Why study Philosophy?

Traditionally, philosophy is defined as rational inquiry into first causes and first principles; it considers comprehensive explanations and the most basic truths presupposed by every form of human knowing. For example, philosophers seek to understand reason, logic, truth, nature, life, being, goodness, and the human person, among many other topics. The philosophy major at Aquinas College gives students the opportunity to pursue this discipline in an intellectually rigorous program inspired by the insights and method of St. Thomas Aquinas.

Students and faculty from all majors engage weekly in Philosophical discussion via the Socratic Club, one of Aquinas’ most popular student organizations.

Meet the Faculty

Ben SmithBenjamin L. Smith, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Philosophy
(615) 297-7545 x448
Ph.D., University of St. Thomas – Houston
M.A., Catholic University of America

Dr. Smith is the founder and faculty sponsor of the Socratic Club. His interests include Ancient and Medieval Philosophy, Political Philosophy, and Logic.


Sister Elinor Gardner, O.P.
Sister Elinor Gardner, O.P., Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Philosophy
(615) 297-7545 x550
Ph.D., Boston College
B.A., Saint Anselm College

Sister Elinor has been a member of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia since 2003 and has been on the faculty at Aquinas since 2013. Her interests are in Ethics and the philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

Office of the School of Arts & Sciences:

4210 Harding Pike
Nashville, TN 37205
(615) 297-7545 ext. 609
Fax: (615) 783-0562

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If you want to learn how to think, not only what to think, then Arts & Sciences at Aquinas College is the place to be. It provides a unique environment where you will be able to grow intellectually and spiritually, preparing you for anything the future could bring.

- Arts & Sciences Student

"The faculty is so nice and enthusiastic! They are always willing to help."

- Abbey

The professors are superb. We have small class sizes and a close community and family feel. It fosters human flourishing. We love it!

- Arts & Sciences Student

The Aquinas College program enables you to engage in course material in an in depth way because of the small class sizes and the teachers’ attention to detail.

- Arts & Sciences Student

"It has been a place where I have been able to get involved, meet fun people, and be challenged academically."

- Mary W.
Aquinas Student