The M.A. program is designed for those who want to pursue philosophy at a deeper level than in their B.A. degree, or who wish to transition into philosophy from other academic disciplines. Students may choose this program to improve their chances of acceptance into a highly-ranked Ph.D. program, or for other reasons. There are no distribution requirements: students may tailor their coursework to their own interests. Students must also write and defend a thesis, which can be used as a writing sample for Ph.D. program applications. (Note that acceptance into the M.A. program does not guarantee acceptance into our own Ph.D. program later on; the application procedures are separate.)

Degree Requirements:

M.A. students must complete 24 graduate-level credits in philosophy (with at least a 3.0 GPA), plus six credits of thesis research. This normally takes four semesters (two years) of full-time enrolment. Students must defend their thesis in an oral defense in the Spring of their second year.

Financial Aid:

For information on how to apply for financial aid, eligibility, and need determination, students should visit http://grad-prof.miami.edu/cost/graduate-costs/index.html.

Graduate Placement:

Faculty will help prepare M.A. students for placement in a Ph.D. program if that is their goal. This includes detailed advice on the personal statement and help with polishing a writing sample.

How to Apply:

Applicants will normally have successfully completed substantial undergraduate coursework in philosophy (in the form of a major, significant minor, or equivalent coursework in philosophy). Applicants who wish to transition from another academic discipline should explain their background in philosophy in their statement of purpose. The application must include three letters of recommendation from those in a position to comment on a student’s potential for graduate study in philosophy (normally former or current teachers), a philosophical essay (writing sample) representing the applicant’s best work in philosophy, a statement of purpose, transcripts, and GRE scores. Foreign students from non-English speaking countries are generally also required to submit their scores on the TOEFL (this may be waived in special cases, e.g. for students who have a prior degree from an English-speaking institution).

Advice for Applicants:

1.     The letters of recommendation: Ideally, your writers should be professors who know your work well, and can comment on your achievements and promise in philosophy. You should provide them with your statement of purpose, writing sample, and other samples of your written work in philosophy to help them in writing their letter. 

2.     The writing sample is our chance to evaluate your philosophical work and abilities first-hand. This should be a substantive and polished paper (ideally: 12-20 pages) on a core philosophical topic, showing your ability to master a topic and contribute to a debate. Do not submit writing samples on non-philosophical topics; that will not help your application.

3.     The statement of purpose: Should be no more than 1-2 pages (single spaced), and should outline why you intend to pursue graduate work in philosophy.

GRE and transcripts: We do not make use of any ‘cut-off’ scores for either GPA or GRE scores, but rather evaluate applications holistically. With respect to GPA, we are generally more interested in your grades in philosophy courses than in other subjects, and are more interested in recent than in distant past grades. Official transcripts from all institutions attended are required and should be sent to the Department. A copy of the transcript may be emailed to the department and serve as a place holder only until the official transcript arrives.

The deadline for applications for admission is: March 31, 2018.

Students who have difficulty meeting the deadline or have any other questions or concerns should contact the Director of Graduate Studies.

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For administrative questions regarding application materials, the status of your application, etc., please contact our secretary, Lisa Tafares, at 305-284-4757, or via e-mail at let@miami.edu 

For questions of an academic nature about the program, contact the Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Simon Evnine. He can be reached via e-mail at sevnine@miami.edu