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Master of Arts in Philosophy

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M.A. Degree Requirements

The department offers thesis and nonthesis M.A. options. Both require at least 30 credit hours of graduate work in philosophy with a grade of B or higher. At least 15 of these hours must be in courses numbered 800 or above and, for the thesis option, may include 6 hours of PHIL 899 Master’s Thesis. Students must complete two courses at the 500 level or above (or the equivalent) in each of these areas: history of philosophy, metaphysics and epistemology (broadly construed), and value theory. Courses taken during the undergraduate career may be counted toward these area requirements, but such work does not count toward the overall 30-hour graduate credit requirement unless the student took this course work for graduate credit and it has department approval. A student also must take PHIL 800 Tutorial in the first year.

For the thesis option, the student must submit an acceptable thesis and pass a 2-part oral or written examination including 1 part covering the material of the M.A. program generally and a second part devoted to a defense of the thesis. For the nonthesis option, the student must pass an oral examination covering the material of the M.A. program. The nonthesis option can be satisfied by Ph.D. students who successfully complete PHIL 901 Ph.D. Tutorial.

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Time Limits and Other Restrictions

Information on time limits may be found under Master's Degree Requirements, Program Time Constraints in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog. The rule for transferring credit toward the M.A. appears under General Regulations in the Graduate Studies section of the online catalog.

The department’s requirement of 39 credit hours of acceptable graduate work for the Ph.D. can be reduced by petition depending on the amount and quality of equivalent graduate work completed at another institution. However, at least 24 hours of acceptable graduate work must be taken in the Department of Philosophy at KU.

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