Why Philosophy?

What is Philosophy and why should I study it?


Philosophy students in togas at the We Are CLA event

Philosophy is the rigorous and systematic study of knowledge, values, and existence. Philosophy explores questions of ethics and investigates fundamental truths about every domain of human experience. The study of philosophy can profoundly affect how you think and what you do.

Because it touches on so many subjects, and its methods are usable in any field, the study of philosophy can be applied to anything you do—professionally and in day-to-day living.





Philosophy contributes uniquely to the understanding of other academic pursuits and fields of inquiry. Many important questions about a discipline, such as the nature of its concepts and its relation to other disciplines, do not belong to that discipline, are not usually pursued in it, and are philosophical in nature. For example:


What can you do with a Philosophy degree?

The short answer is, anything you want! The training you get by studying philosophy makes you a better writer and communicator, a clearer and more rigorous thinker, and sets you up for success in the ever-changing and shifting workplace of the future!


ASUAF students

Some careers philosophy majors go on to pursue are...


... and more!

The skills that our philosophy courses impart are valuable for a wide range of careers: business, law, politics, education, writing, research analysis, and academia, among others. Students develop capacities not only through reading and writing in philosophy, but also through the philosophical dialogue, in and outside the classroom, that is so much a part of a thoroughgoing philosophical education.


Consider this...


Law School

“On the LSAT, philosophy majors rank significantly better than any other humanities degree, with an average score slightly lower than economics for the second highest of any field with more than 2,000 students taking the exam for the 2017-2018 year.” - American Philosophical Association


Graduate School

“Philosophy majors consistently perform best or near best on graduate school admission exams, year after year and across various sections compared to other majors. As is clear from the following data, the success of philosophy graduates on the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is persistent, and despite changes in the content and scoring, students of philosophy regularly outperform their peers.” - American Philosophical Association


  Universal Skills
Some key skill sets gained in Philosophy are general problem solving, empathetic communication, writing clarity, persuasive argumentation, critical thinking, scientific reasoning



UAF students

Who studies philosophy?

Philosophy is essential in assessing the various standards of evidence used by other disciplines. Since all fields of knowledge employ reasoning and must set standards of evidence, logic and epistemology have a general bearing on all these fields.





Philosophy at the University of Alaska Fairbanks




Our program is committed to excellent teaching in philosophy. Our courses are designed to show students how to think clearly and logically about any philosophical problem, covering both theoretical and applied areas.




The program offers a minor in philosophy, introductory philosophy courses, core curriculum classes in ethics and humanities, a broad range of upper and lower-division elective courses, cross-listed and interdisciplinary courses, and classes for graduate credit. We welcome opportunities for collaboration across the university and beyond.






How can I get involved?


The Socratic Society is the UAF undergraduate philosophy club dedicated to a group exploration of philosophical ideas. Join us every 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month.






Our faculty have diverse teaching and research interests, which include philosophy of science and technology, philosophy of biology and evolutionary theory, experimental philosophy, philosophy of mind, history of philosophy, and applied ethics (including biomedical and research ethics, as well as environmental, business, and internet ethics).