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Philosophy at California State University, Fullerton

For Accessible Web Version of Philosophy

Is Philosophy Right for You?

Do you want to know which actions are right, and which are wrong? Do you think about what makes life valuable? Do friends make life valuable? What about family, work, pleasure? Do you love the challenge of figuring out whether arguments are good or bad? Or, of figuring out whether you have good evidence for the things you believe? Then YOU should study Philosophy!

We are an enthusiastic department of faculty and students devoted to the study of Philosophy who believe that training in Philosophy can make us better critical thinkers, and better critical writers. Philosophy teaches us how to recognize and evaluate arguments, and make distinctions. Philosophy also teaches us to see the world differently—more accurately; and helps us notice important things we had missed. Philosophy is useful no matter what sort of life one decides to live, because it makes us better thinkers.

What Can I Do With a Degree in Philosophy?

Philosophy students receive a well-rounded, interdisciplinary education, and graduate with skills that allow them to excel either in graduate school or in the work force. At only 36 and 18 units respectively, a Double-Major or Minor in Philosophy is ideal for students interested in fields such as law, education, politics, and business just to name a few.

Learn More About a Degree in Philosophy

We encourage you to learn more, and find out if a Major or Minor in Philosophy is right for you! Visit out website or call to speak to an adviser who can answer all of your questions, and help lead you down the right path.

Alumni Feature

Tamara Nguyen

"Philosophy has played an important role in my success. It has provided me with the foundation to engage in effective critical thinking and reasoning, and has helped me hone my analytical skills. All of which enables me to utilize my written and oral skills of advocacy and argument in the legal practice."

"With less than a year left from graduating with a degree in Criminal Justice, I decided to enroll in Argument and Writing with Dr. Amy Coplan." Tamara recalls, "It was my first philosophy class and I immediately knew that it would not be my last."

Tamara says that the course introduced her to a new way of perceiving the world and showing her that there were no boundaries to ideas. "Philosophy is exciting, challenging, and fulfilling to the mind. Further, the philosophy department at CSUF is truly one of a kind. With supportive and caring faculty members, the department became a second home to many including myself. I ended up delaying my graduation date to add Philosophy as my second major."

After graduating, Tamara went on to pursue a law degree from the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. While there, she met her husband, with whom she would go on to launch her own legal practice in 2014. "Philosophy has played an important role in my success. It has provided me with the foundation to engage in effective critical thinking and reasoning, and has helped me hone my analytical skills. All of which enables me to utilize my written and oral skills of advocacy and argument in the legal practice." Tamara says.

"The philosophy major compliments all areas of study. Even if students do not want to commit to the major, I still recommend taking a couple philosophy courses." Tamara explains, adding, "Although the philosophy major covers a wide range of topics, philosophers, and theories, students will still benefit from the critical and analytical thinking aspects of a philosophy course which is beneficial in all walks of life."

Pamela Chui

"I took Amy Coplan’s Greek Philosphy class as a general education requirement and fell in love with the subject." Pam recalls, "The critical thinking combined with history really spoke to me. I was intrigued by what the subject matter asked students to do - critically analyze posed premises and consider how they would conclude and potentially impact our world."

Pam believes that Philosophy equips its students well with the skills needed to succeed. She is currently working on her doctorates and says "I would attribute much of my achievements in my current classes to what my professors taught me."

After her undergrad, Pam pursued a career in teaching and simultaneously worked as a competitive analyst for an insurance company. "I got my M.A. in TESOL at CSUF in 2012 and then began working with English as a second language learners at Mt. SAC. My undergraduate degree has served me in ways I never imagined. The critical analysis mindset that was ingrained in us through our studies allowed me to hold positions that necessitated quick thinking and massive amounts of reading. For example, with my insurance position, I had to read insurance filings and extract important data that would help the company obtain a competitive edge." She quips, "When you are required to read German philosophers and write synthesis papers on their theories, insurance filings are a piece of cake." Nowadays, Pam says that she utilizes the skills given to her every day as she make decisions about how to structure her own classroom.

"Without a doubt I would encourage students to take a philosophy class (at the very least) and/or pursue a philosophy degree." Pay says, "The class material, professors, and reading/writing will promote and help shape valuable skills needed for the work place. We often undervalue good reading, writing, and critical thinking skills, but these are all necessary components of success."

Additional Alumni Profiles:

Albert Navarra

George Abiaad

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About Our College and Campus

The Department of Philosophy is a part of the larger College of Humanities and Social Sciences at CSU, Fullerton. H&SS offers its students more than 20 unique degree programs ideal for students who plan to continue their studies in graduate programs, or who want to work in areas such as education, law, politics, business, psychology, public administration, and more.

To learn more about our college and our campus, visit our Prospective Students and our College of Humanities and Social Sciences pages below.