Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy

photo of a studentWhy Major in Philosophy?

The best reason to major in philosophy is because you love it. You love discussing life’s most fundamental questions: What is reality? What is human consciousness? How should we live? What are the values that make life meaningful? How should society be organized? Does God exist? What is knowledge?

These questions have been discussed and analyzed by philosophers for thousands of years. Philosophy majors enjoy reading these great texts and exploring how great minds have addressed these perennial questions. They also enjoy trying to formulate answers of their own.

But you are more practical minded and are already wondering, "Yeah, but what will I be able to do with such a degree?" This may come as a surprise but philosophy is uniquely well suited to prepare students for a wide range of careers and a habit of life-long learning. Many career opportunities are available to philosophy majors because studying philosophy provides the skills of logical thinking and critical analysis demanded by most professions and employers.

Program of Study

View Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy program information and degree requirements in the University Catalog.

Symbolic Logic: All Philosophy Majors must take PHL 3200 Symbolic Logic I.  PHL 3000, Critical Thinking, which is required of all students majoring in subjects in the College of Liberal Arts, is a pre-requisite for this course.  It also double-counts as a Philosophy elective.

Area Requirements: Philosophy Majors must take four area courses with at least one course from each area:

  • History of Philosophy: This area covers the western philosophical tradition, including ancient, medieval, and modern thought.
  • Value Theory: This area covers ethical theory, applied ethics, bioethics, history of ethics, and metaphysical issues such as free will, responsibility, and personhood.
  • Core Curriculum: This area covers philosophy of science, philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, metaphysics, and epistemology.

Electives: Philosophy Majors must take a minimum of six additional Philosophy electives. These courses may be chosen from any area. Students may concentrate their work in one area or spread it out over several.