2019 Best Online Colleges for Philosophy Degrees

Online philosopy degrees are available at the associate, bachelor's, master's, doctoral, and certificate levels. Students studying philosophy will take classes in critical thinking, writing, ethics, and communication. Completion of an online philosophy degree indicates to employers that a student can approach problem-solving in a creative way. Philosophy programs often prepare students for careers in law, medicine, business, and education. Discerning students can benefit from our list of the best online colleges offering bachelor's in philosophy degrees, which ranks programs based on tuition rates and alumni salaries provided by PayScale.

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2019 Best Online Colleges Offering Bachelor's in Philosophy Degrees

Philosophy-Top Online Colleges-2019-Badge

Potential students who are seeking a high quality, affordable online philosophy degree will find options on this list of seven schools. Arizona State University is the #1 ranked school this year, with a median reported alumni salary of $106,000 and a tuition rate of just $10,104 per year. The University of Massachusetts-Lowell is close behind at #2, charging $11,400 per year.

Alumni salaries were provided by PayScale. View our methodology for more details or learn more about SR Education Group.

Rank School Annual Tuition Median Salary
#1 #1 $10,104 $106,000
#2 #2 $11,400 $83,867
#3 #3 $11,329 $72,543
#4 #4 $6,560 $63,433
#5 #5 $12,600 $63,450
#6 #6 $40,208 $58,700
#7 #7 $9,262 $51,550
Salary data provided by Payscale Logo. Updated 2018.

Comprehensive List of Accredited Online Schools - Philosophy Degrees ( 28)

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Partner School
Partner School
Full List Accreditation Annual Tuition Recommend Rate
Full List (30)
American Public University System HLC $6,880 71% (141 reviews)
417 Programs, 2 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy - Ethics
Arizona State University HLC $15,691 - $27,372 68% (81 reviews)
208 Programs, 2 in Philosophy (view all)
  • BA in Philosophy
  • BA in Philosophy (Morality, Politics and Law)
Assumption College NECHE $39,598 Add Review
33 Programs, 2 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Associate of Arts in Humanities - Philosophy
  • Bachelor of Arts in Humanities - Philosophy
Bellevue University HLC $7,752 67% (54 reviews)
165 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies - Human Thought/Human Expression
Colorado Christian University HLC $30,370 56% (9 reviews)
101 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Certificate in Ethics
Columbus State University SACS COC $16,920 20% (5 reviews)
47 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts - Philosophy Track
Creighton University HLC $38,750 100% (3 reviews)
65 Programs, 2 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Medical Doctor/Health Care Ethics Certificate
Drury University HLC $27,015 Add Review
36 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Associate of Science in Pre-ministerial Studies
Faulkner University SACS COC $20,970 50% (2 reviews)
21 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Humanities
Fort Hays State University HLC $14,832 60% (5 reviews)
154 Programs, 3 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
  • Certificate in General Philosophy
  • Certificate in Moral and Political Philosophy
Franciscan University of Steubenville HLC $26,430 Add Review
11 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Associate in Philosophy
Georgetown University MSCHE $52,300 100% (1 review)
26 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies
Georgia State University SACS COC $23,971 0% (1 review)
33 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Associate of Arts in Philosophy
Grand Canyon University HLC $17,050 53% (407 reviews)
220 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • BA in Christian Studies - Philosophy
Johnson University SACS COC $14,920 Add Review
47 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • PhD in Leadership Studies - Philosophy and Theology
Keiser University eCampus SACS COC $18,488 41% (63 reviews)
81 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership
Murray State University SACS COC $23,820 Add Review
56 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Master of Arts in English - English with Philosophy as a Cognate Discipline
Northern Illinois University HLC $23,816 Add Review
39 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Technology
Southwestern Assemblies of God University SACS COC $19,994 100% (1 review)
75 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in in Religion and Philosophy
Texas Tech University SACS COC $18,652 0% (2 reviews)
144 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Special Education
University of Arizona HLC $11,800 100% (2 reviews)
100 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Philosophy: Ethics Specialization (BA)
University of Central Florida SACS COC $22,467 83% (6 reviews)
108 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Theoretical and Applied Ethics, Graduate Certificate
University of Central Missouri HLC $14,150 100% (2 reviews)
58 Programs, 5 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Technology Management - Construction Management
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Technology Management - Digital Communications
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Technology Management - Human Resource Development and Training
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Technology Management - Manufacturing Systems
University of Illinois at Springfield HLC $20,938 100% (4 reviews)
58 Programs, 2 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
  • Master of Arts in Liberal and Integrative Studies - Philosophy
University of Louisiana-Monroe SACS COC $20,570 100% (2 reviews)
55 Programs, 1 in Philosophy (view all)
  • Doctorate of Philosophy in Marriage and Family Therapy
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Online Philosophy Degree Overview & Career Information

There are a variety of degree and certificate programs available for those interested in pursuing a degree in philosophy. Philosophy degrees are available at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, and certificate level.

Students obtaining a degree in philosophy will be equipped with critical thinking, reasoning, and communication skills. Those seeking an advanced degree further their critical thinking skills and focus on a specialized area of study.

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Online Associate Degrees in Philosophy

Online associate degree programs are 62-68 credits and take two years to complete. Classes taken while seeking an associate degree can be transferred to a four-year university with the credit applied toward obtaining a bachelor’s degree should you decide to pursue that instead.

You can obtain an associate degree from community colleges, technical colleges, online colleges, and universities. The only prerequisite for an associate degree in philosophy is a high school diploma or GED. Coursework includes classes in areas such as eastern philosophy, theology, and metaphysics, as well as a variety of liberal arts courses. Students obtaining an associate degree in philosophy will be equipped to enter the workforce with critical thinking and communication skills.

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Online Bachelor's Degrees in Philosophy

Students seeking a bachelor’s in philosophy will learn how to structure arguments, write concisely, and clearly communicate their ideas. Coursework includes classes in symbolic logic, rationalism, and modern and postmodern philosophy, among others. Programs are 120 credits and take four years to complete.

Bachelor’s degree programs are offered at colleges and universities, with many schools offering programs online. A high school diploma or GED is required for admission as well as letters of recommendation and application essays. Students are often asked to submit SAT or ACT scores, depending on the school.

All Bachelor’s of Arts degrees have a liberal arts component. Classes covering topics in this area are typically taken during the first two years of study. Courses specific to your major are taken during the final two years. A bachelor’s degree is required for those wishing to seek an advanced degree.

Students obtaining a bachelor’s degree in philosophy will be equipped with excellent reasoning, and communication skills as well as a broad liberal arts background upon entering the workforce. Bachelor's degrees in philosophy are often used as a stepping stone towards higher level degrees in law and business.

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Online Master's in Philosophy

The Master’s of Arts in Philosophy allows students who already have a bachelor’s degree to gain greater expertise and expand their competence in philosophy. Students will usually select a specific concentration such as ethics and public affairs, philosophy and cultural theory, or philosophy and public affairs.

Master’s degree programs are offered at colleges and universities, with many offering programs online. Master’s programs typically involve two years of coursework, ranging from 30-35 credits, as well as a master’s thesis. A bachelor’s degree is required to apply to a master’s program. Students must submit an application, writing sample or essay, letters of recommendation, GRE scores, and resume. Students who have a bachelor’s degree in a field other than philosophy may also be required to take several undergraduate prerequisites before being granted admission into a master’s program, including a class in each of the core areas of logic, ancient philosophy, and modern philosophy.

Pursuing a master’s degree in philosophy allows students to expand their critical thinking skills and focus on a specialized area of study. Students will be prepared for a variety of careers including those in the fields of education and medicine. A master’s degree is also necessary to obtain for those students who wish to pursue a doctorate.

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Online Doctoral Degrees in Philosophy

Students seeking a PhD in philosophy will obtain the skills necessary to become an independent scholar and teacher of the subject. Those who wish to obtain this advanced degree will likely choose to work at colleges and universities teaching the subject themselves. A PhD in philosophy requires writing a dissertation, meeting with faculty advisors and committee members, attending dissertation seminars, and teaching graduate students for at least two semesters.

Doctoral programs are offered at colleges and universities. Students must already have a master’s degree in philosophy before seeking candidacy in a PhD program. The master’s program requires two years of study, and the PhD program requires an additional two to four years, on average. Those seeking to obtain a doctoral degree must first pass a qualifying examination involving an essay and oral exam in front of a committee. Some schools also will have a language requirement and subsequent exam before students can be accepted into the doctoral program.

Once accepted, students will take seminars in preparing their dissertation prospectus. They will be required to submit their prospectus and meet with committee members to discuss their research. Students working on their dissertation will be required to attend dissertation seminars, during which they must submit a piece of their work in progress each semester.

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Online Certificates in Philosophy

Students seeking training in philosophy but not interested in a traditional degree may obtain an online certificate degree in philosophy. These specialized programs teach students the fundamentals of philosophy.

The type of online program varies, with requirements ranging from 9-15 credits. Most online certificate programs will take one year to complete, and include focuses in areas such as bioethics, rhetoric, and human rights. Some programs offer the chance to further study an area of your own choosing.

Students interested in obtaining a certificate in philosophy will gain critical thinking skills that are valued by employers and higher education institutions. Some certificates can be applied toward a bachelor’s degree by transferring credits if you decide to seek an advanced degree at a later point in time.

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The Importance of an Accredited Online Degree in Philosophy

Attending a school that has been accredited is important so that you know you are receiving the best quality education available. Accreditation ensures that your program is taught by qualified faculty members and that the curriculum is held to high standards.

Obtaining your degree from an accredited institution also signals to employers that you are receiving a quality degree. If you choose to transfer schools or obtain a higher degree, accreditation ensures that your prior coursework and degree will be recognized by other institutions.

References

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