• Kailey Lawson doing a presentation in Prof. Julie Tanenbaum's class
    Kailey Lawson '17 doing a presentation in Prof. Julie Tanenbaum's class
  • In class with Professor Stephen Erickson
    In class with Professor Stephen Erickson
  • In class with Professor Laura Perini
    In class with Professor Laura Perini
  • Students in the Social and Political Philosophy class taught by Prof. Michael Green
    Students in Social and Political Philosophy, taught by Professor Michael Green

Explore the most fundamental questions in life with clarity, precision and logical rigor.

Philosophy courses address some of the most important and difficult questions about the human condition in a systematic, logical manner. 

What are our obligations to others? Are there moral truths or is morality subjective? What does knowledge consist in? Do we really know that there is an external world? Can we know what the future will be like based on observations in the past? Is death something to be feared? 

The Pomona Philosophy Department offers a wide range of courses. You can try philosophy by exploring a particular area (e.g., aesthetics, existentialism, etc.) or by taking a general survey course (e.g., continental thought, ethical theory). Many philosophy courses have no prerequisites.

Is majoring or minoring in philosophy a sensible choice? Grappling with questions about the world and our place in it is both practical and rewarding in itself.

Philosophy emphasizes a number of skills that are attractive to future employers. You will learn to:

  • understand and evaluate your own point of view and those of others; 
  • formulate incisive arguments;
  • identify fallacious reasoning; 
  • and communicate with clarity and precision.

These skills are widely applicable; Pomona College philosophy majors pursue careers in business, medicine, law, the arts, and education. Philosophy majors do particularly well in standardized tests like the GMAT, LSAT (more information[PDF]) and GRE (more information). Medical schools admit students equally across all majors, and the trend in asking applicants for some training in bioethics reflects the value placed on philosophy. Overall, our alumni report that their philosophical training has been an asset to their professional development as well as enriching their personal lives.