Degree Options

Philosophy Majors: Requirements and Options

So you’re interested in being a philosophy major!  A wise choice and we’re glad to have you!

Forms

In order to become a philosophy major you must complete a change of major form.  The forms are available on-line at the registrar’s website: http://www.yorku.ca/yorkweb/currentstudents/forms/index.html.  They need to be filled out and submitted to the Registrar’s Office in the Bennett Centre For Student Services.  You may change your major at any time during the year except during the registration period, June to mid-September.  You do not need to get approval from the department to change your major.

The following are the degree programmes available to philosophy majors, with the major requirements listed just as they are in the York University Calendar.

Available Programmes

Please note that all major programmes have required courses.

Specialized Honours BA
At least 54 credits in Philosophy, including at least 30 credits at the 3000 or 4000 level, with no fewer than 12 credits at the 4000 level.

Honours BA
At least 42 credits in Philosophy, including at least 18 credits at the 3000 or 4000 level, with no fewer than 12 at the 4000 level.

Honours (Double Major) BA
The Honours BA programme described above may be pursued jointly with any other Honours Bachelor's degree programme in the Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, Environmental Studies, Fine Arts, or with a major in Earth and Atmospheric Science or Physics and Astronomy in the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

Honours (Major/Minor) BA
The Honours BA programme described above may be pursued jointly with any Honours Minor Bachelor's degree programme in the Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, Environmental Studies, Fine Arts, or with a Minor in Biology, Chemistry, or Physics and Astronomy in the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

Honours (Minor) BA
The Honours Minor must be pursued jointly with an Honours BA programme in the Liberal Arts & Professional Studies. The Honours Minor in Philosophy comprises at least 30 credits in Philosophy, of which at least 6 credits must be at the 4000 level.

Note: Faculty of LA&PS legislation requires that, in order to obtain an Honours BA (120 credits), students must take a total of at least 18 credits at the 4000 level, including at least 12 credits at the 4000 level in each Honours Major or Specialized Honours Major.  The remaining 6 credits may be in your major, but do not have to.

Honours (Double Major) BA Interdisciplinary
The Honours programme in Philosophy may also be linked in an Honours (Double Major) programme with the following interdisciplinary programmes: Communications Studies, European Studies, or Social and Political Thought. Students must take 36 credits in Philosophy and 36 credits in the programme. Students in these interdisciplinary programmes must take a total of at least 18 credits at the 4000 level, including at least 6 credits in the programme and 6 credits in the departmental major subject. For further details of requirements, see the listings for specific interdisciplinary programmes.

BA
Students must take at least 30 credits in philosophy with at least 12 credits at the 3000 or 4000 level.

Required courses

Philosophy majors are expected to acquire a foundation in the basic areas of philosophy in order to prepare them for future work and provide a well rounded philosophical education.  The acquisition of the knowledge communicated in these courses will provide the student with a background that is both valuable and expected given the level of specialization.  In addition to acquiring a high level of critical and analytical skills inherent in philosophical discourse and investigation, the philosophy major also attains a knowledge of the issues that philosophers have pondered over the ages.

NB: The following requirements apply to all majors who have declared their major following 1 July 2010.

Regular Major Honours Majorr Specialized Honours
1) At least one of

Phil 2015
Phil 2020
Phil 2025

1) At least two of

Phil 2015
Phil 2020
Phil 2025

1) At least two of

Phil 2015
Phil 2020
Phil 2025

2) At least one of

Phil 2070
Phil 2075

2) At least one of

Phil 2070
Phil 2075

2) At least one of

Phil 2070
Phil 2075

3) At least one of

Phil 2100 or
Phil 2200

3) Phil 2100 3) Phil 2100
4) At least one of

Phil 2080
Phil 2170
Phil 2240

4) At least one of

Phil 2080
Phil 2170
Phil 2240

5) Phil 3020
6) At least one of

Phil 3030
Phil 3035

2015 3.0 Plato & Aristotle
2020 3.0 Descartes, Spinoza & Leibniz
2025 3.0 Locke, Berkeley & Hume
2070 3.0 Introduction To Ethics
2075 3.0 Introduction To Applied Ethics
2080 3.0 Perception, Knowledge, Causality
2100 3.0 Introduction To Logic
2170 3.0 Freedom, Determinism & Responsibility
2200 3.0 Critical Reasoning
2240 3.0 Introduction To the Phil. Of Mind
3020 3.0 Ethics
3030 3.0 Metaphysics
3035 3.0 Epistemology

Checklist for Philosophy Requirements

Degree Type Specialized Honours Major Honours Double Major (unlinked) Double Major (linked) BA (90 Credit) Honours Minor
Required Phil Credits
Total 54 42 42 36
3000 or 4000
Level (total)
30 18 18 12
4000 Level 12 12 12 6 6

NOTES FOR MAJORS

  • The honours seminar, Phil 4900 6.0 is offered every year, and it is recommended for honours philosophy majors who are in the last year of their degree.  The topic and the course director changes every year, but it is designed to be an in-depth treatment of an important philosophical topic.  It is a chance for the best philosophy majors to work together!
  • While Directed Reading courses are listed in the mini-calendar like any other course, they are not really the same.  Directed Reading courses, Phil 4000, are intended for a major who has done extensive work with a faculty member that they wish to pursue beyond the existing course listings.  A student must first have the agreement of a faculty member who will supervise the course before applying.  Faculty members receive no credit for these courses.