Why I’ve loved every minute of studying Philosophy at Manchester

by | May 5, 2021 | Politics, Philosophy and Economics, Undergraduate | 0 comments

BA Philosophy student Niall O’Connor shares his experience of studying at The University of Manchester.

Why I chose Philosophy at Manchester

I took Theology for A-level and the course was split into philosophy of religion and moral philosophy, which are still two of my favourite areas of the subject. I fell in love with the analytical method over those two years and decided I wanted to pursue the subject further at university. Philosophy challenges the principles every other subject takes for granted, which is great fun to be a part of.

In terms of Manchester, I’d visited the City a couple of times when I was younger and had fond memories of it, but it was the history of the University and the quality of the philosophy department that really sold it for me. Every day I learn from world class academics and get to do it in one of the liveliest cities in the country.

The best things about my degree

Male student reading in a study spaceWe have lectures and tutorials like every other course, and they are extremely valuable, but the real work on the BA Philosophy is done on the student’s own clock. You have to take it upon yourself to do a reading, to learn how a theory works or to get started on an assignment. This can be daunting at first but with a little time and experience it can help take a great amount of pressure off.

Aspects of the course that stand out

Philosophy students are allowed to take 20 credits per year in a module of their choice outside the subject. This is a fantastic opportunity to learn a language or develop your curiosity for another subject you enjoy.

Last year I was able to take a fantastic introductory politics course and this term I am taking a module in the school of law. This gives students a chance to get a well-rounded education and encourages us to develop different skills, different ways of studying, writing and meet new friends from a different academic field.

Preparing for life after university

The Alan Gilbert Learning Commons on the University of Manchester campusThe world has changed a lot even in my short time, and this change is accelerating. However, the skills developed from studying philosophy are timeless and universally applicable, making them attractive for employers. Whether it’s the formal logic that inspires a student to write a billion dollar computer programme or the ethical theory that inspires the judge’s intuition on whether or not a man deserves to go to jail, their study of philosophy is central.

As for the University, I don’t think too much needs to be said. Here at Manchester we split the atom, we discovered graphene and every department is filled with leading scholars who give the University the global reputation it deserves.

My advice to prospective students

Choose Manchester! You will have the best years of your life living in one of the world’s greatest cities, studying in one of the world’s greatest educational institutions and learning from some of the world’s greatest minds.