Graduate Certificate in American Philosophy

A one-year program that is life-changing and world-opening

The certificate in American philosophy gives you the opportunity to study in a one-year program at one of the world’s premier places for studying American philosophy and especially the thought of Charles Sanders Peirce. IU Indianapolis is home of the Institute for American Thought, which contains the Peirce Edition Project, the Santayana Edition, the Josiah Royce Papers, and the Max H. Fisch Library. Because of this, IU Indianapolis has extensive resources in American philosophy and a substantial contingent of faculty specializing in this area.

The Max H. Fisch Library is a non-lending library specializing in American philosophy and other resources essential for a better understanding of this chapter in philosophy. The library, which also has extensive archival holdings, attracts several scholars each year, as well as graduate students from other institutions who are working on their thesis or Ph.D. dissertation.

Course Requirements

To complete the certificate, you will need to take:

  • five courses (15 credit hours) in the IU system, at least three (9 credits) must be taken at the IU Indianapolis campus and at least three (9 credit hours) must be offered by the Philosophy Department. Unless otherwise stated, all courses must be at the 500-level or higher and be completed with a grade B or higher.
  • P558 American Philosophy (3 credits).
  • three courses (9 credit hours) in concentration-specific courses, while taking the remaining courses either in concentration-specific courses or in courses that fall within the M.A. core.

Courses taken more than five years prior to completion of the certificate must be retaken or revalidated.

Sample Curricula

American Philosophy

Fall semester
P558 American Philosophy (3 cr.)
P560 Metaphysics (3 cr.)
P701 Peirce Seminar (3 cr.)

Spring semester
P507 American Philosophy and the Analytic Tradition (3 cr.)
P748 Josiah Royce Seminar (3 cr.)


You are expected to have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university or its equivalent, with a grade point average of at least 3.0 overall (on a scale of 4) and at least 3.0 as the major GPA.

Admission Deadlines

March 1st – For applicants seeking admission for the summer or fall semesters.

October 15th – For applicants seeking admission for the spring semester.

Non-native English Requirements

If you are a non-native English speaker then you are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). You must also take the English (ESL) examination prior to your first semester of coursework and may be required to take additional classes in English as a second language.

For more information contact:

Graduate Program Director & Advisor, Professor Chad Carmichael,