Philosophy

Master's and Doctoral Programs


Graduate opportunities

By pursuing a graduate degree in Philosophy at the University of North Texas, you’ll join an internationally recognized program known for its focus on environmental philosophy and ethics.

The Department of Philosophy and Religion Studies oversees one of the world’s leading doctoral programs and the nation’s first master’s program in Environmental Philosophy and Ethics. We also house several research centers, manage various research programs and publish the field’s leading philosophy journal.

We are an emerging leader in the philosophy of science and technology studies with more than seven faculty members publishing in the field. Our combination of environmental philosophy and science/ technology studies makes us unique.

The curriculum for the Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees provide you:

  • foundational training in environmental philosophy, the history of Western philosophy, and religious studies
  • specialization in topical areas of philosophy
  • interdisciplinary experiences through a flexible program

Gain new perspectives

You will learn from professors and researchers who are nationally and internationally known in their field. Among our faculty members are the founders of the environmental philosophy discipline — J. Baird Callicott and Eugene C. Hargrove. Another 10 faculty members have strong backgrounds in the discipline with specialties in:

  • land ethics
  • environmental policy
  • environmental justice
  • religion and ecology
  • philosophy of ecology
  • philosophy of water
  • traditional ecological knowledge
  • philosophy of environmental and social sustainability
  • eco-feminism
  • eco-phenomenology
  • environmental aesthetics
  • environmental education
  • environmental restoration

Research programs, centers and projects

Sub-Antarctic Biocultural Conservation Program

Utilizing the first field station in environmental philosophy, science and policy at Cape Horn, Chile, we coordinate this program with the University of Magallanes and the Institute of Ecology and Biodiversity in Chile. It links biological and cultural conservation with social well-being from the southernmost end of the Americas. As a long-term socio-ecological research, education and conservation program, it develops innovative ways to address intertwined environmental and social problems, such as global ecological change, invasive exotic species, cultural homogenization and sustainable development.

Center for Environmental Philosophy

This renowned center furthers research, publication and education in environmental philosophy and ethics. Its primary activities are publishing the journal Environmental Ethics, reprinting significant books on environmental ethics under its own imprint and sponsoring various workshops and conferences.

The Environmental Justice Project

Housed in the Center for Environmental Philosophy, the EJP oversees networks, scholarship and actions focusing on environmental justice. It includes avenues to relevant environmental research that respects grassroots struggles around the globe.

The Philosophy of Water Project

This research project promotes water education, research and outreach activities with local and international organizations. We provide intellectual analysis, hands-on learning experiences, collaborative connections and academic conferences. Research explores the growing problems of water scarcity, quality and quantity of reserves, restoration of riparian areas, and cultural perceptions of water.

The Philosophy of Food Project

This project disseminates information about the philosophical investigation of food; increases the visibility of food as a topic for philosophical research; serves as a resource for researchers, teachers, students and the public; galvanizes a community of philosophers working on food issues; and helps raise the level of discourse about food, agriculture, animals and eating.

The Center for the Study of Interdisciplinarity

The CSID researches the theory and practice of interand transdisciplinary approaches to knowledge. It is devoted to developing a philosophy of interdisciplinarity through research conducted via case studies, an approach called ‘field philosophy.’

Attending UNT

Admission requirements

You will need to meet the admission requirements for the Toulouse Graduate School outlined at catalog.unt.edu. In addition, you will need to meet the following program requirements:

  • acceptable GRE scores on the verbal and quantitative sections (Verbal score may be replaced by completion of the Graduate Preparation Course. The GMAT or LSAT may substitute for the GRE.)
  • statement of purpose
  • three letters of recommendation
  • curriculum vitae
  • writing sample

Degree requirements

Master’s degree

Thesis option

This option requires 24 credit hours of approved course work and a thesis of 6 credit hours. A minimum of 18 credit hours in philosophy is required. Up to 6 credit hours in supporting fields may be selected with the department’s consent. An oral examination is scheduled after completing the thesis.

Non-thesis option

This option requires 36 credit hours with at least 21 credit hours being in the Department of Philosophy and Religion Studies. An additional 9 credit hours will be in a minor field outside the department. Another 6 credit hours may be used to complete further philosophical specialization, further study in supporting fields or internship opportunities that enhance the practice of philosophy.

A non-thesis oral comprehensive examination is conducted during the final semester of course work. The examination may involve more than one faculty member from the department or minor field.

Doctoral degree

You must complete a minimum of 42 credit hours beyond a master’s degree in conjunction with the graduate school degree requirements. Department course requirements include environmental philosophy, the history of philosophy, topical areas in philosophy and interdisciplinary exploration. You will also need to:

  • satisfy the qualifying paper requirement with a work of publishable quality
  • write a dissertation and give a brief public presentation and public oral defense of the work

Detailed information about degree requirements is available on the Philosophy website.

Financial assistance

Our department offers several financial assistance programs to help you pursue your graduate education. Among them are graduate teaching fellowships, as well as teaching and research assistantships, all of which qualify students for in-state tuition rates. Tuition remission is limited and highly competitive. In addition, the Richardson Environmental Action League awards a $500 fellowship each semester to an outstanding student. A limited number of $1,000 awards are offered by the graduate school. Students attending professional conferences may receive departmental support along with a variety of offices throughout the university.

For more information about departmental financial assistance programs, visit our website.