School of Arts and Humanities
Philosophy is one of the most broad-based, rigorous, interdisciplinary, and socially engaged of the liberal arts. Philosophy poses deep, important, and persistent questions concerning the nature of the good life, why we believe and how we know, the nature of the self and its connection with the world and with society, and the foundations of justice. Philosophy takes up such questions through critical analysis of textual evidence, clear and rigorous argumentation, and questioning of unexamined personal and cultural assumptions. The study of the history of philosophy from all cultures proves central to this process.
Far from being an abstruse, removed, and self-contained pursuit, Philosophy at UT Dallas engages in an interdisciplinary Arts & Humanities program, drawing on and contributing to the study of history, literature, and the arts. Our program is also particularly suited to the STEM excellence of UT Dallas, with a practical and theoretical emphasis on the philosophy of science, technology, and medicine. Finally, the UT Dallas Philosophy BA program strives to be highly pluralistic and intellectually diverse, with emphases in continental, analytic, feminist, American, and non-Western philosophical traditions.
Since the following catalog course descriptions offer very general descriptions, students are urged to consult the detailed course descriptions available on the web site for the School of Arts and Humanities. At least one-half of the semester credit hours for a major must be taken at UT Dallas.
Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
I. Core Curriculum Requirements: 42 semester credit hours2
Communication: 6 semester credit hours
Select any 6 semester credit hours from Communication Core courses (see advisor)
Mathematics: 3 semester credit hours
Or select any 3 semester credit hours from Mathematics Core courses (see advisor)
Life and Physical Sciences: 6 semester credit hours
Select any 6 semester credit hours from Life and Physical Sciences Core courses
Language, Philosophy and Culture: 3 semester credit hours
Select one of the following:
Or select any 3 semester credit hours from Language, Philosophy and Culture Core courses (see advisor)
Creative Arts: 3 semester credit hours
Select any 3 semester credit hours from Creative Arts Core courses
American History: 6 semester credit hours
Select any 6 semester credit hours from American History Core courses
Government/Political Science: 6 semester credit hours
Select any 6 semester credit hours from Government/Political Science Core courses (see advisor)
Social and Behavioral Sciences: 3 semester credit hours
Select any 3 semester credit hours from Social and Behavioral Sciences Core courses
Component Area Option: 6 semester credit hours
Select any 6 semester credit hours from Component Area Option Core courses
II. Major Requirements: 42 semester credit hours
Major Preparatory Courses: 0 semester credit hours beyond Core Curriculum4
Select one of the following:
Major Core Courses: 6 semester credit hours
PHIL 3321 Philosophical Traditions I
PHIL 4328 Philosophy Capstone Project
Major Distribution Courses: 12 semester credit hours
6 semester credit hours of lower- or upper-division courses in History of Philosophy from two different periods
PHIL 2316 History of Philosophy I
or PHIL 3322 Ancient Philosophy
PHIL 2317 History of Philosophy II
or PHIL 3323 Early Modern Philosophy
PHIL 3324 19th and 20th Century Philosophy
Courses with other numbers may be considered for this distribution requirement on a case-by-case basis, when their syllabus indicates that they focus primarily on the history of philosophy.
3 semester credit hours of upper-division courses in Metaphysics, Epistemology, and Science
PHIL 3373 Philosophy of Mind
PHIL 4308 Theories of Knowledge
PHIL 3328 History and Philosophy of Science and Medicine
PHIL 4321 Philosophy of Medicine
PHIL 4344 Philosophy of Science
Courses with other numbers may be considered for this distribution requirement on a case-by-case basis, when their syllabus indicates that they focus primarily on metaphysics, epistemology, or philosophy of science.
3 semester credit hours of upper-division courses in Ethics, Values, and Society
PHIL 3375 Contemporary Ethical Issues
PHIL 3320 Medical Ethics
PHIL 3338 Literary Theory and Aesthetic Philosophy
PHIL 4323 Ethical Theories
PHIL 4324 Social and Political Philosophy
PHIL 4325 Philosophy of Art and Aesthetics
Courses with other numbers may be considered for this distribution requirement on a case-by-case basis, when their syllabus indicates that they focus primarily on value theory.
Major Elective Courses: 18 semester credit hours
18 semester credit hours of upper-division Philosophy electives, including Major Figures, Great Texts, Traditions, and Topics courses.
Major-Related Courses: 6 semester credit hours
Students must select 6 semester credit hours of courses from the following list of courses with significant philosophical content:
Any RELS course
ARHM 3100 Topics in Values and Science
ARHM 3342 Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies in the Arts and Humanities
ATCM 4384 Ethics in New Media, Technology, and Communication
CGS 2301 Cognitive Science
COMM 3351 History and Theory of Communication
COMM 3352 Media and Culture
COMM 4360 Communication Ethics
ECON 4381 History of Economic Ideas
GST 2300 Introduction to Gender Studies
HIST 3302 Gender in Western Thought
HIST 3376 American Intellectual History, Colonial to the Civil War
HIST 3377 American Intellectual History, Civil War to the Present
HIST 4380 Topics in Intellectual History
IPEC 4305 Topics in Science, Technology and Institutions
LIT 3316 The Literature of Science Fiction
LIT 3317 The Literature of Fantasy
LIT 3330 Linguistics
PSCI 3301 Political Theory
PSCI 3303 Civil Liberties
PSCI 3306 Political Economy
PSCI 4328 Fake News
PSCI 4334 Approaches to Peace
PSCI 4357 Human Rights
PSY 3324 Psychology of Gender
PSY 3331 Social Psychology
PSY 4325 Death and Dying
SOC 2305 Individual and Society
SOC 2320 Contemporary Social Issues
Other courses from prefixes besides PHIL may be considered for this requirement on a case-by-case basis, when their syllabus indicates that they have significant philosophical content.
III. Elective Requirements: 36 semester credit hours
Free Electives: 36 semester credit hours
Both upper- and lower-division courses may be used as electives, but students must complete at least 51 semester credit hours of upper-division courses to qualify for graduation.
Philosophy majors interested in graduate study should strongly consider using some of their free electives for foreign language study in a language that would support an area of their philosophical interest. Similarly, students with a primary interest in areas of philosophy that depend on outside domains of knowledge (such as philosophy of science or philosophy of mind) should consider using some of their free electives for advanced study or a minor in the relevant field.
Students may want to consider using some free elective credit to complete one of the approved minors offered by UT-Dallas, and should consult their academic advisor for more information about their choices.
1. Incoming freshmen must enroll and complete requirements of UNIV 1010 and the corresponding school-related freshman seminar course. Students, including transfer students, who complete their core curriculum at UT Dallas must take UNIV 2020.
2. Curriculum Requirements can be fulfilled by other approved courses from institutions of higher education. The courses listed are recommended as the most efficient way to satisfy both Core Curriculum and Major Requirements at UT Dallas.
3. A required Preparatory course that also fulfills a Core Curriculum requirement. Semester credit hours may be counted in Core Curriculum.
4. 0 semester credit hours beyond Core Curriculum, if the student has not previously completed other courses to satisfy these core curriculum requirements.
5. These courses may have prerequisites not listed in the degree plan, and may add to the student's time to degree.