Philosophy

Information

Information

Larry Herzberg, Chairperson

Department Office: Radford 315
Department Telephone: (920) 424-1366

Code 76 or PHIL

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Faculty

Faculty

Burr      Kyburg
Carlin Wagoner
Herzberg
Williams

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Degrees

Degrees

  • Undergraduate: A major in Philosophy can lead to the degree(s): Bachelor of Arts; Bachelor of Science.

  • Graduate: The Department does not offer a graduate program.

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Summary of Fields of Study

Summary of Fields of Study

  1. Goal(s)

  • See the department for a listing of their goal(s).

  • The Major(s)

    • The Department offers a single major, the Philosophy major.

  • The Minor

    • The Department offers one minor: 1) Philosophy - Liberal Arts.

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    Admission/Graduation Requirements

    Admission/Graduation Requirements

    • To be eligible for graduation, students must meet all requirements for the degree being sought in addition to earning a minimum grade point average of 2.00 in all courses required for the Philosophy major or minor. Refer to the following Sections for complete major/minor course requirements.

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    Required Core Courses

    Required Core Courses

    Philosophy

    • Philosophy 101 Elementary Logic 3 cr. or Philosophy 202 Symbolic Logic 3 crs.

    • Philosophy 104 Ethics 3 cr. or 105 Ethics (NW) 3 cr. or Philosophy 106 Honors: Ethics (NW) 3 cr.

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    The Major(s), with Emphases and/or Options

    The Major(s), with Emphases and/or Options

    Philosophy Major

    Recommended for students who seek either a traditional "liberal arts" education, or to prepare for further study in philosophy, law, business, or medicine.  Philosophy deals with fundamental issues that are largely unaddressed by the natural or social sciences, including ways of thinking about the nature of reality, issues regarding ethics and values, and various ways of forming and evaluating arguments.  It specializes in developing such intellectual skills as logical analysis, critical reasoning, and creative thinking. The word "philosophy" comes from the ancient Greek meaning love of wisdom.

    • Required Units (crs.): 34 minimum

    • Required Courses: In addition to the Core Courses: 

      • Philosophy 301 History of Ancient Philosophy
      • Philosophy 305 History of Modern Philosophy
      • Philosophy 475 Philosophy Capstone
    • Electives: (21 crs.) Seven courses consisting of at least one course from each category (Category A-Metaphysics/Epistemology; Category B-Value Theory)

            Category A:  Metaphysics/Epistemology

      • Philosophy 306  Philosophy of Emotion
      • Philosophy 309 Contemporary Philosophy
      • Philosophy 315 Philosophy of Science
      • Philosophy 316 Introduction to Cognitive Science
      • Philosophy 319 Theory of Knowledge
      • Philosophy 322 Philosophy of Language
      • Philosophy 327 Philosophy of Mind
      • Philosophy 331 American Philosophy

             Category B:  Value Theory 

      • Philosophy 205 Ethical Issues in a Diverse Society
      • Philosophy 215 Philosophy of Art
      • Philosophy 225 Philosophy of Love
      • Philosophy 230 Environmental Ethics
      • Philosophy 231 Biomedical Ethics
      • Philosophy 325 Social and Political Philosophy
      • Philosophy 329 Contemporary Ethical Problems
      • Philosophy 330 Business and Ethics
      • Philosophy 345 Philosophy of Law

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    The Minor(s)

    The Minor(s)

    Philosophy (Liberal Arts) Minor

    • Required Units (crs.): 21 minimum

    • Required Courses: In addition to the Core Courses:
      • Philosophy 301 or Philosophy 305
    • Electives (12 crs.) Four courses consisting of at least one course from Category A and B above. 

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    Course Offering(s)

    Course Offering(s)

    Philosophy    101

    3 (crs.)

    Elementary Logic (HU)(XC)

    Analysis of reasoning, deductive and inductive, designed to aid the development of critical thinking. Examples illustrating the use of logical and illogical reasoning drawn from selected exercises and current literature.

     

     

    Philosophy    104

    3 (crs.)

    Ethics  (HU)(XC)

    Analysis of the principal theories of ethics and their practical application to problems concerning the individual and society. Proposed methods of justifying moral principles will be examined. Ethics 105 is the Non-Western Culture version of Ethics 104. Students cannot receive credit for both Philosophy 104 and 105.

     

     

    Philosophy    105

    3 (crs.)

    Ethics (HU)(XC)(NW)

    Analysis of the principal theories of ethics and their practical application to problems concerning the individual and society. Proposed methods of justifying moral principles will be examined. Ethics 105 is the Non-Western Culture version of Ethics 104. Students cannot receive credit for both Philosophy 104 and 105.

     

     

    Philosophy    106

    3 (crs.)

    Honors: Ethics (HU)(XC)(NW)

    Studies the two principal questions of ethics: What is good? and What is the right thing to do? The answers to these two questions which have been given by serious thinkers in the past will be examined and evaluated, and applications will be made to present-day matters. Prerequisites: Enrolled in good standing with The Honors College with prior or concurrent enrollment in HNRS 175. Students cannot earn credit in both an honors course and a non-honors course of the same title.

     

     

    Philosophy    109

    3 (crs.)

    Introduction to Philosophy (HU)(XC)

    A survey of some of the perennial problems of the human enterprise; the nature of reality, of truth, of knowledge, of beauty, of ideal political and social relationships, and of the good life; solutions to these problems offered by the best known Greek, medieval, and modern philosophers.

     

     

    Philosophy    110

    3 (crs.)

    Honors: Introduction to Philosophy (HU)(XC)

    An introduction to philosophical study of perennial problems of knowledge, truth, reality, value, religion, the fine arts, ideal social and political arrangements, and the good life. Solutions to these problems offered by some of the best known figures in the history of philosophy. Prerequisites: Enrolled in good standing with The Honors College with prior or concurrent enrollment in HNRS 175. Students cannot earn credit in both an honors course and a non-honors course of the same title.

     

     

    Philosophy    202

    3 (crs.)

    Symbolic Logic

    An examination of the formal characteristics of deductive inference and deductive systems. Particular attention will be given to truth functions, general quantification theory and the scope and limits of formal logic.

     

     

    Philosophy    205

    3 (crs.)

    Ethical Issues in a Diverse Society (ES)(XC)(HU)

    This course examines a number of moral issues that are currently debated in our society. Among those examined are ones that arise from opposing views of social justice and from difference in cultural and racial perspectives. The role of various ethical theories in clarifying these controversial moral issues is studied. Prerequisite: None.

     

     

    Philosophy    207

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Religion (HU)(XC)

    A critical examination of such problems as the nature of religion, the existence of evil, the existence of God; the nature of religious knowledge, and the relation of reason and religious faith.

     

     

    Philosophy    210

    3 (crs.)

    Ethics and Community (HU)(XC)

    Everyone has opinions about right and wrong; good and bad. At the very lease we all want people to be good to us. But what does this mean exactly? This course addresses age-old questions about right and wrong, with an emphasis on community: What is the relationship between individual morality and the ability for a community to thrive? What duties might a community have to its members that are separate from the duties of individuals? Do different cultures have different moral duties or are we all bound by the same moral principles, whatever the local conventions happen to be? What is the origin of morality?

     

     

    Philosophy    211

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy in India (NW)(XC)(HU)

    A scrutiny of Indian philosophic systems and arguments from the Upanishads, Buddhism, Jainism, and Materialism to Gandhi and Radhakrishnan. Satisfies General Education requirement of 3 units (crs.) in non-Western studies.

     

     

    Philosophy    215

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Art (HU)(XC)

    The major philosophies of artistic experience, creation, and criticism. Particular attention to the devising of standards of evaluating works of art.

     

     

    Philosophy    225

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Love (HU)(XC)

    An examination of philosophical views of the nature and definition of love and its role and importance in human life.

     

     

    Philosophy    230

    3 (crs.)

    Environmental Ethics (HU)(XC)

    A survey of topics in environmental ethics. Topics may include: wilderness conservation, endangered species, hunting/agriculture, minerals/pollution, population, climate change, and others.

     

     

    Philosophy    231

    3 (crs.)

    Biomedical Ethics (HU)(XC)

    An examination of ethical issues in various aspects of the life sciences and public health care such as medicine, eugenics, birth control, behavior control, experiment and consent, health care delivery, death and dying, etc.

     

     

    Philosophy    301

    3 (crs.)

    History of Ancient Western Philosophy

    Major ancient philosophers from the Ionians to St. Augustine. The relevance of their thought to contemporary philosophical problems. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    305

    3 (crs.)

    History of Modern Western Philosophy

    Major Western philosophers from the Renaissance to the close of the nineteenth century. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    306

    3 (crs.)

    The Philosophy of Emotion

    A survey of influential philosophical views of emotion.  Topics include "feeling-center" versus "cognitivist" theories of emotion, the relationship between emotion and other sorts of mental state, how types of emotion differ from one another, the evaluation of emotional states in terms of reasonableness or appropriateness, and the value of emotion in a human life.  Prerequisite: One prior philosophy course or consent of instructor.

     

     

    Philosophy    307

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy in Literature

    An examination of important philosophical problems found in selected novels and plays.  Works by such authors as Dostoevsky, Sartre, and Voltaire are studied.

     

     

    Philosophy    309

    3 (crs.)

    Contemporary Philosophy

    A critical examination of some of the important philosophical movements of the last hundred years, such as pragmatism, logical atomism, logical positivism, linguistic analysis, and existentialism. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    312

    3 (crs.)

    Existentialism and Other Movements in Continental Philosophy

    A philosophical examination of the major themes in existentialist and other European movements such as phenomenology, structuralism, and critical theory, with readings from central figures such as Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre, Jaspers, Derrida, Habermas, and Foucault. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    315

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Science

    The nature and function of science.  The scientific method and the growth of several important scientific theories. Philosophical issues involved in the basic concepts and procedures of science and the problems created by the growth of science.  Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    316

    3 (crs.)

    Introduction to Cognitive Science

    Cognitive Science is an interdisciplinary study of the nature of human thought. Philosophical, psychological, linguistic, and artificial intelligence approaches to reasoning, perception and cognition are examined. Prerequisite: One prior philosophy course or consent of instructor.

     

     

    Philosophy    319

    3 (crs.)

    Theory of Knowledge

    A study of recent and important theories of knowledge. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    320

    3 (crs.)

    Metaphysics

    An examination of fundamental ideas about what and how things exist, including possibility, causation, space, time, the mind-body relation, determinism, free will, personal identity, and so on. Prerequisite: One course in philosophy, or consent of instructor.

     

     

    Philosophy    322

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Language

    A philosophical scrutiny of the nature and functions of language, theories of meaning, private languages, and linguistic relativity with emphasis on the writings of such influential linguistic philosophers as Wittgenstein, Ryle, Austin and others.  Prerequisites: One prior philosophy course or consent of instructor.

     

     

    Philosophy    325

    3 (crs.)

    Social and Political Philosophy

    Philosophical analyses of key concepts and issues related to the nature and proper governance of human societies. Such issues as the purpose of society, economic and social justice, political freedom, and the basis of law, rights, and authority will be examined. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    327

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Mind

    A study of the nature of the mind and its philosophical implications: What is the relationship between mind and body? What is the relevance of scientific investigations for philosophical questions about 'mental' phenomena?  How is the study of mind and consciousness essential to philosophy itself since the time of Plato? Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    329

    3 (crs.)

    Contemporary Ethical Problems

    An intensive and rigorous analysis of one or more of the central issues in ethical theory, or of one or more of the central moral philosophers of the contemporary period. This is essentially a continuation of Philosophy 105 at a more advanced level.  Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    330

    3 (crs.)

    Business and Ethics

    An examination of the ethical problems facing different aspects of American business such as the morality of a market economy, the social responsibility of corporations and the honesty of advertising. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    331

    3 (crs.)

    American Philosophy

    This course will examine critically the allegedly distinctive American philosophy of Pragmatism from C.S. Peirce, William James, and John Dewey through revisions and criticisms by some contemporary American philosophers.  Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    340

    3 (crs.)

    Climate Justice (GS)

    This course addresses climate change from a global perspective, using the tools of ethics (broadly construed to include some philosophy, psychology, politics, gender studies, literature, and religion). By the end of the course, students should be able to discuss, analyze, and evaluate the claims of justice, duty, and effective action as they relate to climate change and its effects around the world.

     

     

    Philosophy    345

    3 (crs.)

    Philosophy of Law

    An examination of philosophical issues centering on law--to include topics such as the origin and nature of law, truth and legal interpretation, the role of evidence in legal determinations, the moral justification of legal punishment and coercion, fairness and the law, and the relations between moral and legal rights and duties. Prerequisite: One prior course in Philosophy.

     

     

    Philosophy    350

    3 (crs.)

    Computing Ethics

    This course focuses on ethical issues involved in computing in the age of the internet, including privacy, plagiarism, intellectual property rights, piracy, security, confidentiality and many other issues. We will use several moral theories to investigate these issues, and carefully analyze a professional code of ethics from a variety of perspectives. We will also discuss the logical structure of ethical arguments and positions, the quality and integrity of decisions and inferences based on data, and how important cases have shaped the legality, if not the morality, of computing in the age of the internet. Case studies will be used to further investigate these issues. Prerequisite: One prior philosophy course, or permission of the instructor.

     

     

    Philosophy    426

    1 - 3 (crs.)

    Selected Topics in Philosophy

    The intensive study of a topic not covered in the curriculum. Information about a Selected Topics course announced in the Timetable can be obtained at the Department of Philosophy office. This course may be repeated with different content.

     

     

    Philosophy    446

    1 - 3 (crs.)

    Independent Study

    See Independent Study under Course and Academic Advisement Policies information for general course description, general prerequisites, and proper contract form requirements.

     

     

    Philosophy    456

    1 - 3 (crs.)

    Related Readings

    See Related Readings under Course and Academic Advisement Policies information for general course description, general prerequisites, and proper contract form requirements.

     

     

    Philosophy    474

    1 - 6 (crs.)

    Honors: Thesis

    Honors thesis projects include any advanced independent endeavor in the student's major field of study e.g. a written thesis, scientific experiment or research project, or creative arts exhibit or production. Proposals (attached to Independent Study contract) must show clear promise of honors level work and be approved by a faculty sponsor. Course title for transcript will be Honors Thesis. Completed projects will be announced and presented to interested students and faculty. Prerequisite: The Honors College and junior standing.  Maximum of 6 units (crs.).

     

     

    Philosophy    475

    1 (crs.)

    Philosophy Capstone

    The Philosophy Capstone is a 1-credit course that must be taken in conjunction with any 3-credit 300- or 400- level philosophy course of the student's choosing. The two courses must be taken at the same time, in either the Fall or Spring semester. The student will write a 10-15 page research paper consistent with the 300- or 400-level course's content, and discuss that research with other Capstone students at the end of the academic year. Special arrangements will be made for students taking the course in the Fall, if they will be graduating that same term. Prerequisites: 24 credits in Philosophy or consent of instructor.

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