College: College of Arts and Sciences
Degrees: B.A., minor, M.A., M.A./J.D.
See Also: Department of Philosophy

Philosophy is the study of what exists, how we know, and how to live. Students of philosophy consider questions about the scientific method, human nature, justice, God, art, and the meaning of life. Philosophy majors develop the intellectual abilities to think critically and write effectively. They learn to apply these valuable skills in other disciplines, in their career, and in their life. Because philosophy deals with fundamental questions and explores methods for answering them, it is interdisciplinary, connecting to every other discipline in the university curriculum. Hence, philosophy is an ideal double major or minor. Philosophy prepares students for careers or graduate programs that value the abilities to solve problems, to communicate clearly, to learn new skills, and to use new knowledge. It is an excellent major for a wide range of careers, including law, government, the sciences, medicine, public service, education, religion, and business.

The Department of Philosophy offers a B.A. in Philosophy and B.A. in Philosophy with a Pre-Law Concentration, as well as minors in Philosophy and in Ethics. Majors are urged to consult with their advisers in order to prepare the course of study most appropriate to their individual interests and needs.

Major in Philosophy with a Pre-Law Concentration

The study of philosophy is excellent preparation for law school. The critical thinking skills, clarity in writing and argumentative rigor required in philosophy provide students with the tools they need to be successful in law school and as lawyers. Moreover, philosophy majors have among the highest average scores on the LSAT and the highest admission rates to law school of any major.

Career Opportunities

Philosophy is an appropriate study for anyone wishing a broad liberal education that teaches one how to think and that promotes self-awareness. It is particularly appropriate as a major or minor for those contemplating a career in law, administration, public service, politics, business, education, or religion. Students in other fields are encouraged to consider the possibility of a double major with philosophy. The Department of Philosophy offers a wide variety of courses especially developed for students in business, health sciences, education, and public and urban affairs, as well as for those who pursue a scientific or humanistic career. For those studying the humanities or the sciences, philosophy provides invaluable critical skills, insight into methodological presuppositions, and an appreciation of the intellectual currents that have shaped history.

Academic Guides

This is a suggested 4-year schedule of courses for students to follow, including milestones that should be met each year.