Philosophy Postgraduate Programmes

The Department of Philosophy offers postgraduate programmes leading to the award of degrees of Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy.
  1. Philosophy, Objectives and Scope of the Programmes
In general, the programme aims at providing a solid foundation for those who wish to specialize in professional/academic philosophy. It also aims at bridging the gap between professional/academic philosophy and social practice in Nigeria in particular and Africa in general. Furthermore, it aims at exposing the students to Africa’s contribution to global philosophy and also to other philosophies and thereby show the relevance of philosophy to life.
In particular, the objective of the programme is, to prepare and equip the students with intellectual maturity for administrative, policy-making and mass media career, teaching positions, in the public service, private sector and educational institutions.
  2. M.A Degree Programme:
  3. i) Graduates of Nnamdi Azikiwe University or of other approved universities, who have obtained a single honours degree in philosophy or a combined honours degree with any of the departments in the Faculty of Arts, with at least Second Class Honours or its equivalent.
  4. Candidates who hold qualification other than (i) above, which are acceptable to senate are admitted to this programme.
  1. Ph.D. Degree Programme:
i).   Graduate of Nnamdi Azikiwe University or of other universities who have obtained a good degree of Master of Arts in philosophy; that is, within a minimum of 3.5 grade average.
ii).  Candidates who hold qualifications, other than the above, acceptable to Senate can be admitted to the Ph.D. programme; and with not less than 3.5 points grade average, from the master’s programme.
  2. M.A Degree Programme:
(i)        A combination of course work and research work where    course work predominates over research work.
(ii)       In addition, the candidates should present a defence of        dissertation proposal, a defence of dissertation, and a      seminar.
  1. D. Degree Programme:
Candidates may pursue their course of study by:
  • A combination of research work and course work where research work predominates over course work.
  • In addition, the candidates should present a defence of thesis proposal, a defence of thesis, and two seminars.
  2. M.A Degree Programme:
The minimum period of full-time study for the degree of Master’s shall be a calendar year of 12 months and part-time study shall be 18 months.
  1. D. Degree Programme:
    • The minimum period of full-time study for the degree of Doctor of philosophy shall be a four semesters of which at least two semesters shall be embodied in a thesis.
  • The minimum period of part-time study for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy shall normally be six semesters but may be varied by the Senate on the recommendation of the Board of Postgraduate Studies. At least, two-thirds of the period of study shall be spent on research, the result of which shall be embodied in a thesis.
The nature of the discipline and its designed programme are such as to produce candidates suitable for employment in:
  1. Secondary Educational Institutions
  2. The Universities, Polytechniques and Colleges of Education
  3. The State and Local Government Commissioners, Hospital Administrations.
  4. Federal Government Services – Local as well as foreign
  5. Parastatals, Private Organizations and Institutions
  6. The Military… Army, Navy and Air Forces
  7. The Police and Prisons
  8. Security and Intelligence Organizations
  9. Other bodies with administrative, managerial and personal requirements.
Although postgraduate courses are offered in a number of branches of philosophy, all candidates are required to specialize in one of the following areas:
African Philosophy                                             0
Political and Social Philosophy                          1
Western Metaphysics                                         2
Moral Philosophy                                                            3
Epistemology                                                                   4
History of Western Philosophy                         5
Electives                                                                           6
Project and Dissertation                                    7
  2. M.A. Degree Programme:
(a)  All candidates for M.A. Degree Programme must complete 10 courses of 3 units each and a project of 12 units making a total of 42 units. Five of the courses must be from the candidate’s area of specialization.
(b)   Candidates are required to do five courses in the area of their specialization; Research Methodology; and four other courses from other areas in philosophy.
  1. Ph.D. Degree Programme:
Candidates holding a Mater’s degree in philosophy shall embark on research on a topic approved by the Senate. At the end of the 2nd semester before the final thesis examination consisting of the thesis proposal defence and two seminars, the successful candidate will be allowed to continue his research the result of which will be presented in a thesis.
Course No.  Tile                                                       Credit
African Philosophy
PHL 501         Afric. Philosophy                               3
PHL 502         Afric. Metaphysics                             3
PHL 503         Afric. Social Philosophy                    3
PHL 504         Problem of Afric. Philosophy                       3
PHL 505         Contemporary Afric. Phl 1                           3
PHL 506         Contemporary Afric. Phl.11             3
PHL 591         Master’s Research Seminar/Project           16
Political And Social Philosophy
PHL 511         Greek Period                                     3
PHL 512         Modern Period 1                               3
PHL 513         Modern Period 11                            3
PHL 514         Problem of Political Phl.                   3
PHL 515         Non-European Pol. Thought                        3
Western Metaphysis
PHL 521         Greek Metaphysics                            3
PHL 522         Medieval Metaphysics                      3
PHL 523         The Empiricist Tradition                  3
PHL 524         The Rationalist Tradition                 3
PHL 525         German Idealism                               3
PHL 526         Existentialist Tradition                     3
PHL 527         Recent Analytical Metaphysics        3
PHL 528         Philosophy of Language                   3
Moral Philosophy
PHL 531         Greek Ethics                                       3
PHL 532         Scholastic Ethics                                3
PHL 533         Modern Ethical Systems                   3
PHL 534         Marxian Ethics                                   3
PHL 535         Existentialist Ethics                           3
PHL 536         Social Ethics                                       3
PHL 541         Greek Philosophy                              3
PHL 542         Empiricist Theory of knowledge     3
PHL 543         Rationalist Theory of knowledge    3
PHL 544         Marxist Epistemology                                   3
PHL 545         Idealism Versus Realism                  3
PHL 54           Analytical Epistemology                   3
PHL 54           Epistemology & Existentialism        3
History of Western Philosophy
PHL 551         Ancient Philosophy
(Greco-Roman)                                 3
PHL 552         Scholastic Philosophy
PHL 553         Modern Philosophy                          3
PHL 554         Contemporary Phl. 1                        3
PHL 555         Contemporary Phl. 11                                  3
Research Methodology
PHL 566         Research Methodology                    3
PHL 567         Contemporary Phl. Of Education     3
PHL 568         Special Study                                     3
PHL 569         Metaphysical Anthropology             3
PHL 570         African Person-hood                                    3
PHL 571         Philosophy & Development             3
PHL 572         Philosophy of Religion                     3
PHL 573         Philosophy of Science                                   3
PHL 574         Philosophy of Arts                            3
PHL 601         Morality and Justice                          3
PHL 602         Traditional/African Ethics               3
PHL 603         Marxian – African Ethics                  3
PHL 604         African Value System                                    3
PHL 611         African Philosophy                           3
PHL 612         Cosmology and Cosmologies                       3
PHL 613         Symbolism and Thought                  3
PHL 621         Symbolism and knowledge              3
PHL 622         African Theory of Knowledge         3
PHL 623         African Meaning and Understanding          3
PHL 624         African Thought                                3
Philosophy of Law
PHL 631         Natural Law School                          3
PHL 632         Schools of Law                                  3
PHL 633         Law in Africa                                     3
Western Metaphysics
PHL 641         Ancient Metaphysicians                    3
PHL 642         The Scholastics                                  3
PHL 643         Existentialist Metaphysicians                       3
Social and Political Philosophy
PHL 651         Ancient Political Thinkers
and Philosophers                              3
PHL 652         Modern & Contemporary Theorists
in Social and Political Philosophy.   3
PHL 653         Philosophy and Politics                    3
PHL 654         Philosophy and the Third World    3
Western Ethics
PHL 661         Ancients Theorist                              3
PHL 662         Modern and Contemporary Theorists       3
PHL 663         Marxists Ethical Theories                3
Western Epistemology
PHL 671         Empiricist Rationalist Tradition      3
PHL 672          Positivism in Western Philosophy  3
PHL 673         Recent Theories of Knowledge       3
PHL 501:    African Philosophy                                3 Credits
A study of the main characteristics of the African Traditional thought (for example, religious, moral, mythological, etc.). And in depth examination of the Ontological notions of force, man and spirit, life, death, mystical power, destiny, nature etc. Institutional embodiment of African Traditional thought.
PHL 502:    African Metaphysics                              3 Credits
Advanced study of African Ontology or the philosophy of forces; Ethical systems: the relation of human laws to ontological morality, African philosophy anthropology; man’s place in the world, the use of power of the word (NOMMO) in African Philosophy.
PHL 503:    African Social Philosophy                     3 Credits
Detailed examination of the ontological basis of African Communalism, marriage system, superior/inferior relationship, hierarchy of forces, chieftaincy institutions, kinship system, land allocation, artistic and aesthetic experiences.
PHL 504:    Problems of African Philosophy          3 Credits
Problems of the existence of African Philosophy. The problems among Western and African Philosophers over the concept of African Philosophy. Examination of relevant literature.
PHL 505:    Contemporary African Philosophy 1        3 Credits
Advanced study of African Identity; Authenticity and nationalism, Negritude of Indigenism as a philosophy. Reference will be made to the works of Senghor, Nkrumah, Azikiwe and Nyerere.
PHL 506:    Contemporary African Philosolphy II       3 Credits
The impact of colonialism on African traditional philosophy: Africa at the cross-road; contemporary liberation movements in Africa; Apartheid, Contemporary directions of Africa.
PHL 511:        Greek Period                                     3 Credits
A comprehensive study of ancient Greek thought concerning the nature and origin of state and society, especially including the sophists.
PHL 512:        Modern Period I                                3 Credits
A critical study of some important political theories of the modern period; including: Machiavelli, Bodin, Hobbes, Locke, Montesquieu, Hume, Burke and Rousseau.
PHL 513:        Modern Period II                              3 Credits
A critical study of the following: Bentham and his school, the early socialists, French and English. The Political philosophy of Hegel, Marx and Engels.
PHL 514:        Problems of Political Philosophy    3 Credits
An analytical study of some major problems relating the following concepts: Political Philosophy and Ideology; The scope of politics; sovereignty, power and authority; political obligation. Liberty, democracy, justice and punishment.
PHL 515:        Non-European Political Thought          3 Credits
A study in the social and political ideas of the ‘Third World’ and Black-American thinkers such as Nkrumah Nyerere, Fanon, Mao Tse-Tung, Mahatma Gandhi, Henry David Thoreau and Martin Luther King.
PHL 521:    Greek Metaphysics                                3 Credits
A study of development of metaphysical thought during the pre-Socratic period; A critical and comprehensive study of the metaphysical system of Plato and Aristotle.
PHL 522:    Medieval Metaphysics                           3 Credits
A comprehensive study, of the metaphysical systems of the major philosophers of the medieval period such as: Anaselm, St. Augustine, and William of Ockham.
PHL 523:    The Empiricist Tradition                      3 Credits
A study of the metaphysical systems of the empiricist philosophers of the modern period, especially those of Lacke, Berkeley and Hume.
PHL 524:    The Rationalist Tradition                     3 Credits
A study of the metaphysical systems of the rationalist philosophers: of the modern period, especially those of Descartes Liebniz and Spinoza.
PHL 525:    German Idealism                                   3 Credits
A comprehensive and critical study of the metaphysical systems of Kant or Hegel.
PHL 526:    Existentialist Metaphysics                     3 Credits
A systematic study of any three of the following existentialist philosophers: Karl Jaspers, Nietzche, Kiekegaard, Martin Buber,  Heidegger, Sartre.
PHL 527:    Recent Analytical Metaphysics 3 Credits
An analytical study of the following metaphysical concepts: mind, matter, substance, time, space, cause and God.
PHL 528:    Philosophy of Language                       3 Credits
Introduction to Logic: the relation between language and reality. Objects, concepts, and numbers; theories of sense and reference for sentences and their parts, speech-art theory, information theory, the anti-private language argument, language use, truth meaning and translation; essential and accidental properties, problems in indirect discourse. Formal analysis of semantics of natural language.
PHL 531:    Greek Ethics                               3 Credits
A critical study of the ethical ideas of Ancient Greeks, from Sophists to Aristotle, with special attention to the theories of Plato and Aristotle.
PHL 532:       Scholatic Ethics                                     3 Credits
A study of the ethical doctrines of the medieval period, from St. Augustine to St. Thomas Aquinas.
PHL 533:       Modern Ethical Systems                                    3 Credits
A comprehensive study of distinct types of ethical systems including naturalism, idealism, intuitionism, emotivism and presciptivism.
PHL 534:       Marxian Ethics                                                       3 Credits
A critical study of the moral philosophy of Karl Marx and his followers.
PHL 535:       Existentialist Ethics                                             3 Credits
A detailed study of the major ethical theories of the Existentialist philosophers, including Kierkegaard, Heidegger and J.P. Sartre.
PHL 536:       Social Ethics                                                            3 Credits
The study of the ethical problems relevant to social institutions, norms and values, such as chieftaincy, ethnicity, minority rights, welfare of children, science policy, human rights, decriminalization of moral offences etc.
PHL 541:       Greek Philosophy                                                 3 Credits
The theories of knowledge of the Sophists, Plato and Aristotle, including the discussion of: The relativity of standards, the theory of Ideas, learning and recollection memory, knowledge and relief.
PHL 542:       The Empiricist Theory Of Knowledge             3 Credits
The principles of knowledge in the philosophy of Bacon: Hobbes, Locke, Berkeley and Hume. Especially, their nominalism and conceptualism, rejection of innate ideals, experiences as the source and validation of knowledge and the limits of knowledge.
PHL 543:       The Rationalist Theory of Knowledge            3 Credits
The principles of knowledge advocated in the philosophy of descartes, spinoza, Leibniz and Kant. including the philosophy of scientific method, scepticism and certainly, levels of knowledge, sensation, sense-perception, the innate and the a-priori.
PHL 544:    Marxist Epistemology                           3 Credits
The principles of knowledge embodied in the philosophy of Karl Marx, Engels and their followers, dialectical materialism, historical determinism of forms of consciousness. The identity of the real and the rational, rejection of metaphysics and theory.
PHL 545:    Idealism vs Realism                               3 Credits
A comprehensive study of the epistemological position of Bradley: Russell, Moore and Ayer. The coherence theory of truth. The correspondence theory of truth rejection of internal relations, sense-data and the material world. The realist theory of meaning, truth and common sense.
PHL 546:    Analytical Epistemology                        3 Credits
An analytical study of the central notions in the theory of knowledge; including meaning and verification, truth, scepticism and certainly, criterion and validity, memory, belief, sense-perception and knowledge.
PHL 547:    Epistemology and Existentialism         3 Credits
An examination of the phenomenological and existentialist theories of knowledge: especially those of Husserl and Merleau – Ponty, Sartre and Heidegger.
PHL 551:    Ancient Philosophy (Greco Roman)   3 Credits
The essential points in the thought of Pre-Socratic philosophers. Advanced study of Scratics, Plato, Aristotle, Marcus Epicurus, Ciecero and others.
PHL 552:    Scholastics Philosophy                          3 Credits
Definition of scholasticism in its historical context. Study of the thoughts of the leading thinkers of the period of St. Augustine, Sctus, Latin Averroism, Ockham.
PHL 553:    Modern Philosophy                               3 Credits
The beginning of the scientific age and the rise of Humanism; The thoughts of Descartes, Spinoza, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Kant and Hegel.
PHL 554:    Contemporary Philosophy                   3 Credits
A study of the growing opposition to Hegel’s thought by Marx and the Existentialists, study of the works of Kierkegaard, Sartre, Marcel and Heidegger.
PHL 555:    Contemporary Philosophy II                3 Credits
Continuation of the empiricist tradition in the philosophy of Russell, Moore and A.J. Ayer, An introduction to the philosophy of Wittgenstein with special reference to the philosophical traditions.
PHL 566:    Research Methodology                         3 Credits
Research Methodology; as relevant to research in philosophy.
PHL 567:    Contemporary Philosophy of Education   3 Credits
A critical study of central concepts, aims and in the practice of education: Learning, training, authority, indoctrination, creativity, understanding, etc.
PHL 568:    Special Study                              3 Credits
Comprehensive study of the works of individual philosophers as required by the needs and interests of individual philosophers as required by the needs and interests of individual students.
PHL 569:    Metaphysical Anthropology                 3 Credits
An in-depth and critical study of theories of the person: with special interest in their metaphysics foundations.
PHL 570:    African Personhood                              3 Credits
A study of the causes and phenomena of crisis of African Person-hood; theories of African Person-hood; African theories of the person.
PHL 571:    Philosophy and Development              3 Credits
Meaning, subject matter, issues in development and theories of development.
PHL 572:       Philosophy of Religion                                       3 Credits
Challenge of Religion: defence of religion; religious knowledge, religious experience, religious language, miracles, death and last judgement.
PHL 573:       Philosophy of Science                                        3 Credits
Methodologies of science, historical and revolutionary science of Thomas, Kuhn: Feyerabend’s anarchistic conception of science; concept of scientific progress; issues in technological development; review of Nigerian technology.
PHL 574:       Philosophy of Arts                                               3 Credits
Theories of arts: aesthetics and artistic experiences of man. Appreciation and appraisal of art, criticisms.
PHL 601:       Morality and Justice                                            3 Credits
Morality as the quality in human acts. Man as man, African morality; justice in African communalism. African moral conscience and integrity.
PHL 602:       Traditional/African Ethics                               3 Credits
What is traditional/African ethics? Comparative analysis of traditional/African ethics and the categorical imperatives of modern and contemporary western ethics.
PHL 603:       Marxian – African Ethics                                   3 Credits
Comparative analysis of Marxian ethics with African ethics.
PHL 604:    African Values System                          3 Credits
African meaning of value: Hierarchy of African value System. Critical implications of African value system, false values in human African life.
PHL 611:    African Philosophy                                3 Credits
African philosophy; critique of the trends. African philosophy as force, thought, act and word. The metaphysics of forces, spirit and being.  Metaphysical.
PHL 612:    Cosmology and Cosmologies               3 Credits
African cosmology and cosmologies: A hermeneutical study. Comparative analysis of the cosmological hierarchies and African cosmological hierarchies. criticisms.
PHL 613:    Symbolism and Thought                       3 Credits
The place of symbol in thought. The symbolismic universe of thought. Symbolic reasoning. Symbology and representative system of thought in Africa. The symbols as instrumental foods for thought.
PHL 621:    Symbolism and Knowledge                  3 Credits
The place symbolism in African theory of knowledge. The intentionality of symbolism in knowledge. Knowledge as a system of symbolic imagination. Making the images of knowledge.
PHL 622:    African Theory of Knowledge              3 Credits
Scholars on African theory of knowledge and critique of their position. The representatives theory of African knowledge.
PHL 623:    African Meaning and Understanding       3 Credits
African meaning. African understanding. Understanding and the making of the African meaning of reality. Understanding as sympathy. Meaning as meaning of something.
PHL 624:    African Thought                        3 Credits
The Rationality of African Systems of Thought. African thought and culture. African thought as the projection of African Culture. African philosophy as the systematization of African thought and culture.
PHL 631:    Natural Law School                               3 Credits
Natural law school: The contractualists; exposition and critique. Natural law, human law, divine law and eternal law.
PHL 632:    School of Law                            3 Credits
Critique of positivistic, sociological and historical schools of law. Legal hermeneutics and the conflicts of ontologies.
PHL 633:    Law in Africa                              3 Credits
Law in Africa: application of the schools of thought. Law as the organ of order. Law as the conscience of truth. Legal precedents and cultural typologies.
PHL 641:    Ancient Metaphysicians                        3 Credits
A study of some key motions and views of some philosopher; esse, essence, substance, etc. Parmenides, Heraclitus, Plato, Aristotle, etc. Universals and Particulars.
PHL 642:    The Scholastics                          3 Credits
Martin Heidgger, Jean Paul Sartre, Marcel, etc.  existentialism and essentialism. Phenomenological ontology. Metaphysical sceptism.
PHL 651:    Ancient Political Thinkers and Philosopher
3 Credits
Plato, Aristotle, etc. Man’s place in the political society. Transformation of the state of nature.
PHL 652:    Modern and Contemporary Theorists in Social and Political Philosophy    3 Credits
Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau, Machiavelli, Marx, etc. The state and the political machines.
PHL 653:    Philosophy and Politics             3 Credits
Application of philosophy to politics; philosophy and developmentalism. Political hermeneutics and the conflicts of order in human society. Philosopher kings today.
PHL 654:    Philosophy and the Third World         3  Credits
Radical principles in the philosophical application of philosophical principles in modern politics.  World politics as it affects the third world.  The West and rest of us.  Third world or first world?
PHL 661:    Ancient Theorists                                  3 Credits
Ethical theories of Plato, Aristotle, the Stoics, Epicurus, etc.  Eudaemonism:  Functionalism and perfectionism.
PHL 662:    Modern and Contempporary Theorists    3 Credits
Moral theories of Kant, Mill and others.  Moral absolutes and philosophical analysis.  Axiological ontologies and the concepts of ethical judgements.  deontologism and definability of ethical concepts.
PHL 663:    Marxist Ethical Theories                       3 Credits
Karl Marx’s moral philosophy, the Marxists and ethical principles, and the critique of the Marxist’s stand.  Political Morality: Sub-structural and Super-structural implications.
PHL 663:    Marxist Ethical Thories             3 Credits
Karl Marx’s moral philosophy, the Marxists and ethical principles, and the critique of the Marxist’s stand.  Political morality: sub-structural and super-structural implications.
PHL 671:    Empiricist – Rationalist Tradition        3 Credits
The theories of Francis Bacon, John Locke, Rene Descartes, Leibniz, Spinoza, Kant, etc.  critical mediation of continental dogmatism and scepticism in Britain
PHL 672:    Positivism in Western Philosophy       3 Credits
The philosophical foundations of positivism. The positivism of Comte. The logical positivism of carnap, Ayer, etc.  Scientific philosophy: possibility and impossibility.
PHL 673:    Recent Theories of Knowledge                        3 Credits
Modern developments in epistemology, like, reconstructionism, foundationalism, etc.  Logic of scientific discovery: confirmability, testability, verifiability, falsifiability, etc.