Philosophy encourages us to explore and challenge our assumptions about what we are, how we think, and the nature of the world around us. It encourages questions and often the only answer provided is doubt. Philosophy puts religion and belief on trial and questions the implications of certain religious moralities. God’s very existence is placed in the dock with some of the greatest philosophers acting in defence and prosecution – and the pupils playing the role of judge and jury.
It encourages pupils to be sceptical of experts as well as their own beliefs and to be doubtful of their capacity to know they are right. The aims of the course are to study core philosophical, theological and ethical theories and learn to evaluate them critically.
It is an opportunity to look at some of the deepest questions, such as:
Through the study of Philosophy and Ethics, pupils will develop the ability to formulate and structure an argument, identify and draw out weaknesses and to express themselves logically and with precision.
The study of Philosophy and Ethics at A Level is engaging, academically rigorous and excellent preparation for a wide range of courses at degree level. It is an A Level subject that you can combine with any others. The study of philosophical, theological and ethical theories which underpin and structure our world today provide an understanding which informs engagement with key themes in politics, law, medicine, education, human rights journalism and religion.
Pupils will sit three 2-hour exams, each with a weighting of 33%, one in Philosophy, one in Ethics and one in Developments.