Major/Minor
Philosophy Department
The bachelor's degree in Philosophy at NDMU explores the ideas of Western Philosophy's great thinkers and applies those concepts to current issues through scholarship and interactive discussion. Our program focuses on social justice issues impacting the world today, including those related to equity, race, sexuality, and vulnerable populations. This unique emphasis combined with a study of philosophers from traditionally underrepresented groups leads our philosophy majors to develop a broader perspective and the ability to communicate an informed point of view in a logical, respectful way. These skills are invaluable to employers and can lead graduates to a successful career in any number of fields.
student in classroom
Program Location

Features of the Philosophy Program

  • Interactive Classes – philosophical ideas explored through discussion and debates
  • All-Female Faculty – unique emphasis on the contribution of women to philosophy
  • Professional Development – develop skills sought by employers such as clear and informed communication and critical thinking
  • Social Responsibility – special focus on current social justice issues including equity, race, LGBTQ+, the environment, socioeconomics, etc.

Customize Your Education

At NDMU, our strength is our ability to weave your unique interests into your individual education. Adding a minor to your degree or pursuing an accelerated dual-degree program is a great way to craft an experience that aligns to your aspirations.

Philosophy Minor

The Minor in Philosophy is versatile because the critical thinking and communication skills developed in our program can be an asset to any major or career path. The applied ethics courses in particular can have direct relevance to strong leadership and decision-making.

Majors that often add a philosophy minor include: Biology, Criminology, English, Nursing, Political Science, and Psychology.

Accelerated Dual-Degree Programs

Dual-degree programs offer a unique opportunity to earn multiple degrees in an accelerated format, saving both time and money.

Pathway to Law School

If your ultimate goal is to attend law school, an undergraduate degree in philosophy can provide the foundation of analytical reasoning and writing skills needed to be successful. Our partnership with University of Baltimore School of Law offers an accelerated pathway for qualified students to earn any Bachelor of Arts degree at NDMU and a Juris Doctorate from UB in six years instead of seven.

Four-Year Plan

Sample program of study for the philosophy major. Students should select courses with the assistance of a faculty advisor.

Fall Spring
First Year
ENG-101 College Writing 3 Foreign Language 3
NDMU-100 Perspectives in Education 4 History 3
COM-101 4 Mathematics 3
PHL-201 Introduction to Philosophy 3 Mathematics 3
Physical Educa 1 Social Science 3
[15 credits]   PHL-201 Introduction to Philosophy 3
    [15 credits]  
Second Year
PHL Historical sequence course 3 PHL Ethics course 3
Fine Arts 3 PHL 300/400-level elective 3
RST-201 Introduction to Biblical Studies 3 Religious Studies (300/400 level) 3
COM-106 Fundamentals of Oral Communication 3 English Literature 3
General Education/Electives 3 General Education/Electives 3
Physical Education 1 [15 credits]  
[16 credits]      
Third Year
PHL Religion and Human nature course 3 PHL Metaphysics and Epistemology course 3
PHL Historical sequence course 3 PHL Seminar course 3
General Education/Electives 9 General Education/Electives 9
[15 credits]   [15 credits]  
Fourth Year
PHL Value theory course 3 PHL 300/400-level elective 3
PHL-411 Senior Thesis 3 General Education/Electives 12
General Education/Electives 9 [15 credits]  
[15 credits]      
Professional Program Advising

If you are interested in pursuing a professional program after graduation, NDMU offers specialized advising to help you prepare.

Types of Professional Programs

  • Health Professions (Medical, Dental, Veterinary & More)
  • Law School
  • Pharmacy School
  • Veterinary School

Pre-professional coordinators can help you:

  • Choose a profession that aligns with your interests and goals
  • Select a bachelor’s degree program that will meet required prerequisites to apply to a professional school
  • Monitor your academic progress through in-depth, one-on-one advising sessions
  • Explore experiential learning opportunities and secure internships
  • Connect with alumni who currently work in the field
  • Prepare for the application process

Learn More About Professional Program Advising

Research

One of the hallmarks of the rich educational environment at NDMU is the opportunity to participate in research in your field of interest. Our annual Nancy Kreiter Student Research Day provides the perfect forum to showcase your hard work with a formal research presentation to the NDMU community.

Capstone Experience

In the fourth year, philosophy majors take everything learned over four years to complete a senior research thesis as a culminating capstone project. Under faculty guidance, a philosophical topic of interest is chosen to explore in greater depth and develop into a thesis.

The capstone experience is an opportunity to reflect on your growth, further explore your interests, and prepare to present your work professionally.

Get Involved

Ethics Bowl

The regional Ethics Bowl is an opportunity to use the skills developed in the Philosophy program to compete against other colleges and universities in a challenging debate-style competition. Each year, the Philosophy Department sponsors a team of students to represent NDMU.

The team receives a book of cases several months in advance and meets as a class over the course of the semester to evaluate the ethical issues presented in each case. When it’s time to compete, the team must be ready to present the cases, debate the issues, and respond to counterarguments and challenges by the judges.

Clubs & Honor Societies

The philosophy department at NDMU offers opportunities to get involved beyond the classroom through clubs and activities throughout the semester. Join the Philosophy Club for student-led activities or if eligible, become a member of Phi Sigma Tau, our chapter of the national philosophy honor society.

Jasmine Wise
Student

Jasmine Wise

Opportunity for New Experiences

Student, NDMU Class of 2017
Philosophy
I got a chance to meet new people; I ran into some hardships and successfully overcame them. Experiencing the first Notre Dame cross country team will forever stay with me.

Philosophy Careers

The ability to think critically, present a reasoned argument, and make ethical decisions are skills that often stand out to future employers. A degree in philosophy can be particularly well-suited as a foundation for pursuing professional programs such as law or medicine.

Graduates of the NDMU philosophy program have gone on to pursue advanced degrees and careers in fields including:

  • Business
  • Education
  • Healthcare Administration
  • Law
  • Medicine
  • Politics
  • Public Policy
  • Theatre
Faculty