Are you fascinated by questions like “Why are we here?” “How do we know the difference between right and wrong?” and “Do we have free will?” These questions are fundamental to our understanding of ourselves as human beings, and they are just some of “big questions” philosophy seeks to answer. If this is the type of issue that keeps you up at night, you might want to consider pursuing an online degree in philosophy.
What will I learn in an online philosophy degree program?
Studying philosophy is the best pathway toward learning critical and analytic thinking. Philosophy majors take courses in history, politics, ethics, logic, religion, and more. There have been many major periods in philosophy, and the work of major philosophers has greatly informed the way we think about the world. The core courses in philosophy degree programs include the history of philosophy and the work of philosophers like Rene Descartes, Immanuel Kant, and Friedrich Nietzsche.
Philosophy courses will not teach you the answers to “big questions,” like the ones in the introduction to this post, but they will teach you how to analyze these questions, develop and articulate your own ideas, understand the views of others, and construct valid arguments. You will also learn to critically evaluate arguments and ideas, which is perhaps the most important skill of all.
What types of philosophy degrees are available online?
Philosophy can also be divided into several subcategories, such as ethics, philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, aesthetics, and even political philosophy. Some online schools offer bachelor’s degrees in general philosophy, which are broad-based programs that will touch on all of these specializations. Other schools have concentrations in specific areas of philosophy.
What can I do with an online philosophy degree?
A more accurate question is: What can’t you do with an online philosophy degree? Philosopher itself is not currently a very common job title, but with coursework that focuses on critical thinking, reasoning, and the ability to see problems from multiple perspectives, a philosophy degree is an excellent starting point for many careers.
One of the most popular career paths for philosophy majors is as a lawyer—most law school students get their bachelor’s degree in philosophy. However, philosophers also work in government, education, public policy, consultancies, and even medicine and the sciences. For most students, a degree in philosophy is not a terminal degree, which means that they pursue further education in an area of specialization. Many philosophers go on to become college-level professors.
Many people think philosophy is a dying art, but that’s simply not true. Philosophy continues to form the foundation of modern thought, and people who have studied philosophy continue to be needed to inform decisions in government, science, education, and more.