Online philosophy degrees are becoming an increasingly popular option for those who want to know a thing or two about the long history of Western thought from Socrates to Wittgenstein. Online philosophy degrees might not be the best option for people who want to make a career in the field.
That being said, an online degree can serve more than one purpose, not the least of which is because people can unlock quite a few possibilities that they had never known about. Learning philosophy provides people with a new perspective on the world, something which is important in and of itself.
Many of the people who choose to get online degrees are working professionals. These individuals are not looking to make their lives in the field that they are studying, or at least this is not expected of them. Rather they are interested in pursuing knowledge for its own sake.
And knowledge for its own sake it something which is always worth pursuing. Socrates could have told anyone that. Though most people are not aware of this, Socrates was not a professional philosopher. Even though the comedian Woody Allen once suggested that Socrates might have been a philosopher because it “beat picking olives”, the truth is that Socrates actually probably knew what it was like to pick olives.
More than that, Socrates had been a soldier and made his living as a stone mason. He was the perfect example of the layman’s philosopher. Online philosophy degrees can give people who are interested in philosophy a chance to participate in the great conversation in the same way. Learning about philosophy online might not be the option that everyone is looking for. Some people might still prefer the brick and mortar school.
But the internet is a very broad sphere of knowledge and opportunity. And it is always a good place to learn something new. It is, in a way, the world’s largest classroom and it is just waiting to be fully populated by its two billion students and the millions more that will be added in the next decade.