Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

The Pacific University Undergraduate Philosophy Conference is an annual, two-day conference held each spring, attracting students from across the country and internationally. Since 1997, more than 1,400 students from over 350 schools have participated in our conference.

These students represent all 50 U.S. states as well as a number of Canadian provinces and several other countries. All of the participants are undergraduate students, with the exception of the annual keynote address by a renowned philosopher. Past keynote speakers have included Paul Churchland, Hilary Putnam, John Searle, Keith Lehrer, Catherine Elgin, John Perry, Hubert Dreyfus, Jerry Fodor, Alvin Plantinga, Cora Diamond, James Sterba, Peter Kivy, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, and Daniel Dennett.

20th annual Pacific University Undergraduate Philosophy Conference

  • Friday, April 15 through Saturday, April 16, 2016
  • Pacific University — Forest Grove, Ore.
  • Keynote presentation: Elliott Sober (University of Wisconsin-Madison) (Talk: "Ockham's Razor—When Is the Simpler Theory Better?")

The purpose of this conference is to provide a forum for the presentation of philosophical work of undergraduates to their peers.

Submission Guidelines

Papers are required to be of philosophical content, but there are no specific restrictions on subject matter within the arena of philosophical discussion itself. Papers should be approximately 3,000 words (10-12 pages).

Electronic submissions (as Word documents) are required and should be sent to David Boersema at boersema@pacificu.edu. Submissions should include both the paper and an abstract (that is, a 100-200 word summary of the paper).

Submission deadline is Feb. 1, 2016. Final decisions will be made no later than Feb. 20, 2016.

Selected papers from the conference will be published in Volume 7 (2016) of the journal Res Cogitans.

Conference Schedule

Friday, April 15 (Registration and banquet will be in the MPR, in the lower level of Washburn Hall, also called the University Center)
Conference registration 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
Conference banquet 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, April 16 (Meals will be in the MPR, in the University Center; all paper sessions, including the keynote will be in Marsh Hall)
Breakfast 7:00 to 8:00 a.m.
Conference registration 8:00 to 9:00 a.m.
Paper sessions 8:00 to 11:15 a.m.
Keynote presentation 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Conference luncheon 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.
Paper sessions 2:00 to 7:30 p.m.

A full conference schedule with presentation times and location details is available.


Electronic registration is available. Registration fee: $40. Three meals will be provided to registered attendees: Friday night banquet, Saturday breakfast and lunch. The registration fee can also be paid at the conference. Registration can also be done by sending the registration fee via check (made out to "Pacific University") to:

David Boersema, Department of Philosophy
Pacific University
2043 College Way
Forest Grove OR 97116.

For further information, contact David Boersema at the address above.