The Department of Philosophy explores the frontiers of today’s philosophical research as well as the history of philosophy, spanning thousands of years. We address fundamental questions that engage all reflective people yet remain unanswered by the empirical sciences: ethics, political philosophy, metaphysics, epistemology, logic, the philosophy of mind, and the philosophy of language.

Undergraduates receive training in analytical thinking and the disciplined, rigorous arguments that characterize serious philosophical reflection -- an excellent preparation for careers in law, medicine, public policy, public administration, management, advocacy, finance, and computer science, as well as for graduate work in various humanistic and social scientific fields.

Students have the opportunity to study where the great philosophers lived and taught: Confucius and Lao-tsu in China; Nietzsche, Leibniz, Kant, and Hegel in Germany; Spinoza in the Netherlands; Descartes in France; or Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Wittgenstein in Britain. 

For more on the nature of Philosophy and careers for those with a Philosophy degree, please see the Why Philosophy page.


Why I Chose Philosophy

NBC News’ Katy Tur reveals what drew her to the school on the California coast – is wasn’t just the waterfront living – and how studying philosophy shaped her career today.