MA Philosophy by ResearchSchool of Humanities and Social Sciences
This MA programme is a continuation of the project established by the late Sir Roger Scruton at The University of Buckingham. It is a one-year, London-based programme of ten evening seminars and individual research.
Sir Roger Scruton was very critical of the current academic approach to philosophy, where direct engagement with fundamental philosophical questions and the training of the philosophical mind have been displaced by a focus on engaging with the thoughts of philosophers through the lens of linguistic analysis and examination of minutiae. Central to Scruton’s vision in designing the programme was his conviction that the best way to learn philosophy is by doing philosophy, i.e.: engaging in philosophical dialogue. This lies at the heart of the seminars.
Dr. Alicja Gescinska, was chosen by Sir Roger to assist him in this task, and continues the programme in the same spirit, where the exchange of ideas and a vivid dialogue are central to the course. She does this, together with Professor Raymond Tallis.
Together they have crafted a programme of ten guest lectures which will not only introduce the students to key topics of philosophy, but which will also allow them to take part in real philosophical discussions. The guest lectures will be provided by internationally renowned philosophers. The students will thus have the chance to exchange ideas, and enter into dialogue, with leading figures in the field. During the course of the year these seminars are supplemented by additional online lectures by the course organisers.
The range of topics covered in the programme reflect the wide range of research areas that were central to the work of Sir Roger Scruton.
Each seminar takes place at the Reform Club, Pall Mall, central London and is followed by a dinner during which participants can engage in discussion with the course directors and guest lecturer.
Examination will be by a research dissertation on an approved philosophical topic chosen by the student, of around 25,000 words. Guidance and personal supervision will be provided.
Course director: Dr. Alicja Gescinska.
Deputy director: Prof. Dr. Raymond Tallis.
For further details contact:
Humanities Research Admissions on +44 (0)1280 827514
The minimum entry-level required for this course is as follows:
- a first or upper second-class honours degree from a recognised university or,
- a recognised professional qualification with relevant work experience.
In cases where candidates are applying on the basis of work experience, they may be asked to complete a short written assignment and/or attend an interview as part of the applications process.
Age is no barrier to learning and we welcome all applications from suitably qualified students. Due to their flexibility, our London-based MAs by research attract a wide variety of applicants from a range of backgrounds, including people in full-time employment and retirees. Our current students range in age from 21 to 75.
We are happy to consider all international applications and if you are an international student, you may find it useful to visit our international pages for details of entry requirements from your home country.
The University is a UKVI Student Sponsor.
If English is not your first language, please check our postgraduate English language requirements. If your English levels don’t meet our minimum requirements, you may be interested in applying for our Pre-sessional English Language Foundation Programmes.
Candidates apply online, sending in their supporting documents, and will be assessed on this basis by the Programme Director. The Programme Director or Admissions Assistant will be happy to answer any enquiries.
Student Contract for prospective students
When you are offered a place at the University you will be notified of the student contract between the University and students on our courses of study. When you accept an offer of a place on the course at the University a legal contract is formed between you and the University on the basis of the student contract in your offer letter. Your offer letter and the student contract contain important information which you should read carefully before accepting an offer. Read the Student Contract.
- Tuesday 4 October – Prof. Raymond Tallis & Dr. Alicja Gescinska on Philosophy: The Point(lessness) of the Pursuit of Wisdom
- Tuesday 18 October – Prof. John Cottingham on Scepticism: Descartes and After
- Tuesday 22 November – Prof. Raymond Tallis on Personhood: Persons and Brains
- Tuesday 13 December – Dr. Alicja Gescinska on Liberty: Three Concepts of Freedom
- Tuesday 17 January – Prof. Raymond Tallis on Time: The Metaphysics of Time and the (Im)Possibility of Time Travel
- Tuesday 14 February – Prof. Simon May on Love: The Ultimate Human Value?
- Tuesday 21 March – Prof. Raymond Tallis on Free Will: Is Free Will (Im)Possible?
- Tuesday 18 April – Dr. Alicja Gescinska on Empathy: Personalism and Understanding Others
- Tuesday 23 May – Prof. Fiona Ellis on Naturalism: Three Different Types of Naturalism
- Tuesday 20 June – Dr. Alicja Gescinska on Totalitarianism: Hannah Arendt and Czeslaw Milosz on the Totalitarian Temptation(s)
The University’s Course Directors, students’ supervisors, and the Research Officer and Tutor for Graduate Students are available to discuss students’ post-graduation plans and how they may utilise most effectively the skills acquired during their studies.
The fees for this course are:
|Start||Type||1st Year||Total cost|
Full-time (1 Year)
Part-time (2 Years)
The University reserves the right to increase course fees annually in line with inflation linked to the Retail Price Index (RPI) to take account of the University’s increased costs of delivering educational services. If the University intends to increase your course fees it will notify you via email of this as soon as reasonably practicable.
Course fees do not include additional costs such as books, equipment, writing up fees and so on. Where applicable, these additional costs will be made clear.
Please note that The University of Buckingham has four terms per year. Students will pay the same termly fee for the duration of their studies, unless studies are interrupted and resumed later. The tuition fee quoted is therefore the total cost of the degree.
Postgraduate loan scheme
A system of postgraduate loans for Masters degrees in the UK is available with support from the UK Government. The loan is available for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. The loans can be used for tuition fees, living expenses or both.
Details of scholarships can be found on our main Bursaries and Scholarships page. You should make an application to study at the University and receive an offer letter confirming our acceptance of your application before applying for a scholarship.
Please note that applicants with a First-Class degree at undergraduate level are automatically entitled to a scholarship which is worth the equivalent of 33% of their total fees.
You may also find it useful to visit our External Funding page.
Due to the mode of study on this course you will not normally need a room in University accommodation during your degree.
You can apply directly using our online application form – all you need to do is click the ‘apply’ button at the bottom of this page.