Why Study Philosophy?

aPhilosophy is unlike any other field of study. It is unique both in its methods and in the nature and breadth of its subject matter. Philosophy pursues questions in every dimension of human life, and its approach applies to problems in any field of study or endeavor. As a discipline, it encourages students to reject simple solutions to complex issues; it enhances their ability to perceive the relationships among the various fields of study, and it deepens their sense of the meaning and varieties of the human experience.

At Southwest Minnesota State, the philosophy major and minor seek to instill in students a regard for a reasoned approach to the solution of perplexing questions, a heightened critical sense, and a degree of philosophical detachment which allows the student to achieve a broader and deeper perspective on pressing human issues. The major at Southwest Minnesota State is small enough to allow students to combine it with virtually any other major in the University. The faculty in the program are committed to the ideal of a broad, liberal education as the best possible preparation for a world in which the only certainty is change.

Dr. Brett Gaul on Philosophy

In this short video Dr. Brett Gaul talks about what philosophy is and why it is valuable.


Listed below are links to some recent articles touting the value of philosophy.

Philosophy is unlike any other field of study. It is unique both in its methods and in the nature and breadth of its subject matter. Philosophy pursues questions in ...

For Philosophy Majors, The Question After Graduation Is: What Next? - T. Rees Shapiro asserts that the question is not hard to answer: “Just about anything.”

A Case For Majoring in Philosophy - Travis Chamberlain makes the case for majoring in philosophy by discussing the major's return on investment, which "can be traced to its intellectual rigor."

Don't Go to School for Finance — Liberal Arts is the Future - Billionaire Mark Cuban argues that due to increased automation in the workplace--robots replacing human workers--liberal arts majors such as philosophy majors will have the types of skills needed to do well in the future job market.

The Earning Power of Philosophy Majors - Bourree Lam argues that "there’s one humanities major whose graduates are doing quite well in the job market—and it’s philosophy majors."

Graduating With a Philosophy Degree? There's More Than Starbucks in Your Future - Marnie Eisenstadt points out that philosophy students develop transferable critical thinking and creative problem solving skills that lead to a solid living.

Stop Making Fun of Philosophy and Read Some Philosophy - Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry explains the value of asking philosophical questions.

The Unexpected Way Philosophy Majors Are Changing the World of Business - Carolyn Gregoire argues that philosophy majors will become the entrepreneurs who are shaping the business world.

Why Study Philosophy? "To Challenge Your Own Point of View" - An interview with Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, philosopher and author of Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won't Go Away.

Be Employable: Study Philosophy - Shannon Rupp argues that philosophy classes teach "something applicable to any and every job: clarity of thought. Name me one aspect of your life that doesn’t benefit from being able to think something through clearly."

Is Philosophy the Most Practical Major? - Edward Tenner writes about the recent growth of the number of philosophy majors in the United States.

Why Future Business Leaders Need Philosophy - According to Anders Berg Poulson, "When addressing the challenges put forth by an increasingly complex business environment, looking to traditional business models will not suffice. What is needed is an increased focus on critical reasoning to challenge the basic assumptions of business models and practices."

Philosophy is Back in Business - Dov Seidman contends that "[t]he financial and climate crises, global consumption habits, and other 21st-century challenges call for a 'killer app.' I think I've found it: philosophy."

The Management Myth - Matthew Stewart argues that "[i]f you want to succeed in business, don’t get an M.B.A. Study philosophy instead."

Pepperdine University's Dr. Tomás Bogardus has also compiled statistics showing the success achieved by philosophy majors on the GRE, GMAT, and LSAT.

Last Modified: 8/4/17 2:19 PM