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The Philosophy Department provides excellent training in both research and teaching. The nationally and internationally renowned faculty have expertise in the core areas of philosophy, with particular strength in epistemology, ethics, philosophy of mind and political philosophy, and also in various specialties; these include philosophy of biology, Asian philosophy, experimental philosophy, and the foundations of decision and game theory. With 15 full time faculty and around 25 graduate students, we offer a supportive community for pursuit of the MA and the PhD, with a broad range of courses, rigorous training, attentive, high-quality advising, the opportunity to develop a professional network through our series of colloquia and conferences, and help in every aspect of job seeking. We give students the advice and support they need to present their work at regional and national conferences, and to publish in professional journals, before they begin to look for jobs. We also give our students extensive training and experience in teaching, including assistantships with award-winning teachers.

Degrees Offered

Philosophy, Doctor of Philosophy

On Campus

Admission Criteria

Fall deadline: February 20

  • Average GPA in the major: 3.9

Minimum English Proficiency Requirements

Test Type Total Score Reading Listening Speaking Writing
TOEFL Internet-based10017172317
TOEFL Paper-based6005252N/A52
IELTS Academic76676

Average GRE Scores

Test Type Verbal Quantitative
GRE163155

Although we award an MA degree, we admit students to our PhD program only (with the MA obtained in the process). Any unusual circumstances regarding failure to meet the minimum requirements should be called to the attention of the director of graduate admissions.

Eligibility for any graduate work in philosophy requires the equivalent of the following six undergraduate courses in philosophy: formal logic, ethics, ancient philosophy, modern philosophy, epistemology, and metaphysics.

Deficiencies may be made up after the student is enrolled at MU.

Required Application Materials

For the Office of Graduate Studies

  • Completed Graduate Studies online application
  • Unofficial Transcripts- As part of the application submission process, all applicants are required to upload unofficial copies of all post-secondary transcripts to the online application. Official transcripts are only required if accepted by the academic program.
  • Official Results of English Proficiency Exams (International applicants only)

For the Philosophy Program

  • 3 letters of recommendation (submission through the online application system)
  • Statement of interest (upload to the online application)
  • Writing sample (upload to the online application)
  • Resume/CV (upload to the online application)
  • Departmental application (download this from https://philosophy.missouri.edu/grad/apply-graduate-program and then upload to the online application).
  • GRE score report: MU’s school code is 6875; philosophy’s department code is 2801 (Only electronic scores are acceptable)
  • TOEFL score: MU’s school code is 6875; philosophy’s department code is 2801 (International applicants only)