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Department of Philosophy|College of Arts & Sciences

Contact Us

Department of Philosophy
Department Head:
Franz-Peter Griesmaier
Office Associate:
Clayleen Rivord
Ross Hall, Room 122
Dept. 3392
1000 E. University Ave
Laramie, WY 82071
Phone: 307-766-3204
Fax: 307-766-2096
Email: philosophy@uwyo.edu

M.A. Program FAQs


Admissions

How competitive is admission to your program?

Is funding available?

How do I apply for a graduate assistantship?

How do I apply for a tuition waiver?

How much are tuition and fees?

What criteria do you weigh most heavily in deciding whom to admit?

Do I have to take the GRE in order to apply?

How recently must I have taken the GRE in order to apply?

What is the University of Wyoming's code number for sending GRE scores?

If English is not my native language, must I take the TOEFL?

What should I send for my writing sample?

What if I don't have a writing sample on a philosophical topic?

What should I say in my statement of purpose?

My primary academic background is not in philosophy. Should I bother applying?

I applied last year and wasn't admitted. Should I reapply this year?

I missed the suggested February 1 application deadline. Can I still apply?

Do you admit students in the fall to begin in the spring semester?

How do I apply to the program?

 

 

Program

What areas of philosophy does our program specialize in?

If I enroll in the program, will I be able to specialize in one of these areas?

Do you require a thesis?

How long does it take to complete the program?

What is your placement record?

Can I enroll as a part-time M.A. student?

Can I take graduate philosophy courses at the University of Wyoming without being enrolled in the M.A. program?

Do you accept transfer credits for graduate courses taken at other institutions?

Do you offer a Ph.D.?

Will credits earned in your M.A. program transfer to a Ph.D. program?

 

 

Applicants and Admitted Students

When will I find out whether I've been admitted?

I'm on the waiting list for funding. When will I find out if I will be made an offer?

Besides a graduate assistantship or tuition waiver, what funding opportunities are available?

Do you pay for admitted students to visit the University of Wyoming before deciding whether to come?

 

 


 

Admissions

How competitive is admission to your program?

Admission to the M.A. program is highly competitive because we typically limit those students we admit to those we are able to fund for four semesters or two-years, the duration of the degree program. So, applicants should realize that we accept only four or five new students to our program.

Is funding available?

Yes, funding is available to those students who officially apply before February 1. Students who received funding for 2012-2013 received a full tuition and fee waiver, as well as a stipend of $11,349.00. On occasion, the philosophy department awards partial financial assistance for half-time teaching assistants.

How do I apply for a graduate assistantship?

All applicants who submit all of the required admission material before February 1 will be considered for a graduate assistantship.

How do I apply for a tuition waiver?

All applicants who submit all of the required admission material before February 1 will be considered for a tuition waiver. Those applicants who apply after the February 1 deadline will be considered for a tuition waiver, but, due to the competitive nature of graduate admission college-wide, the applicant is not guaranteed either a tuition waiver or graduate assistantship. Basically, if the applicant seeks both a tuition waiver and a graduate assistantship, then the applicant is highly encouraged to apply early.

How much are tuition and fees?

According to the University of Wyoming's Office of Admissions, tuition for graduate students who are residents of the state of Wyoming amounts to $3,780 or $210 per credit hour. For non-resident graduate students, it is $11,322 or $629 per credit hour. The calculation is based upon a full-time nine-credit hour per term. In addition to tuition, the university requires all graduate students to pay a fee of $582 per semester, or $1,164 annually.

What criteria do you weigh most heavily in deciding whom to admit?

All of the elements of the application are important, but our faculty weigh most heavily in deciding to admit a student the content of the student's letters of recommendation and the writing sample. The writing sample enable faculty members to judge whether the student will be able to succeed in our program, and the letters of recommendation provide faculty members with a snapshot of the student's past performance from a colleague in the discipline. 

Do I have to take the GRE in order to apply?

No, the GRE is not required for admission to the program, but the university highly encourages the student to submit GRE scores.

How recently must I have taken the GRE in order to apply?

GRE scores are valid for five years from the test date.

What is the University of Wyoming's code number for sending GRE scores?

The University of Wyoming's institutional code is 4855.

If English is not my native language, must I take the TOEFL?

Yes, if the applicant's native language is not English, then the student must take the TOEFL and submit scores to the University of Wyoming.

What should I send for my writing sample?

The applicant is encouraged to submit a writing sample that represents the applicant's philosophical interests. The paper should be well-written and, more importantly, well-argued. Likewise, it should be free of grammatical infelicities and show the admissions committee that the applicant is prepared to do the work required at the graduate level and beyond.

What if I don't have a writing sample on a philosophical topic?

Writing samples that do not address a philosophical topic will be considered. Student's whose interest in philosophy has developed late in their academic career may not have a writing sample on a philosophical topic. We understand that not all students interest in philosophy developed early. So, send the writing sample that represents the best piece of writing completed as an undergraduate and take the opportunity in the personal statement to explain why it is that that writing sample was submitted.

What should I say in my statement of purpose?

The statement of purpose permits the student to tell the admissions committee a little bit more about their personal aspirations for pursuing an advanced professional degree in Philosophy. Take the time to tell us what sets the applicant apart from other applicants and how the applicant's interests coincide with the interests of one or more faculty members. The applicant will not be required to work directly with the faculty member discussed in the personal statement, but, by mentioning the faculty member by name, the admissions committee will have a better sense of the student's seriousness about attending the program and, ultimately, finishing the program.

My primary academic background is not in philosophy. Should I bother applying?

Those students who pursue an M.A. in Philosophy many times attended a school where the philosophy major is absent or they are not sure whether they want to pursue a Ph.D. in philosophy. We understand this to be the case, so we do not judge more harshly those applicants whose background is not in philosophy. Rather, we view our program as a place to further cultivate interest in a philosophical topic area so that the student may choose either to go on to a Ph.D. program in philosophy or to go on to another professional degree program, like law school.

I applied last year and wasn't admitted. Should I reapply this year?

Admission to the program is highly competitive, and the candidate pool changes from year-to-year. So, we encourage the applicant to re-apply if the student was not admitted last year.

I missed the suggested February 1 application deadline. Can I still apply?

Yes, the student may apply but should realize that funding may not be available.

Do you admit students in the fall to begin in the spring semester?

No, we do not usually consider admitting students in the fall to begin in the spring semester.

How do I apply to the program?

We are glad you are interested in our program. Start the application process by clicking here.

 

 


 

Program

What areas of philosophy does our program specialize in?

Despite the relatively small size of the faculty, our faculty's interests cover most of the major areas of philosophic research. Our program is mostly focused upon the analytic (or Anglo-American) philosophic tradition that arose in the twentieth century, but we do have at least one member of the department, Harvey Hix, whose expertise includes the continental tradition.

If I enroll in the program, will I be able to specialize in one of these areas?

The purpose of an M.A. in Philosophy is not necessarily to specialize in any one area, as one might expect of a doctoral student; rather, the student is encouraged to work closely with a faculty mentor / advisor to cultivate a thesis project that best exemplifies the student's interest in a particular philosophic topic. Of course, that interest should play out in a well-developed thesis project the student will defend at the end of the student's tenure with the university.

Do you require a thesis?

Yes, the student is required to complete an M.A. thesis in order to obtain the M.A. degree. For more information about the thesis requirement, please review this page.

How long does it take to complete the program?

Full-time graduate students should complete the degree requirements within two years of beginning the program. The program has been designed to be completed in that amount of time, though the student will need to remain motivated to complete the degree requirements within that time period. It is the student's responsibility to meet regularly with advisors to ensure that they are on track for completing the degree within the allotted time period.

What is your placement record?

We have been very successful at placing students in Ph.D. programs, law school (J.D. programs), or in other professional degree granting programs. We encourage applicants to review our placement record here.

Can I enroll as a part-time M.A. student?

Applicants to the program are usually admitted as full-time students unless there are certain extenuating circumstances that require the student to be admitted as a "part-time student." Check with the Director of Graduate Studies if "part-time" status is sought.

Can I take graduate philosophy courses at the University of Wyoming without being enrolled in the M.A. program?

Yes, we have many community members who take graduate philosophy courses and who are not enrolled in the M.A. program. If a community member is interested in taking a graduate philosophy course and is not a full-time or part-time student in the university, contact us at 307/766-3204 for more information about how to be enrolled for the course.

Do you accept transfer credits for graduate courses taken at other institutions?

We do not accept transfer credits from graduate courses taken at other institutions.

Do you offer a Ph.D.?

No, the nearest Ph.D. in Philosophy program to the University of Wyoming is the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Will credits earned in your M.A. program transfer to a Ph.D. program?

We cannot anticipate whether credits earned in the M.A. program in Philosophy at the University of Wyoming will be transferable to a Ph.D. program. The Ph.D. program will likely have specific requirements of what credits it accepts for transfer. If the graduate requires paperwork, i.e., syllabus, course requirements, etc., the graduate should contact the instructor of record and ask that she or he provide that paperwork.

 


 

Applicants and Admitted Students

When will I find out whether I've been admitted?

We make every attempt to alert students of their admission status as soon as possible, but sometimes we are not able to make a final decision about admission until April 1.

I'm on the waiting list for funding. When will I find out if I will be made an offer?

The Director of Graduate Studies and the admissions committee will try to make an offer to applicants by April 15, but a final decision about funding depends upon factors sometimes out of the control of the Director, the admissions committee, and the Philosophy department generally speaking.

Besides a graduate assistantship or tuition waiver, what funding opportunities are available?

Applicants are encouraged to contact the University of Wyoming's Financial Aid Office for alternative funding opportunities that may be available to matriculated graduate students.

Do you pay for admitted students to visit the University of Wyoming before deciding whether to come?

No, neither the University of Wyoming nor the University of Wyoming Philosophy department are able to pay for travel or hotel accommodations if an applicant is interested in attending the university. Should the applicant visit the area, we encourage the applicant to contact the Director of Graduate Studies, faculty members, or graduate students before the travel date. It is possible that the applicant may be able to stay with a graduate student who is already in the program.

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