As a philosophy and religion major, you explore a range of multicultural perspectives that enhance your capacity for open-mindedness and ethical sensitivity. You develop valuable critical-thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills necessary to participate thoughtfully and constructively in local, national, and global communities.

Almost half of our philosophy and religion students pursue more than one area of study — common double majors include English, psychology, and history. This major also complements pre-professional programs, especially in education and health sciences.

Career Paths

The philosophy and religion major provides an excellent foundation for work in law, business, teaching, communications, health professions, ministry, non-profits, public affairs, and more. Our PHRE graduates thrive in graduate school:

  • 66% pursue degrees outside of religious studies (philosophy, law, MBA, etc.)
  • 43% pursue degrees in religious studies

Notable graduate schools attended by our PHRE graduates include:

  • St. Paul’s School of Theology
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Missouri

of PHRE majors complete research
of PHRE graduates seeking employment are employed
of PHRE students pursue more than one major
U.S. News and World Report ranks Truman as the No. 1 public school in the Midwest

Why study philosophy and religion?

The world needs reflective thinkers and creative problem-solvers who can address the ethical, conceptual, and worldview dimensions of complex societal issues.

Featured Courses

Explore the major figures in classical Greek philosophy with special emphasis on Plato and Aristotle.
Investigate the 17th and 18th Century European philosophy emphasizing primary readings from the Rationalists, the British Empiricists, and Kant. Major themes of this course are the fundamental nature of reality and the possibility of knowledge.
Study religious belief and practice in both American history and contemporary American culture. Topics include Christianity, Judaism, Eastern religions, ethnicity and religion, gender and religion, and New Religious Movements.
Trace historical developments of religion across China and Japan, with specific attention to Confucianism, Daoism, Mahayana Buddhism, Shinto, and folk religious practices. You will explore the roles of social institutions and socio-political shifts in the maintenance and evolution of these traditions and practices.
Examine social locations, roles, and ritual mechanisms of a type of healer in a variety of cultures across the earth, throughout much of recorded history up to the current time.

Student Opportunities


As a philosophy and religion major, you can find a wide variety of internships in schools, community organizations, law offices, and other professional settings.

Truman campus

Philosophy and Religion Conference

Each year, the Philosophy and Religion Department gathers students from across the nation to share the results of their research.

Research Opportunities

Work closely with a faculty member on research or delve deeper into an academic pursuit that matches your interests. Truman's Office of Student Research offers travel stipends to present student research at conferences.

Study abroad in China

Study Abroad

You can often use many of the same sources of financial assistance for a study-abroad program that are available for on-campus courses.

Departmental Accomplishments


Having a broader outlook and the ability to think critically about larger issues makes Truman's Philosophy and Religion faculty, students, and alumni stand out above the crowd.

Explore Related Programs

Philosophy and Religion Minor