Taught degree

Philosophy MA

The Philosophy MA enables students to benefit from the acknowledged expertise of UCL's lively, close-knit intellectual community, and also access the stimulation and dynamism of London's wider philosophical community, one of the largest and most varied in the world. The programme offers the flexibility for recent graduates in the subject to study chosen topics in greater depth.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years

Tuition Fees (2015/16)

£8,755 (FT) £4,375 (PT)
£17,250 (FT) £8,755 (PT)

Application deadlines

All applicants:
1 February 2015
Applications are reviewed after 1 February each year and early submission is recommended. If places are available we will continue to review applications until August of the year of entry.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in Philosophy from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with a strong degree in a non-philosophical subject are welcome.

English language requirement: Good

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

International equivalencies

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

The programme develops an advanced knowledge of problems in contemporary analytic philosophy, the history of philosophy and the study of value. It provides students with an understanding of a representative range of central philosophical debates and of the nature of philosophical problems, and encourages them to develop and defend their own viewpoint.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of two core modules (30 credits), optional modules (90 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).

Core Modules

  • Research Preparation in Philosophy 2
  • Research Preparation in Philosophy 1


  • Kant
  • Epistemology
  • Early Wittgenstein
  • Texts from Early Modern Philosophy: Hume
  • Global Justice and Health
  • General Philosophy: Knowledge & Reality
  • General Philosophy: Moral & Political Philosophy
  • <b>Options may include the following</b>:
  • Metaphysics of Science
  • Philosophy of Mind and Cognitive Science
  • 19th Century Philosophy
  • Greek Philosophy
  • Moral Responsibility and Moral Dilemmas
  • Philosophy of Mind
  • Self-Knowledge


All students undertake an independent research project in any area of philosophy taught by the department, which culminates in a dissertation of 12,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is taught through a combination of seminars, lectures, and personal teaching and supervision. Students' performance is assessed through a combination of examinations, presentations, coursework and the dissertation. Students take eight modules and submit the dissertation at the end of their course.


Applicants for this programme may be eligible for a number of funding opportunities, including: the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and Postgraduate Studentships.

The department also has a Wollheim fund supported by alumni for graduate students.

More scholarships are listed on the scholarships website


Graduates of the department have become successful lawyers, journalists, theatre directors and novelists among many other careers. Those who take the MA as a conversion degree and progress well at it can expect to pursue further research in philosophy in London or elsewhere.

First destinations of recent MA graduates of the department include:

  • White and Case: Legal Assistant
  • Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin: Research Assistant Classics/Philosophy
  • College of Law: GDL Law Conversion Course
  • Shanghai Talk Magazine: Journalism Intern
  • Unicorn Theatre: Press and Marketing Assistant
  • World Association of Non-Governmental Organisations: Publishing Assistant
  • Kings College London: Personal Assistant
  • University of Hong Kong: University Teacher.

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Georgetown University Law School, Research Fellow, 2012,
  • Pennsylvania University, PhD Study, 2012,
  • Enstligen Alp, Marketing Intern, 2012,
  • Demos Independent Think Tank, Researcher, 2011,
  • The Social Investment Consultancy, Research Assistant, 2010,


The programme equips graduates with the skills to analyse complex thoughts and arguments, develop independence of judgement and originality of thought, evaluate arguments rigorously, present views lucidly, both orally and on paper, question orthodox views. These skills provide an ideal springboard to future academic study and many graduates go into Law or further (doctoral) philosophical study both UK and abroad.

Why study this degree at UCL?

UCL Philosophy has notable strengths in the Philosophy of Mind and Language, Political and Moral Philosophy, Metaphysics and Epistemology, and the History of Philosophy, and we offer a strong and supportive research culture.

Our students benefit significantly from our location in London, which is one of the world centres of philosophical activity, home of a number of internationally renowned journals (Philosophy; Mind & Language; Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society) and which enjoys regular visiting speakers from across the world. London has over 60 active philosophers making it one of the largest and most varied philosophical communities in the world.

Philosophy MA includes a conversion route with introductory modules for those who have not studied the subject before.

Student / staff ratios › 22 staff › 36 taught students › 52 research students

Department: Philosophy

Degree reviews

Alumni review

"UCL Philosophy combines the intimacy that you get with a faculty of around 15, as well as the breadth and depth of expertise of a much larger faculty, as it is part of the wider London philosophical scene."

Lee Walters

Subject: Philosophy MA, MPhil, PhD

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

The MA offers a useful means to study philosophy for an additional year after an undergraduate degree and provides a good basis for work outside of universities, as well as a foundation for further research in the field. Philosophy graduates who wish to develop a career in teaching philosophy are advised to apply for the MPhil Stud.

Application deadlines

All applicants
Applications are reviewed after 1 February each year and early submission is recommended. If places are available we will continue to review applications until August of the year of entry.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Philosophy at graduate level
  • why you want to study Philosophy at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic and/or professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme offers.

Contact Information


  • Register interest in your chosen subjects
  • Receive notice of graduate open days, events and more
Register now

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