Master of Philosophy in Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctor of Philosophy in Philosophy (PhD)

Program Overview

The AJU MPhil or doctorate degree in philosophy offered in the School of Philosophy and Humanities is offered as EITHER

A). both coursework and research based programme


B). A research based progamme. This is offered to students who have a Masters degree in philosophy or a humanities subject and after they have selected a specialist area in which they are prepared to do research at doctoral level.


Structure of the Programme (Both Coursework and Research based)

There will be four parts of the program. (1) Part One, course work: All PhD candidates will take 16 courses covering 270-320 credits. Six of these courses will be waved if the candidate already has an MA from University of Zimbabwe. Those who obtained their Masters from other universities may do the 16 courses and some may be waved according to the departmental regulations. Two of these courses can be reading courses with particular members of faculty. Further Logic, African Philosophy will be required courses. (2) Part Two, Doctoral Comprehensive. It is expected that between one to two years into the program a candidate will sit for the Doctoral Comprehensive. This will comprise of four parts: (a) Dissertation Proposal; (b) a systematic Problem in philosophy; (c) key themes in philosophical traditions (d) two selected authors of the candidate’s choosing. (3) Part Three: Research and writing of the dissertation. Having successfully defended the doctoral dissertation proposal the candidate now writes it. Prior to writing a dissertation proposal, a candidate chooses a supervisor who will advice him/her on the procedure and who will advice him on the possible date for the doctoral defense. (4) Part Four: And finally a public defense of the doctoral dissertation will be conducted by the supervisors, and select members of the department according to Academic Regulations.

Structure of the Programme (Research-based)

There will be three parts to the research-based programme. Part One will consist of formulating a Dissertation Proposal which will describe the area of study that the dissertation intends to address and the issues that it will seek to address and resolve by providing a bibliography of some of the existing literature on the area of study and where the candidate believes it is inadequate in answering questions that the dissertation will identify. Part Two The candidate will defend the Dissertation Proposal before a Higher Degrees Committee which will include members with specialist knowledge of the area of study. If the candidate successfully defends the Dissertation Proposal, he or she chooses a supervisor or supervisors. If the dissertation is being written on a full-time basis, the minimum writing of the dissertation is 3 years and the maximum 5 years. If the dissertation is being written on a part-time basis, the minimum writing of the dissertation is 4 years and the maximum is six years.

When the candidate has completed his dissertation to his or her own and the supervisor’s satisfaction the supervisor will ask the university to constitute an examining panel that will consist of one internal examiner who is on the academic staff of the university and two external examiners who have expertise in the field that the dissertation is concerned to address. The three examiners will allocate a grade to the dissertation and if these grades indicate that the dissertation has the merit to proceed they will convene an examining panel and the candidate will have to make a public defense of the dissertation.

African Language Requirement

PhD applicants are required to be proficient in English, and any other European, Arabic or Asian language, and an African language as may be demanded by their research. These requirements can be waved if the student provides proof or will be willing to take an examination as substitute.

Duration of the Program

For full time Course work and Research-based candidates, the minimum duration is 3 Years and Maximum 5 years. For research-based candidates it is 3 Years.

For Part time candidates, the minimum duration is 4 Years and Maximum 6 Years.

Components of the Program

After successfully passing their doctoral comprehensive, PhD candidates are allowed to offer courses to the undergraduate students as Teaching Fellows, or Teaching Assistants under the guidance of full professors. Those who wish to be considered to teaching fellowship at AJU must attend and participate fully in the teaching seminar. Service program is part of the core requirement at AJU, PhD candidates are required to do service programs during their studies. Please consult the Dean for further details.


Courses (Course and Research Based Program)

  • DPH 805         Epistemology
  • DPH 807         African Philosophy
  • DPH 809         Egypt-Greek Philosophy
  • DPH 810         A Major Philosopher

  • DPH 800         Economic Philosophy                                    
  • DPH 801         Political Philosophy                                      
  • DPH 803         Philosophy of Development                                     
  • DPH 806         Logic

  • DPH 804         African Literature and its philosophies
  • DPH 808         Christian Philosophy


  • DPH 811         Hermeneutics             
  • DPH 812         Metaphysics              
  • DPH 813         Philosophy of Religion          
  • DPH 814         Phil. Anthropology    
  • DPH 815         Social Philosophy      
  • DPH 816         Legal Philosophy       
  • DPH 817         A Major Philosopher 
  • DPH 818         A Special Subject       
  • DPH 819         Business Ethics                      
  • DPH 820         European Philosophy
  • DPH 821         Issues in Science & Religion
  • DPH 822         Medical Ethics                       
  • DPH 823         Christian Philosophy 
  • DPH 824         Islamic Philosophy    
  • DPH 825         Philosophy of Art     
  • DPH 826         Philosophy of Education
  • DPH 827         Philosophy of History          
  • DPH 828         Philosophy of Language        
  • DPH 829         Philosophy of Literature
  • DPH 830         Philosophy of Mind  
  • DPH 831         Philosophy of Science           
  • DPH 832         Philosophical Writing
  • DPH 833         Philosophy of Action
  • DPH 834         Ethics of War                         
  • DPH 835         Phil. of Information Technology       
  • DPH 836         Reading Course          
  • DPH 837         Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence

Part 2

DPH 840         Dissertation (120 000-140 000 words)


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