Master of Philosophical Studies (MPhilStud)
About the course
The MPhilStud is a research masters degree, aimed at students who have an undergraduate degree (typically 1st class) in which philosophy was at least a major component and who want to begin further research in the subject.
The course for full-time students lasts two years, with a qualifying assessment at the end of the first year. Part-time students can complete the course in either three or four years.
It involves studying three areas of philosophy in depth, chosen from a very extensive list of options (see below), and writing a 30,000-word dissertation.
The MPhilStud programme can be tailored to students' particular interests, reflecting the Department's research strengths, eg Ancient philosophy, philosophy of mind & psychology, etc. Further information can be found along with information on option papers here.
Teaching is by individual tutorials with members of King’s permanent faculty (fortnightly in the first year, weekly in the second). In addition, students can take advantage of the rich research environment in King's. In particular, MPhilStud students are specifically required to attend the First Year Research Seminar in their first year and the Advanced Research Seminar in their second.
In their second year MPhilStud students are normally invited to engage in some paid teaching of undergraduates.
Students who complete this degree and then go on to doctoral research will be expected to complete their PhD a year sooner than normal, ideally after two further years.
How to apply
Applications for a graduate place at King's should now be made online via the online application form. Please note that in their initial phases, applications are handled by the College’s Centre for Arts and Sciences Admissions (CASA), rather than by the department.
NB: These Programmes are officially listed as ‘Philosophical Studies MPhSt'. As such, if you'd like to apply for them, please search for 'Philosophical', rather than 'Philosophy’, when you access the Application Portal.
Once CASA has collected all the required information, the application is then sent to the department's admissions panel for evaluation. During peak periods, the process can take between 4-8 weeks from submission of application to notification of outcome.
Applications for September 2013 entry should be submitted by 01 March 2013 for students seeking funding. However, we will also consider applications as late as July 2013.
In addition to the basic personal information requested by the form, you will need to provide:
Evidence of your past academic qualifications, where available (scanned copies of transcripts will suffice, but not just your degree certificate).
Contact details for two academic referees
One or more pieces of written work totaling around 3,000 words: This should be attached to the section called "Research Proposal" on the form. Ideally, it should be a philosophical essay; try to choose something that demonstrates that you have an aptitude for philosophical study, such as an ability to handle abstract concepts, construct and evaluate an argument, and so on.
Personal statement: you can use this to describe your philosophical interests, explain why you wish to study at King’s in particular, and add any additional information that you feel might support your application
Research proposal: an outline of your proposed research project. We recognise that this will be provisional at this stage - indeed, we expect your project to develop as you study at King's - but nevertheless we request that you give some indication of your proposed research questions, how they are situated in the existing literature, and so on. You are welcome to approach a member of our academic staff to discuss this in advance of submitting your application if you wish, but you are not required to do so.