Have you always been fascinated by the meaning of things, ideas and how ancient and modern cultures have tackled some of life’s most basic philosophical queries and human realities? Have you wondered how concepts of freedom, happiness and justice have evolved in history and been treated by great thinkers over time? Majoring in Philosophy will expose you to the traditional areas of philosophic pedagogy through an interdisciplinary approach and will help you understand various critical contemporary challenges ranging from fields such as feminist studies to cognitive science. Whether you use this background as a springboard into a career fresh out of school or as preparation for a particular career goal, groundwork in Philosophy can be a most exciting direction for your education and your future.
Below is a sample list of some future choices to explore following studies in Philosophy. This list is not exhaustive but it provides a solid idea of what fellow graduates have gone on to do and what potential careers a Philosophy degree can offer. Some options are more directly associated with specific areas of Philosophy than others.
- Child Welfare Advocate
- Community Centre Director
- Freelance Writer
- Foreign Service Worker
- Health Policy Advisor
- Historical Site Coordinator
- Human Resources Manager
- Human Rights Advocate
- International Development Worker
- Lawyer/Legal Aid Representative
- Marketing Specialist
- Media Correspondent
- Museum Curator
- Non-Profit Organization Director
- Political Strategist
- Public Relations Representative
- Public Policy Advisor
- Social Service Worker
- Speech Writer
- UN Representative
NOTE: Some of these career choices may require additional education or preparation in the form of graduate studies, experiential education, or professional formative courses and exams. For a more in-depth description and overall background of some of the careers mentioned above, refer to Job Bank’s Trend Analysis tool by typing the job title into the search engine.
Additionally, consider visiting the Career Cruising website. To locate the university’s username and password, you must login to Experience York using your Passport York information. It can be found under the “Career Education & Development” drop-down menu on the left then under “Career Development Tools”.
A background in Philosophy ensures that you develop the skills and mindset to tackle many different professional challenges. Here are just a few of the skills a Philosophy degree can help you develop:
- A deep understanding of the field traditionally devoted to the “love of wisdom,” and an appreciation for the pursuit of knowledge and fundamental truths
- Solid preparation for a variety of professions requiring analytical thinking, argumentation, logical reasoning, and sharp problem-solving skills
- Strong writing skills, and the ability to present the results of your rational, logical critical analysis in an organized and clear manner
- The capacity to think creatively and systematically, ask the right questions and make sound decisions while considering different sides of an argument
Communication, Data Gathering and Organizational Skills
- The ability to gather information from various sources and concentrate on what is relevant
- The ability to interpret and analyze contemporary and historical sources of information
- The ability to identify unspoken presuppositions and subject them to critical scrutiny
- The ability to summarize and explain complex ideas clearly to others, orally and in writing, and to apply complex theoretical concepts to everyday practice and professional dilemmas
- The skills to collect various types of information, assess them, analyze and incorporate potential linkages from different fields, put them into writing and efficiently convey your message and the goal of your work
Management and Teamwork
- The ability to interpret and analyze information presented by peers and efficiently and constructively support or challenge their proposals, theories, ideas and reports in order to achieve a project’s intended and successful end result
- The capacity to lead and interact with a variety of people with different approaches and personal and professional backgrounds
- The ability to debate, persuade, mediate and present your thoughts and opinions to others, as well as the capacity to recognize and incorporate other potential solutions or applications to given problems
- The capability to identify priorities and proper courses of action, to plan the execution of tasks, to manage your time, and to determine and delegate responsibilities to group members to carry out projects most effectively
Knowing the industry and how to excel in it after receiving a degree are key elements of future success. University study sets up the building blocks you will need to develop and enhance your understanding and knowledge in your career. Being part of a professional organization or network and gaining further insight through training are excellent ways of increasing your knowledge of the field. The following is a selection of organizations related to the field of Philosophy that you may want to visit as you research career options for Philosophy graduates.