Few students study philosophy at school, and so nearly all philosophy undergraduates enter Cambridge fresh to the subject. In the first year they do Ethics, Logic and Metaphysics (the latter covers general questions about the nature of mind and reality). In the second and third years there is the opportunity to specialise in Aesthetics, Political Philosophy, the History of Philosophy and the Philosophy of Mathematics, Science or Psychology.
People can be drawn to Philosophy for any number of reasons, from an interest in moral questions to puzzlement about the nature of numbers. The only essential qualifications are curiosity about large intellectual issues and the desire to resolve them by careful argument.
Essential: No special subject requirements.
Highly Desirable: Arts/Science mix useful.
Candidates are asked to submit one piece of written and coursework (preferably marked). This piece of work can be in any subject area.
Interview Process and Admissions Assessments
Applicants are invited to attend a general interview and a subject interview at the college. The subject interview will be with the Director of Studies in Philosophy and another philosopher, usually a Faculty teaching officer.
All Applicants for Philosophy are required to take a written assessment at interview, if interviewed. The assessment consists of several short questions designed to test logic skills (20 minutes), and a short essay on one of several philosophical topics (40 minutes). During the interview there will be an opportunity to discuss topics of interest to the candidate. Although no specific preparation is required for either the test or the interviews, it is highly desirable that applicants do some general preparatory reading in philosophy beforehand. For further information on the assessment format, please view the entry requirements tab on: http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/philosophy.
Director of Studies - Dr Nakul Krishna
Further information –
Philosophy (information from the Cambridge Admissions website)
Updated May 2016