What is reality? What is the meaning of life? What makes something good or bad, right or wrong, beautiful or ugly? These are some of the perennial questions philosophers pursue. The philosophy major at High Point University asks students to critically examine their own values and challenges them to think, communicate, and act as responsible global citizens in the 21st century.
What makes philosophy majors employable?
In a recent study on what employers are seeking, the number one attribute demanded by 81% of those surveyed is “Critical Thinking and Analytic Reasoning,” followed closely by “Ethical Decision-making” and “Complex Problem Solving.” (Hart Research Associates, 2010)
Philosophy majors score better than business majors on business school entrance exams, and philosophy majors actually have higher mid-career salaries than other majors including business, marketing, and communications majors (according to Forbes and The Wall Street Journal).
Philosophy majors earn the best LSAT scores among all other majors (including political science and criminal justice majors).
Philosophy majors earn the best MCAT scores among all other humanity majors, and philosophy majors actually have a significantly higher medical school acceptance rate than biology and chemistry majors.
Students often pair this major with minors in:
- Political science
HPU philosophy professors hold advanced degrees from:
- UCA Riverside
- Notre Dame
Core areas of study:
- Political Philosophy
- Critical Thinking
Unique course offerings
- Communication Ethics
- Zen and Pure Land
- Medieval Philosophy
- Contemporary Continental Philosophy
Student clubs & organizations
Phi Sigma Tau: National Philosophy Honor Society
Successful people who were philosophy majors
- Carly Fiorina, CEO Hewlett Packard
- Gerald Levine, CEO Time Warner
- Rudolph Giuliani, Former NYC Mayor
- Bill Clinton, U.S. President
- Alex Trebek, Jeopardy Host
- Steven Breyer, Supreme Court Justice
- David Souter, Supreme Court Justice
- Pope John Paul II
- Kristen Baker, the first female brigade commander at West Point
Philosophy is a versatile major because it teaches you how to think.
In a recent study on what employers are seeking, the number one attribute, demanded by 81% of those surveyed, is “Critical Thinking and Analytic Reasoning” (Hart Research Associates, 2010). This was followed closely by “Ethical Decision-making” and “Complex Problem Solving.” Where better than philosophy to gain these essential skills?
Nearly half of our philosophy majors and the majority of our minors take the skills they learn in our department straight into the workforce.
The other half of our majors enter graduate programs. They have matriculated into top programs in Political Science, Law, Education, Psychology, History, Communication, Religion, as well as in Philosophy, including:
• The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
• Duquesne University
• The New School in New York
• American University
• Widener University
• University of Kentucky
• University of North Carolina at Greensboro
While the data shows that philosophy majors may not make as much as business majors in their first job, philosophy majors surpass business majors in their earning potential by mid-career.
Think deep. Think long-term. Think philosophy.
Featured Graduate Outcomes:
Parker Ramsey, ’17 – IT Associate Duke Energy
“High Point University has provided me with a fantastic environment to expand my ability to not only communicate with others, but to truly explore my potential as a leader and innovator. HPU has given me numerous opportunities to present new ideas and grow as an individual in regards to my confidence and potential. Through all of this, HPU has given me the skills and mindset necessary to achieve my goals.”
The Department of Religion and Philosophy offers a B.A. degree in Philosophy. To graduate from High Point University with this degree, students must complete the following:
B.A. in Philosophy
|University Core Requirements
Requirements for the B.A. in Philosophy (36 credits):
One course in Logic selected from the following (4):
- PHL 1006. Logic and Critical Thinking (4)
- PHL 3006. Symbolic Logic (4)
- PHL 3007. Predicate Logic (4)
One course in Ethics selected from (4):
- PHL 2008. Social Ethics (4)
- PHL 2010. Biomedical Ethics (4)
- PHL 2013. The Philosophy and Ethics of Education (4)
- PHL/WGS 2016. Family Ethics (4)
- PHL 2017. Communication Ethics (4)
- PHL/REL 2019. Environmental Ethics (4)
- PHL 2043. Business Ethics (4)
Three courses in History of Philosophy selected from (12):
- PHL 2020. Ancient Philosophy (4)
- PHL/REL 2021. Medieval Philosophy and Theology (4)
- PHL 2022. Modern Philosophy (4)
- PHL 2023. Contemporary Continental Philosophy (4)
- PHL 2024. Contemporary Anglo-American Philosophy (4)
4099 Senior Seminar (4)
12 Elective credits
NOTE: In addition to PHL 4099, at least 8 credits must be at the 3000-level or above
Study Abroad programs popular with this major
Among HPU philosophy majors, the Oxford Brookes Faculty-in-Residence study abroad program is the most popular. Oxford Brookes University has been noted “best modern university in the United Kingdom” for the past seven years. Oxford Brookes is one of the few universities in the UK to have 24 subjects rated as excellent for teaching. Each term Oxford Brookes welcomes 18,800 students from various cultural and social backgrounds on three campuses. The city of Oxford hosts more than 30,000 students, which promises a youthful and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Dr. Tony Kemerly is an Associate Professor Exercise Science and the Department Chair of Exercise Science at High Point University. During the Fall 2015 term at Oxford Brookes, he will be teaching Sociocultural Aspects of Obesity and Body and Identity. For more information on study abroad opportunities, visit highpoint.edu/studyabroad.