Attention Freshmen Wildcats, be sure to schedule a Freshmen Appointment with your Academic Advisor.

College of Arts & Sciences

Philosophy

120

Total hours

6

Premajor hours

45

Core Hours

Restart your search

Philosophy encourages critical and systematic inquiry into fundamental questions of right and wrong, truth and falsehood, the meaning of life, and the nature of reality, knowledge, and society. Philosophy explores the core issues of the Western intellectual tradition. With its emphasis on reason and argumentation, the major is excellent preparation for a career in law or business. Because Philosophy develops certain analytical skills (and maybe also because a certain type of student is attracted to the field), Philosophy majors score among the very highest on standardized tests for law school (the LSAT), graduate school (the GRE), and business school (the GMAT).  Indeed, comparing the data could lead to the conclusion that "Philosophers are the smartest humanists, physicists the smartest scientists, economists the smartest social scientists." 

Careers

Grow Your Future

Philosophy majors are active in many kinds of career:  for example, Business, Law, Counselling, Public Policy and Administration, Social Work, Foreign Service, Ministry, Academics, Librarianship, Journalism, Writing, Editing and Criticism, Computer Science and Applications, Communications, Hospital Administration,  Entertainment, Medical Ethics Consulting.

Career opportunities in Philosophy

  • lawyer 
  • banker
  • public relations director
  • publisher
  • journalist 
  • retail management
  • librarian
  • counselor
  • marketing 
  • consulting
  • research
  • accountant
  • social worker
  • professor
  • self-employed
  • labor relations
  • foreign service officer
  • public policy
  • non-profit work 
  • minister
  • teacher

Current Curriculum Information

Access Major Template

source: myUK: GPS

  • Philosophy (BA) 120 hours

Click to toggle each Academic Year. Click each course for more information.

Freshman Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 260 - HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY I: FROM GREEK BEGINNINGS TO THE MIDDLE AGES3

    Western philosophy from ancient through late medieval times including systematic work in logic, metaphysics, epistemology and ethics by such philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Augustine and Aquinas.

  • UK Core - Comp. & Comm. I3
  • Foreign Language 1014
  • UK Core - Global Dynamics3
  • UK Core - Arts and Creativity3
    • Total16
Spring Semester
  • PHI 270 - HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY II: FROM THE RENAISSANCE TO THE PRESENT ERA3

    Western philosophy from early modern to recent times including systematic work in logic, metaphysics, epistemology and ethics by such philosophers as Occam, Descartes, Hume and Kant.

  • UK Core - Comp. & Comm. II3
  • Foreign Language 1024
  • UK Core - Humanities3
  • UK Core - Quantitative Foundations3
    • Total16
    • Total Freshman Hours32

Sophomore Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 320 - SYMBOLIC LOGIC I3

    A systematic study of sentential logic, elementary quantification, and the logic of identity. The student will acquire specific skills in symbolic methods of analysis which are necessary for further study in logic as well as useful for addressing complex issues in philosophy and other areas.

  • Foreign Language 2013
  • UK Core - Community, Culture and Citizen3
  • UK Core - Natural, Physical and Math3
    • Total15
Spring Semester
  • Major Core Selection3
  • Foreign Language 2023
  • UK Core - Social Sciences3
  • UK Core - Statistical Inferential Reason3
  • A&S Social Sciences (100+ level)3
    • Total15
    • Total Sophomore Hours30

Junior Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 350 - METAPHYSICS AND EPISTEMOLOGY3

    An examination of fundamental issues in metaphysics and epistemology, such as causation, the nature of space and time, personal identity, free will, the existence of God, the nature and types of knowledge, the character of human existence, skepticism, and rationality. This course is a Graduation Composition and Communication Requirement (GCCR) course in certain programs, and hence is not likely to be eligible for automatic transfer credit to UK.

  • From Philosophy Dept (Group A)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • A&S Natural Sciences Course (100+ level)3
  • A&S Lab or Field Work1
  • A&S Approved Elective (100+ level)3
    • Total16
Spring Semester
  • From Philosophy Dept (Group B)3
  • From Philosophy Dept (Group C)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • A&S Natural Sciences Course (100+ level)3
    • Total15
    • Total Junior Hours31

Senior Year

Fall Semester
  • Philosophy Course (500+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (300+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (300+ level)3
  • Philosophy Course (300+ level)3
  • A&S Social Sciences (100+ level)3
    • Total15
Spring Semester
  • Philosophy Course (500+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (300+ level)3
  • A&S Approved Elective (300+ level)3
  • A&S Approved Elective (100+ level)3
    • Total12
    • Total Senior Hours27
  • Philosophy (BS) 120 hours

Click to toggle each Academic Year. Click each course for more information.

Freshman Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 260 - HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY I: FROM GREEK BEGINNINGS TO THE MIDDLE AGES3

    Western philosophy from ancient through late medieval times including systematic work in logic, metaphysics, epistemology and ethics by such philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Augustine and Aquinas.

  • Foreign Language 2013
  • UK Core - Comp. & Comm. I3
  • UK Core - Global Dynamics3
  • UK Core - Arts and Creativity3
    • Total15
Spring Semester
  • PHI 270 - HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY II: FROM THE RENAISSANCE TO THE PRESENT ERA3

    Western philosophy from early modern to recent times including systematic work in logic, metaphysics, epistemology and ethics by such philosophers as Occam, Descartes, Hume and Kant.

  • Foreign Language 2023
  • UK Core - Comp. & Comm. II3
  • UK Core - Humanities3
  • UK Core - Quantitative Foundations3
    • Total15
    • Total Freshman Hours30

Sophomore Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 320 - SYMBOLIC LOGIC I3

    A systematic study of sentential logic, elementary quantification, and the logic of identity. The student will acquire specific skills in symbolic methods of analysis which are necessary for further study in logic as well as useful for addressing complex issues in philosophy and other areas.

  • UK Core - Community, Culture and Citizen3
  • UK Core - Natural, Physical and Math3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
    • Total18
Spring Semester
  • Major Core Selection3
  • UK Core - Social Sciences3
  • UK Core - Statistical Inferential Reason3
  • A&S Social Sciences (100+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
    • Total15
    • Total Sophomore Hours33

Junior Year

Fall Semester
  • PHI 350 - METAPHYSICS AND EPISTEMOLOGY3

    An examination of fundamental issues in metaphysics and epistemology, such as causation, the nature of space and time, personal identity, free will, the existence of God, the nature and types of knowledge, the character of human existence, skepticism, and rationality. This course is a Graduation Composition and Communication Requirement (GCCR) course in certain programs, and hence is not likely to be eligible for automatic transfer credit to UK.

  • From Philosophy Dept (Group A)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • A&S Natural Sciences Course (100+ level)3
  • A&S Lab or Field Work1
  • A&S Approved Elective (100+ level)3
    • Total16
Spring Semester
  • From Philosophy Dept (Group B)3
  • From Philosophy Dept (Group C)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
    • Total15
    • Total Junior Hours31

Senior Year

Fall Semester
  • Philosophy Course (500+ level)3
  • Philosophy Course (300+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
    • Total15
Spring Semester
  • Philosophy Course (500+ level)3
  • Course Outside Philosophy (200+ level)3
  • Natural Science/Math Course (100+ level)3
  • A&S Approved Elective (100+ level)3
  • A&S Approved Elective (100+ level)3
    • Total15
    • Total Senior Hours30

Classes & Requirements

What You'll Study

Philosophy encourages critical and systematic inquiry into fundamental questions of right and wrong, truth and falsehood, the meaning of life, and the nature of reality, knowledge, and society. More than any other discipline, philosophy explores the core issues of the Western intellectual tradition. With its emphasis on reason and argumentation, a philosophy major is an excellent preparation for a career in law or business.

 
Philosophy B.A. Four Year Plan

Graduation Requirements

Any student earning a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree must complete a minimum of 39 hours at the 300+ level. These hours are generally completed by the major requirements. However, keep this hour requirement in mind as you choose your course work for the requirements in the major. See the complete description of College requirements for a Bachelor of Arts degree in the Arts and Sciences section of the 2015-2016 Undergraduate Bulletin.

UK Core Requirements

  • The Nature of Inquiry in Arts and Creativity (3 hours)
  • The Nature of Inquiry in the Humanities (3 hours)
  • The Nature of Inquiry in the Social Sciences (3 hours)
  • The nature of Inquiry in the Natural, Physical and Mathematical Sciences (3 hours)
  • Composition and Communication I (3 hours)
  • Composition and Communication II (3 hours)
  • Quantitative Foundations (3 hours)
  • Statistical and Inferential Reasoning (3 hours)
  • Community, Culture and Citizenship in the USA (3 hours)
  • Global Dynamics (3 hours)

Total Credit Hours - 30


Premajor Requirements 

  • PHI 260 - History of Philosophy I: from Greek Beginnings to the Middle Ages [3 hours]
  • PHI 270 - History of Philosophy II: from the Renaissance to the Present Era [3 hours]

Total Hours - 6

Major Requirements 

Major Core Requirements 

  • PHI 320 - Symbolic Logic [3 hours]
  • PHI 330 - Ethics or PHI 335 - The Individual and Society [3 hours]
  • PHI 350 - Metaphysics and Epistemology [3 hours]

Other Course Work Required for the Major

  • Students must take 15 credit hours of PHI 500+ courses (Please refer to the UK Bulletin for a list of approved classes) [15 hours]
  • Students must take 3 additional credit hours of 300+ PHI course work (please refer to the UK Bulletin for a list of approved classes) [3 hours]

Course Work Outside of the Department

  • Students must take 18 hours of at least 200+ level course work; up to 4 hours may come from Philosophy courses [18 hours]

Total Hours - 45


A&S Undecided/Exploratory Studies

Understanding that over 70 percent of university students will change their declared major at least once during their college careers, the College of Arts and Sciences has developed an Exploratory Studies program for students who have yet to decide the specific field of study that most closely aligns both their personal interests and their professional career goals and objectives. The Exploratory Studies Program provides students with an extraordinarily diverse educational environment that includes coursework spanning Math and Natural Sciences, Humanities, and Social Sciences and provides students with the unique opportunity to explore multiple areas of interest during their first several semesters on campus. For more information please contact a recruiting representative at asrecruting@uky.edu. 


Get more information about going to the University of Kentucky