Philosophy Department Prepares Students for Life After Graduation

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

While Philosophy departments at Canadian universities generally represent a small fraction of the student body, at Tyndale nearly 10% of University students are pursuing a major or minor in philosophy. Students are attracted to the program, which has seen students graduate to work in the corporate world, enter law school and pursue Masters and Ph.D.’s.

Professor Paul Franks, Lecturer of Philosophy, explains that the Tyndale Philosophy department intentionally prepares students for futures in ministry, the marketplace, and graduate school. Philosophy students are prepared for ministry as they are taught critical reasoning and ethics through courses such as Belief, Truth and Knowledge. Students learn to examine issues and to thoughtfully engage arguments, gaining skills that are an asset in many ministry settings.

Increasingly, philosophy students are being recognized as valuable employees in business settings. As such, Dr. Richard Davis, Associate Professor of Philosophy, and Professor Franks intentionally craft the curriculum to prepare students for a career in the marketplace. Classes like Critical Reasoning teach students new ways of thinking. “As a result of that class, you can think better,” Professor Franks said, “We talk about fallacious modes of reasoning…Once you learn to look at things that way, you become better [at reasoning] in general. So whatever situation you find yourself in, you can draw on those types of skills.”

Throughout their education, students are prepared for graduate school. Each fall, a seminar is held on how to apply for graduate school. Students are encouraged to meet with their professors to get personalized advice on programs and schools where the student would be likely to thrive. Their hard work and preparation is paying off, as Tyndale students have gone to graduate work at Trinity Western, Oklahoma, Ryerson, Oxford, and many other universities.

Kirk Lougheed, who is currently completing his M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Philosophy at Trinity Western, reflects on his experience at Tyndale, “I had excellent exposure to the vast number of questions and problems that philosophers have been working on for centuries…Tyndale prepared me for graduate studies [through] the personal attention I received from the professors.” Kirk hopes to begin his Ph.D. in the Fall and he looks forward to the opportunity to work in the field of Philosophy. “Philosophy is about trying to find true answers and explanations for the way the world is. If and when my religious beliefs show through in my work, I know that they can’t be dismissed simply by virtue of being religious. So I think it’s a very exciting time to be a Christian philosopher!”


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