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BA - Philosophy as a major

If you’re fascinated by the history and creative activities of humankind and how this shapes societies and our future, then a Bachelor of Arts (BA) is for you. Our graduates are in demand for their flexible skills, practical outlook and depth of understanding they bring to their roles.

Philosophy is for thinkers and doers. It's about solving real-life problems, and applying intellectual rigour to how we understand and interact with others, society and the world. Studying Philosophy at Waikato will teach you how to learn, think and write clearly, argue vigorously, and question deeply held assumptions and beliefs.


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Key information

Years: 3
Points: 360
Start Dates: Trimester A (March) and Trimester B (July)
Estimated Fees* (Domestic): $6,776 - $7,821 per year
Estimated Fees* (International): $29,425 - $38,305 per year
Entry Requirements: Undergraduate International
Area of Study:
All amounts are in New Zealand Dollars (NZD). *Tuition fees shown are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.

Career opportunities

  • Business Consultant
  • Editor
  • Environmental Consultant
  • Health Policy Adviser
  • Policy Analyst
  • Public Relations Practitioner

Degree Planner

Degree planner — BA in Philosophy

Year 1

Any PHILO 100
level paper

Any PHILO 100
level paper

One from List A

Field of the Degree
100 level

Field of the Degree
100 level

Elective

Elective

Year 2

Any PHILO 200
level paper

Any PHILO 200
level paper

Any PHILO 200
level paper or MAORI202

One from List B

Field of the Degree
200 level

Elective

Elective

Elective

Year 3

Any PHILO 300
level paper

Any PHILO 300
level paper

Any PHILO 300
level paper

Any PHILO 300
level paper or EDSOC300

One from List C

Elective

Elective

Elective

  • Major
  • Compulsory
  • Elective

Philosophy exposes and addresses problems, including ethical problems, problems about science, logical problems and problems about the nature of reality.

Philosophy is available as a first major for the Bachelor of Arts (BA), the Bachelor of Climate Change (BCC), and the Bachelor of Social Sciences (BSocSc). Philosophy may also be taken as a second major or minor in other undergraduate degrees, subject to approval of the Division in which the student is enrolled.

To complete Philosophy as a single major for the BA, BCC and BSocSc, students must gain 135 points from papers listed for Philosophy, including 105 points above 100 level, and 60 points above 200 level.

To complete Philosophy as part of a double major for the BA, BCC, BSocSc or other undergraduate degree, students must gain 120 points from papers listed for Philosophy, including 90 points above 100 level, and 45 points above 200 level.

To complete a minor in Philosophy, students must complete 60 points from the papers listed for the Philosophy major, including at least 30 points above 100 level.

100 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
PHILO102Introduction to Logic15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Online)
An introduction to symbolic logic, including formal testing of arguments for validity in propositional logic and predicate logic.
PHILO103Critical Thinking15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Online)
This paper helps students to engage critically with the sorts of arguments encountered both inside and outside the University.
PHILO106Social and Moral Philosophy15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Online) & 24A (Tauranga)
An investigation of contemporary moral and social issues from a practical ethics perspective. Issues may include abortion, animal welfare, discrimination, euthanasia, freedom of speech, genetic enhancement, privacy, punishment, and your online life.
PHILO150The Big Questions: An Introduction to Philosophy15.024B (Hamilton), 24B (Online) & 24B (Tauranga)
An introduction to philosophy that investigates a range of big questions. The big questions may include: does God exist?, does my morality apply to you?, do we have free will?, what is the meaning of life?, and who am I?.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
MAORI202Ngā Iho Matua: Māori Philosophy15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper examines the philosophical underpinnings of seminal tikanga Maori concepts, and their influence both historically and in contemporary Maori culture.
PHILO204Lying and Fake News in Polarised Communities: Social Aspects of Language and Knowledge15.024A (Hamilton)
Is language the seat of all knowledge and wisdom? The aim of this paper is to explore growing philosophical debates in epistemology and the philosophy of language.
PHILO215Moral and Political Philosophy: A Historical Introduction15.024B (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to central issues in Moral and Political Philosophy, using texts from historical figures in philosophy to study questions about virtue, happiness, justice, liberty, democracy, tyranny, feminism, art, censorship, and moral education.
PHILO217Environmental Ethics15.024H (Online)
A study of ethical questions about the relation of humans to the rest of the natural world, including the attribution of value and rights to the non-human world and ethical issues in environment and development.
PHILO218Ethics at Work15.024G (Online)
A study of ethics as it relates to business and professional practice in New Zealand including material specifically for interest groups: eg computer science, psychology and social work.
PHILO225Happiness and Wellbeing15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Online) & 24A (Tauranga)
Drawing on ancient wisdom and modern science, this paper investigates the meaning and value of happiness, and the role it plays in making our lives go well for us.

300 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ALPSS390Directed Study15.024X (Hamilton)
This paper allows students from the Division of Arts, Law, Psychology, and Social Sciences to undertake research on a specific topic related to their major or minor under the guidance of academic staff.
EDSOC300Māori Knowledge and Western Impacts in Education15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper explores comparisons between key Western and Maori philosophies. It considers how Maori and Western philosophies respectively describe the self's relationship with thought and knowledge in the context of education.
PHILO304Truth, Bullshit, and the Global Community15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper offers a global perspective on what truth is and why truth matters by examining ideas that come from Chinese, Indian, African, Mesoamerican, and western philosophical traditions. Some space will be afforded to empirical studies in order to reveal how popular beliefs may shape our understanding of truth. The paper also ex...
PHILO309Experiments in Ethics15.024B (Hamilton)
The paper uses thought experiments to introduce students to central issues in contemporary moral philosophy. The issues may include: What makes an action right? Are there any absolute duties? Is morality entirely subjective? Is it possible to have moral knowledge? How can we be sure our moral judgments are right?
PHILO316Philosophy and the Arts15.024A (Hamilton)
The course examines philosophical questions to do with the nature and meaning of works of art, the appreciation and evaluation of them, and their function at both the personal and the societal level.
PHILO317Environmental Ethics15.024H (Online)
Do we have moral obligations toward nature? How should human beings treat the natural world? This paper examines questions such as these in light of our current ethical theories.
PHILO318Ethics at Work15.024B (Online) & 24G (Online)
This is an applied ethics paper focussing on the professions, research and business. It examines contemporary issues relevant to a wide range of occupations graduates might enter.
PHILO355Reality, Society and Culture15.024B (Hamilton)
What are social objects like political borders, money, and teams? What about genders, races, musical works, fictional characters, or persons? This paper will help you to think through questions like these. It explores various answers to these questions, what we even mean (or should mean) when we ask them, and how you might rethink ...

500 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ALPSS500Academic & Professional Research & Writing30.024A (Online), 24B (Online) & 24C (Online)
In this course, students will gain the skills and confidence to seamlessly transition from study to work. This course works to enhance the 'skills for the future' identified by the World Economic Forum (2020), in order to produce resilient, creative students with strong analytic and critical thinking skills.
ALPSS590Directed Study30.024X (Hamilton)
This paper allows students from the Division of Arts, Law, Psychology and Social Sciences to undertake research on a specific topic related to their major under the guidance of academic staff.
ALPSS591Research Project30.024X (Hamilton) & 24X (Tauranga)
A research report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical or practice-led investigation (up to 12,500 words maximum).
ALPSS592Dissertation60.024X (Hamilton) & 24X (Tauranga)
A research report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical or practice-led investigation (up to 25,000 words maximum).
PHILO534Reality and Language15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper examines a range of contemporary philosophical work in metaphysics and the philosophy of language.
PHILO545Aesthetics15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper covers a range of topics in contemporary aesthetics, including: What is art? What is the difference between art and craft? Are aesthetic values entirely subjective? Can fictional events give rise to real emotions? How is it possible to enjoy horror?
PHILO552Existence and the Social World15.024B (Hamilton)
This paper covers contemporary research in metaphysics, including work on social ontology and the methods that should be used in doing metaphysics.
PHILO588Foundations of Philosophical Research30.024A (Hamilton)
In this paper we engage in focused analysis of a range of philosophical topics relevant to the research goals of students. The paper enhances students' knowledge of long standing and contemporary debates in philosophy. Students cultivate their research skills through seminar development and presentation, and gain a grounding in phi...
PHILO593Philosophy Thesis90.024X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.

800 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
PHILO800Philosophy MPhil Thesis120.024X (Hamilton)
No description available.

900 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
PHILO900Philosophy PhD Thesis120.024I (Hamilton), 24J (Hamilton), 24K (Hamilton) & 24X (Hamilton)
No description available.

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Subject links

Philosophy Programme


Philosophy is available as a major for the BA and BSocSc. Philosophy may also be taken as a second major or as a supporting subject within other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School of Studies in which the student is enrolled.

For more information about subject requirements please refer to the Catalogue of Papers for the most up to date information. If you have any questions and need more advice contact one of our friendly student advisors phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4080 or email: [email protected]

Please note: For all graduate subject requirements check the information provided in the papers section above.


Contacts

School of Social Sciences
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4030
General Enquiries: [email protected]