Engaging in philosophy is a process of coming to terms with oneself, and thus with one’s place in the world. This process requires developing skills of conceptual analysis, logical reasoning and critical thinking.
Studying philosophy at Oxy helps develop these abilities, providing you with the intellectual grounds to reflect critically on your beliefs, recognize the strengths and weaknesses of alternative beliefs, integrate your views into a coherent perspective, and understand how philosophical ideas have shaped your values, culture, and history. In all these ways, the discipline helps to promote responsible citizenship, social and economic justice, and the recognition of and respect for differences among groups and between individuals.
Philosophical training will allow you to critically and thoughtfully engage with people and texts that represent a wide range of beliefs, values, and experiences that differ from your own. You’ll learn how to articulate and defend your conceptions of a life well lived, and develop your ability to defend that view with reasons, as well as your ability to locate your views in respect to those of others. Majors have a multitude of opportunities to conduct research and to study abroad. You might participate in the Undergraduate Research Center’s Summer Research Program, take a semester or Oxy-led courses abroad in any number of countries, or apply for a Richter grant to undertake a community-based research project abroad.
The skills you gain studying philosophy are intrinsically valuable throughout one’s life. Our graduates have applied them to a wide variety of professions, including law, medicine, education, journalism, business, public policy and government. And you might be surprised at how philosophy majors compare to other majors in salary earnings.