Meditations Journal

Meditations is the undergraduate journal of philosophy at UCLA. The purpose of the journal is to foster philosophical thought and provide an opportunity for undergraduates to gain writing and publishing experience. Maybe you have a philosophy paper that you’re really proud of, or you’re looking for a platform to test your arguments and be challenged. Maybe you have some cool ideas but hate writing when a grade depends on it. We encourage undergraduates of any major to participate in Meditations. Please see the electronic versions of our journal below or a hard copy in the UCLA Philosophy Reading Room.

Issue 7 – Spring 2019
Issue 6 – Spring 2018
Issue 5 – Spring 2017

Issue 4 – Spring 2016

Issue 3 – Spring 2015

Issue 2 – Spring 2014
Issue 1 – Winter 2014

The Undergraduate Philosophy Conference at UCLA

In 2014, the Philosophy Club at UCLA proudly hosted its first conference on behalf of Meditations: The Undergraduate Journal of Philosophy at UCLA. All participating authors and editors of the journal were undergraduate students who dedicated several months to this philosophical project. This conference was an exciting opportunity to honor their hard work and hear them present their original ideas. Additionally, we look forward to again hosting a keynote speaker who will present an original work on an exciting topic.

Our 2019 conference will be Friday, May 31, at 4 p.m. in Haines Hall, room A18.

This year’s student presenters are:

  • Noah Shepardson “Contracts are Commitments, Commitments are Promises”
  • Isabel Xu presenting, “Problems with Bayesian Objection”

Keynote Speaker 2015 – Professor James Van Cleve, ‘The Philosophy of Time Travel’
Keynote Speaker 2016 – Professor John Hawthorne of USC, ‘The Surprise Exam’
Keynote Speaker 2017 – Professor Aaron James, ‘On Reducing the Workweek to Mitigate Climate Change, or Is the Workaholic an Asshole?’
Keynote Speaker 2018- Professor George Wilson, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy USC, “Philosophy in the Cinematic Point of View: On ‘You Only Live Once’“
2019 Commentary – UCLA graduate and incoming Harvard University Ph.D. student Eva Yguico accompanied by undergraduate and Kalish Prize winner Yohana Abughattas

FAQ: Submit or Get Involved with the Journal

Essay Submission

The due date for submissions during the 2020 cycle is March 30th, 2020. We are currently accepting submissions.

What requirements apply to submissions?

All papers should be no more than 6,000 words but no less than 2,500 words, and should include a cover page as a separate word document with your full name, email address, affiliation (college, major, and year), the title of your paper, and (optionally) a short abstract. The paper itself should contain no identifying information whatsoever. All submissions should be of a philosophical nature.

Who can submit?

We will accept submissions from any undergraduate student regardless of the college, major, or minor.

Where do I submit?

Please submit all submissions here (i.e. Both attachments should be emailed in the same message with the names of both the email and the documents themselves chosen appropriately.

Working on the Journal

The due date for the 2020 Selections Committee and Editorial Review Board Applications is March 13th, 2020. We are currently accepting submissions.

What ways are there to help out?

The administrative side of the journal is divided into two parts: a) the Selection Committee and b) the Editorial Review Board. As part of (a), readers will help during the selection process by reviewing submissions according to a provided rubric. This will take place from roughly Week 2 of spring quarter to week 4 of of spring quarter. As part of (b), editors will work with the selected authors from roughly weeks 5 to 8 of spring quarter to prepare and polish submissions for publication. All editors and reviewers will be credited in the print and electronic versions of the journal. We highly encourage anyone interested to apply and take part in being in both the Selections Committee and the Editorial Review Board as both are vital to the success of the journal.

How do I apply?

Please send an email here (i.e. while providing the following information and answering the following questions. Those working directly with the journal can submit papers themselves but you must inform the Chief Editor Nico Vastagh via an email to the above address. You may express willingness to work on both the Selections Committee and Editorial Review Board simultaneously which is highly encouraged.

  1. Full Name
  2. Year at UCLA
  3. Major(s)/Minor(s)
  4. Philosophy Courses Taken
  5. Preference for Selections Committee, Editorial Board or Both
  6. What goals do you have that working on Meditations will support?
  7. What is your availability like?
  8. What, in your opinion, makes for a good Philosophy paper?

2019 – 2020 Club & Journal Officers

Shan Vartanian (President), Sophia McMurry (Internal Vice President), Nico Vastagh (External Vice President), Anthony Sharra (Secretary), Jason Zhao (Book Club Liaison)