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Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Philosophy

The philosophy major is a classic tenet of a liberal arts education. As a philosophy student, you’ll learn to look at the world around you with a more analytical lens, gaining critical and broadly applicable skills that are valuable across time and career paths. You’ll learn to evaluate the political and social structures that organize our world and think through the ethical implications of new technologies. With a bachelor in philosophy degree from John Carroll University, you’ll be prepared for careers in academia, law, medicine, religion and social services, as well as graduate school.

Professor's POV of Philosophy at JCU

Philosophy at John Carroll

  • Critical thinking
  • Ethical awareness
  • Identify problems
  • Formulate solutions to problems
  • Evaluate the efficacy of proposed solutions
  • Clear writing
  • Advanced reading comprehension

Top Employers

BA in Philosophy Program Highlights

Real Teaching

You can get a philosophy degree at almost any university, but at JCU, it comes with the individualized attention and unique perspective that only a small, Jesuit university can provide. Advisors help students tailor their course schedule to their interests, strengths, and career goals, and students are invited to write capstone theses and defend them to department faculty and other interested majors.

Amazing Experience

At John Carroll, philosophy education is hands-on. Undergraduate students can receive course or  internship credit through the Philosophy 4 Kids program in which they go to local middle schools and facilitate philosophy discussions. Students can then do a summer fellowship in which they write curriculum for the middle school discussions, which may be of particular interest to students who want to pursue teaching after their time at JCU. Many philosophy students who are interested in Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies also intern at the Cleveland LGBTQ Center and Rape Crisis Center.

Jobs and Opportunities

Recent graduates have pursued PhDs in philosophy at schools like Boston College, Ohio State University, Loyola University Chicago, and the University of California Riverside. Others have pursued degrees in gifted education at the New School for Social Research in NYC, and from Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health

Others are now employed at the University of Alabama, Gonzaga University, The University of Hawaii at Manoa, and Killian Latex, Inc.

Clubs and Organizations

  • Philosophy club 
  • Philosophy students also often organize informal discussions and movie nights

Featured Faculty

Our program requires critical thinking about controversial issues, such as beauty, truth, and justice, which are more pressing than ever in our high-tech world.  The critical thinking, ethical awareness, ability to formulate solutions to problems, and the ability to evaluate the efficacy of proposed solutions that philosophy fosters prepares our students to adapt to the ubiquitous, rapid, technological changes that we all face."
— Earl Spurgin, Chair, Department of Philosophy

Notable Alum


Steven W. Sorensen, '05

After graduating from JCU with a degree in English and Philosophy in 2005, Steven W. Sorensen went on to receive two masters degrees from the University of Hong Kong and NYU. In 2020, after working in investment banking for many years, Sorensen was hired as the director of corporate finance for droppTV, a shoppable video streaming platform.

JCU Northeast Map

Philosophy Alumni Across the Region

John Carroll University alumni live, work, teach and support communities throughout the region from Northeast Ohio to Chicago, Indianapolis, Detroit, Columbus, Buffalo, Rochester, Pittsburgh, New York City, Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia.