Department Courses

Courses

PHI 104 - Critical Reasoning (3)

The purpose of this course is to help students learn how to analyze, critique, and construct arguments. It will enhance the student's ability to read, reason, and write clearly. In this course we will look at visual media, including TV news, newspapers, and short essays by philosophers and analyze them according to what constitutes a well-reasoned argument and what does not.

PHI 150 - Introduction to Philosophy (3)

Introductory study of the principal areas and problems of philosophy, including the nature and methods of philosophical analysis, mind and matter, meaning and knowledge, appearance and reality, the existence of God, and moral responsibility.

Prerequisite or Co-requisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 195 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for freshmen. Students may enroll in 195 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

PHI 201 - Introduction to Logic (3)

Introductory study of the basic concepts of logic, the rules of valid inference, formal and informal fallacies, and basic symbolic logic.

Prerequisite or Corequisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 240 - Applied Ethics (4)

This course enables students to use theories and concepts from moral philosophy to make well-reasoned ethical judgments, and to apply those judgments to promote social justice. Each section will focus on a central ethical issue, which may vary from section to section, and will draw content from multiple disciplines. Students will engage in experiential learning activities, such as service learning, to connect theoretical content with real world applications of ethics. This course may be cross-listed with specific sections of GSR 240.

Prerequisite: GSR 150

PHI 257 - Moral Philosophy (3)

Study of questions relating to value judgments, such as “What makes actions right or wrong?” and “What are the components of a good life?” This course covers the principles and methods of moral reasoning. Students will compare and evaluate various ethical theories, and use them to examine and debate classic problems and current controversies.

Prerequisite or Corequisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 290 - Ethics and Health Care (3)

This course is an introduction to the field of medical ethics and the kinds of decisions individuals and families make about health care and treatment options. Students will look at current issues such as kinds of treatment and their effects, allocation of health care resources, ethical issues of health care professionals, managed care decisions, and end of life decisions. Students will apply philosophical theories of ethics to these issues and develop perspectives on health care decision making.

Prerequisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 295 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for sophomores. Students may enroll in 295 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

PHI 300 - Metaphysics and Epistemology (3)

Study of the nature of reality and our knowledge thereof. Questions for consideration include: Is there a "real world" that is different from the way things appear? What are properties? Do humans ever freely choose their actions? Is there such a thing as truth? How does evidence justify belief? Can we really know anything?

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or the equivalent; one course in philosophy.

PHI 311 - History of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy (3)

Survey of Western philosophical thought from the pre-Socratics to Thomas Aquinas.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or equivalent, and one course in philosophy; or permission of instructor

PHI 312 - History of Renaissance and Early Modern Philosophy (3)

Survey of Western philosophical thought from Bacon to Kant.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or equivalent, and one course in philosophy; or permission of instructor

PHI 313 - History of Late Modern and Contemporary Philosophy (3)

A survey of Western philosophical thought from Hegel to Wittgenstein.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or equivalent, and one course in philosophy; or permission of instructor

PHI 318 - Social and Political Philosophy (3)

Study of major social and political philosophies, including explanation and discussion of the principal ideas of Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Locke, Hegel, Marx, and the Founding Fathers.

Prerequisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 320 - Topics in Ethics (3)

The study of topics relating to ethics that are not covered in depth in the regular departmental course offerings. Topics may include moral theory, moral psychology, applied ethics, and controversial social issues.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or the equivalent; one course in philosophy; or permission of the instructor

PHI 325 - Philosophy of Religion (3)

Study of the nature of religious knowledge, grounds for belief in God, immortality, the problem of evil, and morality and religion.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or the equivalent; one course in philosophy.

PHI 341 - Business Ethics (3)

This course is cross-listed and is otherwise known as PHI 341. It introduces the student to the normative theories of moral philosophy as they apply to free enterprise market systems, corporations and other organizations. Students use case studies and current events to critically assess how to resolve moral issues commonly faced by managers, employees, marketers, and consumers.

Prerequisite: ENG 102 or the equivalent.

PHI 359 - Philosophy of Punishment (3)

A critical study of the major theories justifying the punishment of criminals, including retributivism, consequentialism, and hybrid and alternative approaches. Arguments about the appropriateness of certain punishments, such as the death penalty and felon disenfranchisement, will also be considered. Emphasis will be on analysis and evaluation of complex texts and on ethical debate.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or the equivalent; one course in philosophy or sociology

PHI 395 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for juniors. Students may enroll in 395 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

PHI 410 - American Philosophy (3)

Survey of American philosophy, including basic ideas of Edwards, the Founding Fathers, Emerson, Thoreau, Peirce, James, Dewey, Whitehead, and representatives of contemporary thought.

Prerequisite: GSR 150 or the equivalent

PHI 415 - Great Thinkers in Philosophy (3)

An in-depth study of one or two related major philosophers. The philosophical thinkers will vary by semester. This course will include analyzing the philosopher's own works as well as commentaries and criticisms by others.

Prerequisite: PHI 311 or 312 or 313; or permission of the instructor

PHI 450 - Bioethics and the Deaf Community (3)

Bioethics is a branch of applied ethics, which in turn is a part of the philosophical field of ethics. Bioethics applies ethical theory to issues in the biological sciences, including scientific research and healthcare. This course introduces major theoretical approaches to bioethics and applies them to topics of interest to the deaf community, including (but not limited to) eugenics, cochlear implant surgery, and genetic technology. Bioethics theories and concepts covered will include informed consent, research ethics, individual and group rights, surrogate decision-making, quality of life, genetic enhancement versus gene therapy, and wrongful life. The potential impact of new and emerging technologies on the deaf community will also be discussed.

Prerequisites: GSR 150 or the equivalent; one course in philosophy.

PHI 493 - Senior Research Paper (3)

Students will research and write a high quality formal philosophy paper, approximately 20 - 25 pages in length, on a topic determined in consultation with the instructor. The thesis shall be reviewed by, and defended before, a committee of at least three members of the faculty, including the instructor.

Prerequisites: Philosophy majors only; 15 credit hours in philosophy, senior standing and permission of the department chair

PHI 494 - Senior Thesis (3)

A course of intensified research and the writing of a thesis, approximately 50 pages in length, on a topic determined in consultation with the instructor. The thesis shall be reviewed by, and defended before, a committee of at least three members of the faculty, including the instructor.

Prerequisites: Philosophy majors only; 15 credit hours in philosophy, senior standing, PHI 499, and permission of the department chair

PHI 495 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for seniors who are majors or minors. Students may enroll in 495 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor

PHI 499 - Independent Study (1-3)

Study of special problems in philosophy through extensive reading, independent research, and writing. Problems to be considered and materials to be covered will be determined in consultation with the instructor.

Prerequisites: 12 hours of philosophy and permission of the department chair

REL 150 - Introduction to Religion (3)

A survey of major ways to study religion. The survey includes the approaches of history of religions, religion in relation to culture, the study of sacred texts, and religion as individual experience.

REL 195 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for freshmen. Students may enroll in 195 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

REL 201 - World Religions (3)

The study of the world's great living religions. Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism will be presented and discussed in their historical and sociocultural perspectives.

REL 202 - Sacred Texts (3)

A comparative survey of the sacred texts of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism,Buddhism, and Chinese Religions. Includes an examination of historical, doctrinal, and contemporary perspectives on these texts

REL 210 - Religion and Literature (3)

A study of the religious elements of various kinds of contemporary literature, including drama, poetry, essays, inspirational writing, and the novel. Students will be expected both to analyze the literature they read and to think about it from their own point of view.

REL 295 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for sophomores. Students may enroll in 295 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

REL 310 - American Indian Spirituality and Worldviews (3)

A general introduction to American Indian spiritual worldviews with attention to the practices of specific nations in North America. Particular attention is given to the impact of European contact with American Indian nations and the continued struggle for American Indian sovereignty. Includes beadworking and visits to the National Museum of the American Indian.

Course Fee: $25.00

REL 320 - African Traditional Religions (3)

An overview of historical and contemporary African traditional religions with attention to the practices of specific peoples. Attention is given to the impact of colonialism and how the variegated religious practices of the worldwide African diaspora are influenced by African Traditional Religious worldviews.

REL 355 - Religion in American Society (3)

Exploration of issues of religion that are unique to the American experience including: historical and contemporary religious pluralism; uniquely American sects such as the Shaker, Amish, and Mormon traditions; and the rise of secular humanism, atheism, and "spiritual but not religious" in American society.

REL 395 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for juniors. Students may enroll in 395 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

REL 410 - Mysticisms (3)

Exploration of mysticism in historical and contemporary perspectives. Includes an overview of the mystical branches of major world religious traditions as well as other forms of mysticism including tribal mysticism, nature mysticism, and spiritualist traditions.

REL 420 - Buddha, Jesus, Muhammad (3)

A comparative study of the life and teachings of Jesus, Muhammad, and the Buddha. Historical research into the lives of these religious figures will be compared with traditional and contemporary views held by adherents of Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam.

REL 495 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for seniors who are majors or minors. Students may enroll in 495 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

REL 499 - Independent Study (1-3)

Intensive supervised study and research on topics of the student's selection.

Prerequisite: Permission of the department chair