Doctoral School of Philosophy


Doctoral School of Philosophy


Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Degree program



Accreditation number

MAB 2016/6/XI/7/2/1000




4+4 semesters (2+2 years)

ECTS credits


Minimum number of students


Maximum number of students


Short description

The goal of this program is to prepare students for obtaining their PhD degree through acquisition of latest research methodologies, participation in conferences and teaching expertise in higher education.

The Doctoral School of Philosophy offers doctoral studies in the following fields:

  • Aesthetics
  • Analytic Philosophy
  • Ancient and Mediaeval Philosophy
  • Art History
  • Ethics and Political Philosophy
  • Film, Media and Culture Theory
  • Hermeneutics
  • Intercultural Philosophy
  • Logic and Philosophy of Science
  • Phenomenology
  • Religious Studies



Aesthetics Doctoral Program

The Aesthetics PhD. Program has been launched as an independent doctoral program in 1995. It was integrated into Doctoral School of Philosophy some years later, but the program preserved its independent profile. According to the first principle the Aesthetic Doctoral Program does not limit the possible subjects for dissertations, but remains open for all high quality and well-founded research project. According to the second principle it is not a general, but higher level formation remaining in the framework of university teaching, but a very specific scientific activity. The core of the teaching in the Aesthetics program is the history of aesthetics and philosophy of art. The most important teaching method is tutorial consultation. We organize at the end of each semester a conference where all doctoral students have to present their actual work.

Analytic Philosophy Doctoral Program

The analytic tradition in philosophy has been prominent in the English speaking world since the second half of the 20th century and became influential in Hungary since the 1990s due in large part to János Kelemen’s teaching and research as well as his participation in launching the Doctoral Program in Analytic Philosophy in 1995. Several faculty members instructing in the Program are internationally renowned scholars in analytic philosophy; the majority of whom regularly teaches English-language courses. Hungarian as well as international students with an MA in Philosophy (or equivalent) can apply to the Doctoral Program, which has a Hungarian as well as an English version. The Analytic Philosophy Program encompasses the following areas: philosophy of language, metaphysics, philosophy of mind, philosophy of psychology, epistemology; ethics, metaethics, moral philosophy; history of analytic philosophy; analytic approaches to feminist philosophy; analytic aesthetics and philosophy of art; analytic political philosophy. Further areas covered through cooperation with other doctoral programs in Philosophy, primarily the Doctoral Program in Logic and Theory of Science: philosophical logic; philosophy of mathematics; mathematical logic; philosophy of science.

Ancient and Medieval Philosophy Doctoral Program

The program, which was launched in 1995, admits two or three doctoral students per year, doing research work on the philosophy of the Greco-Roman world or on the thought of the Middle Ages. The establishment of the program was initiated on the consideration that the study of ancient philosophy is one of the oldest traditions of our Faculty. Our program aims to follow a method of rigorous close-reading of the works under scrutiny. The courses of our program rely on the tradition of reading ancient texts with commentaries. This practice allows our students to realize on the basis of their own experience that the reading and interpretation of commented texts gives rise to new, alternative explanations that in some cases cancel older ones; in other words, that ancient philosophy is intimately bound up with the history of the reception of Classical philosophical doctrines. This insight enhances the students' ability to subject entrenched interpretations to critical scrutiny and to formulate fresh ones. In addition to the focus on the commentary tradition, another important characteristic of our program is the insistence on the importance of using the Greek and Latin original texts, which is an indispensable precondition of developing relevant philosophical interpretations of the works under examination. The program was restructured in 2010 so as to include medieval philosophy as well, the study of which is based on similar principles.

Art History Doctoral Program

The principle aim of the Art History Doctoral Program is research in art history mainly in Hungary, from the Middle Ages to our days. The program focuses not only on classical subjects of the history of arts, but deals also with monuments and the theoretical questions of protection of monuments and historical buildings, it analyses and presents for the international scientific research national art collections, follows and researches  Hungarian art products in abroad. That is why in the program we accentuate not only theoretical and historical formation of students, but also practical knowledge in the field (museums, collections, restorer workshops, etc.).

Ethics and Political Philosophy Doctoral Program

The Doctoral School of Political Philosophy at Eötvös Loránd University Budapest seeks to offer an overall view of modern and contemporary political philosophy. With special emphasis on modern, especially 18th century history of ideas, the Doctoral School intends to cover both classical authors (from Machiavelli to Rawls) and the main currents of political thought (from conservatism to neoliberalism). Within a wider range of positions normative conceptions of the political are given a certain priority.

Film, Media and Culture Theory Doctoral Program
The Institute of Art Theory and Media Studies of Eötvös Loránd University launched its Doctoral Program in the Theory of Film, Media and Culture in September 2007.

This PhD program is the main center for the research of contemporary culture at the Faculty of Humanities. The faculty members of the institute that hosts the program are outstanding professionals of Hungarian film- and media research. Their activity entails  both the research and the production of media. The scientific background of the program involves both traditional disciplines like the history of film and television, theories of genre and of public sphere, and contemporary cultural studies as well as new theories of visuality. The program pays special attention to the social rooting of the emergence of meaning in culture. It also focuses on the political character of the technologies of the creation and reproduction of knowledge. The program considers the transition between disciplines in the analysis of contemporary culture important. Continuing the tradition of the faculty, the program stresses the importance of the textual and aesthetic aspects of film and media. It relates these perspectives to researches regarding the production, technology and regulation of analogue and digital contents. Besides the classical aspects of the aesthetics of reception, the program devotes attention to the examination of the creation and consumption of contemporary culture. The program is connected to the most important domestic scientific and professional workshops and builds lasting partnerships with influential universities abroad. The program considers the intensive joint workshop activity of doctoral students and professors as a key element in the process of teaching and learning.

Hermeneutics Doctoral Program

The doctoral program was established in 1993 and is led since by Prof. István M. Fehér. Hermeneutics is an important school of contemporary philosophy, and being the theory of interpretation it plays a significant role in human sciences. Given that philosophy is inevitably presented in texts, the philosophical relevance of hermeneutics is evident. Furthermore, several neighboring disciplines – among others aesthetics, sociology, psychology –  rely on theories and concepts of hermeneutics. The doctoral program is organized along following three major aspects: a historical account of hermeneutics from Romanticism to Heidegger, Gadamer – including French developments – is combined with a systematic discussion both in philosophy and in other disciplines. Last but not least the program focuses on the contemporary self-reflection of hermeneutics.

Intercultural Philosophy Doctoral Program

The program offers a framework for students who do research on philosophy or on the history of religion in a non-European tradition. Interculturality here may mean the analysis of another culture with our tools and concepts; or the historical study of the contacts of a culture with Europe; or investigations into the interactions of two Eastern cultures, or of phenomena (like Buddhism) crossing many borders; or finally, a purely theoretical contrastive analysis of analogous theories and concepts in different cultures. The program is philologically oriented; a basic requirement is that students have to be able to work directly with original texts in at least one of the languages involved, e.g. Sanskrit, Pali, Chinese, Tibetan or Arabic. Possible research areas are South Asia, East Asia and Islam.

Doctoral Program in Logic and Philosophy of Science

The program launched in 1993 was conceived by the famous Hungarian logician Imre Ruzsa. The main scope of the program is logic and formal approaches to philosophy of science, first of all philosophy of physics and mathematics. We also offer courses and research topics in the fields of philosophy of language and formal semantics, as well as epistemology and metaphysics in connection with philosophy of science. Due to its interdisciplinary nature, the Logic and Philosophy of Science program is open to both Hungarian and foreign students as well who hold an MA/MSc degree either in philosophy or in some other relevant field. The relatively flexible program and the strongly tutorial character of the school bridge the differences in the backgrounds. To bring together the faculty and the students, we have two weekly seminars on logic/philosophy of mathematics and on theoretical philosophy. In several ways, the doctoral program is in harmony with the Logic and Theory of Science MA program. The two programs together constitute an internationally remarkable graduate school in the field of logic and philosophy of science.

Phenomenology Doctoral Program

The program of Phenomenology has been part of the Doctoral School since 1993. Its founder was László Tengelyi, professor of our University until 2001, then professor of philosophy until his death at the University of Wuppertal. He played a significant role in the contemporary international phenomenological movement. The importance of the program is due to the fact that Phenomenology is not only one of the philosophical movements of 20th century, but also the common starting point for the different thinking methods of Continental philosophy. Phenomenology has not only influenced 20th century philosophy in general, but also the human sciences (anthropology, psychology, sociology, etc.). The doctoral program of phenomenology has been working together with young scholars (mainly former students of the Program) of the Hungarian Phenomenological Society (founded in 2005), that organizes conferences, workshops and summer universities, and edits a philosophical review (Aspecto) and a book series (Aspecto könyvek) printed by the publishing house L’Harmattan-Budapest.

Religious Studies Doctoral Program

The Religious Studies program follows the same principles—and implements them at a higher scientific level—as the Centre for Religious Studies coordinating BA and MA education. To understand the ancient or eastern cultures and the Middle Ages as a whole, even to understand contemporary societies, to interpret their language and literature, it is essential to study the religion(s) of that culture. Ethnography (cultural anthropology), philosophy, and their sub-areas and some of their common clusters (e.g folk religion, ritual research, philosophy of religion) are particularly closely related to religious studies, but archaeology and art history also always examine religion- or ritual-related objects. Religious Studies education and research operates in an ideologically neutral framework, and is based on the principles of respect, understanding and tolerance for religious cultures and for the religious human being, as well as on the principle of objective and empathic scientific research, and on the professional, balanced presentation of results.



Strength of program

Main aims of the doctoral school are to prepare students for obtaining the doctoral (PhD) degree through helping them to gain mastery in scholarly research and writing, encouraging their conference participation, and creating the opportunity for them to take part in the various activities of the home-department.

Find the list of study units here

Career opportunities

According to the latest entrance exam statistics the Faculty of Humanities is home of the best and most gifted students nationwide. With nearly 8,000 students, the Faculty has been a stronghold of scientific knowledge all over Hungary. Employers inside and outside Hungary are aware that a graduate from ELTE FoH will be of an extremely high standard. Coming to our faculty will increase your career prospects by the time you earn your degree.

Job examples

Research Institutes, Universities, Museums, Diplomacy, Press and Media

EU/EEA students
non-EU/EEA students
Tuition fee/semester

420 EUR

2,200 EUR

Application fee

30 EUR (non-refundable)

30 EUR (non-refundable)

non-EU/EEA students
Tuition fee/semester

2,200 EUR

Application fee

30 EUR (non-refundable)

Offered for the next academic year


Start program

06, Sep, 2021

Deadline for applications - September intake

10, May, 2021

Is there a February intake


Admission requirements

Minimum level of language proficiency (oral) (A1-C2): B2             

Minimum level of language proficiency (written) (A1-C2): B2

ONLY the following English language exams are accepted: TOEFL (minimum 66), IELTS (minimum Level 5.5), Cambridge, TOEIC, telc GmbH, ECL
Or equivalent Bachelor or Master diploma if the language of the studies was English.
If your mother tongue is English then you have to have a B2 level or higher language exam from another language.

Documents to submit with application



 Online application form


 Master-level degree

 with good qualification or above



 Research work plan

 3-4 pages

 Letter of recommendation


 Copy of application fee transfer


 Language certificate

 Level B2 or above

 Other: Letter of acceptance from the future supervisor

Application procedure

The application starts in the online application system. Students need to register in the system, fill in the online application form, upload the required documents and follow the instructions during the application process. 

Applications can be accepted for the topics offered by the supervisors of the doctoral schools. (To be published in February 2021)

Bank information for paying the application fee:

Beneficiary: Eötvös Loránd Tudományegyetem
Account number: 10032000-01426201-00000000
IBAN: HU03 1003 2000 0142 6201 0000 0000
Transfer information: FELVI-BTKPHD C104 C10401/16 

Entrance examination and selection process: 

The applications are examined by the Admission Board [25 May 2020 – 25 June 2021] and applicants are notified of the outcome of the selection in the online application system until [31 July 2021]. Admission letters are sent out in the online application system until [31 July 2021].

Type of entrance examination: oral

Place of entrance examination: Faculty of Humanities, 1088 Budapest, Múzeum krt. 4/A or Skype

Further details of selection and evaluation: 

The ranking is based on a total evaluation of the academic excellence (based on the submitted documents) and the results of the entrance exam. During this entrance exam, the candidate will be asked about previous university achievements, the individual research plan and the scientific competence in the field of interest.


Program leader

Prof. Dr. Tamás ULLMANN
Head of the Doctoral School of Philosophy

Program coordinator

International PhD coordinator
Postal address: H-1088 Budapest, Múzeum körút 4/A

Faculty of Humanities

Faculty of Humanities