MA in Logic and Philosophy of Science
The MA program in Logic and Philosophy of Science began in October 2012. It is an international program run by the Faculty of Philosophy, Philosophy of Science and Study of Religion at LMU Munich, which also administers a general MA in Philosophy.
LMU has a long-standing tradition in philosophy of science and logic that reaches back to the time of Wolfgang Stegmüller and Kurt Schütte. In recent years, this tradition has been revived by establishing a new chair in logic and philosophy of language (held by Hannes Leitgeb) and by founding the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy (MCMP) which is devoted to the application of logical and mathematical methods in philosophy. Hannes Leitgeb was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Professorship by the German Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in 2010, and in April 2012 another Alexander von Humboldt Professorship was awarded to Stephan Hartmann, who took up the chair in philosophy of science at LMU.
The MCMP and the LMU offers a lively environment to study logic and philosophy of science. Please have a look at the list of current staff as well as the research at the MCMP. Overall, the Faculty of Philosophy, Philosophy of Science and Study of Religion at LMU is one of the largest in the German-speaking world. It covers all areas of philosophy and has a strong interdisciplinary orientation towards areas such as physics, neuroscience, mathematics, statistics, linguistics, computer science, and more.
The language of the program and courses is English.
The MA is a two-year (four semesters, 120 ECTS) program.
Tuition and Financial Support
The MA program in Logic and Philosophy of Science is free, but there is a 111 Euro per semester student fee. Students are furthermore expected to cover their own living costs. It is important to note that comparable MA programs in other countries — especially in the United States and the United Kingdom — typically have very high tuition costs.
Although there are no internal scholarships available to MA students, there are a number of external organizations that offer financial support for MA students. One useful resource is the DAAD’s (German Academic Exchange Service) Scholarship Database. The DAAD itself offers scholarships for international students wishing to enroll in a program in Germany, but their database also includes grants for German students.
American graduate students can apply for a Fulbright grant. Application cycles usually open in spring and close mid October for courses starting in September of the following year. More information on Fulbright grants can be obtained from their website.
To complete the MA program, students must earn 120 ECTS (i.e., credit hours). To do so, students must write a masters thesis and complete the following course requirements:
- 4 masters colloquia
- 2 special MA lectures
- 1 thesis preparation tutorial
- 6 elective courses of one's choosing.
The masters colloquia (''Current Topics in Logic I and II, and ''Central Topics in Philosophy of Science I and II'') are taught by Hannes Leitgeb and Stephan Hartmann, and the topics vary from year to year. Typically, the masters colloquia focus on central topics in logic and philosophy of science.
The two special MA lectures, “Formal Methods I” and “Formal Methods II”, must be taken during the first two semesters of the program. These courses are intended to provide students with the formal skills necessary to pursue research in mathematical philosophy. The primary topics of Formal Methods I are set theory, predicate logic, and probability theory. The primary topics in Formal Methods II are evolutionary game theory and an introduction to agent-based computational and modeling techniques that are becoming increasingly common in philosophy and the sciences.
In the third semester of the program, each student must enroll in a one-on-one thesis preparation tutorial with his or her thesis supervisor. By the end of the semester, each student must have written a thesis proposal.
Finally, students must take at least six elective courses. Each elective belongs to one or more of six "modules", and students must complete courses in at least three of the six modules. Below you can find a list of the six modules and recent courses that have been taught in each of the modules. In a typical semester at the MCMP, there are courses offered in all six of the modules.
A non-exhaustive list of recent courses, sorted by area of philosophy, is below.
- Logic and Computation: Central Topics in Logic, Categorical Logic, Modal Logic, Deontic Logic, Proof Theory, Machine Epistemology, Models and Simulations in Social Epistemology, Theory of Computation
- Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics: Contemporary Philosophy of Logic, Introduction to Formal Semantics, Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorems, Set Theory and Its Philosophy, Frege’s Philosophy of Mathematics
- General Philosophy of Science: Central Topics in Philosophy of Science, Causality and Explanation, Metaphysics of Science, Understanding Scientific Theory Change, Reduction and Emergence, Models and Simulations in Epistemology and Philosophy of Science
- Philosophy of the Special Sciences: Philosophy of Physics, Philosophy of Statistics, Philosophy of Computer Science, Philosophy of Biology, Philosophy of Psychology, Philosophy of Economics, Philosophy of Social Sciences, Philosophy of Climate Change, Philosophy and Public Policy
- Rational Choice and Formal Epistemology: Selected Topics in Formal Epistemology, Decision Theory, Game Theory, Social Choice Theory, Models of Belief and Decision
- Analytic Philosophy: Metaphysics, Epistemology, Social Epistemology, Philosophy of Language, History of Analytic Philosophy, American Pragmatism
We host a lively community of university faculty, MCMP fellows, students, and visitors. All MA students will be able to join the great number of academic activities at the university in general and at the MCMP in particular, including two weekly research seminars in logic, philosophy of science, and mathematical philosophy for speakers from outside, a weekly internal work-in-progress seminar, reading groups, workshops, and conferences. For a list of current activities, please take a look here. We have strong ties to institutions of a similar kind and we regularly host visitors who do their research at our Center or who teach here. Additionally, the journal Erkenntnis is based at the MCMP.