The Philosophy Internship at UAH allowed me to apply critical thinking skills to real world problems. This experience proved to me that critical and analytical thinking are applicable far beyond the classroom. The internship allowed me to get the experiences I needed to make a degree in Philosophy a practical choice.

   -J. Tyler Hamlin 

Internship for Philosophy Credit

Internships that incorporate philosophical skills—skills such as argumentation, critical thinking, ethical or scientific reasoning, social and political problem solving, written and oral communication—can earn one to three credits toward your philosophy degree. Internships can also give you valuable experience toward a career and highlight the ways in which philosophy provides useful and marketable skills.

While the department is willing to help students secure internships, each student is responsible for identifying and securing relevant internship opportunities, but typical options include work in law offices, non-profit organizations, and big data companies. If you already volunteer with a local organization or perform community service, you may be able to demonstrate a connection between the skills you use in this work with the skills learned by studying philosophy. The possibilities for internships are limited only by your creativity and inventiveness in understanding the connections of the work to philosophical skills and themes.

Skills Developed by Studying Philosophy

Skills most clearly developed in studying philosophy are critical thinking and the ability to read, write, and speak clearly and articulately. These are highly useful skills in just about any job. Philosophy also requires thinking about ideas, comparing them, evaluating them against one another. It requires understanding what is relevant to solving a problem and, just as importantly, what is not relevant. And, it demands that students be able to consider issues from multiple points of view. Employers need people who have these skills, and a philosophy internship can highlight the practical application of philosophical reasoning to broader aspects of life and work.

Suggestions for Internships

While students are encouraged to find internship opportunities that match their interests, the department has an internship established with E Squared Research. This is an unpaid position in which the intern will learn key clinical research ethical guidelines and will review patient outreach programs so that directives can be turned into procedures. In short, the internship will allow the student to suggest ways to turn vague ethical considerations into actual working policies within a heavily regulated field. The internship also involves the use of critical analysis skills to review specific research protocols and learn what tests, questions, and procedures ensure specific data points are captured.

If you are a major in philosophy with junior or senior standing and are interested in this opportunity, please contact the department chair, Dr. Nicholaos Jones, or any of the Philosophy Department faculty.

Contact Info

Eligibility for Internships

Any Philosophy major with 18 hours of Philosophy, junior or senior standing, and a minimum 3.0 GPA in Philosophy can request to take an internship course. Each student must submit an application and receive approval from the department chairperson.

Internship Requirements

  1. All interns must submit to the department chairperson an Internship Learning Contract by the end of the second week of the semester. This contract should be accompanied by a brief summary of the history and mission of the organization sponsoring the internship, and the contract should include signatures from both a supervisor at the sponsoring organization and a faculty advisor from the Philosophy Department.
  2. The academic component of the internship must include an original research paper and/or relevant product describing the student's work during the internship, assessing the student's achievement of their learning objectives, and demonstrating how the internship advanced the student's knowledge of philosophy.
  3. During their internship, all interns must work at least 3.3 hours a week for each hour of credit. Work should not exceed 15 hours per week, and work should be completed prior to the beginning of finals week. While routine activities may be part of the internship – as they are part of all jobs – such tasks may not be more than 50% of the work load.
  4. All interns must meet with their faculty supervisor at least twice during their internship, in accordance with arrangements made in the Internship Learning Contract.
  5. All interns must submit to their faculty advisor, by the end of the first day of finals week, the following material: a log of days and hours worked during the internship, reviewed and approved by the employing supervisor; a signed letter from the employing supervisor assessing performance during the internship; an original research paper and/or relevant product describing the student's work during the internship, assessing the student's achievement of their learning objectives, and demonstrating how the internship advanced the student's knowledge of philosophy. These materials are the basis for the course grade.

How to Register for PHL 397: Philosophy Internship

  1. Arrange an internship opportunity with an employer.
  2. Complete an "Internship Learning Contract" form, available from the Philosophy Department. This form details your responsibilities associated with the internship, and includes sections on work expectations and academic requirements.
  3. Submit the completed Internship Learning Contract to the chairperson of the Philosophy Department.
  4. Register for the course.


Dr. Nicholaos Jones