We have a large community of about 50-60 research students, including around 40 doctoral students, who work across the full range of our research expertise. Our research students play an active role in shaping the research life of the Department, in particular, by organising a large number of reading and study groups.
PhD in Linguistics
Aside from PhD research in philosophy, the Department is also able to offer the opportunity for PhD research in Linguistics, working with one of our experts in the field.
NB Students interested in pursuing the PhD in Linguistics should indicate this in their personal statement.
Joint PhD programmes:
National University of Singapore / Humboldt University Berlin
The Department of Philosophy at King's is delighted to be able to offer research students two exciting options for joint-PhD study. The programmes offered provide candidates with the opportunity to divide their PhD study between two prestigious universities, enjoying full supervision at both. The programme builds on an extensive network of existing institutional links, joint teaching experience and collaborative graduate programmes between King’s and the partners universities.
The Department of Philosophy at the Humboldt University has strengths in the following research areas: Classical German Philososophy, especially Kant, Early Modern Philosophy, especially Leibniz and Locke, Philosophy of Mind (Berlin School of Mind and Brain), Ancient Philosophy (Graduate School of Ancient Philosophy), Analytic Metaphysics. These areas complement the research in King’s in the history of philosophy, in ancient philosophy, modern philosophy, philosophy of mind and metaphysics. We encourage applications from students that intend to write a PhD in one of these areas. The joint PhD offers the opportunity to do some graduate work in German. Hence, it should be of interest to PhD students who want to work on a German speaking philosopher.
The Department of Philosophy at the National University of Singapore is a thriving community with 16 full-time tenured or tenure track faculty members. In addition, there are more than thirty graduate students pursuing the PhD and Masters in philosophy. Its faculty members engage in research in a wide range of fields, including Moral and Practical philosophy, Continental European, Buddhist, Indian, Chinese and Comparative Philosophy. It thus offers a range of study options for potential PhD students that complement well King's own research strengths in, for example, ancient philosophy, modern philosophy, philosophy of mind and metaphysics. Students would spend a significant portion of their time in Singapore, thereby enabling them to access expertise in fields of philosophy, such as Chinese philosophy, where King's alone would not be able to offer supervision.
How to apply - special instructions for joint PhD programmes
* For full details, please see 'How To Apply' below
Applicants to Joint PhD programmes are encouraged to contact the department before submitting an application, to discuss the suitability of their topic for the joint programme and the availability of suitable supervisors at both institutions. Applications should initially be submitted to the proposed home institution only, i.e. the institution where students will start and finish their programme. Applications will then be assessed by both partners.
Applicants who choose King’s as their home institution should apply through the online application form, selecting the appropriate Joint PhD option from the drop-down list. In addition to the standard supporting documentation, applicants should submit a travel plan indicating how they intend to split their time between the two partner institutions.
Applicants to Joint PhD programmes are normally expected to start the programme in September.
How you will study
Teaching for the PhD is mainly by individual tutorials. Students will receive, on average, one tutorial every two weeks, and typically will also meet with staff other than their supervisor, to learn about different approaches.
There are seminars for research students each week. In their first year research students attend the First Year Research Seminar; the more advanced students attend the Advanced Research Seminar. Our research students also benefit from access to the unparalleled range of research seminars available across the London philosophical community.
PhD students are usually invited to do some paid teaching of undergraduates—excellent experience for students intending to make a career in university teaching.
Entry into the programme and duration of studies
How to apply
We require students to have a Master’s degree in Philosophy (typically with distinction, or equivalent) before embarking on the PhD.
In the first instance most PhD students are registered as probationary MPhil/PhD students in the expectation that they will be upgraded to full PhD registration after their first year on the basis of written work submitted. However, PhD students who have successfully completed the equivalent of our MPhilSt degree will be accepted directly into the PhD program.
Ideally, full-time students will complete their doctorates within three years (two if their Master's is the London MPhilStud or the Oxford BPhil). After three years' full-time registration students can apply to switch to writing-up status, with reduced fees.
All full-time students must complete within four years.
We also welcome part-time students for whom the required timetables are double those specified above.
Applications for a graduate place at King's should be made via the online application form. NB 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.
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 February 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.