MA Philosophy (Research)

General

Program Description

What is consciousness? What is the relation between truth and democracy? If our world is mechanistic, how could chances ever exist?

Students will further train the philosophical knowledge and skills they developed in their Bachelor's degree program and are encouraged to engage in philosophical discussions at a deeper level.

Master's students in Philosophy can choose from three specializations:

  • Theoretical Philosophy
  • History of Philosophy
  • Ethics of Social and Political Philosophy

The program is concluded with a thesis on a topic of your choice.

The Master's program in Philosophy is offered both on a full-time and part-time basis.

Holland Scholarship

Admitted prospective students from outside the EU/EEA can apply for the Holland Scholarship. Please find information on eligibility and how to apply on our Holland Scholarship page (deadline for 1st call is on 1 February; the deadline for 2nd call is on 1 May).

Tuition waiver

Half the tuition fee for non-EU/EEA students is covered by the Faculty of Philosophy.

Why study this program in Groningen?

Results of the National Student Assessment (NSE) show that our students are very satisfied with the contents of our programs and that they value the expertise of our teaching staff. Small-scale classes and a friendly, informal setting enhance contacts between our staff and students. In reviews of the Keuzegids Universiteiten and in the Higher Education Review of Dutch University Faculties, our faculty was rated number one by both students and professors year after year - and second-best twice.

Program

Year 1

The program comprises one year (60 ECTS). Students choose a coherent set of at least four courses within a specialization area (20 ECTS). Additionally, students can choose up to four courses of other specialization areas (20 ETCS). The program is concluded with a thesis (20 ECTS).

You can choose one of the areas of specialization:

  • Theoretical Philosophy: logic; argumentation theory; (formal) epistemology; and philosophy of science, mind, and language.
  • Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy: normative ethics; meta-ethics; moral psychology; and contemporary political philosophy.
  • History of Philosophy: metaphysics; epistemology; ancient, medieval and (early) modern philosophy.

However, there are also possibilities to take courses outside your specialization area if this also fits your academic interests. For example, if you are interested in contemporary debates on 'autonomy' and 'moral luck', then taking a course about Spinoza's Ethics may be an interesting choice.

You conclude the degree program by writing and defending a thesis of 20 ECTS. You are free to formulate and pursue your own research question. The thesis is written under the supervision of two staff members.

Courses

  • Four electives within an area of specialization (20 EC)
  • Four electives within or outside specialization (15 EC)
  • Master thesis (20 EC)

Study load

40 hours of class and self-study per week on average.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is recommended
  • For an average of 16 weeks
  • Maximum of 30 EC

Admission requirements

International diploma

Specific requirements More information
Language test

Proof of English proficiency: you will need to prove your proficiency in English by means of one of the following tests (the test cannot be older than two years):

  • IELTS, a minimum overall score of 6.5 TOEFL 92/120 IBT

Please ask the ETS to send us the test score report using institution code 7191. This requirement does not apply if you:

  • Are a native speaker and completed secondary education in any one of the following countries: Canada, USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia;
  • Have completed your bachelor education in any one of the following countries: Canada, USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia.
Previous education

We expect a Bachelor's degree in philosophy or philosophy of a specific scientific discipline, or another Bachelor's degree which the admissions board considers to be equivalent.

Reference letter

Two reference letters. These letters should be written by instructors who know the student and who describe the student's past performance and academic promise.

Written request

Motivation letter: The student should explain why he or she wishes to take part in our program, what he or she expects from the program and what he or she wishes to achieve.

Other admission requirements

Required documents to be provided with the application:

Copy of bachelor diploma or proof of enrolment including expected graduation date, Curriculum Vitae (CV), Writing sample: This can be the student's Bachelor thesis or a paper he or she has written for a philosophy course.

We advise non-EU students to apply even earlier and use the deadline of the preceding admission moment, as acquiring a visa and other documents are often time-consuming.

Application deadlines

Type of student Deadline Start course
Dutch students

01 November 2020

01 May 2021

01 February 2021

01 September 2021

EU/EEA students

01 November 2020

01 May 2021

01 November 2021

01 February 2021

01 September 2021

01 February 2022

non-EU/EEA students

01 November 2020

01 May 2021

01 November 2021

01 February 2021

01 September 2021

01 February 2022

Language requirements

Exam Minimum score
IELTS overall band 6.5
TOEFL internet-based 92

Tuition fees

Nationality Year Fee Program form
EU/EEA 2020-2021 € 2143 full-time
non-EU/EEA 2020-2021 € 13500 full-time

Job prospects

After finishing the Master's degree, many philosophers find work as educators, journalists, editors and policy advisors, both in business and at governmental agencies. It is also possible to become a researcher at the university or a private research institute.

Job examples

  • Researcher
  • Journalist

Research

Philosophical research in Groningen has a strong reputation, witness the excellent marks it has received for many years from international assessment committees. According to the most recent committee, headed by Prof. Timothy Williamson, Groningen "is producing research that is cutting-edge by international standards. There is a strong and bracing emphasis on judging work by the highest international standards. Amongst the relevant specialists, the reputation of the Institute is high."

The research in Groningen covers a wide area, and it is carried out in three departments: History of Philosophy, Theoretical Philosophy, and Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy.

Last updated Jul 2020

About the School

The University of Groningen has a rich academic tradition dating back to 1614. From this tradition arose the first female student and the first female lecturer in the Netherlands, the first Dutch astr ... Read More

The University of Groningen has a rich academic tradition dating back to 1614. From this tradition arose the first female student and the first female lecturer in the Netherlands, the first Dutch astronaut and the first president of the European Central Bank. Geographically, the University is rooted in the Northern part of the Netherlands, a region very close to its heart. Read less
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