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Philosophy Major


The Philosophy major is designed to serve the needs of three types of students: 

  • Those who seek a liberal arts education as a terminal program; 
  • Those who are preparing for professional graduate schools, e.g., education, law, theology, and medical schools which approve an undergraduate philosophy major; and
  • Those who are preparing for graduate work in philosophy. 

A Philosophy major is of value to all who question the reasons for things as they are, to those who seek a deeper understanding of what they are doing and their purpose for doing it, and to those who recognize the validity of Socrates’ assertion that the “unexamined life is not worth living.”

A major in Philosophy consists of 30-45 credits (with at least 15 credits at the 3000 level or above). The department does not specify particular course work for the major but recommends that the sequence of courses be designed in close consultation with the student’s faculty advisor. Students who plan to go to graduate school are strongly encouraged to take at least two courses in the history of philosophy. They should also consider a second major in a cognate field, e.g., American Studies, English, French, History, Mathematics, or Political Science.

Students enrolled in the BA program may, if they wish, choose an option in one of the following areas:

  • Philosophy & Religious Studies Option
  • Communications and Critical Thinking Option

View the complete Degree Pathway.

Philosophy & Religious Studies Option

The Philosophy Department offers a concentration in the area of Religious Studies for those students who would like to pursue the in-depth studies of religion and world religious traditions. The approach of this concentration is philosophical rather than historical or sociological; our classes inquire into the nature and meaning of religion in human life as well as its place in modern society and its relation to the scientific tradition. Our courses cover both Western and non-Western religions, allowing the student to design a course of study suited to his or her interests.

Communications and Critical Thinking Option

The Philosophy Department also offers an interdisciplinary option in Communications and Critical Thinking within the Philosophy major, leading to the Bachelor of Arts degree. This program serves students looking to increase their professional options within such fields as publishing, public relations, advertising, sales and marketing, and social services, and who want an interdisciplinary course of study that transcends the confines of traditional programs. The program also provides excellent preparation for further graduate study, above all, in law and business.

Students transferring into the college who wish to major in Philosophy must make individual arrangements with the chairperson of the Department of Philosophy regarding satisfaction of major course requirements.

For additional information visit the Department of Philosophy website or contact us.