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You’re probably wondering if a philosophy degree is worth it. Sure, you love the subject. But can it pay your student debt after graduation?
According to the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA,) high-skilled historical and philosophical studies graduates with an undergraduate degree earn an average of £24,500 in 2018/19.
Want to learn more about what you can do with a philosophy degree? This article discusses whether philosophy is a good major, job options, and where philosophy graduates go.
And, if you want to learn more about university-level Philosophy and what it entails, then our Philosophy summer schools for high school students will really help you.
What Is Philosophy?
Do you know where the word “Philosophy” comes from? It comes from the Greek word “philosophia,” meaning “love of wisdom.” Philosophy is the foundation of all the science disciplines we know today.
It’s the study of the most basic and general questions about existence, reality, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language.
Is Philosophy A Good Major?
Is Philosophy a good major? If you’re passionate about it, definitely yes. But what if you’re looking to get a job after graduation? Still yes! According to a survey by the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services, 44.4% of philosophy graduates worked full-time within 15 months after graduation.
What if you’re looking to use philosophy as a stepping stone to studying law? There is no doubt that philosophy is one of the best courses you can take for law. Of course, the best and shortest route is to take law right away. And going via the philosophy route can add a year or two to your journey.
But if you love philosophy, and you would like to widen your horizons first, then go for it! If you’re considering sociology then check out career paths for sociology graduates.
Is Philosophy A Hard Major?
According to Oxford Royale, Philosophy is one of the hardest degrees. Why? Because the concepts you will study are abstract. Expect questions such as:
- What is reality?
- Why is the chair a chair?
- Who am I?
- What is the meaning of life?
- What is consciousness?
After hours of discussion, you may feel like you haven’t found the answer. And that’s the point! Because philosophy is about wanting to know more. The thinking process is the highlight.
There is a reason why Socrates is famous for his words, “I know nothing.” The more you grasp this concept, the better philosopher you are. Do you want more juicy details about studying philosophy at a university?
Top Job Options For Philosophy Graduates
Secondary Education Teacher
Average Base Salary: £37,000 per year
Secondary school teachers educate students ages 11-18. You will need to choose which subject to teach within a curriculum. Do you know a teacher’s most important job? To create a supportive learning culture where students’ curiosity can thrive.
Average Base Salary: £30,238 per year
What do marketing associates do? They create and oversee marketing campaigns. How? By conducting market research and developing marketing plans. Ensuring the team’s smooth communication is also part of the job description.
Average Base Salary: £43,393 per year
Do you know that business analysts use data to help the company make better decisions? First, they help pinpoint the problem and find the right solution. Then to help everyone get on the same page, they present their findings. That’s why communication skills are vital.
Business Sales Executive
Average Base Salary: £30,000 per year
A business sales executive sells the company’s products and services. The goal? To increase income. So they go to potential customers to introduce the company. They also have to study the market for buying trends.
Human Resources Officer
Average Base Salary: £25697 per year
Can you guess what a human resources officer does? They are in charge of the people working in the company. Developing and implementing policies on employee benefits is part of their job. Also, do you know that they’re responsible for everyone’s payroll?
Sales Account Manager
Average Base Salary: £30,064 per year
A sales account manager needs to have long-term relationships with clients. Why? Because they handle the sales accounts. It’s their job to follow up on existing customers. They also have to get new clients, ensuring they stay loyal to the company.
Average Base Salary: £55,200 per year
Did you know that a solicitor is a type of lawyer? They advise clients on legal matters, including criminal, family, business, and property law. Most of the time, they work at the office doing paperwork. But they also visit clients and attend court hearings.
Average Base Salary: £32,866 per year
What does a policy officer do? Policy officers use their findings from research and analysis to make policies. Then they implement and receive feedback. Most policy officers work for the government. But you can also find them in private businesses.
Average Base Salary: £27,625 per year
A recruitment consultant helps businesses find the right candidate for the job. How? By using their expertise in the field to identify the critical skills the ideal candidate should have. They also interview candidates and help them prepare for interviews.
Health Service Manager
Average Base Salary: £32,123 per year
A health service manager handles the smooth operation of a healthcare facility. Do you know how they do it? By coordinating the work schedules of the healthcare providers. They also check a healthcare facility’s capacity. Especially crucial during a pandemic!
Skills For Your CV
When you’re looking for a job, it’s important to highlight the skills that employers are looking for. Here are the skills you’ll gain with a philosophy degree:
- Open to new ways of thinking
- Communicate ideas to convince the listeners
- Flexible and creative
- Come up with solutions to problems
- Find similarities and differences among points of view
- Knows IT
- Skilled in critical thinking
- Write in a clear and persuasive manner
- Capable of analysing complex information
- Make and breakdown strong arguments
If you’re still not sure what you want to do with your philosophy degree, don’t worry. You can always do an internship or work experience in a field that interests you. This will help you gain the skills and expertise you need to find the right job that suits you best.
How? By volunteering or applying for a short-term work plan. Reach out to potential companies and state your intentions. Your chances of being accepted increase when you study at a prestigious university. So choose your school wisely.
According to HESA, 4,210 historical & philosophical students enrolled in further study. So what’s the advantage of going to further study?
- Some jobs need specialisation. If you want to become a solicitor, you need to enrol in law school.
- The higher your educational degree, the more job opportunities.
- Higher-paid positions become accessible to you when you have a master’s or doctorate.
Where Do Philosophy Graduates Go?
Where do philosophy graduates go to work? Here are the Top 10 sectors that attract philosophy graduates the most:
- Business, HR and finance – 19%
- Retail, catering, waiting and bar – 13.8%
- Marketing, PR and sales – 12.8%
- Clerical and secretarial – 11.7%
- Engineering and Building – 10%
- Education – 9.7%
- Legal, Social, and Welfare – 6.9%
- Childcare, health and education – 6.4%
- Managers – 4.5%
- Information Technology – 4.3%