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Butler University Bulletin

Philosophy Requirements

View the Philosophy Course Catalog

Requirements for the Major

  • One course in logic: PL310, Logic, or any course so designated
  • Two courses in a history sequence:
    • PL311, History of Ancient Philosophy
    • PL313, History of Modern Philosophy
  • One course in analytic philosophy:
    • PL320, Theory of Knowledge
    • PL323, Introduction to Analytic Philosophy
    • PL343, Philosophy of Science
    • PL346, Philosophy of Mind
    • Or any course designated analytic philosophy
  • One course in value theory (normative philosophy):
    • PL344, Philosophy of Law
    • PL345, Contemporary Social and Political Philosophy
    • PL360, Ethics
    • PL364, Ethics & International Relations
    • Or any course designated value theory
  • Two offerings (6 hours) of PL410, Seminar in Philosophy. Students may request a substitute for 3 hours of this seminar requirement if PL410 is offered when they are studying abroad. Students may also substitute PL499, Honors Thesis, for 3 hours of PL410.
  • Twelve hours of additional philosophy courses will be taken, for a total of 33 hours. No more than 12 hours of 100- or 200-level courses may be applied to the 33 hours required for the major. NOTE: While TI courses offered by the Philosophy program (TI 240-PL, TI 241-PL, TI 242-PL, TI 243-PL, TI 244-PL) may count as electives, AR 231-PL (Principles of Reasoning) does not.

Requirements for the Combined Philosophy and Religion Major

The major requires 42 hours. Detailed requirements are posted at or can be obtained at the departmental office.

Requirements for the Combined Philosophy and Psychology Major

The major requires 51 hours. Detailed requirements are posted at or can be obtained at the departmental office.

Requirements for the Minor

The minor requires 18 hours in philosophy, which must include the philosophy seminar (PL410) plus 6 additional hours at the 300 or 400 level. Minors will be strongly advised to create a suitable package of courses in consultation with a philosophy professor appointed by the chair.

Requirements for the Ethics Minor

The minor requires 18 hours, 12 of which should be philosophy courses and 9 of which should be at the 300 or 400 level. Students are advised to create thematic unity in their course selection, in consultation with the program director or other faculty connected to the minor. Specifically:

  • A foundational philosophy course in ethics covering basic moral theories and concepts (3 hours)
  • Two additional philosophy courses to be chosen from a wide variety of courses in normative philosophy (6 hours)
  • A course in applied ethics showing how moral deliberation is pivotal to some specific profession or field of human activity (3 hours)
  • Two electives, to be selected from philosophy courses with an ethical focus, or courses with an ethical focus from other disciplines (6 hours)

The program director may approve additional courses as electives, on a semester-by-semester basis, including some courses in political science.

No more than 6 credit hours of the ethics minor may be “double counted” toward any other minor or major.

For details, contact program director Harry van der Linden or visit

NOTE: The information found on this website with respect to major/minor/program requirements is primarily directed at providing prospective students a general roadmap of the curriculum. Current Butler students are expected to review their degree audit report at and speak with their advisor regularly for detailed information regarding their specific degree requirements and their progress toward degree completion.