COVID-19 Updates

Read the latest announcements and testing info.

Major and Minor in Philosophy

The philosophy major is structured around two principal strengths of the current faculty in the department—the analytic philosophy of mind and historical/continental philosophy—with an eye toward preparing students who intend to apply to graduate school (predominantly in philosophy, law, psychology, and public policy; but also in the fields of theology, English, and history).

Both the major and the minor are structured to provide a balance between required courses and the selection of electives that are applicable to a particular student’s philosophical interests.

Is Philosophy for Me?

  • Philosophy majors are prepared for a wide range of careers, including medicine, law, education, computers, psychology, theology, or in philosophy itself.
  • Philosophy also makes a good second major for those in the sciences, since it broadens their education with study in a related humanities discipline.
  • Psychology majors can add a philosophy major as a way of preparing for graduate study in cognitive science or related fields; philosophy gives one the ability to deal with the difficult conceptual issues involved in understanding the mind.
  • If you’re interested in pursuing an advanced degree other than philosophy, the department recommends that you choose a second major.

Major Requirements

Students majoring in philosophy must take:

  • PHL 106 Critical Reasoning or PHL 220 Formal Logic
  • PHL 303 Ancient Philosophy
  • PHL 304 Modern Philosophy
  • PHL 405 Contemporary Philosophy
  • At least three other courses offered by the department

Appropriate, related courses offered by other departments can be arranged in consultation with the department chair.

The Minor

A minor in philosophy adds depth to any major.

  • A political science student with a working knowledge of Locke, for example, has a greater understanding of American political thought.
  • A theatre major studying Sartre and the existentialists can bring valuable creative input to productions.
  • A business major studying ethics is on top of contemporary problems in economic development, investment and social responsibility.

Students minoring in philosophy must take five courses in philosophy, including:

  • PHL 106 Critical Reasoning or PHL 220 Formal Logic
  • PHL 303 Ancient Philosophy
  • PHL 304 Modern Philosophy
  • Two other 300- or 400-level courses

Connect with #elmhurstu