Document Actions

Philosophy (M.A.)

Taught in German




If Philosophy today is no longer synonymous with Science as it was in Newton’s day, it is because in the course of time certain questions have been transferred to individual sciences once they had diverged from Philosophy. However, what Philosophy has to this day continued to cultivate as its own is the field of questions relating to the fundamental conditions of human action and understanding and consequently also questions about the principles underlying explanations given by (individual) sciences.

Behind such questions, regardless of their diversity and the wealth of answers given to them, the Department of Philosophy at JLU Giessen recognises the common concern of all philosophical thinking, which is to mould and deepen our concept of self as human beings.

The Master of Arts degree course in Philosophy aims to study this concern from the perspective of a new anthropology which is not to be classified as a special philosophical discipline, but rather as an umbrella covering and integrating the content of multi-facetted questions. In the themes and problems treated, the programme steers towards the contentual guiding question about the aspects and dimensions determining human forms of life at the interface between culture and nature. This contentual guiding question will enable you in your studies to integrate thematically the foci of your choice from practical and theoretical Philosophy and to act at the intersection of cultural studies and life sciences. The programme not only links philosophical questions with issues of a historical and cultural nature, but also points towards the field of the life sciences. The foci of the professorships in the department offer a productive environment to students interested in the exchange between philosophy and the individual sciences.

The excellent thematic profile of the Master’s programme in Giessen is complemented by the high degree of autonomy and responsibility expected of students regarding the content of their studies ‑ not only the issues they choose to investigate, but how they study and treat the content critically and productively. On the one hand, the curriculum covers traditional philosophical seminars and conventional forms of student academic work, but on the other, also a number of philosophical projects allowing students to experiment with alternative forms of philosophical work, such as book reviews, newspaper articles, conference papers or philosophical analyses of current affairs, all of which are intensively supervised by our academic staff. The programme will prepare our students not only for the challenges of an academic career but also for a wide spread of career openings in the field of culture.


Duration of studies 4 Semester 120 Credit Points (CP)

Duration of Studies

4 Semesters - 120 Credit Points (CP)

Composition of the Study Programme

Composition of the Study Programme

Composition of the Study Programme

The course of study contains modules from the area of theoretical and practical philosophy as well as philosophy of Life Sciences. Students have to choose three project modules which offer the possibility to work on philosophical topics and to present them in form of projects. In an elective module, students can choose from the course catalogue of the department of philosophy, from interdisciplinary skills or apply as a student assistant (e.g. tutor) at the department of philosophy. In the context of the module "Research semiar" students can work out their own research topic, discuss it and present it. The research should serve as a basis for drafting the Master’s thesis.



1st semester (in total 30 CP)2nd semester (in total 30 CP)
Human Being, Nature, Culture (12 CP) Action, Norms, Ethics (12 CP)
Project module 1:
Critique and Deliberation (12 CP)
Project module 2:
Construction and Argumentation (12 CP)
Individuale module (6 CP) Research Seminar: part 1 (6 CP)
3rd semester (in total 30 CP)4th semester (in total 30 CP)
Mind, Understanding, Knowledge (12 CP) Thesis (30 CP)
Project module 3:
Cognitive and Normative Orientation (12 CP)
Research Seminar: part 2 (6 CP)


Students have the possibility to set their own focus area in the project modules.


Master's Thesis

Both parts of the research seminar serve as the preparation to find the right topic for the Master's thesis. The topic will be discussed and tested in the seminar.

The thesis itself is an academic work, where students have to deal with a chosen philosophical topic. Further details need do be discussed with the supervisor of your thesis.


Further Information

A description of the core- and specialisation modules can be found in the special regulations with module descriptions and module plans (in German)

More on this... ("Spezielle Ordnung")


Courses offered in the course catalogue



Information about studying at Justus Liebig University Giessen (incomings)

International Office
General counseling of international students
Dr. Saltanat Rakhimzhanova, Patrycja Zakrzewska

Goethestr. 58, Room 38
35390 Giessen

Contact and office hours

International pages

Please have a look at our International Pages for more information in English.


Commencement of Studies in the Winter and Summer Semester

Commencement of studies

Summer semester and winter semester

Entrance requirements

Entrance requirements

The requirement for acceptance into the Master’s course is a completed Bachelor’s degree, with at least 60 CP in the area of philosophy, or a completed teaching degree programme with at least 60 cp in the teaching subjects philosophy and ethics. The board of examiners can accept other courses of study as equivalent after examining them individually

Application not limited

Application for admission and registration

  • The intake capacity of this degree programme is not limited internally by the university.
  • Applications must be received by the JLU Student Secretariat by 15th January for the summer semester and 15th July for the winter semester. More on this...
  • Special regulations apply to foreign applicants or those who gained their university-entrance qualifications abroad. Read more...

Further Information

Further Information: Documents

PDF documents for the courses of study

Examination- and study regulations


Courses offered in the course catalogue

International pages

Please have a look at our International Pages for more information in English.

Any Questions

Any Questions?

Information- and advisory services of JLU can be found under the category “contact” on this page!


Subject Advisor

Subject Advisor

Dr. Timo-Peter Ertz
Institut für Philosophie
Rathenaustraße 8, roomm 212 | 35394 Giessen
Phone: +49 (0)641 99 - 15551 | Fax: -15539

Contact hours | Further information:
Thursdays 14.00 - 15.00 or by appointment

Central Study Advisor

Natascha Koch
Central Student Services

Directions and welcome desk