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.
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Array ( [0] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 97536 [post_author] => 53 [post_date] => 2021-06-03 16:11:38 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-06-03 20:11:38 [post_content] => Areas of Specialization: History of Theology and Ethics, especially ancient and medieval theology Theological Ethics and Economics   Courses:
  • Early Christian Thought
  • Medieval Philosophy and Theology
  • Great Theologians: Thomas Aquinas
  • New Testament
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Foundations of Christian Ethics
  • Globalization and Christian Ethics
  Dr. Franks has taught in the department since 2003. His research interests focus on bringing the riches of Christian tradition to bear to address today’s questions about the shape of Christian discipleship, but extend to other areas of theology as well. His first book, He Became Poor: The Poverty of Christ and Aquinas’ Economic Teachings, was published by Eerdmans in 2009. His published work has also appeared in the Journal of Religion, Modern Theology, and The Thomist. He is an ordained minister in the Western North Carolina Conference of The United Methodist Church. He has served as parish minister of Methodist churches in Dinas Powys and Penarth, Wales. He is also an active member of Ekklesia Project, Society of Christian Ethics, and the American Academy of Religion. He enjoys biking, hiking, gardening, singing, and spending time with his wife, Sandy, and their five children. [post_title] => Christopher Franks [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => christopher-franks [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 20:14:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-09 00:14:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?p=97536 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 94425 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-05-26 10:53:34 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-05-26 14:53:34 [post_content] =>
Areas of specialization: Business Ethics Ethical Theory Philosophy of Science Political Philosophy   Courses Taught: Business Ethics (including Honors, and Service Learning sections) Science Fiction and Philosophy Ethical Theory Political Philosophy   I never meant to be a philosopher. As an aimless college student, I was simply intrigued by the big questions: about life, existence and meaning. Philosophy classes nurtured my inquisitive mind. After college, I landed a business consulting job – thanks to my Philosophy degree – with a Fortune 500 company. Though a promising career path beckoned, my thirst for knowledge motivated me to pursue graduate school instead. In graduate school, I studied the philosophy of science, and moral philosophy, merging the two in my dissertation. I also had the fortune of working with Norman Bowie, a pioneer of business ethics, who inspired me to specialize in the field. Science Fiction and Philosophy is a seminar I love to teach, in which first-year students are introduced to philosophical ideas through the science fiction lens of short stories, films, games, etc. My publications include essays in Pop Culture & Philosophy volumes, such as Inception and PhilosophyAvatar and PhilosophyEnder’s Game and Philosophy (pending). My business ethics publications include “Bumfights and Care Ethics” and “Spirituality Incorporated: Including Spirituality in Business” (pending). I feel fortunate to work at HPU, among stellar faculty, in an academy committed to 21st century education.
[post_title] => Matthew Brophy [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => dr-matthew-brophy [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 20:28:06 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-09 00:28:06 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?post_type=faculty-staff&p=94425 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 94695 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-05-27 16:04:18 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-05-27 20:04:18 [post_content] => Areas of Specialization: 19th Century philosophy (especially Hegel and Kierkegaard) History of Philosophy Metaphysics Existentialism Philosophy of Religion     Courses Taught: Business Ethics Sacred Experiences in World Religions Medieval Philosophy and Theology Contemporary Continental Philosophy Political Philosophy Philosophy of Religion   My primary research interests are in 19th Century philosophy (especially Kierkegaard and Hegel), and in metaphysics, existentialism, and the philosophy of religion throughout the history of philosophy. I focus on the themes of motion, modality, time and eternity, dialectics, the relationship between metaphysics and existence, and the metaphysical and existential foundations of the philosophy of religion.   I decided to study Kierkegaard, because he writes with unexpected irony and unrelenting humor. Any philosopher who is that funny is a philosopher worth studying. From my interest in Kierkegaard, I then backtracked my way to Hegel, and I have yet to find my way back out again, but that’s pretty much fine with me. [post_title] => Claudine Davidshofer [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => dr-claudine-davidshofer [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-07-26 16:24:24 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-07-26 20:24:24 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?post_type=faculty-staff&p=94695 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 94653 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-05-27 14:51:02 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-05-27 18:51:02 [post_content] => My research interests include social and political philosophy, normative and applied ethics, poverty studies, and feminist theory. I entered college intending to be a journalism major, but I got hooked on philosophy in freshman year instead. I got my BA in philosophy from Furman University, my MA from Virginia Tech, and my PhD from Rice University. Since going to a liberal arts school, I have always intended to return to my liberal arts roots to teach, and I joined the HPU faculty in 2017.   Areas of Specialization: Social/Political Philosophy Normative and Applied Ethics   Courses Taught at High Point University: Business Ethics Social Ethics Logic and Critical Thinking Civic Responsibility and Social Innovation Morality of Globalization.     [post_title] => Elizabeth Hupfer [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => dr-elizabeth-hupfer [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 19:56:38 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-08 23:56:38 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?post_type=faculty-staff&p=94653 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 98193 [post_author] => 53 [post_date] => 2021-06-03 16:24:28 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-06-03 20:24:28 [post_content] => Areas of Specialization: Catholic Moral Theology Virtue Ethics Theories of Justice Religious Autobiography   Courses Taught: PHL 2008 Social Ethics REL 2015 Faith and Ethics PHL 1001 Introduction to Philosophy FYS 1000 Prisons, Monasteries, and Ghosts: Religious Autobiography and the American Self (First Year Seminar) REL 1001 Hebrew Bible REL 1002 New Testament Studies   My academic interest in ethics was born in my first class in college, a “great books” course called “Perspectives in Western Culture.” It was a year long survey guided by the question “what is the best way to live?” which examined answers from the Western religious and philosophical traditions and invited us to enter into critical dialogue with the great thinkers of our cultural heritage. That question and dialogical approach guided my graduate work at Vanderbilt Divinity School and Boston College, and served as a fruitful foundation when I began to teach my own courses. This was particularly true when I began teaching service learning courses, which integrated serving the community with reflection on lives of action and contemplation, the meaning of justice, and how to live well in community. I hope that students find my classes as an invitation to dialogue with their classmates and authors of the “great books” and to reflect on what it means to live a good human life in relationship with God and others.  I recently published the book Primary Source Readings in Christian Morality with St. Mary’s Press in 2008. [post_title] => Thaddeus Ostrowski [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => thaddeus-ostrowski [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 20:17:06 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-09 00:17:06 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?p=98193 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 97992 [post_author] => 53 [post_date] => 2021-06-03 16:20:17 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-06-03 20:20:17 [post_content] => Dr. Toole was born in Tachikawa, Japan. He lived in the nearby town of Fusa before returning to the United States with his family. After living in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin his family settled in the Chicago area, which he considers to be his true “hometown.” Some of his recent public and/or invited talks include: “Before Fodors There Was Xuanzang: Pilgrimage to India By The Book,” “Socially Engaged Buddhists & Aboriginal Australians,” “Dharma, Karma, and Samsāra: An Examination of Ancient Indian Concepts,” “Toward a Further Understanding of Extreme Asceticism and Athleticism,” “Vedantic Philosophy and Inception,” and “What Would Buddha Do? Reflections on Blind Turtles, Hamster Wheels, and Washing Dishes.” Dr. Toole looks forward to leading an upcoming student study trip to Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam as an extension of his scholarship. Toole also serves as faculty advisor for the HPU PRIDE student organization and the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity. Dr. Toole lives in Greensboro, NC, along with his two daughters.   www.marktoolehpu.com   Areas of Specialization: Rituals and Philosophies of Japan China and India Comparative Religious Studies Pilgrimage Buddhist and Daoist Conceptions of the Environment   Courses Taught at HPU: Honors Senior Symposium Buddhist Traditions: Zen & Pure Land Religions of Japan Contemporary Buddhist Developments Introduction to Buddhism – Honors Sacred Experiences and World Religions – Honors Asian Thought and Global Concerns – Honors Religions of East Asia Religions of South Asia Human Images in World Religions Eastern Philosophies and World Religions Sages, Monks, and Ascetics What is Consciousness? Comparative Religious Responses Pilgrimage through the Buddha’s India [post_title] => Mark Toole [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => mark-toole [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-08-20 09:14:01 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-08-20 13:14:01 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?p=97992 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [6] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 97407 [post_author] => 50 [post_date] => 2021-06-03 15:03:57 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-06-03 19:03:57 [post_content] => [post_title] => Amy L. MacArthur [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => amy-l-macarthur [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 20:20:20 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-09 00:20:20 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?p=97407 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [7] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 129107 [post_author] => 66 [post_date] => 2021-08-26 16:18:21 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-08-26 20:18:21 [post_content] => [post_title] => Caroline Mobley [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => caroline-mobley [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-08 19:54:00 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-08 23:54:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.highpoint.edu/?post_type=faculty-staff&p=129107 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => faculty-staff [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
Chair and Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy and Pre-Ministerial Advisor
Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy and Assistant Director of CITL
Assistant Professor of Religion & Philosophy
Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy
Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy

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.

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Course Requirements 2020/2021
Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
Minor in Philosophy
Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
Degree Requirements Credits
Major Requirements 36
University Core Requirements 50
Electives 42
Total 128
Minor in Philosophy
Minor Requirements Credits
Course Requirements 20
Total 20
Requirements for B.A. in Philosophy
Requirements for Minor in Philosophy
Requirements for B.A. in Philosophy
Course Course Title Credits
PHL 4099 Senior Seminar 4
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 the following (4)
PHL 2008 Social Ethics 4
PHL 2010 Biomedical Ethics 4
PHL 2013 The 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 the following (12)
PHL 2020 Ancient Philosophy 4
PHL/REL 2021 Medieval Philosophy and Theology 4
PHL 2022 Modern Philosophy 4
PHL/REL 2024 Existentialism 4
PHL 3023 Contemporary Continental Philosophy 4
PHL 3024 Contemporary Anglo-American Philosophy 4
Elective Credits in Philosophy (12)
PHL 1001 Introduction to Philosophy 4
PHL/ECE 2014 Engineering and Technology Ethics 4
PHL/REL 2039 Buddhism and Culture in Southeast Asia 4
PHL 2881, 3881, 4881 Special Topics Variable Credit. May be repeated.
PHL/PSC 3009 Political Philosophy 4
PHL/CSI 3010 Civic Responsibility and Social Innovation 4
PHL/REL 3025 Evil, Suffering, and God 4
PHL/REL 3032 Buddhist Traditions: Zen & Pure Land 4
PHL/GBS 3311 Morality of Globalization 4
PHL/REL/GBS 3331 Asian Thought and Global Concerns 4
PHL 4444 Independent Study 4
Course Descriptions
Note: In addition to PHL 4099, at least 8 credits must be at the 3000-level or above.
Requirements for Minor in Philosophy
Course Course Title Credits
PHL 1006, PHL 3006, 3007 Logic and Critical Thinking or Symbolic Logic or Predicate Logic 4
Choose 4 credits in History of Philosophy from below:
PHL 2020 Ancient Philosophy 4
PHL/REL 2021 Medieval Philosophy and Theology 4
PHL 2022 Modern Philosophy 4
PHL/REL 2024 Existentialism 4
PHL 3023 Contemporary Continental Philosophy 4
PHL 3024 Contemporary Anglo-American Philosophy 4
Choose 12 elective credits. 4 credits must be at the 3000 level or above.
PHL 1001 Introduction to Philosophy 4
PHL 2008 Social Ethics 4
PHL 2010 Biomedial Ethics 4
PHL 2013 The Ethics of Education 4
PHL/ECE 2014 Engineering and Technology Ethics 4
PHL/WGS 2016 Family Ethics 4
PHL 2017 Communication Ethics 4
PHL/REL 2019 Environmental Ethics 4
PHL/REL 2039 Buddhism and Culture in Southeast Asia 4
PHL 2043 Business Ethics 4
PHL 2881, 3881, 4881 Special Topics Variable Credit. May be repeated.
PHL/PSC 3009 Political Philosophy 4
PHL/CSI 3010 Civic Responsibility and Social Innovation 4
PHL/REL 3025 Evil, Suffering, and God 4
PHL/REL 3032 Buddhist Traditions: Zen & Pure Land 4
PHL/GBS 3311 Morality of Globalization 4
HL/REL/GBS 3331 Asian Thought and Global Concerns 4
PHL/REL 4099 Senior Seminar 4
PHL 4444 Independent Study 4
Course Descriptions
Career Opportunities
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?

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.

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:
Student Outcomes
Abby Ray
World Relief Triad

  With another Commencement behind us, High Point University graduates will be commencing prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from…

Abby Ray
World Relief Triad

Name: Abby Ray Hometown: High Point, North Carolina Year: Class of 2022 Major: Philosophy with a minor in strategic communication Internship: Ray worked with World Relief Triad as the opportunity services department intern, where her responsibilities and role supported finding employment for refugees who have been resettled. She worked with clients to offer services like…

With another successful commencement behind us, High Point University seniors have kicked-off prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the…

  READ MORE INTERNSHIP PROFILES Name: Aurora Jaques  Hometown: Irvine, California Year: Class of 2020 Major: Criminal justice with double minors in sociology and philosophy Internship: Jaques joined the Institute for Justice as a strategic research intern in Arlington, Virginia, this summer. The Institute for Justice is the nation’s leading libertarian public interest law firm, defending…

With another successful Commencement behind us, recent High Point University graduates are already kicking-off prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior…

With commencement just around the corner, recent High Point University graduates are already preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from…

Though commencement is months away, High Point University seniors are already preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the Class…

Though commencement is months away, High Point University seniors are already preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the Class…

With another successful commencement behind us, recent High Point University graduates are preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary senior from the…

With another successful commencement behind us, recent High Point University graduates are preparing to commence prestigious career paths around the world at Fortune 500 companies, international service programs, public school systems, top-tier law, medical and graduate school programs, and many other esteemed organizations thanks to their journey at HPU. Here’s a glimpse of one extraordinary…

Study Abroad
At High Point University, our emphasis on global perspectives is designed to provide students with opportunities to enhance their international awareness and to develop their cross-cultural communication skills. Study abroad is strongly encouraged as a part of this emphasis on global studies. With a variety of extraordinary options at some of the most prestigious universities in the world, students at High Point University are encouraged to study abroad as early as the summer after their freshman year. Employers are looking for more than just a degree; they want well-rounded individuals who have familiarity with diverse cultures, special skills, and knowledge of the world around them.
Why Study Philosophy?
A Philosophy degree equips students with fundamental skills, empowering them to dominate in a variety of careers.
Preparing for Graduate School
Find out more about how a degree in Philosophy can be beneficial when pursuing graduate school options.
Charles Franklin Finch Lecture Series
The Charles Franklin Finch Lecture series at HPU dates back to 1960, and it is a yearly endowed lectureship.
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School of Humanities Gallery
View photos from the School of Humanities and Behavioral Sciences.
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