Philosophy BA

Department of Philosophy and Religion

The study of philosophy develops our ability to make sense of ourselves and our surroundings. Philosophers apply critical thinking to questions of values and beliefs in order to understand reality, clarify the nature of interactions between individuals and society, and come to terms with the problems of existence and ultimate values. Different schools of thought in economics, history, psychology, and education are based upon differences in philosophy. Political and religious beliefs and codes of ethics are based on philosophical assumptions. Students who study philosophy engage in the examination of their own beliefs, the resolution of conflicts, the search for a purpose to life, and the development of a basis for ethical decisions. Undergraduate courses in philosophy are geared toward the preparation for life rather than a specific type of work, and provide an excellent background for a variety of careers. A background in philosophy can help develop character and personal skills which are extremely important in most job situations: specifically, the abilities to listen carefully and critically; think clearly; analyze and organize ideas; write; defend one’s position rationally; stimulate discussion; and question, confront, support, evaluate, reshape, and understand different points of view. Sample issues in philosophy: What is knowledge?  How do we know?  What makes the difference between sound and fallacious reasoning?  What are the arguments for and against the existence of God?  What is a virtue?  Can a person be taught to be virtuous?  If so, how?  If not, why not?  Is trust in science justified?  What are the presuppositions of science?  What is beauty?  Is it possible to define art?  What is valuable about art? The following are examples of career titles for Philosophy majors. Keep in mind some of these careers will require education beyond the Baccalaureatelevel.


Related Career Titles
Affirmative Action Representative
Arts Consultant
Author
Columnist
Counselor
Critic
Diplomat
Editorial Assistant
Employment Interviewer
Financial Consultant
Foreign Services Officer
Fund-raiser
Guidance Counselor
Hospital Administrator
Journalist
Labor Relations Researcher
Lawyer
Lobbyist
Management Trainee
Nonprofit/NGO Manager
Nursing Home Director
Paralegal
Political Campaign Worker
Professor
Psychologist
Public Policy Manager
Public Relations Representative
Public Service Official
Reporter
Research Assistant
Researcher/Historian
Sales Representative
Social Worker
YMCA/YWCA Worker


Some Employers of Philosophy and Religion Majors
Business & Industry
Colleges & Universities
Consulting Firms
Government
Hospitals
Media
Newspapers & Magazines
Non-Profit Organizations
Political Parties
Publishing Companies
Religious Associations
State & Federal Government


Related Major Skills
Close, extensive reading
Communicating in logical manner
Curiosity
Debating Skills
Deductive Reasoning
Interest in pursuing, exploring
    and explaining intangible ideas
Objectivity
Open-mindedness
Problem Solving
Self-discipline
Theory Development
Work Independently

 

Professional Organizations and Associations
American Association of Political Consultants
Institute for Humane Studies
National Database of Nonprofit Organizations
Peace Science Society (International)
SWIP: The Society for Women in Philosophy

 

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