What can I do with a philosophy degree? 

What can I do with a philosophy degree?

Students who study for a degree in Philosophy will be naturally inquisitive and are usually suited to a career in research or politics. A philosophy degree will teach you how to analyse and communicate ideas logically and a whole host of other skills that are in demand by various different employers and sectors.

Career options

Natural career paths following a philosophy degree:

  • Further education teacher
  • Higher education lecturer
  • Secondary school teacher
 

Transferable skills career paths:

  • Business analyst
  • Chaplain
  • Civil Service Fast Streamer
  • Health service manager
  • Human resources officer
  • Local government officer
  • Marketing Executive
  • Newspaper journalist
  • Policy officer
  • Psychotherapist
  • Recruitment Consultant
  • Social researcher
  • Solicitor
 

These should only be used as a guide. Many employers will accept applications from students that have studied various degrees. 

Work experience

Those wanting a career that involves philosophical skills should investigate doing an industry placement – pre-entry work is valued highly. Your careers department at your university should be able to help you identify these. These may include opportunities within the following:

  • Human Resources 
  • Public Relations
  • Marketing
  • Charity 
  • Social Work 
  • IT 
  • Consultancy
  • The Civil Service
  • Sales 
  • Recruitment

 

If your university course does not offer a placement year, you may want to consider doing part-time, summer or voluntary work. To give yourself a head start, you can reach out to local businesses to see if there is a need for the skills you have already developed throughout your degree and the opportunity to learn and grow. If you want to become a teacher, you’ll need some classroom experience so contact local schools for opportunities.

 

Any kind of pre-entry experience will give your application an advantage. It will also help you to develop the essential skills needed to succeed in the industry. Employers value work experience very highly, and it will also allow you to network and build a list of contacts who may become useful in the future.  

Typical employers

The skills you will develop through a philosophy degree are in demand across various public, private and not-for-profit employers. The most common industries where philosophy graduates have found employment include publishing, the media, journalism, human resources, marketing, advertising and teaching. Typical employers of philosophy students include: 

  • Local government and the Civil Service
  • Advertising, marketing and public relations agencies
  • Management consultancies
  • Primary and secondary schools, further education colleges and higher education institutions
  • Law firms
  • Publishing companies
  • Charities
  • Banking and insurance companies
  • Accountancy firms
  • Recruitment agencies

Below are some of the job titles you earn with a philosophy degree: 

  • Advice worker
  • Aid worker/humanitarian worker
  • Charities administrator
  • Civil Service administrator
  • Consultant
  • Health service manager
  • IT consultant
  • Secondary school teacher
  • Social worker
  • Solicitor

Unlike other degrees, few careers in philosophy are directly linked to philosophy degrees. However, a philosophy degree can provide you with skills that will be useful in both your personal and professional life, including communication, critical and logical thinking and the ability to see every argument for a multitude of angles and evaluate and analyse it effectively. 

Skills for your CV

Through your degree, you will learn various professional skills, such as how to analyse and construct sound arguments, distinguish the difference between views and find common ground, present ideas convincingly through well-constructed, systematic arguments, write clearly and persuasively, generate ideas and come up with solutions to problems and be open to new ideas and ways of thinking. Alongside this, you will have developed additional skills which will be transferable. 

Make sure the following skills are highlighted on your CV:

 

  • Self-motivation and the capacity for independent study and thought
  • The ability to prioritise work and meet deadlines
  • Flexibility and creativity
  • Critical thinking
  • The capacity to identify, absorb and sift complex information
  • Teamworking
  • Increased knowledge of IT.
 

A philosophy student will be able to see the bigger picture in every situation and will not be afraid to ask questions and challenge different points of view. You will be extremely creative and confident with presenting your ideas to others, as well as taking on constructive criticism and learning from others. 

 

Further study

 

Some philosophy graduates will choose to continue studying and progress to a Masters and PhD. This will usually be because they have a particular interest in teaching the subject to others or simply love it. However, a philosophy degree also lays the foundation for many other career paths. It is a very flexible degree that allows you to take your career in whichever direction you want it to. This could be in other related areas of interest, such as politics, ethics, international development and sociology. 

 

If you want to specialise in a specific industry, such as law, lecturing or teaching, you will be required to undertake further qualifications. Some sectors will either require specific qualifications or will look for previous work experience where you will already have the basic skills necessary for that industry. 

 

What are philosophy graduates doing?

Philosophy graduates’ most popular career paths include teaching professionals, sales, marketing, business, research, admin or finance. 

 

Related Courses

If you fancy learning about the inner workings of the mind and human behaviour, then TEG’s BSc Psychology degree is for you.

You’ll study the human mind and associated behaviour and develop key skills in collecting, analysing and interpreting data – which will allow you to apply your knowledge in research and investigation processes to solve problems in real-world settings.

TEG’s BSc Psychology is accredited by the British Psychological Society, which provides the basis for Graduate Registration.

 

The UWS BA (Hons) in Social Sciences focuses on the central themes of social justice, power and inequalities. The first two years of this degree equip you with a firm grounding in the essential disciplines of politics, policy and sociology.

Investigating social and political change, you will explore how we understand society and how we can change it for the better, developing your critical thinking alongside a wide range of research and transferable skills highly valued by the public, private and voluntary sectors.

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