Best Philosophy Careers
Philosophy is often mistaken for an "unemployable" major. But, in reality, the precise analysis, critical thinking, and clear writing required for the degree are excellent training for almost any professional career. In fact, philosophy students have been shown to perform better than other majors on entrance exams for law, medicine, and other graduate schools. They also outrank students of business administration, pre-medicine, and political science in terms of average mid-career salary. This may be one reason why interest in the major is increasing, with twice as many students graduating from the program today as 30 years ago.
Over the course of this rigorous degree, students learn to solve complex problems solve, reason logically, interpret and synthesize information, conduct independent research, and reflect on their own morals and values. All of these skills set them up for success in a wide range of careers, many of which look almost nothing like you'd expect.
This article will be covering the following careers:
|Career||Avg Salary||Satisfaction||Your Match|
|High School Teacher||$64k||3.0/5|
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Arbitration is an alternative form of dispute resolution that allows parties to come to an agreement outside of the courtroom. Arbitrators are at the heart of the process—the "private judges" who review the evidence and testimony presented by each party, then come to a final decision. Philosophy majors, with their rigorous reasoning skills and ability to consider multiple perspectives on the same issue, are perfectly suited to the job.
Anyone who has ever signed a mobile-phone or other consumer contract, a lease, or an employment agreement, has probably seen in the contract's fine print a provision known as an "arbitration clause." This widely used legal covenant requires that in the case of a dispute between the parties, the arbitration process be used to resolve their differences.
2. Marriage Therapist
Like arbitration, marriage therapy requires a unique mix of active listening, clear communication, levelheaded reasoning, and an ability to consider conflicting viewpoints on a topic. These empathetic individuals dedicate their careers to helping couples in distress resolve challenges and build more rewarding relationships. Although a master's degree or higher is required to practice, this career can be an ideal match for philosophy majors with an interest in people or psychology.
A marriage therapist (or marriage counselor) is someone who helps couples who are either engaged to be married and would like advice, or who are already married and are experiencing issues that need to be resolved.
3. High School Teacher
The Socratic Method is an age-old approach to teaching that involves posing thought-provoking questions to push students to explore a concept on their own terms. It is just one of the many points of intersection between philosophy and teaching. Philosophy majors, with their broad theoretical knowledge and ability to engage others in intellectual debates, can make excellent high school teachers. Those who are interested in pursuing this career should note that supplementary training and experience in education is required.
High School Teacher
A high school teacher is someone who prepares and teaches academic, technical, vocational or specialized subjects at public and private secondary schools, typically from grades 9-12.
Judges play an essential role in the legal system. These highly rational individuals oversee hearings and trials, preside over cases, and provide legal guidance to juries to assist them in coming to a verdict. A law degree and several years of experience is required to enter the position, but a bachelor's in philosophy provides many of the skills needed to succeed in the career: strong communication, ability to interpret and synthesize large amounts of information, and a logical, ethical mindset.
Judges apply the law to court cases and oversee the legal process in courts.
Research and writing are two skills philosophy majors master over the course of their degree. These complimentary capacities, combined with their ability to construct clear, logical arguments, make them ideally suited to a career in journalism. Many philosophy majors will excel in this fast-paced and constantly changing profession. Especially when it comes to controversial issues, readers will appreciate their ability to provide nuanced, unbiased news coverage that incorporates many perspectives.
A journalist is someone who investigates, collects and presents information as a news story.
Consultants are clever, highly rational individuals who provide professional guidance to organizations of all kinds. Their insights help clients solve problems, improve workplace productivity, or create positive change for the future. Consultants may be hired to assist with a specific project—such as reorganizing the company's hiring structure—or to provide more general recommendations for success. This role involves gathering information, interpreting and parsing it to get to the root of the issue, and then offering clear, compelling advice for how to move forward. Philosophy majors possess all of these qualities and can truly thrive in this challenging career.
A consultant is someone who has extensive knowledge and experience in a specific professional field, and who shares their expertise in order to solve business-related issues or problems.
Although a bachelor's in philosophy isn't a prerequisite for law school, it is one of the most common undergraduate degrees held by practicing lawyers. This should be no surprise, given that many of the qualities philosophy majors possess are essential for a successful legal career: logical reasoning skills, a knack for research, and the ability to craft clear, convincing arguments.
A lawyer is someone who is licensed to practice law, and whose obligation it is to uphold the law while also protecting their client's rights.
Lobbyists are professional advocates who help organizations of all kinds create change. The term can apply to anyone involved in a corporate merger, a political campaign, or even a community movement. Whatever the specifics of the cause they are promoting, lobbyists strive to influence opinions and inspire social or political action. This profession requires a persuasive personality, a stable sense of ethics, and the ability to make sense of complex legal or policy-related documents. Philosophy majors can put their argumentation and critical thinking skills to use in this intellectually stimulating career.
A lobbyist is an advocate for a particular side of an issue; someone who articulates and communicates the views of a company or organization to outside stakeholders, such as government agencies, trade associations, and legislative bodies.
Finally, for philosophy majors who absolutely love their subject and are passionate about lifelong learning, a career in academia can be a natural fit. Professors of philosophy work within universities and colleges around the world, teaching courses, conducting research, and publishing academic books and journal articles. This career is challenging and requires many years of education, but is a unique opportunity to ponder some of life's biggest questions professionally.