Philosophy of Mind and Psychology

Program and courses Philosophy of Mind and Psychology

Study themes at the intersection of philosophy and psychology and reflect on the mental phenomena that jointly make up the ‘human mind’. What does it mean to have 'emotions' and 'consciousness', and (how) can we have knowledge about ourselves?

Program structure

This one-year track consists of 60 credits (ECTS) divided between two semesters, of which:

  • 10 core courses:
    - 1 signature course of 6 ECTS
    - 2 common courses of 6 ECTS (12 ECTS)
    - 7 track-specific courses of 3 ECTS (21 ECTS)
  • Master Seminar (0 ECTS)
  • 1 elective course of 6 ECTS or 2 elective courses of 3 ECTS (6 ECTS)
  • 1 Master’s thesis (15 ECTS)

You can start either at the end of August or at the end of January.

Program content

Core courses

You will follow 1 signature course (6 ECTS):

  • The Intelligence of Emotions (6 ECTS)

You take 2 common courses (12 ECTS) together with students from the other Philosophy master tracks:

  • Ethics (6 ECTS)
  • The Canon and Beyond (6 ECTS)

You will follow 7 track-specific courses (21 ECTS):

  • Thinking Mistakes (3 ECTS)
  • Philosophy of Influence (3 ECTS)
  • Trauma and Art (3 ECTS)
  • Psychoanalysis and the Unconscious (3 ECTS)
  • Philosophy and the Limits of Psychology (3 ECTS)
  • Crisis and Insecurity (3 ECTS)
  • Brains and Bodies (3 ECTS)

The Master Seminar (0 ECTS) offers a theoretical and practical deepening and enrichment of the Master's program. For the seminars, philosophers and professionals from relevant fields are invited.

Elective courses

Choose one course of 6 ECTS or two courses of 3 ECTS from the curriculum of the following tracks:

Master's thesis

In the first semester, you will receive practical information about the process of writing your Master's thesis and then get to work choosing a topic, developing an outline, and finding a supervisor. In the second semester, you get to work on writing your thesis.

Thesis procedure (in short):

  • You can freely choose the subject of your thesis. The topic must be philosophical in nature and consistent with the content of the program. 
  • You are matched with a supervisor based on content expertise and availability.
  • You have the opportunity, under conditions, to write your thesis in response to a research question from a company or organization.
  • The thesis is an academic and philosophical piece of writing and thus the research expected is philosophical in nature (conceptual, argumentative, literature review).

Examples of topics in the last academic year:

  • Controlling human attention processes: Exploring the psychological techniques and social implications behind recommendation systems.
  • Freedom and authenticity in neoliberal times: A contemporary application of Heidegger’s thoughts on death and Eigentlichkeit.
  • I embody, therefore I am: Mind-body therapies and the special role of the body.

Watch a trial lecture

You will find a detailed description of the courses and required literature in our course catalog.

Go to the course descriptions

Part-time study program

Read more about the part-time Master's track Philosophy of Mind and Psychology

Part-time students usually take two years to complete the master (instead of one year), and three years for pre-master plus master. However, a higher or lower study tempo in the master is also negotiable.

As a part-time student, keep the following in mind:

  1. The courses from the Master's are scheduled in such a way that the program can be followed partly in the evening hours as a part-time student.
  2. Evening lectures start at 17.45h (or later) and are given on one or two regular evenings during the week. They usually take place on Monday and/or Thursday evening. Lectures that start before the evening (for example at 16.45h) and end in the evening, do not count as evening lectures.
  3. As a part-time student you will also encounter lectures that are given during the day. These lectures can take place on all working days (Monday up to and including Friday). 
  4. Lecturing schedules are drawn up every semester and are usually announced one or one and a half month before the start of the semester.
  5. Since lectures can be scheduled every day of the week, during the day as well as in the evening, it is important to have some flexibility in your working schedule when you want to combine this study with a job.
  6. Attendance during the working lectures is not mandatory for part-time students, but it is highly recommended. 
  7. The average study load when studying part-time is 20-25 hours per week. This includes lectures, exams and preparation for the lectures and exams.

Please note: programs are subject to change. We advise you to look up the current program in OSIRIS Student at the start of the year.

Short overview of Philosophy of Mind and Psychology

  • Develop a philosophical approach to understanding the human psyche, while also reflecting on theories and findings from other relevant disciplines, such as psychology, cognitive science, and artificial intelligence.
  • Gain more insight into mental phenomena, such as beliefs, emotions, experiences, intuitions, intelligence, consciousness and traumas.
  • Profit from small-scale working methods with a great deal of interaction, which enables in-depth analysis and discussion with fellow students and lecturers. 
  • Choose a program that scores high on student satisfaction. In the most recent National Student Survey (2023), students of the Master’s in Philosophy at Tilburg University (incl. all tracks) gave high scores for, among other things, connection of the program to current developments, expertise of the lecturers, and the degree to which the program inspires them.

Do you want to know more about this Master’s program?

Find out more during one of our events

Check out our events calendar

Interested in the Philosophy of Mind and Psychology track?

Check your eligibility and the deadlines for application.