A completed Bachelor's degree in Philosophy or in a related discipline (in the latter case, students must have acquired at least 60 EC in Philosophical disciplines).
The applicant must have a degree with merit or distinction or equivalent. Meaning: a student’s weighted grade-point average in philosophy in the 2nd and 3rd year of their Bachelor's programme must be the equivalent of 7.5 or more (on the Dutch scale of 10).
On the page "Conversions of international grades" you will find an indication of what the equivalent of a Dutch 7.5 or 8 might be in the country where you obtained your Bachelor’s degree.
A proficiency in English
In order to take part in this programme, you need to have fluency in both written and spoken English. Non-native speakers of English* without a Dutch Master's degree must either have obtained a higher diploma from an English-teaching institution or be in possession of one of the following certificates:
- A TOEFL score of ≥577 (paper based) or ≥233 (computer based) or ≥90 (internet based)
- An IELTS score of ≥6.5
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) with a mark of C or higher
An applicant must be able to demonstrate to the Examination Board that they have serious research interests and skills. Applicant must write a motivation letter and send a writing sample which can help evaluate their research and writing skills.
Months of entry
Studying ‘the political' as an essential but conflict-ridden aspect of the human condition, and how politics is a way of coping with the issues resulting from this.
Everything is political, but nothing is only political. That is the basic intuition behind the research Master’s in Social and Political Philosophy at Radboud University. So, there’s no such thing as ‘pure politics', everything political is dependent on social, economic, and other conditions. At the same time, everything is ‘political' in the sense that decisions regarding social phenomena rest upon contestable beliefs and meanings, and not on objective judgements or ‘ ‘Truth’ (even if many ‘truths’ are being invoked). Politics thus implies a dimension of reflexive understanding, and political re-shifting is necessary due to shifts of those beliefs through time and due to discussions between disagreeing parties. Politics is not about either banal everyday affairs and particular interests or about lofty ideals and utopian visions, but always about both in their interrelation.
Today's global, although maybe better: glocal, world is marked by a clash not of civilisations, but of conceptualisations. Philosophy plays a significant role in the latter, both in their proliferation and in their deconstruction or critique. Unlike political theory, which focuses on concepts used in the current political arena, political philosophy focuses more on the concepts themselves. What is political conflict? Why is there politics in the first place? Power? Freedom? Is conflict an unavoidable evil or is it actually constructive? You’ll gain insight into how to ask questions that are significant for the contemporary age and examine them in the light of major thinkers from the philosophical tradition.
How fundamental concepts such as freedom, power, justice, and so on are judged and how words and phrases are being used in political debates, has an essential impact on the outcome of a debate. As a social and political philosopher you’ll be geared towards pinpointing where these – often unconscious – assumptions are at work. This will enable you to make people aware of them.
Key authors for this specialisation are, in alphabetical order: Aristotle, Arendt, Foucault, Hobbes, Kant, Macchiavelli, Marx, Rawls, Schmitt, Spinoza, and Žižek.
Fees and funding
There are various scholarships available for studying at Radboud University. Some of the opportunities are described below. A full list, including detailed information, can be found on our scholarships and grants page at our website.
Radboud Scholarship Programme
Open to a select number of excellent international students. Instead of the institutional tuition fees, non-EEA students pay the legal tuition fees (€2,060 in 2018/2019). Visa and residence permit costs, liability insurance and health insurance are also covered.
Orange Tulip Scholarship
Open to students from Brazil, Mexico, Russia, Indonesia, South-Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, and China. Instead of the institutional tuition fees, non-EEA students pay the legal tuition fees (€2,060 in 2018/2019). Visa and residence permit costs, liability insurance and health insurance are also covered.
Open to excellent American students. The grant will be paid in 12 monthly instalments of 1,050 euros. International travel and the cost of the residence permit will be covered, and an extra allowance of €1150 will be paid on arrival.
Sino-Dutch Bilateral Exchange Scholarship
Open to excellent students from China. Consists of a contribution of € 16,113 towards the total costs of one year of study or research in the Netherlands.
Aimed at lecturers at higher education institutions in Indonesia who wish to pursue a PhD or Master's at a university in the Netherlands. A DIKTI scholarship includes allowances for living expenses, insurance, travel costs, tuition fees and more.
Indonesian Education Scholarship (LPDP)
Open to excellent Indonesian students under the age of 35. Involves a full scholarship.
Holland Scholarship Programme
Open to excellent students from Canada, America, India and Turkey. Scholarship consists of 5,000 euros payed at the start of study.
Dutch Student Finance
EU/EEA students and Swiss students under 30 years of age are eligible if they are working at least 56 hours per month in the Netherlands, or have been living in the Netherlands for five years or more. Dutch student finance consists of four components: a basic grant, a supplementary grant (depending on the parental income), a student travel product, and a loan.
Qualification and course duration
MA by research
Course contact details
- Admission Office