Department of Philosophy

The philosophy program is designed for students who plan to take an active leadership role in shaping a more humane society. Completing the philosophy major will (1) provide the student with knowledge of the philosophical themes and thinkers that have been influential in shaping contemporary culture; (2) increase the student's ability to think, speak, read, and write critically and effectively; and (3) increase the student's ability to approach value questions in a rational manner. These abilities will prepare the student for success in any career that requires rational thought and expression (teaching, law, business, management, public policy, etc.).

In order to accommodate a number of different career options, the curriculum has been designed to encourage students to pursue a second area of interest by means of a double major, a double minor, or a combination of related courses.

The requirements for majors in philosophy are: three courses in the history of philosophy (2011, 2021, and 2031), one course in logic (2040), one course in ethics (2045, 2400, or 2410), a course in directed readings (philosophical author or topic of students’ choice in consultation with the instructor), one senior seminar, and four other courses in philosophy. Majors are required to pass a comprehensive examination and regular attendance at all Philosophy departmental meetings is required. In order for a philosophy course to be counted for degree credit, a student must earn a “C” or better.

For those students who major in philosophy in preparation for graduate work in THEOLOGY, the course in Philosophy of Religion (2270) is highly recommended.

For those students who are interested in LAW SCHOOL or are interested in learning more about the law, Legal Reasoning (3190), Philosophy of Law (3260), and the Law and Humanities Seminar (4500) are highly recommended.

For those students who are interested in PUBLIC POLICY or CIVIL SERVICE employment, the department offers great flexibility for pursuing a minor in Public Administration while at the same time enjoying 16 hours of free electives to help them improve their quantitative skills.

For those students interested in an MBA program (Master of Business Administration), the department offers courses for the development of a critical mind, problem solving skills, and a mature understanding of values. These students can minor in Business Administration and still take 16 hours of free electives to improve their quantitative skills.

Students interested in medical or dental school should begin work in the freshmen year on a chemistry minor and the other courses required by medical and dental schools. The required courses are described in the Special Programs section of this catalog.

Students entering Xavier in Fall 2010 or after should refer to the 2010-2012 university catalog for updated Department of Philosophy program requirements.

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