MA Program

The M.A. program is designed to be completed in one or two years.


Breadth Requirements

All graduate students fulfill a set of breadth requirements with the first year coursework. These requirements provide a common experience on which students can build their individual projects and a shared framework within which they can exchange ideas. 

In the first year, students will take at least one course in:

  • metaphysics and epistemology
  • history of philosophy
  • moral philosophy
  • 3 electives (any three graduate seminars in philosophy)


During their first year of study all students must pass a logic competency examination with a grade of B or better. The examination will cover material typically taught in a first course in formal logic. With approval from the Graduate Program Director completion of Philosophy 9, Introduction to Logic may be taken in lieu of the exam.


A total of nine, 5-credit graduate seminars is required for completion of the MA Program. Up to two seminars may be taken from other departments and up to two may be independent studies. In addition to the six courses listed above to be taken in year one, MA students are expected to take at least three more seminars in year two.


There is no foreign language requirement for M.A. students.

Master's Paper

By the end of the second year of study and the completion of 45 credits, M.A. students will submit a master's paper, which will normally be defended before a committee of two faculty.*


*Committees of three faculty are also permitted