All Programs


Major in Philosophy

The major in philosophy requires the completion of 44 units (11 4-credit courses) in philosophy.  Most of the courses offered to philosophy majors and minors are capped at 20 students to ensure an intimate atmosphere, fostering in-depth discussion.

There are four (4) required "foundational" courses, and the remaining courses may be selected from 300- and 400-level electives, a variety of which are offered every semester.  Students may count up to two (2) lower-division, 100- or 200- level introductory courses toward a Philosophy major, but are not required to do so.  All incoming students are advised to immediately enroll in PHIL 310 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, which will also satisfy the Core D1 Philosophy requirement. PHIL 315 - Ethics for Majors, also required, will satisfy the Core D3 Ethics requirement.

Summary of Requirements for the Major

The major requires completion of forty-four  (44) credits in philosophy, as follows:

Required Courses (4)
  • PHIL - 310 Origins: Ancient Philosophy and Development
  • PHIL - 312 Modern Philosophy
  • PHIL - 315 Ethics for Majors
  • PHIL - 319 Logic
Elective Courses - Lower Division (2)
  • (No more than two courses may be may be taken at the 100- or 200-level.)
  • One Philosophy lower or upper division course
  • One Philosophy lower or upper division course
  • Elective Courses - Upper Division (300- or 400-level) (5) 
  • PHIL upper division course
  • PHIL upper division course
  • PHIL upper division course
  • PHIL upper division course
  • PHIL upper division course

Philosophy Program Learning outcomes and Goal


1. Students identify primary philosophical themes found in the writings of major philosophers.

2. Students write historical and argumentative essays on central philosophical issues.

3. Students develop philosophical arguments using methods originated by historical and contemporary philosophers. 

The Philosophy program's goal is to have its students think philosophically on the meaning of one’s life, the conceptual foundations of belief, and the nature of self and responsibility

To accomplish this goal our students read, discuss, and analyze in writing (1) philosophical problems (ontology of self and other; metaphysics of action; possibility of knowledge; origin and value of ethical systems; and concern for social justice), and (2) major figures and eras in the history and present of philosophy (ancient, medieval, modern, post-modern, and contemporary).