MA Philosophy & Artificial Intelligence
The MA Philosophy & Artificial Intelligence combines exploration of a range of philosophical issues, including ethical issues related to computer data, with opportunities to develop the skills and techniques of data science. Poised at the intersection of the humanities and technology, this innovative masters degree can equip you with the combination of thinking, communication, and technical skills currently sought by employers in sectors ranging from financial and professional services, to the creative industries, government and policy-making.
Presupposing no background in either philosophy or programming, it ensures students are equipped with the skills and knowledge needed for graduate study in philosophy, and offers opportunities to acquire relevant coding abilities, and knowledge of the techniques of data science that underpin recent advances in machine learning and artificial intelligence, should students so desire.
At the same time, the programme allows for a progressive exploration of ethical and other philosophical issues arising in this area, with courses directly addressing them, and a dissertation devoted to a detailed investigation of an approved topic of the student’s choosing.
The College’s MA Philosophy and Artificial Intelligence is a 180-credit programme. Students will complete four core courses, two ‘depth’ course options, and one further ‘breadth’ option, for a total of 120 credits. The programme culminates with the production of a dissertation of 10,000-12,000 words, which is worth 60 credits.
Philosophy courses will be taught in small lectures/seminars, and (with two course exceptions) through one-on-one tutorials with Faculty members.
Data science courses will be taught through lectures/seminars, labs, and drop-in sessions/office hours, and will use Jupyter notebooks.
The dissertation will involve independent research under supervision from a Faculty member.
The Masters programme can be taken part-time over two years. Part-time students attend the same classes as their full-time colleagues, taking 50% of the course load each academic year.
Our Masters programmes are demanding and we advise students that, if they intend to work alongside the course, their work should be flexible in nature. However, we will work with students, where possible taking into account their individual circumstances and need, to be flexible with our provisions.
Summative assessment for the MA Philosophy & Artificial Intelligence will be by a range of methods to ensure students have the opportunity to demonstrate their abilities and achievements. Students will also be assessed on a dissertation of 10,000-12,000 words.
The MA Philosophy & Artificial Intelligence will equip students for a range of careers and roles in society. Artificial intelligence – specifically, the application of machine learning techniques to big data sets – is becoming increasingly prevalent in society. There is therefore an increasing need for those who can think and communicate clearly about it, and its ethical and societal implications, both within the tech sector and throughout the private, public, and third sectors that engage with and apply it now more than ever.
The option to learn some of the techniques of data science and AI while pursuing the study of Philosophy at masters level is unusual in the UK. Graduates pursuing this option will be able to speak with their more technically minded colleagues and with the uninitiated, bridging the knowledge gaps between them.
This degree will appeal to those who wish to contribute to either the practical or theoretical development of artificial intelligence and its applications, whether through further graduate study or by working in a relevant sector. Graduates will be well-placed to advance their careers in e.g. the tech sector, financial services, policy-making, and journalism, amongst many other areas.