What is Philosophy?
Philosophy studies the basic beliefs that support all of our thinking and living, including the nature and existence of God, free will, knowledge and goodness. You’ve probably thought about major philosophical questions at some point in your life–and philosophy classes are about giving you the tools to address these questions and problems systematically. At Georgetown College, the Philosophy department’s curriculum emphasizes the history of philosophy as well as recent philosophical work on culture, religion, business, gender and the environment.
The Philosophy programs are designed to provide maximum flexibility and opportunities for independent study. All majors take advanced courses in other disciplines related to their philosophical interests; many double-major in another academic field. Recently students have combined the philosophy major with majors in biology, business, chemistry, communication arts, English, history, political science, and religion.
Faculty Committed to Student Engagement
The philosophy faculty at Georgetown College are gifted scholars who are committed, first and foremost, to excellent teaching, both in the classroom and beyond. Each member of our faculty is involved with student life and organizations outside our classes, from the Center for Christian DIscernment to the Student Women’s and Gender Society. Within the curriculum, Philosophy majors not only benefit from small, seminar-style classes with close faculty interaction; they may also select an area of philosophy for independent study, and enter the honors program and extend this research to three semesters.
Many philosophy students also take tutorial courses—a method of instruction adapted from humanities courses at Oxford University and Cambridge University. They are good preparation for students planning to study at Regent’s Park College, Oxford through the college’s new Oxford Program. The tutorial method is truly a “scholar developing a scholar” approach to learning. The student is a self-motivated, active learner. The professor serves as the student’s one-on-one tutor. Students read their research essays to the tutor who evaluates them by high standards of both presentation and content.
Connections at Home and Abroad
The philosophy department at Georgetown not only offers preparatory tutorials for the Oxford program, it also maintains strong ties with Regent’s Park College and is proud to count the director of that program as one of its colleagues.
Closer to home, we strongly encourage our students to take advantage of the close-knit philosophical community fostered by the Brokmeyer Society, as well as the wide variety of philosophical events and public lectures by leading scholars that are available by virtue of Georgetown’s connections with and close proximity to a half-dozen other institutions of higher learning.