Philosophy defined is "love of wisdom." For our students and faculty, this love—this pursuit—of wisdom is a calling.

As a philosophy major at Emmanuel, you will explore the “big questions” surrounding human existence: the meaning of life, the existence of God, the source and nature of values, and the relationship between individuals and society, as well as the practical challenges surrounding the ethics of science and health care, of political policy, the workplace, justice, discrimination and more. You will graduate equipped to analyze ideas carefully, reason accurately, present arguments clearly and develop other critical-thinking skills that are in great demand in today's professions.

The Curriculum

View the 2023-2024 Academic Catalog to find course titles, numbers and descriptions.

Requirements for the Philosophy Major

  • Any 1000 level course
  • PHIL2108 Critical Thinking (M) (ER) OR PHIL2119 Symbolic Logic (QA) (QR)
  • PHIL2106 Ethics (M) (ER) (WI)
  • PHIL2201 Existentialism and the Meaning of Life (M) (ER)
  • PHIL3109 Philosophy of Mind
  • PHIL3115 Ancient and Medieval Philosophy
  • PHIL3215 Modern Philosophy
  • PHIL4999 Senior Seminar in Philosophy
  • Three additional philosophy courses, to be selected from department electives.

Students may also minor in philosophy to complement their studies in the liberal arts and sciences.

View the 2023-2024 Academic Catalog to find course titles, numbers and descriptions.

Requirements for Minor in Philosophy

  • Any 1000 level course 
  • PHIL2108 Critical Thinking (M) (ER) OR PHIL2119 Symbolic Logic (QA) (QR)
  • Three additional philosophy courses, one of which must be a 3000-level course

In addition to acquiring knowledge of philosophical concepts, problems and systems, successful philosophy majors will learn

  • Solve problems, think critically, and communicate their ideas effectively in written and oral form.
  • Analyze their own fundamental beliefs and world view, be comfortable with ambiguity and complexity, and gain intellectual independence.
Where Essential Values and Skills Meet the Real World

Where Essential Values and Skills Meet the Real World

Along with areas of knowledge and major requirements, you will cultivate essential values in the classroom and complete two courses in each area:

  • Social Justice (SJ): Develop knowledge, skills, values and motivation to participate beneficially in activities of personal and public concern.
  • Diversity & Multiculturalism (DM): Understand the complexity of identity the historical truths of different cultural perspectives to address bias and examine contemporary social issues. 

One hundred percent of Emmanuel students complete an internship as part of the core curriculum. In a city as dynamic as Boston, your options are bound only by the limits of your curiosity.

The skills sharpened by philosophy majors, including the ability to communicate effectively and think critically are in high demand in many fields. As a philosophy major, you can find meaningful and beneficial internships in research, law, education, nonprofit and advocacy groups, and many more.

In all majors, the Capstone Experience involves completing a significant piece of work that requires the integration and application of learning from multiple courses.

The culminating experience for Philosophy majors is the Senior Seminar in Philosophy (PHIL4999), which is completed in your senior year. In this seminar, groups will discuss major topics in philosophy, and you will write and present a major paper that will be made available to department faculty.