Academic Catalog


Philosophy Program Learning Outcomes

College of Arts and Humanities
Department of Philosophy
Bachelor of Arts
Degree Roadmaps

Philosophy Option
Religious Thought Option
Religious Studies


Sheela Pawar, Department Chair
Dana S. Belu, Brian Gregor, Robert Jones

Department Office: LCH C-312, (310) 243-3636

Emeriti Faculty

Charles Fay, William Hagan, John LaCorte, Donald Lewis, Eiichi Shimomisse, Rudy Vanterpool

Program Description

The Philosophy department offers a major and a minor in Philosophy and a minor in Religious Studies. The program provides a strong foundation in the history of Western thought and deals with a variety of ongoing philosophical and religious issues, tracing them from their origins in early Greek and other historical sources to current theories and disputes. The department offers a variety of courses in contemporary philosophy, including phenomenology and applied ethics. The department recognizes the importance of cultural diversity and through its course offerings addresses multicultural concerns.


The faculty members of the Department of Philosophy bring with them a deep interest in their subjects and together provide a wide spectrum of interests and expertise in the areas of both philosophy and religious studies. All of the faculty members hold their doctoral degrees from highly respected universities, and are active in research and writing.

In scheduling classes, the department endeavors to provide sufficient course offerings to permit those students who work the opportunity to complete the major in a timely manner. For full-time students, courses necessary to fulfill the major are offered within a four-semester period.

Academic Advisement

Students should consult an advisor as early as possible so that the most suitable combination of courses can be planned in advance.


Students in the Philosophy program are involved in ongoing assessment. As part of the requirements of core courses, journals are required in addition to other written assignments such as research papers. The PHI 490 Seminar (3) functions as a capstone experience in which work generated from previous courses in philosophy is reviewed to assist in determining the overall progress of the student in the Philosophy program.


High school students are encouraged to take four years of English and courses in the humanities and sciences.

Transfer students should contact their Advising Center or the CSU Dominguez Hills Philosophy department to identify appropriate lower division major/minor preparatory courses.

Career Possibilities

The study of Philosophy provides students with the mental tools and skills necessary for clear thinking and analysis. This training provides students with the means of more fully understanding the intricacies of virtually any area chosen as a basis for livelihood. For those students interested in doing graduate work in the field or in closely related fields, the major offers a well-rounded preparation for more advanced studies. The bachelor's degree in Philosophy furthermore provides quality preparation for advanced studies in fields such as law, medicine and theology, among others. Our majors found careers in business consulting, law, teaching, higher education, counseling, financial advising, public service, the seminary, humanitarian organizations and environmental organizations. Students might also consider Philosophy as a "second major," providing a balance for their primary major, be it in the humanities or the sciences.

Graduation With Honors

An undergraduate student may be a candidate for graduation with Honors in Philosophy provided he or she meets the following criteria:

  1. A minimum of 36 units in residence at CSU Dominguez Hills;
  2. A minimum grade point average of 3.5 in all courses used to satisfy the upper division requirements in the major;
  3. Four upper division courses, including PHI 490 Seminar (3), taken in the Department of Philosophy;
  4. Recommendation by the faculty of the Department of Philosophy.

Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy

Total Course Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree

See the "Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree" in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements. A minimum of 40 units, including those required for the major, must be upper division.

Elective Requirements

Completion of elective courses (beyond the requirements listed below) to reach a total of a minimum of 120 units.

General Education Requirements (49 units)

See the "General Education" requirements in the University Catalog or the Class Schedule for the most current information on General Education requirements and course offerings.

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement

See the "Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement" in the University Catalog.

Major Requirements (45 units)

The following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, are required of all candidates for this degree.

A. Core Courses (30units)
1. Required Courses (24 units)

PHI 120 Critical Reasoning (3)
PHI 300 Proseminar (3)
PHI 301 Ancient Greek and Roman Philosophy (3)
PHI 302 Medieval Philosophies: Jewish, Christian and Muslim (3)
PHI 305 Contemporary Philosophy (3)
PHI 303 Modern Philosophy: Descartes To Kant (3)
PHI 304 19th Century Philosophy: Hegel To Nietzsche (3)
PHI 316 Ethical Theories (3)
PHI 490 Seminar (3)

2. Core Elective Courses (6 units)

Majors are required to choose two (2) of the following lower division courses in the area of Philosophy or Religious Thought. (6 units)
PHI 101 Moral Problems (3)
PHI 102 Humanity, Nature & God (3)
PHI 201 The Good Life (3)
PHI 202 The Devil You Don't Know (3)

B. Options

Majors are required to choose five (5) courses in the area of Philosophy or Religious Thought (15 units)

1. Philosophy Option

PHI 308 Existentialism (3)
PHI 321 The Nature of Beauty: Aesthetics (3)
PHI 331 Social & Political Philosophy (3)
PHI 340 Environmental Ethics (3)
PHI 365 Mind, World and Language (3)
PHI 379 Contemporary Moral Issues (3)

2. Religious Thought Option

PHI 308 Existentialism (3)
PHI 371 African World Religions (3)
PHI 378 Philosophy of Religion (3)
PHI 379 Contemporary Moral Issues (3)
PHI 383 Comparative Religions (3)
PHI 384 Philosophies of India, China and Japan (3)
PHI 386 Analytical Methods of Biblical Study (3)
PHI 480 Religion and Violence (3)

Minor in Philosophy (15 units)


A. Required Courses

PHI 300 Proseminar (3)

B. Electives (12 units)

Select four additional upper division courses with faculty advisement (12 units)

Minor in Religious Studies (15 units)


A. Required Courses (9 units)

Choose 3 of the following:
ANT 315 Magic & Religion (3)
PHI 378 Philosophy of Religion (3)
PHI 383 Comparative Religions (3)
PHI 386 Analytical Methods of Biblical Study (3)

B. Electives (6 units)

Minors are required to choose 2 courses from the following (6 units):
ANT 341 Folklore (3)
PHI 302 Medieval Philosophies: Jewish, Christian and Muslim (3)
PHI 371 African World Religions (3)
PHI 384 Philosophies of India, China and Japan (3)