Degree type(s): Bachelor's; Minor
Degree field(s): Philosophy; Humanities
Location(s): Bismarck, ND
Program offerings by location and modality are subject to change.

Philosophy Bachelor's Degree Program

Four-year degree: Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Philosophy is the love for and pursuit of wisdom. Wisdom involves understanding the answers to philosophical questions. Philosophical questions include the most important and fundamental questions that humans ask: Who and what am I? Am I free? What is there? Is there a God? How should I live? How should we live together? Can I even know the answers to these questions? 

We all operate with answers to these questions whether we have explicitly considered the questions or not. Yet have we answered them well or poorly? To discover true answers to these perennial and difficult questions requires the development of a philosophical habit of mind. Such a habit of mind enables clear understanding of concepts, informed judgment, and logical reasoning. In short, it enables you to think well.   

Thinking well is an asset for any job. Further, the kind of thinking that philosophy develops contributes to higher performance on the many standardized tests that involve analytic and synthetic reasoning. Even so, the questions that philosophy engages are worth studying and seeking to answer for their own sake. Here is a helpful website by a philosopher about the practical value of a philosophical habit of mind.   

Above all, the goal of a philosophy education is to help you to live well and become wise. Education in philosophy helps you to order the various subject matters of an undergraduate education into a unified understanding. By engaging great ideas and fostering reflection, philosophy sharpens and enlarges our minds. It helps us to form a comprehensive view of the world and our place in it. At the University of Mary, every student will take at least two philosophy courses because it is a crucial component to a liberal arts education

Philosophical study plays an essential role at our Christian, Catholic, and Benedictine institution because of its commitment to the harmony of faith and reason and its support for the pursuit of philosophical truth for its own sake. Philosophy at the University of Mary reinforces our commitment to the Catholic intellectual tradition, which affirms the potential of the mind to discover and increasingly understand true answers to philosophical questions.

In the philosophy department, we contribute to the University of Mary’s mission to educate for life by cultivating a philosophical habit of mind, which is essential for living wisely, and offering a fellowship of students and faculty who are joyfully committed to discovering and deepening our understanding of the truth.

While studying Philosophy at the University of Mary, you can:

  • Join our philosophical community in lively discussion at our philosophy colloquium
  • Receive preparation for Seminary or graduate study (particularly in Philosophy, Theology, English, and Law)
  • Study the relation between faith and reason and philosophy and theology
  • Study the history of philosophy in order to understand the history of ideas and avoid contemporary myopia
  • Enhance an existing major with a double-major in Philosophy, which readily combines with most of our degree programs (e.g., Theology, English, Catholic Studies, Engineering)

For a list of courses for this program, visit the catalog.

Even as one of the most affordable private universities in the nation, the University of Mary does offer a variety of scholarships. In fact, 99% of main campus undergraduate students receive some form of scholarship! 

Some scholarships are available for specific academic programs, such as nursing, while other scholarships are available for certain student populations, such as military and veteran students

We strongly encourage you to contact your personal admissions representative to discover all of the options that might be available to you. In many cases, a program specific scholarship is just one component of a complete financial aid package. 

Our admissions professionals will work together with our Office of Financial Assistance to ensure that you get the best financial aid package possible to finance your education. 

Acceptance at the University of Mary does not automatically qualify you to pursue a program in one of the academic programs of study. Application requirements are specific to each major or academic program.

We recommend consulting your advisor for details. Applications are reviewed by the faculty members of the program. You will be notified that you have been admitted, admitted provisionally, or denied admission to the program.

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