Your path to a degree in philosophy

In studying philosophy, students can improve their understanding of themselves and the world in which they live.  They can also improve their ability to think clearly.  If one understands how to think clearly, one can apply the techniques of critical and constructive thinking to the study of any discipline or to any occupation. 

In fact, one of the advantages of studying philosophy is that you are not locked into a career path, because the skills encouraged by studying philosophy are universally useful and will not ever be made obsolete by technological change.

Although some philosophy majors go on to earn advanced degrees and wind up as philosophy professors, most people who study philosophy do not go on to careers in philosophy.  Instead, they go on to a wide range of interesting, beneficial, and valuable careers.  There are lawyers, scientists, doctors, entrepreneurs, investors, entertainers, actors, journalists, judges, writers, religious officials, and people in public service who majored or minored in philosophy.

Requirements for the Major

The Philosophy major consists of 33 hours of Philosophy distributed as follows:

  • Required: PH 201, 202, 220, 303, 398, 399 (18 hours)
  • At least two of the following: (Value Theory): PH 200*, 211, 214, 300*, 311, 312, 313, 315, 340, 386* (6 hours)
  • At least two of the following: (Metaphysics and Epistemology): PH 200*, 203, 205, 207, 300*, 302, 320, 325, 327, 330, 335, 386* (6 hours)
  • Three hours of elective credit also is required as part of the 33-hour requirement. A 100-level course may count toward this elective credit, but only with the permission of the Chair. At least 15 hours of the 33 (in addition to PH 398/99) must be at the 300 level.

*If course material is appropriate (Chair's discretion)

Philosophy majors desiring to earn departmental honors must successfully complete the college requirements for departmental honors.

Pre-Professional Programs (Pre-Law)

Because of the emphasis placed on critical thinking and problem analysis, the department can offer an exceptionally fine undergraduate program of study for students interested in pursuing a law career.  Students interested in a pre-law program should contact the department as early as possible.

Philosophy as a Second Major

Philosophy pursues questions in every dimension of human life, and its techniques apply to problems in any field of study or endeavor. Thus, much of what is learned in philosophy can be applied in any other academic discipline or major field of study.  Because it touches on so many other subjects, and because many of its methods are helpful in other fields, philosophy is well worth considering as a second major. The study of philosophy can complement a wide variety of academic majors such as economics, English, mathematics, political science, and psychology. If you are interested in philosophy as a second major, you should speak with a member of the Philosophy Department as early in your college career as possible.

For a complete description of the individual classes, go to the course catalog at:

Academic Catalog                          

(Note, this link opens a large pdf file in a new window.  Once the file opens, click on the ribbon tab in the upper right corner of the screen. This will open the bookmarks menu.  Click on the arrow next to the College of Arts and Sciences to open the sub-menu and then scroll down to the name of the department.  Click on the department name and you'll go straight to the information for this department.)

GET IN TOUCH WITH Philosophy and Religious Studies Department

Philosophy and Religious Studies Department
Morgan Hall, Room 206
1700 SW College Ave.
Topeka, KS 66621

Phone & Email
785.670.1542
phil-rg@washburn.edu

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