Philosophy examines the big ideas and questions we have about the world— how it works and our place in it.
Philosophy is not just one discipline amongst others. It is unique, not just because it asks questions about the most fundamental and important things, but also because, unlike other disciplines, it isn’t optional: whether we know it or not, all of us are already doing Philosophy. We cannot escape it; we can only decide whether to do it well or badly.
We carry within ourselves certain basic convictions about what is true, what is good, etc. And yet, we also wonder about these convictions, doubting them, calling them into question. Philosophy is this wondering and questioning. As such, it is indispensable for developing a clearer understanding of ourselves and our world, and for living our lives responsibly.
- You’re always asking questions and are fascinated with puzzles and paradoxes
Studying Philosophy helps you think more clearly and precisely, such that you have a sharper grasp of your own views and can better articulate yourself, both orally and in writing; it strengthens the critical reasoning skills that enable you to organize and construct compelling arguments and identify the strengths and weaknesses in the arguments of others; and it helps you “think outside the box” so that you approach questions and problems in fresh, creative ways. Philosophy graduates learn to enter into respectful and patient dialogue with each other: Philosophy always involves considering and responding to the views of others and submitting one’s own views to their critical assessment; it is less a matter of “winning arguments” than of seeking truth together, co-operatively.
Graduates are prepared for a career that involves critical analysis, research, writing, problem solving, and significant ethical consideration. Careers in government, education, social work, law, business and entrepreneurship, marketing and advertising, and many others are fitting for Philosophy graduates. Philosophy graduates generally achieve better scores on the Law School Admission Test than other Majors, and consistently achieve high scores on the Graduate Record Exam.
Philosophy requires a great amount of critical thinking, reading, and questioning. As such, almost any other academic discipline at St. Thomas relates to Philosophy. The field is one that asks life’s biggest fundamental questions. The answers to these questions can be explored through lenses that call on an understanding of History, Political Science, Anthropology, Sociology, Gerontology, and English Language and Literature to name a few.