Undergraduate Program

Philosophy at BGSU

Although we teach classes across the range of the discipline of philosophy, Bowling Green State University's distinctive philosophy department has a renowned specialization in applied philosophy. The department's vision of applied philosophy involves developing a rigorous grasp of philosophical theories and methodologies and using them to address real world issues.  

View a short film about Philosophy at BGSU: "Are You Deep Enough?"

The department is ideal for those interested in moral and political theory and the theory of rational choice. It is also a perfect environment for those interested in medical ethics, environmental ethics, business ethics, and the philosophy of law. It is also an excellent choice for those that plan to pursue a career in law, medicine, theology, or environmental management.

Find out more about a Major or Minor in Philosophy at BGSU

Dr. Mark Aulisio, a graduate of BGSU's applied philosophy program and current executive director of a national task-force studying ethical standards for health care professionals, found that the philosophy program at BGSU "prepares you to do very rigorous analytical,theoretical work with implications that really matter."

Undergraduates enjoy favorable class sizes and uncommon access to the distinguished faculty as well as training from a prominent program that specializes in producing students with especially marketable skills.

New York Times Highlights Surge of Interest in a Philosophy Degree

In April 2008 the New York Times published an article about a recent nationwide resurgence in interest among college undergraduates in majoring in philosophy.  Reasons given for the interest included:

  • Helps students to become quick learners and fosters strong skills in writing, analysis and critical thinking
  • Provides a foundation for understanding other disciplines in the humanities and sciences
  • Philosophy majors outscore almost all other majors in tests like the GRE and LSAT
  • Provides a good training for looking at larger societal issues like globalization and technology
  • Is intellectually rewarding and enriching

Find out more about Philosophy and Careers

Department of Philosophy Learning Outcomes

At the completion of baccalaureate degree studies in Philosophy, students will be able to:

  • read and comprehend sophisticated philosophical texts
  • critically evaluate philosophical arguments
  • construct and defend philosophical arguments in well-organized, clear, and concise prose
  • demonstrate mastery of basic philosophical concepts and methods in both oral and written contexts
  • apply critical thinking and argument-evaluation skills to those philosophical issues and arguments that present themselves in everyday life
  • engage in rational, civil, discourse about complex and emotionally laden topics in a manner that is respectful of others

Undergraduate Awards and Prizes

The Department currently gives a number of different types of awards at the undergraduate level.

Unique Opportunities

In addition to hosting regular colloquia by prominent philosophers, each Spring the department hosts an annual workshop series on Applied Ethics and Public Policy on topics that reflect some of the key moral issues facing our society. Not only that, but for the past several years, the department's graduate students have organized an annual Applied Philosophy Graduate Student Workshop each Fall.  The University also houses a truly extraordinary collection of philosophy books and journals.

The student run Philosophy Club meets weekly to discuss philosophical topics of mutual interest. Typically the department supplies pizza, soda, and often a faculty member to these events. The department also awards three annual cash grants to outstanding students that are majoring in philosophy.

For further information about the program in philosophy, contact the Undergraduate Advisor Dr. Justin Donhauser

Updated: 10/05/2023 11:31AM