Philosophy that matters

The University of Waterloo is proud to offer versatile graduate programs in Philosophy that prepare our students for careers inside and outside of academia. During their time at Waterloo, our students benefit from a strong repertoire of interdisciplinary research strengths, our programs produce competent and well-respected graduates that have gone on to work in healthcare, government, law, corporate, and academic careers.

Our research strengths include feminist philosophy, cognitive science of psychology, bioethics, and applied ethics, and we offer specialized graduate research fields in language, logic, and metaphysics, philosophy of mind and cognitive science, ethics and political philosophy, and philosophy of science and mathematics.

Graduate programs

MA in Philosophy

The MA in Philosophy teaches students to think logically and abstractly about complex problems and while honing research and communication skills. A student enrolled full-time in the MA in Philosophy typically completes the program within twelve months, but can take up to 24 months if needed. There is also the option to study part-time.

PhD in Philosophy

The PhD in Philosophy prepares students to conduct rigorous independent research and explain complex ideas to a variety of audiences. 

PhD in Applied Philosophy

The PhD in Applied Philosophy teaches students how to integrate theoretical philosophical training with practical problems.

As a doctoral candidate in applied philosophy, Kathryn Morrison took her studies in bioethics a step beyond to support clinical teams, patients, and families.

"During the Applied Philosophy PhD program I enjoyed meeting and working with experts and mentors in both academic and practical settings. The process of reflecting on the practical applications of my research has enriched the quality of my work."

- Kathryn Morrison, Applied Philosophy PhD Graduate

In Philosophy, we're more than just a department - we're a community. Our graduate student association has been hosting their own graduate conference series for over 20 years, and we host regularly socials where graduate students and faculty get to interact beyond the classroom.

We also host the Humphery Professor and the Rudrick scholar series which brings in external scholars from outside Waterloo in addition to our regular program of visiting speakers. These opportunities allow students to learn about philosophy in practice and provide valuable learning and network opportunities.

Want to know more?

We're happy to talk to you about our graduate programs and answer any questions you have.

Ashley Price
Graduate Coordinator

  • Admissions

  • Academic forms, deadlines, and courses

  • Funding

Chris Lowry
Associate Chair for Graduate Studies

  • Program requirements

  • Academic advising

  • Learning outcomes

Notice for international applicants: Due to funding restrictions, the Faculty of Arts is currently limiting the number of international students we can admit. If you are an international applicant, please contact the Associate Chair for Graduate Studies prior to applying.