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Why Schools Should Incorporate Philosophy into their Curriculum

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

Universities and educational institutions were built on the ideas of ancient schools of philosophy, so why do they make you work to have a philosophical curriculum? Think about the foundations of philosophy: ethics, logic… seems like something American public schools could benefit from greatly. Although I was lucky enough to attend a high school which introduced me to philosophy, I went to public school for most of my life, and I can’t help but think back to how much studying philosophy could’ve helped me. 

Although ethics of some sort are taught in elementary schools, I think kids would benefit greatly from looking at the different perspectives from ethical professions so they can establish their own moral code from a young age. Not only would learning how to interpret these texts along with picture books have boosted my education, but I struggled a lot in my teenage years with the concept of morality. I didn’t grow up religious, but by living as an active member of society I could pick up on morality, and I could see how law wasn’t necessarily our society’s code of ethics. I believe that learning about philosophical thinking, especially in relation to morality, could have avoided the many sleepless nights I spent on my own identity.

On top of the morality aspect of philosophy, the logical structure of arguments and thinking could have improved many other skills. Schools today teach us that there is a right answer, which I understand as the only way they can get us to understand a concept one at a time, but thinking philosophically better prepares kids for the real world. Aside from math, which philosophical logic also improves, there aren’t really specific right answers. Learning about subjective perspectives could improve members of society from a young age, teaching them empathy and removing pressure of perfectionism, which causes many bright minds to burn out young. 

I am a philosophy major, but don’t let my mild bias affect the message here. If anything, I’m proof that there’s still a demand for philosophy. Studying this major makes up for the years I could have benefited from this type of learning, improves my reading comprehension and writing skills, and genuinely has made me a better person. Plus, if I still haven’t convinced you, to all those pre-law students out there, philosophy majors have the highest average LSAT scores.

Ariana, or Aria, is a third year philosophy major at UCLA. She enjoys fashion, 19th and 20th century feminism novels, cartoons, shoegaze music, rock climbing, baking, and spending time with friends.