University of Central Missouri Loses Philosophy Program

Students at the University of Central Missouri will no longer be able to major in philosophy, according to the school’s news site, Muleskinner.

It’s reported that the philosophy program was eliminated because it “didn’t make its projected student goal of 10 graduating students over a year’s time.” The move is a response to unspecified “budget cuts”. Some philosophy classes will remain on the books as part of the school’s general education curriculum.

It was not reported what effect, if any, this would have on the employment of those currently teaching philosophy at the school.

Further information here.

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UCM grad
UCM grad
6 years ago

As someone who graduated from UCM with a philosophy degree, it’s not surprising. The program did not attract new students. It did not setup the students it did attract for success in getting into grad school.

Daniel Kaufman
Reply to  UCM grad
6 years ago

As you can see from the article your last sentence is not the reason why the major was cut. It is because it was a “low completer” program. At Missouri State we have been under the same threat.

In the 20 years I have been here, we have only sent a handful of people to graduate school. But that is a silly measure of success given the student demographics of places like Central Missouri and our school which used to be Southwest Missouri State.

A much better measure is how many students are receiving quality educations and going on to successful careers, largely in the professions? On this front we do very well. Our gen ed courses are very popular, and our majors are successful after college. And we’ve to managed to stay just above the graduation minimum.

Laura Grams
Laura Grams
Reply to  Daniel Kaufman
6 years ago

Thank you, Dan, I too teach at a public university in a department that serves undergraduates. A few of our majors have gone on successfully to graduate school, but many more of them go to law school or other graduate and professional schools, or successful careers in everything from the insurance industry to counseling. The Philosophy major offers these students a challenging education with emphasis on writing, communication, and analysis of difficult problems and texts. We also serve a large group of minors and non-majors who take upper level courses, a few of which are important in the curricula of other majors. This would not be possible without a major in Philosophy to support offering those courses. The goal of producing Philosophy graduate students is not at the top of our list; we are keenly aware of the difficult job market for those students and therefore discuss many alternative careers even with students who express strong interest in grad school. We want them to have many good options.