Graduate Program

The Department of Philosophy offers a PhD program as well as a joint MA/JD degree with the University of Iowa College of Law. We do not offer a terminal MA degree; however, students who are working toward the PhD often apply to receive the MA degree after passing the comprehensive exam early in the third year. The M.A. requires a minimum of 30 semester hours; courses in metaphysics and epistemology, history of philosophy, logic and philosophy of science, ethics, and value theory; and an oral final examination.

We are an active but fairly informal group of 12 regular faculty and 25 graduate students. We also have three emeritus faculty who continue to be an important part of our teaching and research mission. The department hosts a number of colloquia every semester, along with a departmental picnic at the end of summer and a series of social events recognizing Graduate Student Appreciation Week at the end of spring.

Our graduate students run the University of Iowa Graduate Philosophical Society, organizing a national conference every April and an in-house conference in December, along with informal philosophy “salon” papers and discussions throughout fall and spring. The graduate student community is collegial, and discussions tend to spill over and extend to other venues in downtown Iowa City.