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M.A. Application

We generally admit 8–12 students to the M.A. program each year.

Applicants intending to pursue a doctorate at Duquesne should generally apply for the Ph.D. program rather than the M.A. program. If not offered admission to the Ph.D. program, applicants without a previous philosophy M.A. will be considered for admission to the M.A. program.

M.A. program applicants are expected to hold or be in the final stages of completing a B.A. or equivalent degree in Philosophy or a closely related discipline. Applicants holding B.A.- or M.A.-level degrees in other fields may be considered when they can demonstrate that they have successfully pursued significant advanced-level philosophical coursework. It is helpful, but not required, for applicants to possess background in at least one relevant research language (especially ancient Greek, Latin, French, or German).

Applications to the Philosophy M.A. program must be submitted HERE. A complete application consists both of the general University application and all the supporting materials, letters of recommendation, and test scores listed below. The entire application dossier must be submitted through the online application portal and test scores must be sent directly from the testing agency to Duquesne.

Note: If you are reapplying to the Philosophy M.A. program, you must submit a new application and resubmit all supporting materials and letters of recommendation. Please check with the Office of Graduate Admissions (gradadmissions@duq.edu, 412-396-6219) to confirm that test scores submitted in an earlier application round remain on file at Duquesne.

MARCH 1 is the deadline for receipt of the entire application.

Application Checklist
  • University application
  • Supporting application materials
    • Statement of intent
    • Curriculum vitae
    • Writing sample
    • Transcripts
  • Letters of recommendation (3)
  • Test scores
    • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores - required for all applicants
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) scores - required for all international applicants (applicants who do not hold U.S. citizenship, permanent resident status, or refugee/asylum status) for whom English is not a first language; see below for exceptions
Supporting Materials

All supporting materials must be submitted through Duquesne's online application platform. Supporting materials will not be accepted via email or postal mail.

Statement of intent
Submit a statement of intent characterizing research interests, describing reasons for seeking to engage in advanced study of philosophy, summarizing philosophical background and any relevant biography, and explaining specific interest in the Duquesne graduate program.

Curriculum vitae
Submit a one-page CV clearly indicating name and contact information; academic degrees (with degree, institution, major or discipline, and date conferred); any academic fellowships, scholarships, or honors; any academic publications; language proficiency (other than English; for each language, indicate proficiency in reading, speaking, and writing as fluent, advanced, intermediate, or basic); references (include the name, position, institutional affiliation, and email address of each person who will submit a letter of recommendation); and any additional, academically relevant information.

Writing sample
Submit a sample of philosophical writing, maximum 5000 words.

Submit a transcript from each college or university from which you received a degree or in which you are currently enrolled. For purposes of the application process, legible scans of transcripts are fine. If accepted into the program, applicants must submit official transcripts before matriculating.

Letters of Recommendation

At least three confidential letters of recommendation must be submitted by those in a position to assess the applicant’s past performance and future academic potential.

Please use the Duquesne online application system to generate requests for confidential recommendations, which will be sent directly to your recommenders. Recommenders will receive instructions for uploading their letters directly to the Duquesne application portal.

Required Test Scores

All test scores must be official and sent directly from the relevant testing agency. Copies or scans of score reports sent by applicants will not be accepted.

GRE scores
Submit scores from a test taken within five years of application. Duquesne’s ETS code is 2196. All applicants to the M.A. program are required to submit GRE test scores, but no specific minimum scores are required for review. We consider GRE scores as one element in a complete dossier.

TOEFL or IELTS language test scores
In addition to GRE scores, either TOEFL or IELTS language proficiency scores are required for international applicants for whom English is not a first language. Submit scores from a test taken within three years of application. Duquesne's ETS code is 2196. Duquesne does have language test score minimums in order to qualify for application to any graduate program:

  • TOEFL iBT or revised TOEFL Paper-delivered Test: 80, with all sub-scores at 17 minimum
  • TOEFL PBT: 550
  • IELTS: 6.5 overall, with sub-scores meeting the following minimums: 6.5 reading; 5.5 writing; 5.5 speaking; 6.0 listening

Note: Upon request (selcerd@duq.edu), the TOEFL/IELTS language proficiency test requirement will be waived for international applicants who hold BA- or MA-level degrees from universities where the primary language of instruction is English.

Application Questions

More information regarding the Philosophy M.A. program course of study, funding for M.A. students, placement record, course offerings, and our current graduate students can be found via the links on the left side of this page.

For program issues that aren't treated sufficiently there or questions concerning the content of supporting application materials, please contact Dr. Daniel Selcer, Director of Graduate Studies in Philosophy, selcerd@duq.edu.

For questions specific to the international applications submission process, please contact the Office of International Programs, intladmissions@duq.edu, 1-412-396-6113.

For all questions or difficulties regarding the submission of materials through the Duquesne online application portal (including the University application, supporting materials, and letters of recommendation) or for questions regarding GRE, TOEFL, or IELTS test scores, please contact the Office of Graduate Admissions, gradadmissions@duq.edu, 412-396-6219.