About the Course

Psychology, Philosophy and Linguistics is a course which allows you to study thought, behaviour and language, and the connections between them. Psychology at Oxford is essentially a scientific discipline, involving the rigorous formulation and testing of ideas. It includes subjects as diverse as social interaction, learning, child development, schizophrenia and information processing.

Philosophy is concerned with a wide range of questions concerning ethics, knowledge and the nature of mind. Philosophy at Oxford has active interests in the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of science, and has very close links with neuroscience and psychology.

Linguistics is the study of language, including structure, meaning (semantics), and pronunciation. There are many areas which link two or more of the component subjects, e.g. language learning, generation and interpretation of language, psycholinguistics.

Psychology, Philosophy and Linguistics at Oxford is a flexible course, offering a wide range of choices within all of the branches. Initially you apply to take TWO of the component subjects, i.e. the available combinations are:

  • Psychology & Philosophy (CV85)
  • Psychology & Linguistics (CQ81)
  • Philosophy & Linguistics (VQ51)

Given the nature of the degree, PPL students are able to consider a wide range of careers, including careers in professional psychology, education, research, medicine, the health services, finance, commerce, industry, the media and information technology. Some careers will require further study and/or training after your degree.

If you study Psychology as part of PPL, your degree is accredited as conferring eligibility for the Graduate Basis for Chartered Membership of the British Psychological Society (provided you study sufficient Psychology options and obtain a 2:1 or above). However, it is not generally possible to earn a living as a psychologist if your only qualification is an undergraduate degree in the subject. For nearly all professional jobs in the subject, further qualifications are necessary, At present, some 15-20% of our undergraduates go on to take second degrees (usually a DPhil, PhD or MSc). These are usually based on independent research done under supervision at some academic institution. They are usually preludes to careers in teaching and research in one or another branch of psychology at a university.

Subject notes

To see the latest subject notes for Psychology, Philosophy and Linguistics (PPL) - which contain information about our tutorial fellows, the admissions process and the course itself - please consult the below link.