Computer Science and Philosophy: Overview and Entrance Requirements

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In this Computer Science and Philosophy course, you’ll dive into the realms of mathematical problem-solving, computing, and artificial intelligence. Furthermore, you’ll explore the profound impact of computer systems on our lives – from communication to AI-driven problem-solving beyond human capability.

You will uncover philosophical challenges arising from AI, like ethics, privacy, and the social landscape. You will also delve into the very nature of reason, rationality, and autonomy. What was once theoretical has become a reality, thus shaping the world around us.

Computer science offers profound insights into intricate systems, while philosophy hones analytical and critical skills. Engage with diverse viewpoints, craft compelling arguments, and envision novel possibilities.

Embark on a 3-year BA journey or a 4-year Master’s exploration in Computer Science and Philosophy. Seize the opportunity to be a forward-thinking thinker, navigating the intersection of technology and philosophy.

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UCAS CodeIV15   
Minimum Entrance Requirements A-levels – A*AA, including Maths, with the A* in Maths, Further Maths or Computer Science 
Advanced Highers – AA/AAB with an A in Mathematics
IB – 39 (including core points) with 766 at HL (the 7 must be in HL Mathematics)
Admission Test for Computer Science and Philosophy at OxfordMAT (Mathematics Admissions Test)
Test Date: 19 October 2023, Registration Deadline: 29 September 2023        
Subject Requirements for Computer Science and Philosophy at OxfordMaths is Essential and Further Maths is also highly Recommended
Extras things admission tutors look forApplication/Interest: Candidates should be able to demonstrate: Strong mathematical aptitude, independent thinking and working, quick absorption and application of new concepts.
Tutors will also be looking for: Critical and analytical approach to abstract questions, skill in defending viewpoints through reasoned argument. Furthermore, candidates should demonstrate an eagerness to explore and delve deeper into philosophical concepts.
Duration3 years (BA), 4 years (MCompSciPhil)
Admissions StatisticsInterviewed: 28%, Successful: 9%
What is Computer Science & Philosophy at Oxford?Computer Science and Philosophy at Oxford is an innovative programme that merges mathematical problem-solving, computing, and AI with philosophical exploration. 
It also examines the impact of computer systems on our lives, delves into ethical and theoretical questions posed by AI. Moreover, it equips students with analytical, critical, and logical skills. 
Guided by esteemed academics, this degree further offers a unique opportunity to bridge the gap between technology and philosophy.
Colleges that Offer this courseBalliol College, Christ Church, Hertford College, Jesus College, Lady Margaret Hall, Merton College, New College, Oriel College, St Anne’s College, St Catherine’s College, St Hilda’s College, University College
Structure of the Computer Science and Philosophy Course at OxfordYear 1 
Around 8 lectures and 2-3 college tutorials weekly. 
Computer Science: Functional programming, Design and analysis of algorithms, Introduction to proof systems, Imperative programming, Discrete mathematics, Probability
Philosophy: Core courses may include: General philosophy, Philosophical topics in logic and probability, Alan Turing on computability and intelligence
There will also be three Computer Science examinations and two Philosophy examinations
Year 2 Computer Science core courses (25%):
Models of computation, Algorithms and data structures, Group design practica
lComputer Science options (25%):
Current options include: Compilers, Databases, Artificial intelligence, Logic and proof, Computer architecture 
Philosophy (50%):
Current options include: Knowledge and reality, Early modern philosophy, Philosophy of science, Philosophy of mind, Ethics, Computer Science group design practical, possibly industry-sponsored.
There will also be between four and six Computer Science examinations (according to student’s choice)
Year 3Computer Science (25–75%):        
Current options include: Computational complexity, Machine learning, Computer-aided formal verification, Principles of programming language, Knowledge representation and reasoning
Philosophy (25–75%):
Current options include: Ethics of artificial intelligence, Philosophical logic, Philosophy of cognitive science, Philosophy of mathematics, Philosophy of logic and language, Philosophy thesis
There will also be between five and nine examinations, including at least three in Philosophy
Year 4 Computer Science:
Current advanced options include: Advanced security, Computational game theory, Computational learning theory, Concurrent algorithms and data structures, Graph representation learning, Ethical computing in practice, Optional computer science project
Philosophy: Advanced options in philosophy, Optional philosophy thesis
Computer Science: one examination (or take-home exercise) per course
Philosophy: for each course, a three-hour written examination and a 5,000-word essay.
Common Careers after Computer Science and Philosophy at OxfordThe course imparts highly marketable skills. Moreover, the skills to design programmes & processes coupled with an ability to analyse or interpret complex concepts helps graduates of this course to secure leadership & high-level positions in the market.
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