PhD Program Information | Philosophy & Religion

PhD Program Information

Student Cateogories

Category I Students, 72 hours

Category 1 students: accepted to the PhD program with bachelor's degree in any discipline

  • Required courses, 21 hours (6 hours of history sequence; 6 hours of environmental philosophy sequence; 3 hours of topic specialization sequence; 6 hours of interdisciplinary study outside department)
  • Elective courses, 39 hours
  • Dissertation, 12 hours

Category II Students, 42 hours

Category 2 students: accepted to the PhD program with master's degree in a discipline other than philosophy

  • Required courses, 15 hours (6 hours of environmental philosophy sequence; 3 hours of topic specialization sequence; 6 hours of history sequence)
  • Elective courses, 15 hours
  • Dissertation, 12 hours

Category III Students, 42 hours

Category 3 students: accepted to the PhD program with master's degree in philosophy

  • Required courses, 12 hours (6 hours of environmental philosophy sequence; 6 hours of interdisciplinary study outside department)
  • Elective courses, 18 hours
  • Dissertation, 12 hours

Course Sequences

Environmental Philosophy sequence: At least two courses (6 credit hours):
(Required of Student Categories: I, II, & III)

  • PHIL 5000. Environmental Ethics
  • PHIL 5010. Philosophy of Ecology
  • PHIL 6700. Philosophy of Water Issues
  • PHIL 6710. Ecofeminism
  • PHIL 6720. Religion and Ecology
  • PHIL 6730. Christianity and the Environment
  • PHIL 6740. Environmental Ethics and Public Policy
  • PHIL 6750. Environmental Justice
  • PHIL 6760. Topics in Environmental Philosophy

Philosophical topic specialization (3 credit hours):
(Required of Student Categories: I & II)

  • PHIL 5300. Social and Political Philosophy
  • PHIL 5400. Ethical Theory
  • PHIL 5500. Philosophy of Science and Technology
  • PHIL 5600. Philosophy of Religion
  • PHIL 6100. Epistemology
  • PHIL 6150. Metaphysics
  • PHIL 6250. Aesthetics

Philosophical history sequence (6 credit hours):
(Required of Student Categories: I & II)

  • PHIL 5100. Topics in Ancient Philosophy
  • PHIL 5200. Topics in Modern Philosophy
  • PHIL 5250. Topics in History of Philosophy

Interdisciplinary study
At least two courses outside of philosophy, determined in consultation with Graduate Advisor and Major Professor.
(Required of Student Categories: I & III)

Dissertation course (12 credit hours)
After completing all other course requirements and the qualifying exam requirement, students will enroll in 12 semester credit hours of dissertation writing over the remainder of the degree program.

Qualifying Exam Paper (QEP)

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE INCLUDE A QUALIFYING EXAM PAPER AND DISSERTATION WRITING/DEFENSE.

Satisfying the Toulouse Graduate School Requirement for Qualifying Examination and Admission to Candidacy.

The purpose of the Qualifying Exam Paper is for the PhD student in philosophy to develop and demonstrate an area of scholarly competency beyond the specialization of the student's dissertation topic. Consistent with the Toulouse Graduate School Requirement for Qualifying Examination and Admission to Candidacy this qualifying exam paper will require the student to demonstrate competency with exemplary writing, research, and analytical skills. Students are to produce a paper of high scholarly merit consistent with "publishable" quality standards.

http://www.unt.edu/catalog/grad/pdfs/doctoral_degree_requirements.pdf

Upon the final semester of coursework, the PhD students will prepare to submit the Qualifying Exam Paper, which must be turned in as a final and complete draft by the deadline following the semester of course completion:

Qualifying Exam Paper Due the Following March 1

  • Course Completion Upon Any Fall Semester
  • Revisions of March 1 papers are due by April 15
  • Students funded by the Department will be advanced to Level 3 pay scale the following fall semester.

Qualifying Exam Paper Due the Following May 15th

  • Course Completion Upon Any Spring Semester
  • Revisions are due by August 1st
  • Students funded by the Department will be advanced to Level 3 pay scale if the revision is submitted and approved by August 1st. Any revisions submitted later than August 1st, even with extenuating circumstances, will not be advanced to Level 3 pay scale until the following year. This is policy for the University that Level 3 pay scale increases occur only during fall semesters, and any revised paper submission after August 1st will fail to meet the Departmental arrangements to meet the University policy.

Format/Criteria/Procedure/Evaluation:

1. Course completion entails all course requirements are completed and all requirements set by the Toulouse Graduate School are satisfied.

2. Qualifying exam papers must be on a topic explicitly other than the dissertation. However, content and research for examination may be present in minor portions of the ultimate dissertation project.

3. The qualifying exam paper should amount to between 6,000-8,000 words.

4. The qualifying exam paper should be of publishable quality. The Qualifying Exam Committee (QEC) will evaluate the paper. The QEC will be comprised of three tenured faculty, who serve on an annual basis. The QEC membership will be determined during the May committee assignment meeting. The paper evaluation is based upon a general rubric of "publishable quality." Publishable papers are based upon evaluation criteria that are addressed with the following considerations and questions:

PAPER FORMAT (Strictly Enforced)

  • Papers must include an abstract.
  • Papers must be double-spaced, including the abstract, but notes may be single spaced.
  • 6000-8000 word count is strictly enforced. Any paper outside of that number will be immediately returned to the author. Notes and bibliography are NOT included in the word count.
  • Citations must follow the style of the Journal of Environmental Ethics. It is an in-house journal that can be easily accessed.
  • A Works Cited or Bibliography page must be in the style of the Journal of Environmental Ethics.

A. Considerations: The QEC recognizes the diversity of philosophical paper topics, the multiplicity of argument styles, and the multiplicity of philosophical end points. The QEC therefore gives consideration to the different kinds of questions that can be addressed in the qualifying exam paper. The QEC offers this guideline of questions for its evaluation process. This list is neither exhaustive nor measuring as a sufficient condition for the QEC's evaluation options given the different available approaches available to candidates. It is the obligation of the student to ensure a meeting with the QEC to discuss expectations and conditions of the qualifying exam paper prior to completing the last semester of coursework.

B. Guiding Questions:

4.1 Does the paper address an important problem or issue in current philosophical scholarship?

4.2 Does it develop a clear philosophical approach or method in discussing the problem or issue at hand?

4.3 Is it well organized and clear?

4.4 Is the reasoning in the paper sound?

4.5 Is the textual and historical scholarship sound?

4.6 Does it take into account relevant existing scholarship and publications?

4.7 Does it make a significant contribution to current philosophical scholarship?

4.8 Does it use proper scholarly format and style?

4.9 Are there any other comments about the paper relevant to the issue of its readiness for submission to a professional journal?

C. Evaluation, Grading, and Appeals: The QEC will evaluate the student's paper, provide comments, and a ranking Pass/Fail grade in a timely manner.

  • Pass/Fail Rankings:
    • Final Rankings- The final rankings of a paper will fall under the following designations:
      • Pass with Distinction- Top ranking of the paper assessed by the QEC to be publishable and representing of significant contribution to the field of the author's paper topic.
      • Pass- A ranking of the paper by the QEC as satisfactorily meeting the Qualifying Exam Requirement.
      • Fail- A ranking of the paper by the QEC as unsatisfactorily meeting the Qualifying Exam Requirement.
    • Pass- Unconditional passing moving student to All But Dissertation (ABD) status as a doctoral candidate. Students will be expected to present a Passed Paper in a Department Colloquium.
    • Pass with Minor Revisions- Student will revise the paper according to the comments provided by the QEC. The QEC and the student will agree to a date by which revised paper must be completed. Upon reevaluation by the QEC the student will be given either a Pass or Fail grade.
      • Pass grade moves the student to ABD status as a doctoral candidate.
      • Fail grade will be given if revision is unsatisfactory or deadline for revision is unmet. Conditions of Fail grade are listed below.
    • Pass with Major Revisions- Student will be required to deal with major revisions according to the comments provided by the QEC. The QEC and the student will agree to a date by which the revised paper must be completed. Upon reevaluation by the QEC the student will be given either a Pass or Fail grade.
      • Pass grade moves the student to ABD status as a doctoral candidate.
      • Fail grade will be given if revision is unsatisfactory or deadline for revision/resubmission is unmet. Conditions of Fail grade are listed below.
    • Fail- Upon conditions stated in the revision categories above or the QEC's evaluation of a Failed ranking for the original paper submission, the student will be dismissed from the PhD Program in Philosophy with an opportunity to appeal the Fail grade through a rewrite and resubmit process.
  • Appealing the Fail Grade: In the event of a Fail grade, the student may appeal the grade once by a rewrite and resubmit condition. The resubmitted paper must satisfy the conditions of an unconditional passing grade in order to avoid program dismissal.
    • Rewrite and Resubmit- Student will be required to deal with major revisions that amount to rewriting and resubmitting the paper according to the comments provided by the QEC. The QEC and the student will agree to a date by which revision/resubmission must be completed. An appeals committee comprised of the QEC, Graduate Advisor, Major Professor, and the Department Chair will confer to determine the merits of the appeal and resubmitted paper. Upon reevaluation by the QEC the student will be given either a Pass or Fail grade.
      • Pass grade moves the student to ABD status as a doctoral candidate.
      • Fail grade in this appeal will result in dismissal from the Program for unsatisfactory progress.

[1] The Department of Philosophy and Religion recognizes that individuals may experience extenuating circumstances that could allow a change in the final draft deadline. Students must request such an extension with indication of extenuating circumstances prior to the respective deadline.

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