Frequently Asked Questions


Q: What is the amount of the Fellowship award?

A: €12,000.00/year divided into 12 sequential monthly payments of €1,000.00 each, for a period of 36 sequential months, to be electronically wired directly into the fellow's designated bank account. The payments run from September of the first year of work through August concluding the third sequential year of work.

Q: Are there any restrictions on areas of research interest or specialization that qualify for funding?

A: No. The Fellowship can be used to fund a dissertation in any recognized area, theme, tradition or subject matter in the field of philosophy.

Q: Can the Fellowship be granted more than once to the same applicant?

A: No. The Fellowship offers the Fellow three years of full support in order to encourage the intensive focus on the dissertation that will result in its completion within that three-year period. That the Fellowship cannot be extended or renewed provides additional incentive to get it done within the designated time frame.

Q: Why does the Fellowship require a particular course of study among the Applicant Credentials as a precondition for applying?

A: Because undergraduate and master's programs in philosophy vary widely with regard to the courses required for the philosophy major or master's degree, it is not possible to infer from a student's successful fulfillment of these degree requirements that he or she is in fact adequately prepared to write a high-quality, well-informed dissertation. Students sometimes do not discover that they are not until it is too late to do anything about it. The course of study required by the Applicant Credentials ensures that the Fellow approaches the philosophy dissertation with a complete tool set of academic skills and resources. And it provides that same tool set to other applicants, for use in whatever professional path they subsequently choose. Of course it is also available to any other students who elect to complete this course of study on their own initiative.

Q: What should interested students do to meet these course requirements if they are not offered in the student's degree program in philosophy?

A: Often they are available through other departments in the student's home college or university. For example, a first and second logic course may be offered in the institution's math or computer science department; a course in ancient Indian or Chinese philosophy may be offered through its oriental studies department; a course in medieval philosophy may be offered in the intellectual history sequence of a history department. If an interested student's home college or university offers none of these options, he or she should either work together with other interested students to demand them from the institution's administration, or else take them elsewhere for transfer credit.

Q: How should interested post-graduates meet these requirements if they have already graduated from a Bachelor's or Master's program in philosophy that does not satisfy them?

A: They should take these courses on their own initiative, either in adult education programs, part-time study programs, work-study programs, or as a visiting post-graduate student at their own or another academic institution.

Q: Is it possible to fulfill these course requirements by studying on one's own?

A: No. There is an honorable and respected place for autodidacts in the history of philosophy. But in order to compete in the global context of first-class scholarly research, a philosophy dissertation must meet internationally recognized standards of competence that can be administered only by accredited academic institutions.

Q: Why is the passing grade for the courses set so high? Grades don't mean anything anyway.

A: All they need to mean is that you pull out all the stops to do the very best work in the course you possibly can in order to achieve them. Any other route to obtaining them just sets you up for professional embarrassment later on.