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What will I learn?

The aim of the Philosophy curriculum is to foster critical thinking skills in students while enabling them to appreciate the philosophical traditions of both the East and the West. Philosophy is also often studied via its cultural heritage, such as that bequeathed by the Ancient Greeks and Romans, the Chinese and Indian traditions, Medieval Scholars in both Europe and the Arabic world, and modern Western cultures, including that of Anglo-America and Continental Europe. The Philosophy B.A. programme in the Department of Philosophy supplies an academic grounding in the subject, as well as in the thought of important philosophers both past and present. By selecting appropriate modules, students may experience the thrill and frustration of grappling with profound and challenging issues first-hand, as well as learning how great philosophers have approached them. The philosophical skills developed in the process, including systematic critical thinking, sensitivity to opposing viewpoints, and the appreciation of complex systems of belief, can be applied to wide areas of life.

Since philosophy is a focal discipline which examines the fundamental presuppositions involved in all disciplines, there is an emphasis on techniques of analytical and critical thinking from the very first year. For this same reason, the Department has attracted students from other faculties. All modules, except those of level 4000, are open to non-FASS students.

The Department also has a thriving graduate programme, with both Ph.D. and M.A. students. Graduate research scholarships are available to outstanding candidates on a competitive basis.

Career Prospects

The critical and analytical skills that students develop in studying Philosophy, as well as their knowledge of Asian philosophical traditions, allow them to do well in many career areas. Philosophy graduates have been recruited by such diverse organisations as The Straits Times, MediaCorp Pte Ltd, multinationals such as Shell and IBM, the Economic Development Board, Neptune Orient Lines, Singapore International Airlines, established commercial banks, and numerous divisions of the Civil Service.

Large organisations and employers value the evidence of independent thought, capacity for good writing & research, and flexible, integrative and critical thinking that an education in Philosophy provides. Last, but not least, the department provides ample opportunity for students who wish to pursue the subject at a higher level to do so. This may lead to a career in the research and teaching of Philosophy.

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Study options

Full Time (60 months)

Tuition fees
SG$20,350.00 (11,49,068) per year
Start date

Expected August 2022


Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

The Shaw Foundation Building, Block AS7, Level 5,

5 Arts Link,

117570, Singapore

Entry requirements

For students from United States

PhD programme requires a good Master’s degree in a relevant discipline, or at least a Second Class Upper Honours degree or equivalent in a relevant discipline. English Language Requirements: TOEFL scores for Internet Based Test (IBT) is 90; or IELTS score of 6.0. 

For international students

In general, the University requires:

  • Normally a good Master’s degree in a relevant discipline; or
  • an NUS Honours degree (at least Distinction/Second Class Upper Division) or equivalent (e.g., a four-year Bachelor’s degree with an average grade above B) in a relevant discipline, subject to approval by the Faculty, on a case-by-case basis.

English Language Requirements: Minimum TOEFL score is required: 85 for the internet-based test (with a minimum score of 22 for the writing section); or 580 for the paper-based test; or 237 for the computer-based test. IELTS result of 6.0 is required.


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