Philosophy Courses

PHIL-100 Introduction to Philosophy

An introduction to philosophical issues in epistemology, metaphysics, and value theory including such topics as the nature and sources of knowledge, freedom and determinism, the relation of mind and body, personal identity, the relation of knowledge and values. Offered annually. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-155 Special Topics

See department for course description.
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-202 Ethics and Society

An introduction to ethical theories and their application to a variety of moral problems and contemporary ethical issues. We will pay special attention to questions of personal conduct. How should I live? How do my personal choices affect society? What values should guide my decision-making? What would it mean for me to live an ethical life? Also listed as PSJ 202. Offered annually. Counts toward core requirement: Civic Engagement. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-205 Ancient Philosophy

A study of the major issues and personalities that constituted and shaped early western thought, from the pre-socratics (sixth century BCE) through the Hellenistic and Roman era (fourth century CE). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-206 Medieval Philosophy

A study of the major issues and personalities that constituted and shaped medieval western thought from the fourth century through the fifteenth century. Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-207 Early Modern Phil 1500-1750

A study of the major issues and personalities that constituted and shaped modern western thought from the sixteenth century through the eighteenth century. Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-208 Late Modern Phil 1750-1900

A study of the major issues and personalities that constituted and shaped modern western thought from the mid-eighteenth century through the nineteenth century. Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-212 Language and Logic

A survey of formal syntactic and semantic features of language, including topics such as sentential logic, predicate logic, axiomatic systems and set theory, and nonclassical extensions such as multivalued logics. Also listed as MATH 212. Does not meet Humanities core requirement (2010 catalog). Offered annually. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-221 Sports Ethics

This course examines the principles of ethical reasoning as applied to sport. Issues relevant to a wide range of areas in competitive and recreational sport are covered, such as moral reasoning, sportsmanship and gamesmanship, sport violence and intimidation, commercialization, racial and gender equity, as well as technological and ergogenic aids. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00

PHIL-240 Human Rights

This course offers an in-depth investigation of conceptual and political issues related to rights and human rights, including such issues as the source and extent of rights, the nature of rights- bearers, the justification of rights claims, the legitimacy and means of implementing universal human rights and critiques and evaluations of the social role of rights. Also listed as PSJ 240. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00

PHIL-255 Special Topics

See department for course description.
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-275 Internship

See department for details. Internship contract required.
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-295 Independent Study

See department for details. Independent study contract required.
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-303 American Philosophy

A survey of major themes, movements, and figures of American philosophical thought from the seventeenth century to the present. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-304 Philosophy of Art

An investigation of the arts, including such topics as the nature of art, the metaphysics of art (e.g., form, expression, art as process vs. art as object) the epistemology of art (e.g., the locus of meaning in art, what constitutes artistic understanding, can art be "true"), and the axiology of art (e.g., art and morals, the social significance of art, how can art be evaluated). Besides general philosophical issues connected to art, particular arts will be considered (e.g., painting, dance, music, theatre, film, architecture). Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-305 Asian Philosophy

A study of Asian philosophical texts both historical and contemporary from various cultures, focusing for example on the Hinduism of India, the Taoism of China, and the Zen Buddhism of Japan. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Counts toward core requirement: Comparative Cultural or International Perspectives. Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-307 Ethics, Medicine & Health Care

A study of some ethical issues connected with medicine and health care: medical fallibility, cultural sensitivity in medical services, disability issues, economic and social inequalities, cultural relativism & medical intervention, racism, global health problems, and pharmaceutical issues. Also listed as DS 307. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-309 Philosophy of Religion

An investigation of the nature of religion and the truth of religious claims as interpreted by both historical and contemporary philosophers and theologians. Topics may include among others: the existence and nature of God, the quality and significance of religious experiences, and the origins of religion as a natural phenomenon. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-310 Philosophy of Science

An investigation of issues and concepts within science and about science, including such topics as the nature of explanation, the nature of confirmation, the nature of scientific progress, the relations among science, technology, values and society. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-314 Philosophy of Mind

An investigation of the nature of mind and consciousness as interpreted by contemporary philosophers of mind. What is consciousness? Who has it? How is it produced? Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-315 Philosophy of Law

An introduction to philosophical issues within and about law, including such topics as the nature of law, legal reasoning, liberty/rights and the limits of law, the nature of legal responsibility, the nature and justification of legal punishment. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-321 Environmental Ethics

A study of the key concepts in environmental ethics, such as biodiversity loss, corporate responsibility, animal rights, over-population, and environmental racism. Also listed as ENV 321. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-326 Animal Ethics

An investigation of the relationship between human and non-human animals. What is the moral standing of non-human animals? We will study both the theoretical and practical facets of this question by focusing on the ethical issues raised by animal experiments and factory farming. Also listed as ENV 326. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits). Offered alternate years. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00

PHIL-355 Special Topics

See department for course description. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing or above (30 or more completed credits).
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-395 Independent Study

See department for details. Independent study contract required.
Credits: 1.00

PHIL-403 Twentieth Century Philosophy

An intensive study of the major issues and personalities in twentieth-century philosophy, in such movements and schools as pragmatism, existentialism, phenomenology, positivism, linguistic analysis, structuralism, poststructuralism, and critical theory. Prerequisite: PHIL 208 plus one other course in the history of philosophy: PHIL 205, PHIL 206, or PHIL 207. Offered intermittently. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-405 Topics in Moral Philosophy

An intensive study in a specific topic in moral philosophy. Prerequisite: PHIL 202. Offered alternate years. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00

PHIL-420 Seminar in Philosophy

A concentrated study of various issues in philosophy, including such topics as philosophy of language, advanced logic, aesthetics, environmental ethics, moral philosophy, in-depth analysis of particular works or philosophers, etc. Prerequisite: 10 credits in PHIL courses. Offered intermittently. 4 credits.
Credits: 4.00

PHIL-475 Internship

See department for details. Internship contract required.
Credits: 0.00

PHIL-494 Senior Seminar I

Required of all philosophy majors in the fall of the senior year; in the spring majors are required to enroll in PHIL 495. The purpose of this seminar is to prepare the student to produce a philosophical essay of significant length and quality, a senior thesis. This project will require researching, writing, defending, and perhaps publishing the essay. In PHIL 494 students will research and prepare a substantial prospectus for the senior thesis; students will also read, discuss and critique the work of other members of the seminar. Prerequisite: 18 credits in philosophy, PHIL-212, and one course in the history of PHIL (PHIL-205, PHIL-206, PHIL-207, or PHIL-208), each with a C- or better. Offered annually in the fall term. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00

PHIL-495 Senior Seminar II

Required of all philosophy majors in the senior year; in the fall majors are required to enroll in PHIL 494. The purpose of this seminar is for each student to produce a philosophical essay of significant length and quality, a senior thesis. This project will require researching, writing, defending, and perhaps publishing the essay. In PHIL 495 students will write and defend the senior thesis; students will also read, discuss, and critique the work of other members of the seminar. Prerequisite: PHIL 494. Instructor's consent required. Offered Spring semester. 2 credits.
Credits: 2.00