Key Stage 5

year 12 & 13: (Sixth Form)

EXAMINATION BOARD
AQA

WHAT IS SPECIAL ABOUT THIS SUBJECT?
Philosophy is thinking about life’s big questions. It’s about being a mental detective. If you’ve ever wondered how we know what’s real, where ideas of right and wrong come from and where we are going, then you’ve already started the journey. This is the next step, where you have the opportunity to engage with significant concepts in a non-religious context.

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS
Grade 4 or above in GCSE RS and English.

YOU WILL STUDY
Year 12
Epistemology (the study of knowledge)
• What is knowledge?
• How do we know things?
• What are the limits of knowledge?
Moral philosophy
• Theories of how we should behave (Ethics)
• Applying Ethics to issues like stealing and simulated killing (within computer games, plays, films etc.)
• Meta-ethics – where do morals come from? Are morals “facts” or are they subjective?
Year 13
Metaphysics of God
• What is ‘God’?
• Arguments relating to the existence of God.
• Religious language.
Metaphysics of Mind
• What do we mean by “Mind”?
• Dualism – how do the mind and body relate to each other?
• Physicalism – is everything physical or dependent upon the physical?
• Functionalism – do mental states play a certain role within our brain?

YOU WILL LEARN

• Be clear and precise in your thinking and writing.
• Engage with complex texts.
• Construct and defend your own arguments.
• Analyse and evaluate the arguments of yourself and others.

ASSESSMENT DETAILS
There are two exams, taken at the end of Year 13
• Paper 1 – Epistemology and Moral philosophy: 3 hours, 50% of final grade.
• Paper 2 – Metaphysics of God and Metaphysics of Mind: 3 hours, 50% of final grade.

There is no coursework or controlled assessment.

CAREERS AND UNIVERSITY PATHWAYS
Philosophy is highly valued in many careers, including Education, Medicine, Law and more! In fact, philosophical skills can help in all jobs and are used in almost every area of life. Philosophy can be studied at university on its own or with various other subjects.