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  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas

    Philosophy

  • Start Date

    September

  • Course Duration

    1 year

  • Course Type

    MA

  • Course Fees

    Please see website for details

  • Last Updated

    04 September 2017

Course content

What is the meaning of existence? This is just one of the philosophical questions you’ll explore at Leuven's renowned Institute of Philosophy. Its Master of Arts in Philosophy (MA) programme crosses the boundaries of all philosophical disciplines, traditions, and approaches to help you form your own well-rounded view. The programme aims to develop students' knowledge of philosophy by exposing them to more advanced study of the central issues of the subject and by equipping them with the requisite research skills needed to proceed to a higher degree.

What is the Master of Philosophy all about?

The Institute of Philosophy offers a comprehensive range of BA, MA, Research Master and PhD degrees, all taught in English. Viewed collectively, our undergraduate and post-graduate degrees aim to familiarise students with the history of philosophy as well as with contemporary movements in analytic and continental philosophy so that they are able to engage with the fundamental areas of philosophical research. The Institute of Philosophy is proud to offer its students a broad philosophical education and a wide range of courses and seminars, as well as personalised study support and guidance.

The aim of the MA programme is to deepen students’ knowledge of philosophy by exposing them to more advanced study of the central issues of the subject and by equipping them with the requisite research skills needed to proceed to a higher degree. The programme is comprehensive and at the same time allows students to begin to develop their own specialisation. 

This is a programme that can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

The Master of Arts in Philosophy is a one-year programme of 60 ECTS Credits. With regard to its structure, the MA provides a broad range of both historical and systematic Core Courses which, together with elective courses, guarantee the comprehensiveness of the programme. Yet, the programme structure allows students to deepen their knowledge in a particular philosophical domain or period, thus laying the basis for their future specialisation.

The Master’s Thesis is a key part of the programme, where students demonstrate their research, writing and argumentative skills, as well as thorough insight in the chosen research question and the correct use of primary and secondary sources. Students are encouraged to present their thesis research to the international audience of fellow students, permanent teaching staff and young researchers associated with the institute at the yearly Graduate Student Conference. The Institute of Philosophy has hosted the conference with much success for more than seven years now. For help with the writing process or preparing a presentation, students can turn to the HIW Writing Lab.

International

Philosophy has been taught at KU Leuven since its founding in 1425. Throughout the centuries, the university has remained an important and influential centre of philosophical thought, with a strong commitment to the international dimension of education. In more recent times, the Institute of Philosophy, established in 1889, has continued this august tradition and is now an internationally recognised centre of philosophical research and education.

The Institute of Philosophy is international in every sense of the word.

  • It offers a complete programme of philosophical studies in English, in addition to a complete programme in Dutch.
  • It has its roots in the eminent tradition of European continental philosophy. In recent years, however, it has embraced other philosophical traditions ranging from Anglo-American thought to non-Western philosophy. The Institute is truly committed to philosophical pluralism.
  • Members of its teaching staff come from, among others, the USA, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, and South-Africa.
  • It attracts visiting scholars and students from all over the world. Some 70 different nationalities are represented.
  • It has Erasmus+ exchange agreements with more than 40 European universities, including universities in Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen, Paris, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Madrid, Siena and Istanbul. Master students who did the BA Philosophy at KU Leuven have the opportunity to study at a foreign partner university for one semester, in either the first or the second semester. 
  • With 5 research centres, some 40 full-time staff and more than 150 adjunct faculty members, post-docs and doctoral students, it is among the largest research groups in philosophy on the continent.
  • It hosts several international conferences every year with widely varying themes and involving a mix of well-established and up-and-coming philosophers from near and far.
  • It has one of the finest philosophical libraries in the world. The library contains more than 90,000 volumes and maintains subscriptions to more than 300 journals. It is user-friendly, with open stacks, a liberal lending policy, extensive electronic resources and an online catalogue.
  • In 2017 the Institute of Philosophy was ranked 30th in the world among philosophy programmes (QS World University Rankings).

Career perspectives

Graduates in philosophy go on to careers in many different sectors, including business, civil service, politics, education, publishing, media, the socio-cultural sector, journalism, academia ...

Many employers seek candidates who are not only well grounded in a specific field, but are also able to handle the diverse challenges arising in a fast-paced workplace. Graduates in philosophy are well positioned to think clearly and respond effectively in the workplace.


Visit the Philosophy MA page on the KU Leuven website for more details!

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