Discipline of Philosophy

About us

The term "philosophy" is oft used in contemporary English: we speak of someone's personal philosophy or the philosophy behind a particular idea, meaning that many prospective students do not know what to expect or what use philosophy will be to them, if any.

If you register for studies in Philosophy you will not be merely learning about what famous people have had to say about the so-called great questions of life. Rather, as philosophical questions are fundamental questions about the world and those who live in it, you will learn how to philosophize through the acquisition and use of critical reasoning and argumentative skills. By doing this, you will contribute to the ongoing philosophical debates in contemporary times. Even before Plato, questioning people were asking why there is something and not nothing, who we are, what we can know, if there is an ultimate cause, what it means to be just, or good, and many more of the questions we still ponder over today.

Philosophy poses questions such as:

  • Is there a way of representing the universe?
  • Is some modern art really valuable or just a hoax?
  • Who are we? - what makes people different from other things?
  • What is the good life?
  • What is the best political system for a country?
  • What is African Philosophy?
  • What constitutes personal identity?
  • Who are the great philosophers?
  • Is euthanasia right?
  • What is science?
  • What is knowledge? - do we really know anything?
  • What does it mean to think clearly? ... What use is philosophy?

While seeking wisdom through Philosophy may sound interesting and exciting, a perfectly fair question to ask is whether or not studies in Philosophy will aid you in obtaining employment, or improving the work you already have? Realistically, there are not many jobs in Philosophy, however, studying Philosophy, because it teaches you to think clearly and critically, helps you do everything else you do, more effectively. Evidence of this was shown in a study of American college students, in which it was found that those doing Philosophy began to perform better in all their other subjects, when compared to students not studying Philosophy. Graduates who have taken a course or two in Philosophy during their degrees are able to clearly sum-up situations, to think effectively, analyse problems well, and to grasp solutions quickly.

Studies in Philosophy present students with the conceptual framework and technical skills necessary for careers in research, teaching, information science, business, and government. In general, the undergraduate philosophy student is equipped with the ability to communicate clearly, critically evaluate evidence and data, and apply conceptual, analytical, and interpersonal skills to a variety of situations.

Even if you do not plan to use your studies to improve your vocational prospects, your own life will become richer and more meaningful once you have the skills and the knowledge to become part of what a contemporary philosopher has called "the great conversation", for as one of the greatest of all, Socrates, said centuries ago:

"The unexamined life is not worth living."

For enquiries with regard to administrative matters such as subject choices, fees, registration and exam dates, etc, please contact

Last modified: 2017/03/13