Useful Books/Websites – Higher Philosophy


Benn, Piers Ethics (London: Routledge, 1998) ISBn: 1-85728-453-4

Really useful chapters on consequentialism and Kant. If you were able to understand and remember the complexities he discusses you would be looking at getting an A in the Moral Philosophy Section if you were able to communicate it reasonably well. The discussion of Kant is, I think, one of the best at this level available. The other chapters are also good for IB. Questions on the above chapters are in the Higher Philosophy Section of this site.

Rafferty J Critical Thinking For SQA Higher and Int 2 (London: Kynoch & Blaney, 2007) ISBN: 978-0955397318

Cardinal, Hayward & Jones The Meditations Rene Descartes (Philosophy in Focus) (London: Hodder Education, 2005) ISBN: 978-0340888049

Descartes, R Meditations on First Philosophy (Indianapolis: Hackett PC, 1993) ISBN: 9780872201927

Kenny, A What I Believe (London: Continuum, 2007) ISBN: 978-0826496164

Anthony Kenny’s chapter on ethics explains Kant and Consequentialism with wonderful clarity (though in less detail than you require) and offers criticisms of both that are slightly more nuanced than some found in other books noted here. He also gives an excellent account of Virtue Ethics which may free you from the ‘Kant or Mill’ nature of some essays. They can certainly both be wrong.

Warburton, N Philosophy: The Classics, 2nd Edition (London: Routledge, 2001) ISBN: 0-415-23998-2

Warburton, N Philosophy: The Basics (London: Routledge, 1992 and following) ISBN: 0-415-32773-3

on the web

LTS Support Notes

These should be your first port of call for all your revising and if you have missed any classes. They are set by people who have studied the arrangement document very closely and are very easy to understand. If you know everything in these you will certainly pass the final exam. This said to attain a top level band you will need to do a lot more that know a load of facts. You must be able to apply/evaluate/evidence (depending on the section) everything you have studied. By the final exam you will have covered things that are not in these notes so do not rely on them entirely.

Stevenson College Philosophy Website

Real evidence for the old adage ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’. The site looks difficult to navigate but is, in actual fact, very straight forward. The handouts are very useful. Especially if you have missed an entire topic. Remember the slides form our classes are also online.

The Basics of Philosophy Website

Pretty useful if you miss something massive I think, and quite good for seeing how some different areas fit together. I wouldn’t spend to long on it though… it probably doesn’t have all the information and complexity you would want to have under your belt for the exam, though, so don’t rely on it too much.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This on the other hand will go into considerably more depth than is necessary. You would probably have to use it wisely and look at the main subtitles. On the other hand the articles are very good and there is probably no better online philosophy resource.

That Religious Studies Website

You’ve got to be careful with this because it’s aimed at a different course than that which you are studying, on the other hand it is brilliant for understanding the parts of the course that the SQA don’t give enough time to. Click above to see the entry on Preference Utilitarianism and Peter Singer – a good example of one of these areas. It is slightly less interactive than similar sites but the content is top quality.

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