In the final section of the programme, students write a 10,000- 15,000- word MA Philosophy Dissertation on an approved topic of their choice and defend it in a viva voce exam.
Each student is prepared for this endeavour in part by the earlier Mind & Reality and Values & Society courses, which provide an advanced introduction to academic philosophical writing, research, and presentation skills. In those seminars, the student has an opportunity to write and receive feedback on a dissertation proposal in a group context. Each student is also prepared for the dissertation in part by the earlier optional modules in which they write essays and defend them in individual tutorials. Students will also draw on their writing and debating skills, which have been honed through the seminars, essays, and seminars for their other modules.
In the dissertation module, each student meets with an assigned supervisor to finalize their proposal and to discuss and refine successive drafts. Once the dissertation has been submitted, the student defends it in a 50-minute viva voce exam.
Formal academic contact time for the MA Philosophy Dissertation comprises two 30-minutes meetings to decide dissertation topic and five one-hour individual supervisions based on the proposal and successive drafts, plus the 50-minute viva voce exam.
The dissertation is an extensive piece of academic work and students are expected to dedicate a total of 600 hours of independent study into the development of the dissertation.
NCH London is able to offer Master’s dissertation supervision for a range of interdisciplinary topics. You will find details of our Philosophy faculty’s research and supervision portfolio here. If you wish to study a theme or region that isn’t covered in the list, please do contact a member of the faculty to discuss further your intended topic. It is often the case that faculty members supervise topics that only relate tangentially to their research interests, but which pursue similar themes, methodologies, and conceptual frameworks.
Masters degree students at NCH have access to a range of resources to support their study and dissertation research. These include Senate House Library (the central library of the University of London); the School of Advanced Study; the nearby British Library; and JSTOR. Formal research training is provided in the courses which comprise your Master’s degree.
The following degrees contain this course: