Research course


University of Edinburgh · Philosophy

Entry requirements

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in philosophy.

Your application will also be considered if you have a UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in another subject and a postgraduate masters level degree in philosophy.
Your academic achievements will be assessed by a panel of academics along with the research proposal submitted as part of your application.

Months of entry


Course content

We are one of the world’s leading philosophy departments for research.

In the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), Times Higher Education ranks Philosophy research at Edinburgh 2nd in Scotland and 7th in the UK.
The department has close links with other subject areas within the University, such as psychology, linguistics, informatics, jurisprudence, politics and classics.
We are also home to EIDYN, a philosophical research centre that hosts multiple international conferences, workshops and visiting scholars every year.
Our research and teaching spans most areas of philosophy, but we have particular expertise in the following research areas:
Our world-leading group of epistemologists have research interests in scepticism (including its history), epistemic value, contextualism, social epistemology, epistemic responsibility, perceptual knowledge, rationality, the nature of cognitive processes, and virtue epistemology.
Our internationally renowned Ethics research cluster has particular research strengths in ethical theory, meta-ethics, normative theory and political philosophy.
History of Philosophy
The research interests of our Ancient philosophy faculty include ancient metaphysics and ethics, ancient and medieval philosophy and science, the Presocratics, Plato and Aristotle. Several of our faculty have research expertise in the core period of early modern philosophy (Hobbes to Kant) and subsequent developments from the German Romantics to British Hegelians. Within these periods, faculty have particular research interests in issues in metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of mind and language, philosophy of science.
Logic and Language
The department has growing research strengths in Logic, Language and related topics, with faculty members working on Godel's results, theories of truth deflationism, semantic paradoxes, the applicability of mathematics, proof theory, theoretical syntax, pragmatics, proof theory, and non-classical logic.
Mind and Cognition
Our research team ranks among the world leaders in this fast-moving area, and specialises in the study of embodiment, consciousness, perception, action, and situated reason. Our researchers benefit from close links with the University's world-leading informatics, linguistics and psychology departments.
Philosophy of Science
Philosophy of science at the University of Edinburgh specialises in the philosophy of the natural sciences, and the philosophy of cognitive sciences. Topics we cover include: laws, causation, realism, time, models, explanation, measurement and fictionalism.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    full time
    36 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    72 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Postgraduate Office
+44 (0)131 651 5002