Core Requirements

Georgetown, with its commitment to the Jesuit tradition, believes that men and women should
consider reflectively their relationship to the world, their fellow humans, and God. Because of
this, all Georgetown students are required to take two courses in Philosophy as part of their
humanistic education.


In general, all students take one course in Ethics and one course in General Philosophy. Specific course requirements vary by school. Please consult the Undergraduate Bulletin for information about the requirements in your program.

Courses taught outside the Philosophy Department do not satisfy either of these requirements unless they are cross-listed in philosophy. Requests to cross-list courses can be made only by the faculty member teaching the course and must be made before the beginning of the semester. Courses taken at other institutions must be approved by the Dean’s office or the Department in order to count for credit toward the Core Requirements.

For all students outside the SFS, the first course in Philosophy will be PHIL 010 (Introduction to
Ethics) or PHIL 020 (Introduction to Philosophy). SFS students will take PHIL 099 (Social and
Political Philosophy) for their first course. Students may not enroll in a 100-level course without
first having taken PHIL 010, 020 or 099. The exception is seniors who have not yet taken any
philosophy. Seniors cannot register for PHIL 010 or 020 and should enroll directly in a 100-level
course for their first philosophy course.

If a student’s first course is PHIL 010, the second course must be a 100-level course in General
Philosophy (PHIL 150-199). If the first course is PHIL 020, the second course must be a 100-
level course in Ethics (PHIL 100-149.) Students in the SFS may take any 100-level course for
their second philosophy. For students in the MSB, STRT 230 (Ethical Values of Business)
fulfills the second course requirement in Ethics.

Please note: students may not take both PHIL 010 and PHIL 020, or both PHIL 099 and PHIL
010 or PHIL 020.

Paths through the Core Requirement will standardly be one of these:

  1. PHIL 010 and a course from PHIL 150-199
  2. PHIL 020 and a course from PHIL 100-149 (or STRT 230 for MSB students)
  3. PHIL 099 and a course from PHIL 100-199 (for SFS students only)

Upper-Level Courses

No PHIL course numbered 200 or higher fulfills the Core Requirement in Philosophy.
Undergraduate students may take courses numbered PHIL 200 to PHIL 499 only after taking two
courses from PHIL 001 to PHIL 199. PHIL 500–999 are for graduate students in philosophy

Other students with strong philosophy backgrounds and aptitude may enroll, but only with
permission of the instructor and the Department.