Universiteit Leiden

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Philosophy of Natural Sciences (MA)

About the programme

You will take courses both at the Leiden Institute for Philosophy and the Leiden Faculty of Science. Students in this two-year programme typically also enrol in one of the master’s programmes at the faculty of Natural Sciences, thus effectively taking a double degree.

Philosophy courses integrate historical and systematic approaches in philosophy to the study of primary philosophical texts, exposing students to historical and current philosophical debates. The programme combines continental and analytical philosophy.

The two-year programme consists of the following components:

  • MA courses in the chosen discipline outside philosophy (for a total of 40 EC)
  • Specialist courses (for a total of 20 EC)
  • Optional courses in Philosophy (for a total of 40 EC)
  • Master’s thesis, thesis seminar, and exam (20 EC)
  • Seminars
  • Self-study
  • Internship options
  • Thesis
  • Exams
  • Peer feedback and assessment
  • Essays, reports and final thesis
  • Oral presentations

The objective of the two-year master’s in Philosophy of Natural Sciences programme is to provide you with advanced knowledge and understanding of the philosophical foundations and methodological aspects of a number of disciplines in the Natural Sciences. 

The development of in-depth knowledge and advanced skills in logic, critical thinking and communication are key goals of this programme. Opportunities are provided for students to broaden their world experience and professional skills through an internship or by participating in an exchange programme at another top university.

Detailed programme

For a detailed programme, see this year's Prospectus. Please note that this guide applies to the current academic year, which means that the curriculum for next year may slightly differ.

Victor Gijsbers

University Lecturer

Victor Gijsbers

“The MA Philosophy of Natural Sciences is an ideal opportunity for students of the natural sciences to think through the philosophical implications and foundations of their scientific fields. Big ideas from contemporary theoretical philosophy are linked to themes from the sciences, shedding new light on both. It is also possible to follow courses engaging with the history of philosophy as well as non-western traditions.”

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