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    Jul 24, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
    
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Philosophy, PhD


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Students accepted into the PhD program with a BA degree (category 1): 72 credit hours

Students entering with a BA are required to take 72 credit hours: 60 hours of required and elective courses and 12 hours of doctoral dissertation courses.

  • Required courses: 9 hours of philosophical topics, 9 hours of environmental philosophy
  • PHIL elective courses: 27 hours
  • Additional PHIL elective or non-PHIL elective courses: 15 hours
  • Doctoral Dissertation: 12 hours

Students accepted into the PhD program with an MA degree in a discipline other than philosophy (category 2): 42 credit hours

Students entering with an MA are required to take 42 credit hours: 30 hours of required and elective courses and 12 hours of doctoral dissertation courses.

  • Required courses: 9 hours of philosophical topics, 9 hours of environmental philosophy
  • Additional PHIL elective: 12 hours
  • Doctoral Dissertation: 12 hours

Students accepted into the PhD program with an MA degree in philosophy (category 3): 42 credit hours

  • Required courses: 6 hours of philosophical topics, 9 hours of environmental philosophy
  • Additional PHIL elective or non-PHIL elective courses: 15 hours
  • Doctoral Dissertation: 12 hours

Interdisciplinary study, 6 or 15 hours


Students entering the PhD program with a BA (in any discipline) and those entering the program with an MA in philosophy may take up to five courses (15 credit hours) in other departments.

Dissertation, 12 hours


Required of all students. After completing all course requirements, students must enroll in 12 semester credit hours of PHIL 6950 . Students may enroll in PHIL 6950  while preparing for the comprehensive exam. Doctoral students must maintain continuous enrollment in this course to remain matriculated

Upon completion of course work and comprehensive exams, students are required to submit a dissertation proposal to the dissertation director and committee members. The student defends the proposal to the director and committee; the proposal must be signed and approved before the student can begin the dissertation.

The dissertation should be a work of original scholarship. The dissertation defense takes place before the director and the committee and is open to the public. 

Additional information


Limitation to taking independent study courses

Graduate students in the Department of Philosophy and Religion may take no more than two independent studies throughout their graduate career unless approved by the Director of Graduate Studies.

Comprehensive examinations


Satisfying the Toulouse Graduate School Requirement for Qualifying Examination and Admission to Candidacy.

The purpose of the comprehensive exam is for the PhD student in philosophy to develop mastery of the philosophical materials (broadly construed) at the foundations of their research interests. The comprehensive exam also serves the purpose of providing the student with mentorship and guidance in the development of their dissertation prospectus.

Consistent with the Toulouse Graduate School Requirement for Qualifying Examination and Admission to Candidacy, this comprehensive exam will require the student to demonstrate competency in the areas of philosophy that they choose in consultation with their Exam Committee

Students are eligible for the comprehensive exam beginning in the final semester of course work. Exams will be administered by the end of the spring semester, or by the end of the fall semester with the consent of the Director of Graduate Studies.

Students are required to assemble a willing Exam Committee with a willing Exam Committee chair for their comprehensive examination. Committees shall consist of three faculty members of the department. Students are encouraged to enroll in a special problems course with their Exam Committee chair during the semester leading up to the exams. They are required to consult frequently with all members of the Committee as they prepare for the exams.

In consultation with the Committee, students will designate a set of texts (and other materials) over which they will be examined. The primary purpose of this list is to ensure mastery of materials deemed essential to situating and grounding their research interests.

PhD students must pass a set of written examinations based on the designated texts and administered by their Committee. The written exams will be administered as take-home essays to be completed across a ten-day period. The Exam Committee will formulate five exam questions or prompts, from which the student will choose three to answer. Each of the three exam questions/prompts chosen by the student is to be answered with a 2,500 to 3,500-word essay. Individual Committees will determine the details of the exams and ensure that the student is well-informed about scheduling, content, and process.

The Committee as a whole is responsible for evaluating the exams. All members of the Exam Committee will read the essays, marking them Pass or Fail. Should at least two members judge an essay or the essays to be failing, the Committee may permit the student to retake those sections once. Such permission is at the discretion of the Committee; should the Committee not grant it, or should a student fail a second time, the student will be removed from the program for unsatisfactory progress. Responsibility for planning, composing, scheduling, and grading the exam rests with the Exam Committee.

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