Master of Arts in Philosophy (MA)

Overview

The UBC Masters in Philosophy provides an opportunity for excellent students to study philosophy at an advanced level; to broaden their understanding of some fundamental questions; and to acquire the skills and knowledge that are necessary for the development their own philosophical research.

There are two routes by which a Masters degree in Philosophy can be gained at UBC: a thesis-based route and a coursework based one. 

The requirements of the coursework-based route are usually met by taking ten courses, with at least six of these being taught in the department of philosophy. Completion of the thesis-based route usually involves taking six courses, and then writing a thesis. In both routes it is normal for students to complete the degree within two years. 

Students have considerable flexibility as to the areas of philosophy in which they choose to specialize. Those wishing to study the work of philosophers writing in languages other than English have the opportunity to learn the languages in question. Most of our students also gain experience of teaching philosophy, through working as a teaching assistant in a variety of undergraduate courses.

What makes the program unique?

The UBC Department of Philosophy is home to a number of internationally celebrated thinkers, with expertise in a broad range of philosophical topics, and with a variety of unique perspectives on the arts, on the biological, social and psychological sciences, on language, on knowledge, on history, and on value.  All of the department’s faculty members work closely with the students who are enrolled in our graduate programmes.

The UBC Philosophy Masters program provides a great degree of flexibility, enabling students to shape their study around their own areas of interest and expertise.   The department has a supportive, collegial, and philosophically inspiring culture.  Students have a range of opportunities to participate fully in its intellectual life. They are also encouraged to participate in the broader community of philosophers, with several sources of funding being available that enable students to present their research at international academic conferences.

Quick Facts

Degree
Master of Arts
Subject
Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities
Mode of delivery
On campus
Specialization
Philosophy
Program Components
Coursework + Options
Faculty
Faculty of Arts

Meet a UBC representative

Graduate Student Housing Info Session

webinar
Date: Tuesday, 02 October 2018
Time: 15:30 to 16:30
It's not too early to explore your options for accommodation, particularly if you are hoping to live on campus, in residence at UBC. About 1300 graduate students live in residence at UBC. Learn about the UBC student residences available for graduate students, the application process, waitlist logistics, and more in this 1-hour webinar presented by UBC Student Housing and Hospitality Services.

Virtual Office Hours

webinar
Date: Thursday, 04 October 2018
Time: 09:00 to 10:00
Are you considering UBC for graduate school? Join our Virtual Office Hours to learn more about academic requirements, the admissions process, and more. Ask your questions in advance when you register. Please note that we will not be able to provide answers to questions that involve specific personal information.

Requirements

TOEFL (ibT) Overall Score Requirement

100
22
21
22
21

IELTS Overall Score Requirement

7.0
6.5
6.5
6.5
6.5

Deadline Details

Application Deadline

Deadline to submit online application. No changes can be made to the application after submission.

Transcript Deadline

Deadline to upload scans of official transcripts through the applicant portal in support of a submitted application. Information for accessing the applicant portal will be provided after submitting an online application for admission.

Referee Deadline

Deadline for the referees identified in the application for admission to submit references. See Letters of Reference for more information.

September 2019 Intake

Application Open Date
15 October 2018
Canadian Applicants
Application Deadline: 07 January 2019
Transcript Deadline: 11 January 2019
Referee Deadline: 11 January 2019
International Applicants
Application Deadline: 07 January 2019
Transcript Deadline: 11 January 2019
Referee Deadline: 11 January 2019

September 2020 Intake

Application Open Date
15 October 2019
Canadian Applicants
Application Deadline: 08 January 2020
Transcript Deadline: 12 January 2020
Referee Deadline: 12 January 2020
International Applicants
Application Deadline: 08 January 2020
Transcript Deadline: 12 January 2020
Referee Deadline: 12 January 2020

Career Options

Graduate students are attracted to the UBC Philosophy Department from around the world, and they often go on to pursue international careers when they graduate.  Many of the students who graduate from the UBC Masters in Philosophy gain fellowships that enable them to study philosophy at the doctoral level at other world-leading universities. The graduates of our program are also exceptionally well-trained in the analytic and verbal skills that employers outside of academia prize, especially in areas relating to the arts, the media, law, and politics.

Alumni on Success

Tuition / Program Costs

FeesCanadian Citizen / Permanent Resident / Refugee / DiplomatInternational
Application Fee$104.00$168.25
Tuition *
Installments per year33
Tuition per installment$1,632.61$2,868.22
Tuition per year$4,897.83$8,604.66
Int. Tuition Award (ITA) per year (if eligible) $3,200.00 (-)
Other Fees and Costs
Student Fees (yearly)$930.14 (approx.)
Costs of living (yearly)starting at $16,884.10 (check cost calculator)
* Regular, full-time tuition. For on-leave, extension, continuing or part time (if applicable) fees see UBC Calendar.
All fees for the year are subject to adjustment and UBC reserves the right to change any fees without notice at any time, including tuition and student fees. In case of a discrepancy between this webpage and the UBC Calendar, the UBC Calendar entry will be held to be correct.

Statistical Data

Enrolment Data

 20172016201520142013
Applications3949325350
Offers28657
New registrations 5435
Total enrolment610789

Completion Rates & Times

This program has a graduation rate of 85% based on 20 students admitted between 2007 - 2010. Based on 12 graduations between 2013 - 2016 the minimum time to completion is 1.66 years and the maximum time is 2.00 years with an average of 1.81 years of study. All calculations exclude leave times.
Disclaimer
Admissions data refer to all UBC Vancouver applications, offers, new registrants for each year, May to April [data updated: 9 March 2018]. Enrolment data are based on March 1 snapshots. Program completion data are only provided for datasets comprised of more than 4 individuals. Rates and times of completion depend on a number of variables (e.g. curriculum requirements, student funding), some of which may have changed in recent years for some programs [data updated: 29 September 2017].

Research Supervisors

This list shows faculty members with full supervisory privileges who are affiliated with this program. It is not a comprehensive list of all potential supervisors as faculty from other programs or faculty members without full supervisory privileges can request approvals to supervise graduate students in this program.

  • Anderson, Scott Allen (intersection of ethics and social and political philosophy, largely focused on how to use and regulate power, coercion, and social norms; action theory and moral psychology, privacy, and problems related to the intensification of technology and information.)
  • Aydede, Murat (Philosophy of mind)
  • Ballarin, Roberta (Philosophical logic, nature and sources of necessity)
  • Bartha, Paul (logic; probability; analogical reasoning, Philosophy of science, decision theory)
  • Beatty, John Henry (Socio-political dimensions of genetics and evolutionary biology)
  • Bedke, Matthew (Philosophy, History and Comparative Studies, Foundations of Ethics, Social Organization and Political Systems, Ethics and Fundamental Issues of Law and Justice, metaethics, ethics, political philosophy, philosophy of law, epistemology)
  • Berryman, Sylvia (Philosophy, History and Comparative Studies, Ancient Greek natural philosophy, Aristotle's ethics, ethics and global poverty)
  • Griffin, Michael (Greek philosophy, Ancient philosophy, Plato, Aristotle, Plotinus, Proclus, Neoplatonism, Ancient logic )
  • Ichikawa, Jonathan (epistemology; philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, philosophical methodology (including experimental philosophy), cognitive science, and metaphysics, especially but not)
  • Jenkins, Carrie (epistemology and metaphysics)
  • Lopes, Dominic (Aesthetics)
  • Margolis, Eric (Philosophy of mind, cognitive sciences, developmental origins of human conceptual system, relationship between language and thought, exaplanation of distinctively human cognition)
  • Mole, Christopher (Philosophical issues that arise from the attempt to understand the mind scientifically, aesthetics of literature )
  • Richardson, Alan Walter (History of philosophy of science in early twentieth century)
  • Russell, Joseph Paul (Free will, contemporary compatibilism, optimism-pessimism contrast)
  • Schabas, Margaret (Philosophy, History and Comparative Studies, History and Philosophy of Economics)
  • Simchen, Ori (Philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, philosophy of law )
  • Stephens, Christopher (philosophy of biology, philosophy of science, rationality, Why be rational?, scientific philosophy)
  • Thompson, Evan (Philosophical Foundations, Philosophy, History and Comparative Studies, Theories and Philosophies, Cognitive Science, Philosophy of Mind, Phenomenology, Asian Philosophies)
  • Wylie, Alison (Philosophy, History and Comparative Studies, philosophy of science, philosophy of the social and historial sciences, feminist philosophy, philosophy of archaeology, research ethics (non-medical), science studies)

Further Program Information

 
 

September 2019 Intake

Application Open Date
15 October 2018
Canadian Applicant Deadline
07 January 2019
International Applicant Deadline
07 January 2019

September 2020 Intake

Application Open Date
15 October 2019
Canadian Applicant Deadline
08 January 2020
International Applicant Deadline
08 January 2020

Program Information

Application Enquiries

Supervisor Search

 

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