Study Abroad in Philosophy
"It is good to know something of the customs of various peoples, so as to judge our own more soundly and so as not to think that everything that is contrary to our ways is ridiculous and against reason, as those who have seen nothing have a habit of doing."
(Rene Descartes,Discourse on Method)
"The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page."
(Augustine, City of God)
"When he ascended the Eastern Mount, Confucius felt that Lu was small, and when he ascended Mount Tai, he felt that the Empire was small. Likewise it is difficult for water to come up to the expectation of someone who has seen the Sea, and it is difficult for words to come up to the expectation of someone who has studied under a sage."
Studying abroad is an especially effective way for students of philosophy to get in touch with the locations, languages and traditions that have been involved in the history of philosophy and continue to affect its contemporary practice. Studying abroad is also a tremendous opportunity for personal growth and development and a great opportunity for developing knowledge of other countries and cultures, as well as cross-cultural communication skills.
Depending on the program chosen, it is possible for students who study abroad to fulfill B.A. language requirements, general education foundation requirements, issue requirements and/or requirements for the philosophy major. The Padnos International Center offers a variety of programs at Universities around the world, while the Philosophy Study Abroad sheet contains a listing of some of these programs that are recommended for philosophy majors in particular, as well as further advice and information about study abroad programs. Of special note is the China Summer School study abroad program, an annual study abroad opportunity in China lead by Philosophy Professors Peimin Ni and Geling Shang.
The Philosophy Department at GVSU has a strong international character and philosophy students are strongly encouraged to pursue study abroad opportunities during their time at GVSU. For further information about study abroad opportunities, we recommend reading over the Study Abroad Advising Sheet for Philosophy Majors, discussing the matter with your philosophy advisor, and consulting the Padnos International Center's Getting Started page, which contains helpful information about the study abroad application process.