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Dissertation BA Philosophy


  • Credit value: 30 credits at Level 6
  • Assessment: a dissertation of no more than 7500 words (including footnotes, endnotes, subheadings and appendices, but excluding the bibliography)

Module description

Students in the final year of their degree are able, if they wish, to research and write a dissertation. If you complete a dissertation, you take two fewer 15-credit Level 6 modules than otherwise. Once you have confirmed that you will undertake a dissertation, one of the faculty is assigned to you as a supervisor based on whichever topic you propose. There is freedom to choose almost any topic within philosophy.

You will have a preliminary meeting with your supervisor, finalising your topic and dissertation plan in more detail and discussing an initial reading list. This preliminary meeting can take place as soon as you have been allocated a supervisor, which can even be in the summer before the final year if you decide on a topic in time.

Over the course of the final year, you can have two further supervisions. Typically one of these will be on a plan or outline and the other on a full draft. However, it is up to you and the supervisor to agree on how best to use this time, and when exactly to have the supervisions.

The maximum length of a dissertation is 7500 words, which includes footnotes, endnotes, subheadings and appendices; it excludes the bibliography. There is no minimum length, but it is expected that most dissertations will come close to the maximum length. The eventual dissertation is submitted via TurnItIn on Moodle.

The topic of a dissertation, and the recommended reading, is inevitably unique for each student. Part of the function of the supervisions is to discuss and decide on precisely these things.