The Department of Philosophy has particular strengths in value and social theory, epistemology and metaphysics, history of philosophy, and continental philosophy from Kant through existentialism. We maintain a deliberately pluralistic approach to philosophy, and the research in the Department draws from an unusually broad range of philosophical traditions, including contemporary, historical, continental, and analytic traditions.
UC Irvine’s philosophy graduate program is jointly administered by the Department of Philosophy in the School of Humanities and the Department of Logic and Philosophy of Science in the School of Social Sciences. The graduate program is ranked among the top twenty nine in the United States, and the very best in a number of subfields of philosophy (see the Philosophical Gourmet Report.) Graduate applications need to be addressed either to the Department of Philosophy, or to the Department of Logic and Philosophy of Science, depending on the dominant interests of the student. But graduate students have full access to all the courses and faculty of the two Departments. We have been able to place our Ph.D. students at well-reputed universities and colleges.
The success of our undergraduate program is based on a rigorous education both in historical and in contemporary issues. Because of the collaboration between the two Departments undergraduate and graduate students can take courses ranging from philosophy of quantum mechanics and decision theory to medieval ethics and phenomenology. The fact that our majors have gone on to study in first-rate graduate programs and to pursue successful careers in law and medicine is a testament to the quality of the program.