Universiteit Leiden

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Philosophy of Political Science (MA)

About the programme

Learn the newest insights from the researchers who uncover them.

You will take courses at both the Leiden Institute for Philosophy and the Leiden Faculty of Social Sciences. Students in this two-year programme typically also enroll in the MSc Political Science, effectively taking a double degree.

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

The two-year programme consists of the following components:

  • MA courses in the 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 master’s in Philosophy of Political Science is to provide you with advanced knowledge and understanding of the philosophical foundations of Political Science.

The development of in-depth knowledge and advanced skills in critical thinking 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.

Bruno Verbeek

Researcher and University Lecturer

Bruno Verbeek

“Students in our programme are encouraged to apply the theoretical work on real-world practical problems which gives them an advantage over ‘normal’ philosophers and ‘normal’ political scientists alike. In addition, there is a heavy emphasis on the analytical and communicative skills that today's job market demands.”

Small scale intensive seminars

“Most of our students are ambitious and highly motivated. They typically have already an MSc in Political Science or are combining this programme with an MSc in Political Science. What we offer them is the opportunity to find out about the underlying normative and systematic continuities of our political systems and institutions in small scale intensive seminars where they can test and critically asses their own  and others’ assumptions in a safe environment with like-minded and motivated peers.”

Applying abstract critical thinking

“Our programme combines the traditional methods of philosophical analysis with an interdisciplinary interest in politics in all its facets. In this way students learn to apply highly abstract critical thinking to both deep and mundane questions about the societies and institutions we live under.”

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