Greetings from the Philosophy Department Chair!
“Why study Philosophy here at Mount Saint Mary’s University, Los Angeles,” you might ask. Well, let me explain. We are a small, but mighty department.
Our faculty love to teach and focus their energy on our students. Mind you, some students are drawn to mega-universities with more people than they can possibly meet.
Others prefer a well-respected, small Liberal arts college where people meet and greet you, and are happy to see you’re a member of our community of learners. That’s us!
Here’s what we have to offer you as a student of Philosophy:
- Two track major (theoretical vs. applied) = Courses tailored to your needs and interests
- Small classes + Dedicated instructors = Great learning environment
- Diverse range of interesting classes = Stimulating for your brain
- Enthusiastic group of majors/minors = Wonderful teammates
- Classes taught by the pros not teaching assistants = Solid foundation for career growth
- Chance to build your skills and abilities = Chance to become the best thinker you can be
Come see for yourself. Contact our Admissions Department or, better yet, contact me!
I’d be delighted to meet you and talk to you about our department, our major, and minor.
Email me at email@example.com or phone: 310-954-4290 to set up an appointment.
Dr. Peter Tan, Chair, Philosophy Department
BA Degree in Philosophy (Major)+-
Philosophy provides us with the tools discover, examine, and evaluate insights into the meaning of knowledge, personal identity, creativity, fundamental concepts, relationships, nature, the structure of institutions, policies, values, and beliefs.
This major serves as an excellent preparation for graduate study or a career in college teaching, law, bioethics, medicine, computer programming, culture studies, social sciences, or religious studies. Philosophy provides a strong foundation for careers in education, business, research, writing, or counseling.
The Philosophy department encourages and helps students to arrange double majors, especially with the departments of Art, Political Science, Business, English, and Religious Studies. Other double majors with philosophy can be arranged.
Courses Required for a BA Degree in Philosophy
Lower Division. One class from each of the following groups:
- Analytical Skills:
- PHI 5 Introduction to Logic
- PHI 10 Critical Thinking
- Introductory Ethics:
- PHI 21 Moral Values
- PHI 92 Business Ethics
Upper Division. At least ten are upper division courses in Philosophy. Students will select one of the following programs:
A program of study primarily for those interested in pursuing graduate study in Philosophy. Students must take at least:
- Three courses (9 units) from area A (History of Philosophy)
- Three courses (9 units) from area C (Logic, Metaphysics, Epistemology)
- Two courses (6 units) from area B (Value Theory)
- One course (3 units) from area D (Interdisciplinary Philosophy).
- One elective course (3 units) from any of areas A, B, C, and D.
A program of study primarily for those interested in fields where a background in Philosophy is particularly valuable, such as law, bioethics, business ethics, medicine, women's studies, or culture studies. Students must take at least:
- Three courses (9 units) from areas B (Value Theory)
- Three courses (9 units) from area D (Interdisciplinary Philosophy)
- One course (3 units) from area A (History of Philosophy)
- One course (3 units) from area C (Logic, Metaphysics, Epistemology)
- Two elective courses (6 units) from any of areas A, B, C, and D.
- History of Philosophy:
- PHI 124 Socrates, Plato, & Aristotle (3)
- PHI 125 Medieval Philosophy (3)
- PHI 126 Descartes to Kant (3)
- PHI 130 Existentialism (3)
- PHI 134 American Philosophy (3)
- PHI 172 Marxism (3)
- Value Theory:
- PHI 167 Ethics and Film (3)
- PHI 168A Contemporary Moral Problems (3)
- PHI 168B Bioethics (3)
- PHI 170 Social and Political Philosophy (3)
- PHI 174 Philosophy of Art (Aesthetics) (3)
- PHI 179 Women and Values (3)
- PHI 192 Business Ethics (3)
- Logic, Metaphysics, and Epistemology:
- PHI 150 Metaphysics (3)
- PHI 152 Theory of Knowledge (Epistemology) (3)
- PHI 155 Symbolic Logic (3)
- PHI 158 Scientific Method (3)
- PHI 160 Philosophy of Religion (3)
- Interdisciplinary Philosophy:
- PHI 162 Philosophy and Native Cultures (3)
- PHI 165 Philosophy of Law (3)
- PHI 169 Philosophy of Technology (3)
- PHI 175 Philosophy of Film (3)
- PHI 176 Philosophy of Literature (3)
- PHI 178 Philosophy of Women (3)
Total Units in Philosophy: 36.
Plus general studies requirements and electives totaling 124 semester units, including foreign language requirement.
Independent Study Policy:
Independent studies are open to philosophy majors and minors who wish to explore an area of philosophy for advanced or specialized work. Any non-major wishing to do an independent study in philosophy must have a clearly defined goal and must confer with both the faculty member and the chair of the department to see if it is appropriate. Independent studies require independent research. Students are expected to meet the faculty member at least one hour per week, undertaking an equivalent amount of work that would be expected in a 3 credit course. Normally, independent studies are not intended to replace a course taught in the department. For details on what must be included in your petition for an independent study, please contact the Chair of the Philosophy department.
Major in Applied Ethics+-
Requirements for the Major
Basic Skills (12 units).All of:
One of: PHI 5 or PHI 10 (3)
One of: PHI 15 or PHI 16 (3)
PHI 21 Moral Values (3)
PHI 24 Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle (3)
1. Ethical Frameworks (12 units). Four of:
PHI 167 Ethics & Film (3)
PHI 168A Con Moral Problems (3)
PHI 168B Bioethics (3)
PHI 192 Business Ethics (3)
2. Philosophical Frameworks (6 units). Two of:
PHI 150 Metaphysics (3)
PHI 155 Symbolic Logic (3)
PHI 152 Theory of Knowledge (3)
PHI 158 Scientific Method (3)
PHI 165 Phi of Law (3)
3. Society and Values (6 units). Two of:
PHI 169 Phi of Technology (3)
PHI 170 Social & Political Phi (3)
PHI 174 Phi of Art (3)
PHI 175 Phi of Film (3)
PHI 179 Women and Values (3)
4. Elective (3 units):
Any other course from categories #1-3 (3)
Internship/Practicum (3 units):
Phi 198 Internship/ Practicum (3)
On or off-campus, per arrangement with the Philosophy Chair or your major advisor
Total units: 40 units (30 units upper division)
Great Idea: A double major with an emphasis in Nursing Ethics or Bioethics is encouraged to take at least one upper division Health Care Policy or a Religious Studies Ethics course.
Minor in Philosophy+-
A minimum of 21 units in philosophy, 15 of which must be upper division, approved by the Philosophy department. This includes:
- At least one course from either History of Philosophy or Value Theory (groups A and B)
- At least one course from Logic, Metaphysics, and Epistemology or Interdisciplinary Philosophy (groups C and D).
Minors who wish to emphasize a particular area (such as Business Ethics, Bioethics, Aesthetics, or Social and Political Philosophy) are encouraged to contact the Chair of the Philosophy department for assistance.