Effective Date: Fall 2012  - Current

A minor in Philosophy is not open to students with a major in Philosophy.

Students wishing to pursue a minor in Philosophy must develop a specific plan for its completion in consultation with the department's designated advisor. Appointments are scheduled through the on-line scheduling system available on the department's web page:


The Philosophy Academic Minors are designed to provide students with an education in philosophy that will complement a major in some other discipline and that will, among other things, illuminate philosophical issues that arise in that other discipline. Because students who elect a minor in philosophy will have a variety of philosophical interests, the department offers a choice of a number of distinct minors namely: 

  1. General Philosophy
  2. History of Philosophy
  3. Moral and Political Philosophy
  4. Mind and Meaning; and
  5. Epistemology and Philosophy of Science.

The specialized minors (b)-(e) focus on particular areas within philosophy, and complement several different majors.

The General Philosophy minor aims to provide students basic philosophical skills and training, exposure to rigorous core courses, and some advanced work, but does not aim for the breadth and comprehensiveness of the major or for depth in any particular area.

The History of Philosophy minor aims to provide students both a comprehensive foundation in the central evaluative and theoretical philosophical areas, which are required in order to best appreciate the history of philosophy, and broad study of the history of philosophy. It is aimed at students with serious interests in the history of philosophy, or in studying philosophy from an historical perspective, but who, for various reasons, are unable to concentrate in philosophy.  This minor will enable them to develop their interests in a way that assured they had sufficient background in the main philosophical areas, as well as significant breadth and depth in the history of philosophy.

The Moral and Political Philosophy minor aims to give students a basic foundation in general philosophy, core systematic training in either moral or political philosophy, along with broad study across a range of areas in moral and political philosophy and intensive advanced-level work. It should appeal to students who want to study moral and political philosophy in conjunction with other majors, for example, Political Science, Sociology, and Economics, or want to study the subject for pre-professional reasons (e.g., because they are interested in ethical issues concerning medicine or the law).

Fundamental issues of metaphysics, epistemology, and the philosophies of language and mind arise in connection with many majors, such as Psychology, Linguistics, and the sciences. The Mind and Meaning minor will provide students who cannot concentrate in Philosophy a systematic way to pursue and develop these interest. It aims to give students a basic foundation in philosophy, logical skills necessary to do serious study in the areas of metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of language and philosophy of mind, and rigorous exposure  and advanced-level work in some subset of these areas.

The minor in Epistemology and Philosophy of Science is designed to provide a basic familiarity with the philosophical problems and techniques in these fields. The minor offers an opportunity for students to develop basic skills of philosophical reflection and argument in the context of questions about ordinary as well as scientific knowledge.  The intended audience for this minor includes students concentrating in scientific or mathematical disciplines who wish to explore the philosophical aspects of their subject, as well as students who have a more general interest in theory of knowledge or philosophy of science including, for example, students of literature, history, anthropology, or sociology — who wish to acquire the necessary background to understand recent debates relating to the sociology of knowledge.

Prerequisites to the Minor: 

Any 100- or 200-level course other than PHIL 180, 201, 296 (logic courses).

Requirements for the Minor: 

Minors must take at least 15 credits of Philosophy, in one of the following patterns.


At least nine credits, including the required 400-level course, must be taken in residence. No course will count toward the minor unless the student receives a grade of C- or better.


  1. At least one course at the 400-level, other than formal methods (PHIL 413, 414)
  2. A minimum of 15 credits of Philosophy, at least 9 of which (including the required 400-level course) must be taken in residence.
  3. No course will count toward the minor unless the student receives a grade of C- or better.


  1.  General Philosophy
    1. One course in Logic or Formal Methods (PHIL 180, 201, 296, 303, 305, 413, or 414)
    2. Two courses from: PHIL 345, 361, 365, 366, 367, 381, 383, 388, 389
    3. One 400-level course, which must not include 401, 402, 413, 414, or 455

  2.   History of Philosophy (Effective Fall 2012)
    1. Either PHIL 345, 361, 366, 367 or 383
    2. PHIL 388 or 389
    3. One additional course from: PHIL 388, 389, 405, 406, 458, 460, 461, 462, 464
    4. One additional course from "c" expanded to include: PHIL 371, 385, 433, 463, 466, 467, 474, 492

  3.   Moral and Political Philosophy
    1. One of PHIL 361 or 366 or 367 or PPE 300
    2. Three additional courses from: PHIL 355, 356, 359, 361, 366, 369, 385, 429, 430, 431, 433, 442, 443, 485 (one of which must be at the 400-level)

  4.   Mind and Meaning
    1. One course in symbolic logic: PHIL 296, 303, 305, 413, or 414
    2. PHIL 345, 381, or 383
    3. Two additional courses from: PHIL 340, 345, 381, 383, 409, 450, 481, 482 (one of which must be at the 400-level).

  5.   Epistemology and Philosophy of Science
    1. One course in Formal Methods: PHIL 296, 303, 305, 413, or 414
    2. PHIL 345, 381, or  383
    3. Two other courses from: PHIL 320, 322, 381, 383, 420, 422, 423, 424, 425, 427, 443, 477. At least one course taken to satisfy the minor must be at the 400-level, other than formal methods (PHIL 413, 414)

College of Literature, Science, and the Arts 500 S. State Street, Ann Arbor, MI  48109 © 2016 Regents of the University of Michigan