Extra Curricular

Extra Curricular

Philosophy

Why study this course?

AS level Philosophy was offered for the first time at Malbank in September 2010 as an enrichment [‘option K'] opportunity to develop a variety of skills that can be applied across the curriculum.

Have you ever sat quietly and asked yourself difficult questions such as:

  • Does God exist ?
  • Are we really free ?
  • Is doing good for other people, really doing good ?
  • Who and what am I and do I really believe ?

If you have, you're philosophical by nature. But what is philosophy? There is no ‘straightforward' definition but what most people agree on is that philosophy is about using rational argument and logical thinking to shine some light on life's big questions. In doing so you'll get a greater understanding of the world we live in, and of yourself. Cool, huh?

Philosophy - or the sharp thinking that philosophy promotes - will turn you from a smart person into a great thinker. Considering abstract subjects and applying them to everyday life will be personally useful, but is also a very worthwhile skill in a number of career choices.

What are the entry requirements?Philosophy is a challenging academic course with rigorous and demanding assessment procedures. It requires high level, flexible thinking skills and you should only opt for this course if you have achieved a grade B or above in English and related subjects such as History and RE.

Which other subjects link well with  this subject?

Philosophy will be a useful addition to a wide range of subject combinations because it develops a whole host of transferable skills. As aforementioned, it promotes sharp thinking so whether you study Law, Electronics, Art or Food Technology, there's a valid argument for making philosophy a foundation subject. However it would combine particularly well with subjects such as Psychology, English Language or Literature, Sociology, History and RE.

What career paths would this course lead to?

For the vast majority of students - even those who go on to take the subject at university - ‘philosopher' is not the kind of job title you see down at the local job centre. But what philosophy does do is fine-tune your reasoning so that your enhanced intellect can be applied to other careers. Law, politics, the civil service, journalism, advertising, education ... these are some of the careers where your ability to turn abstract subjects into solid concepts will be highly regarded.

What specific skills will I learn?

  • How to debate, argue & empathise
  • How to think for yourself and question the norm
  • How to examine information in a critical way
  • How to form judgements on clear evaluation of information
  • How to put your point of view accross clearly
  • How to take responsibility for your own learning

How is the course structured?

AS Unit 1 - An introduction into Philosophy

‘interpreting reason & experience' and ‘why should I be moral'?
Written paper, 1 hour 30 minutes,  50% of AS

AS Unit 2 - An introduction into Philosophy

‘interpreting knowledge of the external world' and ‘God and the world' Written paper, 1 hour 30 minutes,  50% of AS

NB: Due to the fact that the course runs during an enrichment slot [2 hrs/week], students who wish to sit both exams will need to dedicate several hours of their own time each week to ensure that the material is covered and examination skills are developed.

Extra Opportunities

Over the coming year, the aim is to establish links with local organisations that will give students the opportunity to apply their skills in a purposeful way such as policy making and public speaking.