Throughout our lives, we are frequently assailed by philosophical perplexity.  Are knowledge and morals a matter of preference and perspective, or are there such things as objective truths and values?  What indeed is worth valuing?  Is there a God?  Is the mind separable from the body?  What is the nature of meaning?  How ought we to organize ourselves in society?  How can we balance considerations of liberty with those of equality?

The ultimate aim of a philosophy course is not merely to assist students in understanding the writings of those thinkers who have addressed these important issues, but also to equip students with the means by which they themselves can profitably grapple with the same questions.  A student’s development within the discipline, therefore, depends not just on a critical and imaginative engagement with the material, but on dialogue with others, both inside and outside of the classroom.

Philosophy furnishes a good grounding for personal development and citizenship. It contributes significantly to the development of inquisitive and independent minds.  Given the emphasis in philosophy on argument and analysis, there is no better preparation for a career in law.  And since philosophy places a premium on precision of thought and communication, it provides an excellent background for a career in journalism and publishing, policy-making, education, and counseling.  Philosophy graduates also attest to the indispensable value of their education to careers in management, healthcare, research, and planning.

The Department of Philosophy offers a full range of undergraduate courses. Students may obtain an honours degree in philosophy, be a philosophy major, do a minor in philosophy, or earn a concentration in philosophy. Students should consult with the undergraduate advisor to arrange a selection of courses that fits their individual interests and meets Department requirements. In addition, the Department offers a pre-law option, a double-honours with physics, and a master’s degree.

Critical Thinking (PHIL 1200) is the only philosophy course that satisfies regulation 3b of the Faculty of Arts degree requirements.