Students in the StFX Philosophy Department are taught by Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, René Descartes, David Hume, Immanuel Kant and all great philosophical minds. The goal, however, is not merely to learn what the philosophers have said but to learn the truth and a wisdom by which we ought to live our lives. Great minds do not think alike, but they are the best guides for our own independent thinking.
Professors in this department view teaching and research as their primary academic mission. The department has special strengths in the history of philosophy, especially ancient and mediaeval philosophy. As well, the department has strong offerings in ethics, theory of rights, and political philosophy; it offers advanced instruction in areas such as biomedical ethics.
In your first year, you will take Philosophy 100, which presents a history of Philosophy from the ancient Greeks to contemporary thought, and includes an introduction to logic. The study of Philosophy is conceptually challenging, but it helps you engage in independent thought.
Students study Philosophy primarily to liberate themselves from the narrow prejudices of their own age, including the banausic concerns for job-training. Graduates in Philosophy, however, have been very successful in law, journalism, medicine, theology, business and government – in fact, Philosophy remains the very best training for law school among all undergraduate majors. Honours students tend to get hooked, and often go on to graduate programs in Philosophy.
You can do a major, advanced major, or an honours degree in Philosophy. Philosophy is also a very popular choice as a minor, as it helps to make sense of many other disciplines in the arts and sciences.
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