The teaching staff are brilliant. Their combination of academic rigour and approachability is winning. They are always happy to provide feedback and discuss lines of thought.

I'd absolutely recommend York to students thinking of applying to study Philosophy here. I’ve found it to be a great place to live and study. The education in Philosophy that I have received at York has been stimulating, challenging and rewarding. It has prepared me for Postgraduate study (MA, followed by a PhD).