Overview of Program

The Department of Philosophy is an active, mid-sized department that has broad interests in philosophical issues within the Anglo-American analytic tradition. Members of the department are engaged in research in philosophy of science, philosophy of mind, metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of language, aesthetics, ethics, social/political philosophy, logic, Indian philosophy and the history of philosophy.

The department has a lively atmosphere and meets regularly during the term for colloquia and other social events. Visit our Calendar of Events for more information. The heart of the department is the Reading Room, which houses a strong collection of books and journals, and is a pleasant place to work. An active Graduate Student Colloquium provides a venue in which graduate members of the department may discuss their research.  Graduate students have the opportunity to hone their teaching skills as TAs or instructors.

Degree Programs

We offer Ph.D. and M.A. (thesis optional) programmes.  Currently, most MA students elect the course-only option, which is especially appropriate for students entering with an interdisciplinary background.

Interdisciplinary Resources

Several philosophy department faculty are members of the Science and Technology Studies program in cooperation with faculty from history, english and other departments.  The STS program offers an MA program and a PhD stream within the philosophy PhD.  Philosophy PhD students enrolled in the PhD stream take three STS seminars as part of their graduate coursework.  STS seminars are frequently crosslisted with philosophy seminars and are open to other graduate students.

Supervision in applied ethics, including biomedical ethics, environmental ethics, and business and professional ethics, is available in conjunction with the Maurice Young Centre for Applied Ethics. The Centre for Applied Ethics is an independent academic unit with resources for graduate education in applied ethics. Graduate students in the philosophy department can seek research supervision from Centre faculty.

The undergraduate Cognitive Systems Program, which links philosophy students to faculty in several departments, is a valuable resource to graduates studying philosophy of mind

Co-operative Agreement with Simon Fraser University

Philosophy graduate students at UBC may take courses in the Philosophy Department at Simon Fraser University without paying additional fees. Supervisory committees may include members from both departments.

Part-Time Studies

Those interested in graduate work who cannot devote themselves to their studies full-time may study part-time toward the M.A. There is no part-time program leading to the Ph.D.

Visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies for more information on applying to be a graduate student at UBC.