Philosophy

BE CURIOUS.
BE PURPLE. BU.

In the study of philosophy and the philosophical tradition, students enter into a conversation with some of history’s greatest minds, shaping our views on such fundamental issues as love and friendship, art and science, justice and community, politics and religion, meaning itself.

Student walking on campus
Keep Asking Why

Why study Philosophy at Bishop’s?

The Bishop’s experience in Philosophy is designed to foster lasting and adequate understanding, which is achieved through patience and creativity on the part of professors and engagement and self-reliance on the part of students. Small, seminar stye classes, geared towards current student interests while challenging them to take a leadership role in presenting their work makes this possible.

Career Possibilities

Bishop’s Philosophy graduates have gone on to challenging careers in graduate studies, education, law, international aid, filmmaking, business and other fields. Many students pursue majors in multiple programs while studying here, such as Philosophy and Education, Pre-Law, or other.

Conferences

Bishop’s philosophy students may participate in hosting a conference, or may travel to conferences in the Maritimes, Quebec, or Ontario.  Past conference locations have included;

  • Guelph University, Guelp, Ontario
  • McGill University, Montreal, Quebec
  • York Universiry, Toronto, Ontario
  • Mount Allison University, Sackville, New Brunswick

Location, location, location

Bishop’s is located on the unceded territory of the Abenaki, located in the beautiful and bilingual Eastern Townships of Quebec. The picturesque campus is a safe, diverse, and culturally rich location to pursue your degree.

Life Outside the Classroom

Studying Philosophy at Bishop’s means you are part of a community. From potluck dinners, to the Bishop’s Plato Group, to wine and cheese receptions with guest speakers, to support groups. In addition, philosophy at Bishop’s is one of the faculties belonging to BUHF (Bishop’s University Humanities Federation), a council which organizes trips and events for the community of humanities students.

More than ever philosophy is needed in our world: environmental issues, healthcare and justice systems, gender inequality, political decisions and artificial intelligence. None of those topics can be engaged if the critical thinking and the moral approach of philosophy are not in the discussions. I am so grateful to have been introduced to philosophy at Bishop’s because this is where I understood that with the right foundation, all the doors were open to anything I wanted to pursue in my life. As I am continuing my higher education in philosophy and law, I am confident I can make a difference in the world, and I have the Philosophy department at Bishop’s to thank for preparing me to think critically in a constantly changing world.
Marie-Emmanuelle Genesse
Marie-Emmanuelle Genesse
The department brought me to understand philosophy in its theoretical and practical side. The program requires personal involvement both in serious philosophical studies and in a community of students who share similar interests and concerns. Course discussions, though formally beginning and ending according to schedule, often continued wherever philosophy students gathered, on or off campus. The small seminars brought me to cultivate dialogical and rhetorical virtues that played a unique role in forming me into the human I presently am. I am grateful for the support I received throughout my studies– especially over my last year in writing my honours thesis. This thesis is still with me four years later as I advance through graduate study. I would recommend philosophy to anyone ready to undergo a life-transforming experience.
Guillaume Boucher
I left law school to study Philosophy at Bishop’s. It became clear to me on my first day in the program that this was by far the best decision I have ever made in my entire life. What I valued most about the Philosophy Department at Bishop’s was that you won’t just be ‘taught’ the material, but also invited to ‘think through’ it, to engage, criticize, and develop current theories and arguments in a way that allows you to flourish not only as a theorist but a future agent of social and political change.
Florence-Olivia Genesse
Florence-Olivia Genesse
I opened myself up to the power of philosophy upon taking an introductory ethics course, where I realized that philosophy itself is not just a discipline, but a way of thinking, and perhaps even more significant—a way of living. What this has meant for me as a student is coming to understand how adopting a certain philosophical approach to thinking is not only useful but is fundamentally necessary in the unveiling of a more holistic perspective on life in general.
Angelina Seale
Angelina Seale

Courses and Programs

Are you ready to explore the big questions?

Knowledge of the philosophical tradition is essential to a sound and liberal education. It lies at the heart of what Bishop’s has understood historically and continues to embrace today as its educational mission.

Bachelor of Philosophy Honours

Honours and Majors follow a curriculum which emphasizes two broad areas: Continental European Philosophy and the Western Philosophical Tradition. Advanced students may also pursue independent studies of special topics in greater depth. Candidates for the Honours program must obtain at least an average of 70% on the best 60 credits in Philosophy in order to be eligible to enter the Honours program.

Bachelor of Philosophy Major

Honours and Majors follow a curriculum which emphasizes two broad areas: Continental European Philosophy and the Western Philosophical Tradition. Advanced students may also pursue independent studies of special topics in greater depth. A major in Philosophy requires the successful completion of 48 credits.

Minor in Philosophy

A minor in Philosophy is any eight courses or cognates recognized by the Department.  It is an ideal supplement for those contemplating careers in law, teaching, diplomatic service, psychological counseling and other modes of work that regularly require consideration of the fundamental questions and forces shaping human life.

About your Professors

Our small class sizes offer the ability to take full advantage of your professors. In Philosophy an open door, safe space policy is maintained. Further, professors aim to develop their research programs and interests for their current students, inviting engagement.

Questions ?

Have questions about studying Philosophy at Bishop’s?

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