The study of philosophy enables us to think well about the most important questions in our lives: What do I want to accomplish with my life? Does my life have any purpose? Do I live in a just society? Does God really exist? How should I treat others? The only way we can be satisfied with our answers is by finding them for ourselves, not by memorizing the ideas of others or being intimidated by the “wisdom of the ages.” We must learn to think clearly and creatively for ourselves.
In order to think clearly, philosophy students learn methods for thinking that avoid basic mistakes in reasoning. In order to think creatively, philosophy students examine some of the outstanding original ideas of past and present to discover where our ideas originated and to use them as a starting point for our thinking. Studying philosophy at UFV will help you apply philosophy to current issues using critical analysis, while applying knowledge of philosphy in your research. You will learn to adopt a reflective stance toward your own worldviews and beliefs.
Since Socrates, the founder of Western philosophy, was asked to drink hemlock by the citizens of Athens in 399 B.C., philosophy has had a subversive reputation because it makes us think for ourselves. The reputation is well deserved. By studying philosophy, you will learn to and ask fundamental questions about what exists, who we are, and how to live, as well as identify major trends and issues in philosophy.
Studying philosophy will teach you to communicate effectively and respectfully through classroom presenations, seminar discussions, essays, and online. You will be able to facilitate constructive interaction between people of different backgrounds and interests.
Studying philosophy will help you assess primary and secondary sources in philosophy, develop responses to philosophical positions and imaginative resolutions to issues. You will learn to develop sound arguments, evaluating diverse approaches to problem solving.