Philosophy Advising

Advising for Undergraduates

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Look here for advice on Writing papers in Philosophy.

Philosophy Advisor Contact Information

Every Philosophy student should have an Advisor. All advising is done by regular members of the teaching staff. Philosophy Department Advisors are available at scheduled times for all students. Please note that advising will be ongoing until the end of term and is particularly recommended for Returning Students.

In order to make an advising appointment, or for consultation by email please consult the advisors below. If you have any questions please email the tianyi.zheng [at] (Undergraduate Program Coordinator).

Note that the Department of Philosophy now has Audit Sheets for the program requirements. It is advised to fill out your sheet before meeting an advisor and bring it to the meeting. 

Summer 2024 Advising Schedule 

* Students who have urgent questions can contact the Undergraduate Director, Prof. Alia Al-Saji by email ( [at] for scheduling an appointment.


Prof. Alia Al-Saji

(Undergraduate Program Director) [at]

Advising over the summer will take place by email or phone

Email for an appointment

Prof. Michael Hallett


michael.hallett [at]

If you wish to arrange an appointment with Prof. Hallett, please contact him at: michael.hallett [at]


Email for an appointment
Prof. Philip Buckley philip.buckley [at]

By appointment on zoom

Please sign up for an appointment:

Wednesdays 10h-12h via Zoom

By appointment via sign-up sheet

For the week of June 3rd: Thursday 10h-12h


Prof. Stephanie Leary stephanie.leary [at]

By appointment only


Email for an appointment



Prof. Hasana Sharp [at] Please email for summer advising on zoom or email. In person meetings may be possible as well Email for appointment

The Advisors are glad to help you select appropriate courses, but please consult the calendar before your appointment and think about what courses you want to take.

Arts OASIS (Office of Advising and Student Information Services)

The Arts OASIS website provides Arts students with general academic information and advice about issues such as faculty and degree requirements, registration issues, inter-faculty transfer, study away, academic standing, or graduation. In addition to advising students about such issues, either by appointment or on a daily drop-in basis, the Arts OASIS Faculty advisers offer a number of information sessions every term, such as degree planning workshops, study away workshops, and freshman information sessions. For more information, please go to the following website: Arts OASIS

If you would like to contact Science advisors please visit the Faculty of Science website for appropriate links and email addresses.

Philosophy Undergraduate Orientation

The Department of Philosophy will be offering virtual advising in the form of a Q&A session on June 6th, from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Please see the Undergraduate Orientation Page for more information.

About Minerva

See an official Advisor to make sure you are on track to graduate when you expect to graduate.

600-level courses are officially open only to U3 students in a Philosophy program, and graduate students. Other students need the express permission of the instructor to enroll. But Minerva may not recognize Joint Honours students as Philosophy students, and so may not allow these students to enroll in 600-level courses in Philosophy. To remedy this problem, see your Advisor.

PHIL 301 (Philosophical Fundamentals) is open only to Philosophy Honours and Joint Honours students. It is a required course in the Honours and Joint Honours Philosophy programs. Two previous courses in philosophy, one of which must be PHIL 210 or written consent of the Department, are the prerequisites for taking PHIL 301. If you fulfill the above requirements and need to take PHIL 301, please contact the info.philosophy [at] (Undergraduate Program Coordinator) for permission.


Thinking of Graduate School in Philosophy?

Here are some things to think about and do well before beginning your final year at McGill:

  1. You will need to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Many PhD. programmes require that applicants sit the exam by October of the academic year in which applications are submitted.
  2. You will need a writing sample. This should be a paper that reflects your interests. A paper that has been well-received by an instructor provides a good starting point, but even an `A' paper will need further work. Remember that you are asking to become a member of the philosophical profession.
  3. You will need three letters of reference. Think about whom you can ask. Choose people who know you well. Detailed letters are much more valuable than letters that say only that you did well in a class. In other words, try to get letters from instructors who taught you in a relatively small class.
  4. You will need a "statement of purpose" describing what you want to focus on in graduate school. Think about this; talk with faculty members; write drafts; rewrite; etc. Your statement is itself unlikely to get you admitted, but a poorly articulated statement may get you rejected.
  5. Deadlines for applications will typically be in January. You should visit departmental web sites well in advance to get information on their application procedures.
  6. There is fellowship money out there. Find out what you can apply for. Canadian students may be eligible for SSHRC; Quebec residents may be eligible for FQRSC funding; and American students may be eligible for NSF or Jacob Javits fellowships. Most new students will be offered funding by the departments that admit them. These fellowship packages are of substantial value. A well-prepared application is a sine qua non of success in the competition for these fellowships.
  7. Do not assume that you cannot apply directly to PhD. programmes. In fact, McGill Major students will have taken at least as many philosophy courses as most of the first-year students in North American PhD. programmes. McGill Honours students will be among the better prepared students in their entering classes. (A McGill Honours degree is roughly equivalent to an M.A. from a U.S. university.)
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