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A level Philosophy AQA

A level Philosophy AQA

Easter Revision Course Dates 2024

  • Week 1: Monday 25 March – Friday 29 March
  • Week 2: Monday 1 April – Friday 5 April
  • Week 3: Monday 8 April – Friday 12 April

(Good Friday is 29 March; Easter Monday is 1 April 2024)


AQA 7172

Length of Course

5 full-day sessions

This course is board-specific for the AQA A level Philosophy specification (7172) and is for A Level Year 13 students only.

The course will cover:


  • What is knowledge? The distinction between acquaintance knowledge, ability knowledge and
    propositional knowledge; the nature of definition (including Linda Zagzebski) and how propositional
    knowledge may be analysed/defined; the tripartite view, issues and responses.
  • Perception as a source of knowledge: Direct realism, indirect realism and Berkeley’s idealism.
  • Reason as a source of knowledge: Innatism; The intuition and deduction thesis. Empiricist responses
    to these theories.
  • The limits of knowledge: Particular nature of philosophical scepticism; the role/function of
    philosophical scepticism within epistemology; the distinction between local and global skepticism;
    Descartes’ sceptical arguments and issues/responses; reliabilism.

Moral philosophy

  • Normative ethical theories: The meaning of good, bad, right, wrong within each of the three
    approaches: Utilitarianism, Kantian deontological ethics, Aristotelian virtue ethics.
  • Meta-ethics: The origins of moral principles: reason, emotion/attitudes, or society; the distinction
    between cognitivism and non-cognitivism about ethical language; moral realism, including naturalism
    and non-naturalism; moral anti-realism, including error theory, emotivism and prescriptivism.
  • Applied ethics: Applying the content of normative ethical theories and metaethics to the following
    issues: stealing; simulated killing (within computer games, plays, films etc); eating animals, telling lies.

Metaphysics of God

  • The concept and nature of ‘God’ God’s attributes: God as omniscient, omnipotent, supremely good
    (omnibenevolent), and the meaning(s) of these divine attributes. Competing views on such a being’s
    relationship to time, arguments for the incoherence of the concept of God.
  • Arguments relating to the existence of God: Ontological arguments, teleological/design arguments,
    cosmological arguments and the Problem of Evil.
  • Religious language: The distinction between cognitivism and non-cognitivism about religious language,
    verification/falsification (Ayer) and responses including eschatological verification and the ‘University

Metaphysics of mind

  • What do we mean by ‘mind’? Features of mental states: • All or at least some mental states have
    phenomenal properties • Some, but not all, philosophers use the term ‘qualia’ to refer to these
    properties, where ‘qualia’ are defined as ‘intrinsic and non-intentional phenomenal properties that are
    introspectively accessible’ • All or at least some mental states have intentional properties (ie
  • Dualist theories: Substance dualism (Descartes). The ‘philosophical zombies’ argument for property
    dualism (David Chalmers). The ‘knowledge/Mary’ argument for property dualism (Frank Jackson).
  • Physicalist theories: Behaviourism, Mind-brain type identity theory, Eliminative materialism and
    Functionalism. Issues and responses to these theories.

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