Rijksuniversiteit Groningen

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Deze opleiding

!Deze opleiding communiceert alleen in het Engels.
We tonen daarom de Engelstalige opleidingsinformatie.
What is freedom (and why should it be valued)? What causal role does the body play in cognition? What makes an argument convincing?

Philosophy is the systematic investigation of fundamental questions. Students are trained to think and write in a clear manner about topics such as the relations between mind, body and cognition, the nature and basis of moral judgments, the limits of knowledge, or the principles of social justice.

The Research Master Philosophy offers you the opportunity to work with leading scholars in the history of philosophy, practical philosophy and theoretical philosophy (see staff pages). It prepares you for an academic career, but also teaches useful skills for other jobs.

The programme offers a core curriculum on philosophical problems related to ongoing research in the faculty, as well as many opportunities to pursue your own interests.

We reserve two fully funded PhD positions for our students every year, and offer paid teaching assistantships (see: 'Why Groningen?').

Our personal approach makes the Faculty a wonderful place to study, and our programme is consistently ranked highly by independent assessors. (Read about it here.)

The Master's programme in Philosophy is offered both on a full-time and part-time basis.

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diplomaMA Filosofie ( research )
typeonderzoek, 120 EC
start1 februari, 1 september
taalvolledig English
opleidingsduur2 jaar voltijd
heeft geen numerus fixus
heeft een honours programma
Faculty of Philosophy

Waarom aan de Rijksuniversiteit?

awardNVAO beoordeling goed
  • Top Rated programme 2017 (Consumer Guide for Dutch University Education)
  • Our programme offers fully funded three-year PhD positions to the two best students graduating from the programme every year.
  • There are possibilities of working as a teaching assistant during the programme.
  • Non-EU/EEA students can apply for a tuition waiver of 50%.
  • In reviews of the Keuzegids Universiteiten (Consumer Guide for Dutch University Education) and in the Higher Education Review of Dutch University Faculties (performed yearly by Elsevier Magazine), our faculty was ranked number one by both students and professors year after year.
  • Results of the National Student Assessment (NSE) show that our students are very satisfied with the contents of our programmes and that they value the expertise of our teaching staff.


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1e jaar All students take four Core Issue courses devoted to central themes related to ongoing research in the faculty (20 ECTS). These cover topics in practical, theoretical and the history of philosophy. In addition, you choose three specialization courses in two of these areas (30 ECTS). Finally, you follow Research in Practice I, a course aimed at training academic language, research ethics, presentation skills and participation at seminars (10 ECTS).
Core Issues I-II
10 EC
Specialization I
10 EC
Research in practice I
10 EC
Specialization II
10 EC
Core Issues III-IV
10 EC
Specialization III
10 EC
2e jaar Year 2 includes an opportunity to spend a term abroad. Dutch students must either spend a full semester abroad (30 ECTS), or opt for a 15 ECTS programme complemented with 15 ECTS electives in the Netherlands. (International students are not required to go abroad, but they are free to do so.)
Term abroad
30 EC
Research in practice II
5 EC
RM thesis
25 EC


specialisatie History of Philosophy

Research and teaching of the department of History of Philosophy focuses on ancient philosophy, medieval and (early) modern thought. Important areas of research are the role of relativism in ancient thought, the transformations of the scholastic-Aristotelian worldview, the rise of modern philosophy and science in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, and the role of common sense and common language in early modern philosophy.

specialisatie Ethics, Social and Political Philosophy

Research and teaching in this department includes normative ethics; metaethics; contemporary political philosophy; research include applied ethics; moral psychology; social ontology; critical theory; deliberative democracy; citizenship theory and theories of global justice.

specialisatie Theoretical Philosophy

The department of Theoretical Philosophy specialises in logic, argumentation theory, epistemology, metaphysics, and the philosophy of science, of mind, and of language. Important areas of research are the notions of agency, cognition, and probabilistic knowledge.


taal van onderwijs100% en
onderwijsopzet60% zelfstudie
40% theorie
literature study, research, research project, research proposal, tutorial, lecture, working group, workshop, individual assignment, self study, seminar
By studying philosophy, you develop analytic rigor and the ability to reason in a logically sound way. It greatly improves your reading skills and it allows you to critically scrutinize vague concepts, tacit assumptions, loose argumentation, and widely shared preconceptions that we encounter in everyday life. The programme allows you to obtain comprehensive philosophical knowledge, insight and skills and it prepares you for the profession of scientific researcher.
study guidance
The programme provides a great deal of study support. Small-scale classes and a friendly, informal setting stimulate contact between our staff and students. Each student is assigned a tutor that counsels the student on the choices of the individual study programme. Our international officer provides general information for international students and she also helps students to arrange the term abroad.
If you have any questions or problems you can always consult the study advisor. A study advisor can provide more detailed information about our programmes. He also monitors your study progress. You can also contact the study advisor in case of personal problems that affect your study performance. Students can make an appointment or drop by during consultation hours.

honours-/excellence program Honours College

The Honours College offers talented and motivated master students the opportunity to follow a programme of 15 ECTS in addition to the Master's degree programme.

The Honours programme of the master focuses on the theme of 'leadership'.

Toelating en studiekosten

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1 februari 2017
aanmelding deadline : 1 november 2016
wettelijk tarief : € 2006
instellingstarief : € 2006
niet-EU/EER studenten : € 11400
1 februari 2018
aanmelding deadline : 1 november 2017
collegegeld nog niet bekend
1 september 2017
aanmelding deadline : 1 mei 2017
wettelijk tarief : € 2006
instellingstarief : € 2006
niet-EU/EER studenten : € 11400
1 september 2018
aanmelding deadline : 1 mei 2018
collegegeld nog niet bekend
Dutch students wishing to apply for this programme, please submit your application (including all required documents) to: , visit and follow the application instructions.

Once we have received your application and all required documents, the admissions board will evaluate your file. Applicants may subsequently be invited for an interview (possibly via Skype). In any case, you will hear from us no later than one month after the application deadline (see below). If you're admitted, we will ask you to confirm your participation by signing and returning a confirmation of participation form.

Academic transcript: We expect applicants to have a mean score of 8 (corresponding roughly to an A in the US system) or better in the relevant upper division courses of their study programme (usually the second- and third-year philosophy courses of a Bachelor programme). If the programme involved a thesis, it also must have received at least an 8.

Proof of English proficiency: you will need to prove your proficiency in English by means of one of the following tests (the test cannot be older than two years):

  • IELTS, minimum overall score 7.0 with no band less than 6.5
  • TOEFL 100 (section scores Reading 22, Listening 22, Speaking 26, Writing 24)

Please ask the ETS to send us the test score report using institution code 7191.
This requirement does not apply if you:
  • are a native speaker and completed secondary education in any one of the following countries: Canada, USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia
  • have completed your bachelor education in any one of the following countries: Canada, USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia
  • have an International Baccalaureate
  • have a European Baccalaureate diploma

We expect a Bachelor's degree in philosophy or philosophy of a specific scientific discipline, or another Bachelor's degree which the admissions board considers to be equivalent.

reference letter
Two reference letters: These letters should be written by instructors who know the student and who describe the student's past performance and academic promise.

Motivation letter: The student should explain why he or she wishes to take part in our programme, what he or she expects from the programme and what he or she wishes to achieve.

estimated monthly costs

bron: Nibud
303kamerhuur in Groningenrond het landelijk gemiddelde
158collegegeldop basis van € 1906 per jaar
80studieboeken en -spullen
77uiterlijkkleding, kapper, schoenen
132vrije tijdstappen, uit eten, vakantie
42vervoernaast de OV-kaart

€ 1171totale maandelijkse uitgaven landelijk gemiddelde is € 1181
Hiernaast staat een overzicht van de gemiddelde kosten die een uitwonende student heeft. Niet iedere student heeft met iedere kostenpost te maken. Het totaalgemiddelde is dus niet gelijk aan de optelsom van alle kostenposten.

Bekijk ook de uitgebreide toelichting: wat kost studeren?

Studenten en studentenleven


? studenten volgen deze opleiding
?% daarvan is vrouw
? eerstejaars gestart in 2012
?% daarvan is vrouw
27868 studenten aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen
51% daarvan is vrouw
bron: HBO-raad/VSNU


STUFF is the social network of all philosophy students of the University of Groningen. STUFF organizes philosophical activities, like lectures and debates and trips to foreign universities as well as many social happenings such as monthly meetings at a local café, (theme) parties, competitions etc.
Contact via:

Op kamers in Groningen

55216studenten studerend
31914studenten woonachtig   
€ 303gemiddelde kamerprijs
kamer betaalbaarheid
21 m2gemiddelde kameroppervlak
kamer beschikbaarheid
bron: Nationale Studenten Enquête

aan het woord: studenten en docenten

Ingrid Pendaries
I immediately felt at home

After having finished my Bachelor Degree at the Université de Toulouse Le Mirail in France, I felt the deep need to explore new horizons, be they cultural or philosophical. Groningen was a great place for me to do so. I easily found a room in a student house through the Housing Office. Living in such a place has not only allowed me to quickly become fluent in English, but also to make great Dutch and international friends. Although I was away from my family, I immediately felt at home.

I was also glad to see the freedom of thought and the genuine interest that was given to my work. The Faculty of Philosophy in Groningen is supported by a team of dedicated professionals, as they manage to make time and to properly advise each student.
Variety of lectures
I would even say that the Faculty of Philosophy stands out from other faculties because of its internal dynamics and variety of lectures and seminars. I remember specifically, that in June 2011, I went to a conference given by Peter Singer. It was quite an epiphany for me. I read The Life You Can Save and Animal Liberation in the week that followed, and that is when I realized how Practical Ethics are of central importance to me.

I then deepened my knowledge of the subject and was given the opportunity to express my views on Animal Ethics through my papers, a topic so dear to me. Moreover, it is during the time I spent in Groningen that I experienced the implications of long term research, especially through the elaboration and support of my Master’s thesis. I learned to appropriately use scientific data and fundamental philosophical opinions needed for researching. The Faculty's teachers and supervisors have been, and still are, of inspiration to me regarding these accomplishments. That is why today, I am more than happy to continue in the Research Master's programme in Groningen to perfect my researching skills.
Ingrid graduated with her research master's thesis: Veganism Light: The Feasibility of a Moral Ideal

lees verder ...
Efthymis Panourgias
What could be better than the University of Groningen?

Before coming in Groningen I worked as a teacher of philosophy and Greek literature in secondary education in Greece. Continuing my studies in Philosophy was something that I wanted to do, since I finished my studies at the Philosophy department of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece. I wanted to expand my horizons and get in contact with new ways of thinking and working. Hence, I decided to follow a programme abroad. What could be better than the University of Groningen?

First of all, the programme is a very high level and competitive one, with a variety of subjects from almost all areas of philosophy. Secondly, it consists in high skilled, experienced, and specialized personnel. The very fact that it hosts a large group of PhD students and post-docs is a strong indication that it is a very active faculty in terms of research with a strong presence in the philosophical domain. What is more, the fact that there are regular colloquia and seminars organized, gives everyone the opportunity to present their research and discuss it with their colleagues. I think that this is very important for the prosperity and the progress of everyone individually and of the Faculty in total. I shouldn't omit to mention the extra-curricular activities, such as reading groups, which are regularly organised just for the sheer interest and engagement with a topic.
Family atmosphere
As for the atmosphere among the students and the teachers, I found it more relaxed and friendly than I was used to. The very fact that it is an independent Faculty gives it the leverage of a family atmosphere. The teachers are easily accessible and cooperative, while there is a good communication among the fellow students. What makes the whole atmosphere more comfortable and pleasant is the Kantine in which everyone gathers to have their lunch, relax and talk.
Language and cultural differences
Nevertheless, there are quite a few difficulties that one faces by their arrival in Groningen. Even though both the University and the Faculty give a warm welcoming, and there is a general willingness to help on several levels, there are some objective difficulties that one has to face. Language and cultural differences are the most important ones. It is true that it takes time to adjust to the cultural differences and get used to speaking and talking in a foreign language. However, it is a minor obstacle that can be easily surpassed.
Bureaucratic issues: do some research beforehand
The search for accommodation and the bureaucratic issues that one has to deal with before and during staying in Groningen, are quite easily resolved. However, one must take care of them quite some time before arrival. Especially accommodation must be catered for before arrival due to the fact that the demand for housing is bigger than the offer. An easy and safe solution is staying during the first period in one of the student houses which are administered by the Housing Office. As for the bureaucratic issues (enrolment at the municipality hall, health insurance, bank account etc.), it is advisable to do some research beforehand as to what is required. I shouldn't fail to mention that I had quite some help from the Faculty and some fellow students.
Groningen: great chances for new experiences
Groningen is mainly characterized by its student life, since the RUG is a big university. Hence, it is the perfect place for someone to meet new people from different countries and cultural backgrounds from all over the world. Especially for someone easy-going, it is not difficult to make new friends and socialize a lot. Combined with the fact that Groningen is a city with a variety of options concerning entertainment and cultural events, I think that it offers great chances for new experiences. Even though it is considered a remote area within the Netherlands, it is a lively city with many facilities for almost every taste and an easy access to several places around Central and Northern Europe.
I am following the Research Master programme with a specialization in ancient metaphysics and epistemology (Plato and Aristotle). After the end of my studies at the Faculty of Philosophy I intend to continue research in my area of interest.

lees verder ...
Chengying Guan
'Throughout the programme, students are constantly encouraged to think and work as true insiders of academia.'

Starting his philosophical career from Jilin University in China, Chengying Guan joined UG's international Research Master's Programme in the autumn of 2013.Philosophy is difficult, and to pursue the career of being a professional philosopher could be arduous. Indeed, this seems more real for those who come from a civilization that had no such thing in its pre-modern stage.

Outside of academia, few know that the first user of it was the Japanese scholar Nishi Amane (1829-1897), an ardent participant of the Meiji Restoration.
The real challenge is to 'do philosophy' directly on our own hands
Due to this historical background and also a series of social-political setbacks that happened in the twentieth century, philosophy in China suffered from slow development for many years. Notwithstanding, thanks to the effort of honorable pioneers, philosophical research is now no longer strange to Chinese people; our works are still short of international visibilities and thus need improvement. The Chinese philosophy community has a clear awareness of this situation and a resolute ambition to make a change.
Being included in that community, when finishing my undergraduate at Jilin University in Changchun, I realized I had better study abroad in order to go faster. As I see it, instead of transmitting—from a bird's eye view—what great Western philosophers had said, the real challenge is to—from a trench-eye view—‘do philosophy' directly on our own hands, that is, to engage in those ongoing debates, working face-to-face with our contemporary peers from all over the world.
I felt so lucky that I subsequently got the chance to enroll in the international Research Master's Programme here at the University of Groningen, which is an outstanding classic university rooted in the north of the Netherlands, a nation that stands in the frontier of philosophy. In fact, as even fewer people know, when Nishi Amane made his original translation, the object in front of him was shown in neither English nor German. Rather, it was the Dutch word ‘wijsbegeerte,' which literally means ‘desire for wisdom,' that fascinated this oriental young, during his stay for study in the Netherlands between 1862 and 1865.
More interestingly, Dutch people take ‘wijsbegeerte’ to be the synonymy of another more informal word which nonetheless indicates philosophy’s Greek origin in a more common way , namely, ‘filosofie’ (i.e. φιλοσοφία, or rather, ‘love of wisdom’). By specifically isolating ‘desire’ from ‘love,’ it seemed that they revealed a more active mentality about how to get along with philosophy , that is, the mentality that philosophy is more like a craft worth doing than simply something worth admiring . Considering that the physical size of the nation is so small, this mentality, which is also the point I think Chinese people should learn, is impressively unusual and perhaps has mattered a lot. Nowadays, Dutch philosophers consistently put out cutting-edge and internationally-recognized works. Every year, a considerable number of papers and books written in Dutch philosophy departments get published in world’s top journals and presses. To be part of this story is, in one word, delightful.
An atmosphere of mutual respect
Three distinctive characteristics of the Faculty of Philosophy (Faculteit Wijsbegeerte) at Groningen and its international Research Master's Programme must be highlighted. First of all, the faculty is the largest one of its kind nationwide. This provides students with comprehensive possibilities to explore their own upgrading routines; that is to say, enrolling in the faculty, students can develop academic interests in almost all branches of philosophy and get appropriate supervision.
Secondly, the structure of the international Research Master Programme is wisely designed, prepares its participants well for getting surviving and thriving in the environment of ‘analytical tradition,' which is currently the dominating research paradigm. (Yet, at the same time, it also teaches us never to underestimate the value of other traditions.) To be precise, the programme is arranged in such a way that it does not only just pass on knowledge but it also has a strong emphasis on the mastery of research skills. Throughout the programme, students are constantly encouraged to think and work as true insiders of academia.
Related to this, thirdly and of the most importance, being ‘research masters,’ we are treated by Groningen professors as not merely students but their future colleagues. Such an atmosphere of mutual respect—not to mention their tremendous patience with those who need much time to grow—is highly exhilarating. To summarize, I think it would be quite fair to say that no matter how rough the path to a philosophical career may be, sitting at Groningen’s research master classes implies a good start-up. Especially, for those from China, like me, as well as—if I may venture to infer—for those from similar non-Western countries, this kind of feeling could be even stronger.

lees verder ...
Kritika Maheshwari
This programme prepares you for the next academic phase in every way.

While pursuing my Bachelor of Science in India, I noticed that when I did experiments I liked it better to explain what I did and why, than the practice itself. That's when I decided to switch to philosophy and pursued a Master's in Birmingham.Before deciding to come here, I participated in the Philosophy Winter School last year. I would advise everyone to do this as it is a good introduction to the Faculty.

This programme prepares you for the next academic phase in every way...
This is really something special that I did not experience anywhere else.
At this moment, I consider doing my own research in the field of Philosophy of Neuroscience, more specifically Philosophy of Mental Health, combined with Ethics. I definitely want to continue working in academia and pursue a PhD.

lees verder ...


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1/13 Rijksuniversiteit
star NVAO
€ 303 gemiddelde kamerhuur
7 eerstejaars
14% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
2/13 Erasmus
Philosophy - Philosophy and Economics
star Keuzegids topopleiding 2016
€ 342 gemiddelde kamerhuur
4 eerstejaars
50% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
3/13 Radboud Universiteit
Social and Political Philosophy
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
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4/13 Radboud Universiteit
Philosophical Anthropology
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
5/13 Radboud Universiteit
Metaphysics and Epistemology
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
6/13 Radboud Universiteit
Philosophy of Language and Logic
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
7/13 Radboud Universiteit
History of Philosophy
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
8/13 Radboud Universiteit
Wijsbegeerte (research master)
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
9/13 Radboud Universiteit
Philosophy of Mind
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
10/13 Radboud Universiteit
Philosophical Ethics
€ 315 gemiddelde kamerhuur
8 eerstejaars
25% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
11/13 Utrecht
star NVAO
€ 336 gemiddelde kamerhuur
5 eerstejaars
60% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
12/13 UvA
Philosophy (research MA)
€ 424 gemiddelde kamerhuur
3 eerstejaars
?% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
13/13 Tilburg University
Research Master in Philosophy
€ 253 gemiddelde kamerhuur
? eerstejaars
?% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
disclaimer: bovenstaande cijfers en beoordelingen zijn aangeleverd door de opleidingen zelf. Wij kunnen de juistheid niet garanderen.

Feiten en / studie in cijfers

bron: Nationale Studenten Enquete 2015
algemeen oordeel4.2


De Nationale Studenten Enquete is het grootschalige onderzoek van de overheid onder studenten in Nederland naar de kwaliteit van opleidingen aan hogescholen en universiteiten.
In 2015 hebben meer dan 200.000 studenten hun oordeel gegeven over hun studie en instelling.

Philosophy aan de Rijksuniversiteit Groningen is beoordeeld door 9 respondenten. Gemiddeld waarderen ze de opleiding met uit 5.

Na de studie

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Beroepsperspectief / arbeidsmarkt

After finishing the Master's degree, many philosophers find work as educators, journalists, editors and policy advisors, both in business and at governmental agencies. It is also possible to become a researcher at the university or a private research institute.
current job market

vergeleken met andere studies

zoektijd baangemiddeld
salaris na 1,5 jaar zeer slecht
kans op een vaste baan zeer slecht
bron: Elsevier beste banen 2015

Potentiële beroepen

  • aartsbisschop, kardinaal, opperrabbijn
  • bisschop, deken
  • directeur kerkenorganisatie
  • directeur onderzoekinstelling voor filosofie, ethiek, godsdienstwetenschappen, geschiedenis
  • directeur onderzoeksinstelling theologie
  • dominee, studentenpastor (wetenschappelijk)
  • polemoloog, wetenschappelijk onderzoeker geschiedenis, godsdienstwetenschappen, theologie, ethiek, filosofie
  • vicaris
bron: CBS


Central Admissions Office
Harrie ten Have MA

General information

Meer informatie?
Bezoek de website van deze opleiding.

open_in_newstudy website