Philosophical training helps students reason well, make thoughtful distinctions, and analyze difficult and abstract ideas. Philosophy prizes clear thinking, rational judgement, and careful arguments-all in the pursuit of truth. Unsurprisingly, philosophy provides excellent training for a wide variety of careers within business, law, and medicine. As technology continues to advance, and as artificial intelligence and automation transform the workplace of tomorrow, the technical skills of today may not be required tomorrow. But the ability to think well is never out of fashion.
Christian philosophy helps us understand and defend the faith and also offers us a Christian conception of human flourishing. When the Apostle Paul was in Athens, he spoke with Epicurean and Stoic philosophers. Christians today continue that conversation, for the sake of the Church and for the world. Many philosophers have become voices for the Church in their own right (e.g. Augustine and Aquinas) and faithful philosophical engagement with important ideas has the power to transform the Church and our world even today.
Philosophy resembles mathematics, in its rigor and clarity; history, in its sensitivity to people and ideas across cultures and ages; and literature, in its concern for articulate expression. Philosophy majors are thus well positioned to pursue careers immediately after graduation or graduate school in philosophy, theology, history, ministry, law, and medicine.
Student Learning Outcomes
The philosophy program at JBU teaches specific philosophical content both in the history of philosophy and contemporary analytical philosophy. Philosophy is taught in such a way that students learn to read carefully, think critically, write well, and speak clearly. Consequently, the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Philosophy has the following student learning outcomes for its classes:
- Know philosophy
- Read carefully
- Think critically
- Write well
- Speak clearly
Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree with major in Philosophy
University Core Curriculum - 42 hours
Program requirements satisfy 6 of the 48 hours in the Core Curriculum.
- Six hours of the Arts and Humanities elective area are satisfied by two of the following: BBL 3413 , BBL 3423 , BBL 3433 , BBL 3443 , BBL 3453 , BBL 3463 , BBL 3473 , BBL 3613 , BBL 3623 , BBL 3633 , BBL 3663 , POL 3003 , RPH 2103 , RPH 2323 , RPH 2423 , RPH 2483, RPH 3343 , RPH 3353 , RPH 3533 , RPH 3543 , RPH 4433 , RPH 4483 .
Courses Specified by the Department - 9 hours
One of the following:
An Old or New Testament Book Study Course
Required Major Core Courses - 18 hours
Electives in Philosophy/Religious Studies - 12 hours
Twelve hours from the following, 6 of which must be upper division courses:
If RPH 2483 is used to satisfy the Major Core requirement, it cannot be taken again as an elective for the major.
RPH 4483 may be taken again for elective credit if it is a different topic.
Foreign Language - 12 hours
Select one of the following options:
Twelve hours from
- Six hours of LS-2000 level courses
Minor field or electives as necessary to complete minimum total hours
Minimum total semester hours - 120