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. The programme offers the flexibility for recent graduates in the subject to study chosen topics in greater depth.
Covid-19 programme updates
Due to COVID-19, there may have been updates to this programme for the 2020 academic year. Where there has been an update, these are indicated with a red alert and a link which will provide further information.
Modes and duration
Tuition fees (2020/21)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website.
A minimum of a 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 requirements
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.
The English language level for this programme is: Advanced
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
The programme allows students to develop 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), six optional modules (90 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MA in Philosophy.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
These modules introduce students to graduate study in philosophy. Students will give short presentations on central topics and classic papers which form the basis of discussion.
- Research Preparation in Philosophy 1
- Research Preparation in Philosophy 2
Options may include the following:
- Foundations of Effective Altruism
- Intentional Agency, Acting for a Reason and Responsibility
- Early Wittgenstein
- Philosophy of Mind
- Global Justice and Health
- Free Speech
- Greek Philosophy
- Nineteenth Century Philosophy
- Philosophy of Mind and Cognitive Science
- Metaphysics of Science
- The Self in Early Analytic Philosophy
- Philosophy of Space and Time
- Epistemology of Disagreement
- The Philosophy of Climate Change
- Recent Work in Practical Philosophy
- Graduate Studies in the Philosophy of Language
- Perception and its History
- Aristotle’s Moral Psychology
All students undertake an independent research project in any area of philosophy taught and approved by the department, leading to in a dissertation of 12,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is taught through a combination of seminars, lectures, and supervisions. Students' performance is assessed through presentations, coursework, examinations and the dissertation.
Applicants for this programme may be eligible for a number of funding opportunities, including UCL graduate scholarships.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- UK, EU, Overseas
- Based on academic merit
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Graduates of this programme have become successful lawyers, journalists, theatre directors and novelists among other careers. Those who perform sufficiently well on the MA can expect to pursue further research in philosophy in London or elsewhere.
The programme equips graduates with the skills to analyse complex ideas, develop independence of judgement and originality of thought, evaluate arguments rigorously, present views lucidly both orally and on paper, and question orthodox views. The programme provides an ideal basis for future academic study and many graduates proceed to research degrees in the UK and abroad.
Why study this degree at UCL?
The department has strengths in philosophy of mind, language, political and moral philosophy, metaphysics, epistemology and the history of philosophy.
Our students benefit significantly from our location in London, which is one of the international centres of philosophical activity. London is home of a number of renowned journals (Philosophy; Mind & Language; Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society) and hosts regular visiting speakers from across the world. Over 60 philosophers are active in London making it one of the largest and most varied philosophical communities in the world.
What our students and staff say
"UCL has one of the best philosophy departments in the world. With the other London universities there are interesting talks, workshops, and conferences taking place all the time. Most of my work is on causation, laws of nature, and probability, and the relationship between these three things. Work on probability and causation is a cross-disciplinary venture, involving philosophers, computer scientists, statisticians, and psychologists, among others."
Professor Luke Fenton-GlynnPhilosophy MA, Philosophy 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.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £80 for online applications and £105 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
The MA offers a means to study philosophy for an additional year after completing an undergraduate degree and also provides a good basis for work outside of universities. Philosophy graduates who wish to develop a career in teaching philosophy are advised to apply directly for the MPhil Stud.
- All applicants
- 31 January 2020
Applications close on 1 February each year and early submission is recommended.
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.
UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.