About the program

The Joint Major in Business, Philosophy and the Law combines a core education in business with a core education in philosophy.

  • Interested in a career in the law, public policy, business or in academia?
  • Wanting to prepare for entry to law school?
  • Looking for an innovative and interdisciplinary approach to prepare you for a career in legal and policy-related fields?

The program gives a robust exposure to the way in which business practice interacts with the law, offering students the chance to master fundamental critical reasoning skills. Students will also explore a range of theoretical and practical questions about law, ethics, policy and justice, and their interaction.

For complete requirements, please see the calendar entry for the joint major program. 

"Philosophy majors consistently score very highly on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) required for application to most graduate business programs -- typically 4th out of 35 surveyed majors..." 

How do I apply?

Students applying must satisfy requirements for both the Department of Philosophy and the Beedie School of Business. 

Joint Major Course Requirements

The Joint Major in Business, Philosophy and the Law blends critical thinking and reasoning from the Philosophy major with the experiential aspects of the Business degree program. The program offers a unique combination of theoretical and practical training that can help prepare students for the LSAT exam or for a career in business, public policy or academia.

Students complete 44-46 lower division and 54 upper division units from Business and Philosophy, earning either a BA or a BBA:

  • Philosophy - 15 lower division; 25 upper division units  
  • Business - 29-31 lower division; 29 upper division units. 

Please consult the calendar entry for full requirements.

"Data from the Law School Admission Council shows philosophy tied with economics as the highest-scoring majors, with students in each of those two disciplines achieving average scores of 159." 

Critical Skills Acquired

Students who complete this program will be able to:

  • Employ core critical reasoning skills, including a) the ability to identify fallacious reasoning and b) the ability to understand and employ the foundational concepts of critical reasoning, including truth, rationality, deduction and induction
  • Articulate and explain fundamental ethical concepts and theories
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the relevance and importance to the law of foundational concepts and debates in ethics, social and political philosophy, logic and epistemology
  • Defend an original argument against objections
  • Demonstrate the ability to engage in independent research, including finding relevant primary and secondary sources, and expositing and assessing them
  • Demonstrate an understanding of core business concepts, including how ethics and the law are interwoven, how torte and contract law are fundamental to business organizations' relations and how these concepts impact human resource decisions
  • Identify fundamental ways in which business practice intersects with legal theories and the application of the law

Program Requirements and Core Courses

Please consult the calendar entry for full requirements.

Philosophy Lower Division Requirements 

15 lower division units (at least), including:

One of:

And all of:

Please note, these do not include requirements for admission to the Beedie School of Business BBA program. The Philosophy Student Advisor (see below) can help with course selection and program planning.

BBA Admission Requirements and Core Courses (Business)

In addition to courses required to gain entry to the Philosophy Joint Major program, students must gain entry to the BBA program and satisfy the Business Upper Division Requirements.

Please see the Beedie School of Business website for full details.

“To remain competitive, Cuban advises ditching degrees that teach specific skills or professions and opting for degrees that teach you to think in a big picture way, like philosophy.”

Mark Cuban says studying philosophy may soon be worth more than computer science: CNBC (2017)

Joint Major FAQs

Q: Can I use courses that count toward this Joint Major to count toward a Certificate?
Yes. Courses used  for the Joint Major may also count toward a certificate.  

Q: Can I use courses that count toward this Joint Major to count toward another minor or major?
A: No. Upper division courses cannot be used for two majors, joint majors or minors.

Q: How do I apply?
A: You can apply through the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, or through the Beedie School of Business as long as you satisfy entry requirements for both.

Program Advisor, Joint Major

Undergraduate Advisor

Mr. Jay Leardi
Office: Office: WMC 4604 
Phone: 778.782.5096  
Email: philcomm@sfu.ca

Mr. Leardi handles program declarations, course enrollments and withdrawals, program requirements, general advising and administrative issues.

To book an advising appointment: 


For help with declarations, degree progress check-ins, enrollment, course permissions, or quick questions, contact Jay by email at philcomm@sfu.ca. Please include your student number.


Philosophy and Law? Philosophy and Business?

Don't just take our word for it...here's what others are saying about how a Philosophy degree can boost your career.

Image attribution: Wall St. bull by Alankitassigments CC BY-SA 4.0], from Wikimedia Commons