Philosophy and Humanities Information
Phone: (423) 439-4425
Web Address: www.etsu.edu/cas/philosophy/
Philosophy is an attempt to reason clearly and critically about all areas of experience: science, religion, art, politics, and morality. Its purpose is to understand and evaluate our most basic beliefs and values, then to integrate them into a coherent view of ourselves and the world.
Philosophy is an appropriate preparation for vocations that require a broad liberal education and skills in clear, creative thinking. Such vocations include law, government service, writing, the ministry, medicine, and many types of positions in business. It is especially attractive when paired with another major that teaches technical or professional skills, for example, philosophy with mass communication.
A total of 120 credits is required for graduation. In addition to the General Education Requirements, philosophy majors must meet B.A. or B.S. degree requirements in the College of Arts and Sciences. The choice of B.A. or B.S. degree should be made in connection with a student’s second major, if there is one. Students whose second major is in the humanities should choose the B.A. degree, while students with a second major in the sciences should choose the B.S. degree. A student’s interest in pursuing studies in philosophy at the graduate level is also relevant to the choice of B.A. or B.S. degree. See below. A minor is required of all philosophy majors, except those pursuing a double major. Philosophy students should be aware that most upper-division philosophy courses, excluding those required for the major, are offered only once every other year.
Students interested in graduate school in Philosophy – Students who are considering graduate school in philosophy should take seriously their degree at ETSU as preparation for that course of study. The decision to pursue the study of philosophy in graduate school should ideally be made in the junior year, and faculty in the department should be notified so that they can provide advice specific to the student’s area of interest. In general, graduate schools will prefer that students have received a B.A. in philosophy, have studied a language or languages relevant to the discipline, and that they have taken symbolic logic. Students interested specifically in the philosophy of science or related areas may find it beneficial to receive a B.S. degree. Excellent performance in the core courses required by the department will be expected, as well as evidence of some focus in one’s area of interest in electives and extra-curricular efforts (e.g. presenting work at an undergraduate philosophy conference, participation in the philosophy club, independent work, etc.).
Transfer Students – Transfer students seeking a Philosophy Major must complete a minimum of nine hours in Philosophy at ETSU with at least a “C” average.
Graduate Study – The department offers some graduate work in philosophy. Further information on graduate programs is contained in the Graduate Catalog.
How to Contact Your Advisor – www.etsu.edu/advisement/continuingstudents/default.aspx#Find)