Philosophy Courses (PHIL)

  1. 100 The Examined Life
  2. 101 Philosophy for Living
  3. 103 Introduction to Ethics
  4. 202 Everyday Logic
  5. 203 Ethical Theory and Practice
  6. 204 Minds, Knowledge, and Education
  7. 205 The Philosophical Athlete
  8. 207 Philosophy and Modern Literature
  9. 212 Philosophy of Sex, Love, and Friendship
  10. 209 Topics in Philosophy
  11. 308 Applied Agricultural Ethics
  12. 311 Philosophical Foundations of the Olympic Games
  13. 319 Modern Political Theory
  14. 325 The Good Life: Ancient Greek and Hellenistic Philosophy
  15. 332 Faith, Reason, and Experience: Medieval and Modern Philosophy
  16. 333 Knowledge and Existence: 19th and 20th Century Continental Philosophy
  17. 362 Philosophy of Religion
  18. 365 Philosophy of Science
  19. 401/402 Seminar in Philosophy
  20. 475 Senior Seminar in Philosophy
  21. 490 Topics in Philosophy

100 The Examined Life

4 Credits

This course introduces students to philosophy as an approach to life by examining the lives and writings of prominent philosophers. Students are encouraged to develop a personal philosophy of life by exploring such issues as the nature of ourselves and our world, the limits and possibilities of human knowledge, and how we ought to live.

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101 Philosophy for Living

4 Credits

This course explores diverse views on major problems in philosophy. Some of those problems include: “What is the best way to lead our lives?” “What is the best form of government?” “Is it always right to obey authority?” “Do we have free will?” “How do we tell the difference between right and wrong?”

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103 Introduction to Ethics

4 Credits

This course is a critical examination of major ethical theories and several contemporary moral and social issues. It examines various methods for solving moral problems and applies defensible ethical theories to such contemporary issues as: abortion, capital punishment, war, terrorism, genetic engineering, cloning, homosexuality and animal rights.

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202 Everyday Logic

4 Credits

This is a basic introduction to logic, which concentrates on finding, correctly analyzing, and evaluating arguments. Students learn to identify and avoid common logical fallacies and faulty reasoning.

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203 Ethical Theory and Practice

4 Credits

This course is an in-depth study of major philosophical ethical theories and their practical application. Original works covered will likely include Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics; John Stuart Mill’s Utilitarianism; Immanuel Kant’s Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals , and John Rawls’ Theory of Justice . Moral issues dealt with would likely include: animal rights; environmental ethics; genetic engineering (e.g. cloning), and professional ethics (e.g., business, law, and medicine).

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204 Minds, Knowledge, and Education

4 Credits

This course explores enduring philosophical issues about the nature of the human mind, the limitations and possibilities of knowledge, and the role and purpose of education. Each issue is approached from at least three different philosophical angles, representing important figures and theories in the history of philosophy — ancient, modern and contemporary.

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205 The Philosophical Athlete

4 Credits

This course is motivated by the question: How can we learn from sport in a way that makes us better personally, ethically and as citizens? Students take a critical and analytical approach to the athletic experience. They seek to maximize their understanding of sport in their lives and their lives in sport as a way of encouraging reflection on personal ethics and values.

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207 Philosophy and Modern Literature

4 Credits

This course considers basic problems in philosophy through an analysis of some of the 19th and early 20th century literature of western Europe. Students read such novels as Albert Camus’ The Stranger, Hardy’s Jude the Obscure and Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment.

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212 Philosophy of Sex, Love, and Friendship

4 Credits

This course examines various philosophical theories of sex, love and friendship. Texts will range from ancient to contemporary. Such issues as monogamy, adultery, heterosexuality, homosexuality and differences between love and friendship are discussed.

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209 Topics in Philosophy

4 Credits

This course is a philosophical treatment of some selected issue (e.g., women, food, the environment) that emphasizes the skills of logical reasoning, constructive dialogue and argumentative writing.

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308 Applied Agricultural Ethics

4 Credits

This course examines the ethical issues in contemporary agriculture. In this course students address the ethical implications of the way we produce and consume food.

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311 Philosophical Foundations of the Olympic Games

4 Credits

In this course students examine whether the Olympic Games are living up to their own ideals. Students seek to understand the personal, educational and political ideals of Olympism on a philosophical level. They examine the historical and contemporary reality of the games from the perspectives of athletes, spectators and society.

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319 Modern Political Theory

4 Credits

A study of the evolution of political theory from Machiavelli to Nietzsche, emphasizing themes about the nature of politics, the social contract, and the foundations of democratic theory.

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325 The Good Life: Ancient Greek and Hellenistic Philosophy

4 Credits

In this course students survey the development of ancient thought from the Presocratics to the Roman Hellenists, within its historical context. There is an emphasis on the Classical Greeks. Topics include epistemology, education, ethics, religion, metaphysics and social and political thought.

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332 Faith, Reason, and Experience: Medieval and Modern Philosophy

4 Credits

This course surveys the development of medieval, renaissance and modern thought from Early Christian Philosophy to Modern British Empiricism, focusing on the relationships between faith, reason and experience.

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333 Knowledge and Existence: 19th and 20th Century Continental Philosophy

4 Credits

This is a survey of the development of 19th and 20th century continental thought, focused on the shifting emphasis from what we can know to how we should live.

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362 Philosophy of Religion

4 Credits

This is a critical study of religious experience, language and claims to religious knowledge. Issues include God’s existence, religious faith, the problem of evil, mystical experience and religious pluralism. The course compares diverging conceptions and evaluations of religion while encouraging students to develop their personal views.

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365 Philosophy of Science

4 Credits

This course is a critical study of the methodology of the natural and social sciences, and the philosophical problems which confront them. The course compares diverging conceptions and evaluations of science while encouraging students to develop personal views on the issues.

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401/402 Seminar in Philosophy

4 Credits

This course is a detailed study of a person, topic or historical movement in philosophy. Skills emphasized include clear argumentative writing, logical analysis, constructive oral discussion and debate.

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475 Senior Seminar in Philosophy

4 Credits

A detailed study of a person, topic, or historical movement in philosophy. Skills emphasized include clear argumentative writing, logical analysis, constructive oral discussion and debate. Texts and topics will be decided annually, based on the interests of the participants.

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490 Topics in Philosophy

4 Credits

This is an advanced philosophical treatment of some selected issue that compares diverging conceptions and evaluations while encouraging students to develop their personal views. Emphasizes the use skills of logical reasoning, constructive dialogue and argumentative writing.

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