Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Philosophy B.A.

Philosophy Department
College of Liberal Arts
  • Program Type: Baccalaureate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2017
  • Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
  • Required credits within the major: 30 to 39
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
If you have ever pondered, "Why am I here?" or "What is the meaning of life?" then you have already thought about philosophy. Philosophy poses questions about human endeavors and examines our basic assumptions about everything we think we know. It takes on challenging issues that sometimes defy resolution and trains the brain to think in a rigorous and analytic way about all the possible answers and what's at stake. Philosophy is not just a subject matter but a way of thinking. In your philosophy courses, you will learn about the way that people throughout history have engaged in this kind of thinking with questions such as "Can I really trust my senses to tell me about reality?", "Is anything really morally right or wrong or is it all just relative?", "Do scientific theories tell us the truth about the world or are they tools that are useful for certain purposes?" and "Are some societies more just than others?". You will discover that thinking about these questions with an open mind is deeply satisfying. Philosophical thinking also contributes to a worthwhile life; in the words of Socrates "the unexamined life is not worth living". Of course, life isn't all about having fun thinking. Philosophy is also much more practical than you might think! Because philosophy is so far-reaching, the method it uses for study enhances the study of other fields such as art, math, science, language, and law with tremendous success. It is a great complement to other majors as a second major or a minor. You can find details about good combinations on our website. Also, studying philosophy is a fantastic way to hone your critical thinking and analytic writing skills. You'll learn two types of critical thinking: First, a method for rigorous analysis of arguments. Second, a habit of asking penetrating questions about the hidden assumptions of any position, ideology or practice. You will develop your capacities to conceive of alternative assumptions, evaluate which ones are best and determine where they lead. You'll learn to write papers that clearly demonstrate these skills. And finally, you can reassure your parents about your choice of philosophy with the fact that the skills of critical thinking and analytic writing are highly desirable and sought by graduate programs and employers. Evidence of this includes: • PHIL majors rank first among all majors in law school acceptance rate: 82.4%. • PHIL majors rank first among all majors in verbal and analytic sections of the GRE (and first among humanities majors in the quantitative section) • PHIL majors score higher on the Graduate Management Admissions Test (the test that most MBA programs require) than students in any business major (management, finance, accounting, marketing, etc.) • PHIL majors' salaries increase more over 10 years than most other majors, including marketing and accounting (The Wall Street Journal). • "The present value of the extra earnings that graduates in humanities majors can expect over their lifetime is… $444,700 for English majors, $537,800 for history majors, and $658,900 for philosophy majors" (Forbes). For more information, visit: http://www.philosophy.umn.edu/
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
General Requirements
All students in baccalaureate degree programs are required to complete general University and college requirements including writing and liberal education courses. For more information about University-wide requirements, see the liberal education requirements. Required courses for the major, minor or certificate in which a student receives a D grade (with or without plus or minus) do not count toward the major, minor or certificate (including transfer courses).
Program Requirements
Students are required to complete 4 semester(s) of any second language. with a grade of C-, or better, or S, or demonstrate proficiency in the language(s) as defined by the department or college.
CLA BA degrees require 4 semesters or the equivalent of a second language. CLA BA degrees require 18 upper-division (3xxx-level or higher) credits outside the major designator. These credits must be taken in designators different from the major designator and cannot include courses that are cross-listed with the major designator. The major designator for the Philosophy BA is PHIL. A philosophy major program requires 30 credits, at least 11 of which must be upper division philosophy credits completed at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities campus. No more than 8 credits of PHIL 1xxx may count toward the degree, and at least two 3-or-more-credit courses must be PHIL 4xxx or higher. Students who double-major and choose to complete the senior project in their other major are still responsible for taking 30 total PHIL credits. Students may earn a BA or a minor in philosophy, but not both. All incoming CLA freshmen must complete the First Year Experience course sequence.
Required Courses
Take exactly 4 course(s) totaling 14 - 16 credit(s) from the following:
History of Philosophy
Take exactly 1 course(s) totaling 4 or more credit(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· Logic
Take exactly 1 course(s) totaling 4 or more credit(s) from the following:
· PHIL 1001 - Introduction to Logic [MATH] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 5201 - Symbolic Logic I (4.0 cr)
· ELMS (Epistemology/Philosophy of Language/Metaphysics/Philosophy of Science)
Take exactly 1 course(s) totaling 3 - 4 credit(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3234 - Knowledge and Society (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4101 - Metaphysics (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4105W - Epistemology [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4231 - Philosophy of Language (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4607 - Philosophy of the Biological Sciences (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4605 - Space and Time (3.0 cr)
or PHIL 5605 - Space and Time (3.0 cr)
· Value Theory
Take exactly 1 course(s) totaling 3 - 4 credit(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4330 - Contemporary Moral Theories (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy (3.0 cr)
Philosophy Electives
Students can choose any combination of courses from the Philosophy Electives to reach the 30-credit minimum for the major. Depending on the credit value of the courses taken to fulfill the Required Courses requirement, students will need to take 13-16 credits of electives. Note: No more than 8 credits of PHIL 1xxx can count towards the major.
Aesthetics
Aesthetics is the philosophical study of the arts, especially in regard to such questions as: What is art, and how is it connected to the world? What is the role of beauty in art? Are there objective truths about artistic value? Are there situations in which artistic activity should be restricted or suppressed? Study of aesthetics pairs well with majors in the arts and in art history, as well as in literature and such subjects as sociology, anthropology, psychology and education.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4501 - Principles of Aesthetics (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4510 - Philosophy of the Individual Arts (3.0 cr)
or PHIL 5510 - Philosophy of the Individual Arts (3.0 cr)
Practical/Applied Ethics
Many of the questions we confront in our personal, professional, and civic lives are questions of ethics. Should I buy organically produced food in order to minimize harms to the environment? Should I support affirmative action policies in education or the workplace? Is mass incarceration unjust? Why? Study of ethics pairs well with students who anticipate pursuing professions such as business, education, human resources, law, and medicine.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3301 - Environmental Ethics [ENV] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3305 - Medical Ethics (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
or PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (3.0 cr)
Ethics and Moral Philosophy
In these courses you will explore questions such as: What it is to be a good person? Are there universal principles that distinguish right from wrong? What are our moral obligations? Is morality relative or absolute? Consider taking courses in this area if you are heading for business, law, or medical school, in combination with some courses from the practical ethics group to give you some theoretical background. Ethics courses also pair well with a major in psychology or political science.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 1003W - Introduction to Ethics [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4330 - Contemporary Moral Theories (3.0 cr)
ELM (Epistemology, Language, Metaphysics, Mind)
These courses cover a wide ranging set of issues in contemporary philosophy. In Epistemology, philosophers explore questions such as: What is knowledge? How is knowledge shaped by society and culture? In Metaphysics: Does God exist? Are we free to act the way we choose? In Philosophy of Mind: What is the relationship between the mind and body? What is thinking? In Philosophy of Language: How does language work? What is the relationship between thought and language?
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3231 - Philosophy and Language (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3234 - Knowledge and Society (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3607 - Philosophy of Psychology (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4101 - Metaphysics (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4105W - Epistemology [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4231 - Philosophy of Language (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4615 - Minds, Bodies, and Machines (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4085 - Wittgenstein (3.0 cr)
or PHIL 5085 - Wittgenstein (3.0 cr)
History of Philosophy
In these courses you will reflect on writings by philosophers of the past that explore questions such as: What makes a life worth living? How can I tell if I am doing the right thing? Can a contradictory statement be true? Could I be wrong about most everything I believe? You will find that some authors have ideas different from yours, while others share familiar ideas. Comparing the different with the familiar gives you the opportunity to notice, understand, and evaluate your own assumptions.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4055 - Kant (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5601 - History of the Philosophy of Science (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4010 - Ancient Philosophers (3.0 cr)
or PHIL 5010 - Ancient Philosophers (3.0 cr)
Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics
Logic (and its philosophy) studies the differences between truth and falsity, good and bad arguments, correct and incorrect reasoning, necessity and possibility, and the finite and the infinite. In logic courses we introduce precise symbolic methods for representing various kinds of reasoning, and we develop systematic tools for differentiating the good arguments from the bad. The study of logic pairs especially well with mathematics, statistics, economics, and physics.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 1001 - Introduction to Logic [MATH] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 5201 - Symbolic Logic I (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 5202 - Symbolic Logic II (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 5211 - Modal Logic (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 5221 - Philosophy of Logic (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5222 - Philosophy of Mathematics (3.0 cr)
Political Philosophy and Philosophy of Law
What is justice? What is the purpose of the state? What obligations does the state have to its citizens and vice versa? What is law? What may or must citizens do in the face of unjust laws? These are some of the questions addressed in courses in political philosophy and philosophy of law. These questions prepare you for a career in law, politics, or public service. Courses in these areas compliment majors in political science, history or economics, as well as any major that focuses on justice.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 1004W - Introduction to Political Philosophy [AH, CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5415 - Philosophy of Law (3.0 cr)
Philosophy of Science
What makes a claim "scientific"? How do scientists know when they have a good theory? How can we make informed evaluations of scientific claims in order to participate knowledgeably in society and make good choices in everyday life? Philosophy of science courses address these and other questions about the nature of scientific reasoning. This includes exploring characteristics of hypotheses in case studies from scientific research, as well as analyzing ideas that have emerged in modern science.
Take 0 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3602 - Science, Technology, and Society (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4605 - Space and Time (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4607 - Philosophy of the Biological Sciences (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5601 - History of the Philosophy of Science (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5602 - Scientific Representation and Explanation (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5603 - Scientific Inquiry (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5605 - Space and Time (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 5606 - Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 1005 - Scientific Reasoning (4.0 cr)
or PHIL 1005H - Scientific Reasoning (4.0 cr)
Senior Project
A senior project is required and is typically a paper.
PHIL 4995 - Senior Project (Directed Studies) (1.0 cr)
or PHIL 4995H - Honors Senior Project (1.0 cr)
Upper Division Writing Intensive within the major
Students are required to take one upper division writing intensive course within the major. If that requirement has not been satisfied within the core major requirements, students must choose one course from the following list. Some of these courses may also fulfill other major requirements.
Take 0 - 1 course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period [AH, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought [WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4105W - Epistemology [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice [WI] (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
or PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (3.0 cr)
Program Sub-plans
A sub-plan is not required for this program.
Ethics and Civic Life
The Department of Philosophy's optional concentration in ethics and civic life is an opportunity for students who are interested in ethics and community service to relate their experiences in the classroom to their work in the community and vice versa. Students who complete the concentration will receive acknowledgment on their transcripts.
Core Courses
Take 3 or more course(s) from the following:
· PHIL 1004W - Introduction to Political Philosophy [AH, CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 1006W - Philosophy and Cultural Diversity [AH, DSJ, WI] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3301 - Environmental Ethics [ENV] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3305 - Medical Ethics (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3307 - Social Justice and Community Service [AH, CIV] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 3602 - Science, Technology, and Society (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 4326 - Lives Worth Living: Questions of Self, Vocation, and Community [CIV, AH] (4.0 cr)
· PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy (3.0 cr)
· PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (4.0 cr)
or PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society [CIV, WI] (3.0 cr)
Community Service
The community service component may be completed by taking a practicum course in philosophy (for example, PHIL 1007 in conjunction with 1004W); a community service component of one of the above courses; or a directed study in philosophy with a community service component.
 
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PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00816 - Phil 3001W/V/3101
Typically offered: Every Fall
Major developments in ancient Greek philosophic thought: pre-Socrates, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Hellenistic thinkers.
PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00540 - Phil 3005W/V/3105
Typically offered: Every Spring
Major developments in philosophic thought of the modern period: renaissance beginnings, Descartes through Hume. Some attention to Kant.
PHIL 1001 - Introduction to Logic (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 1001/1001H/1021
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Application of formal techniques for evaluating arguments.
PHIL 5201 - Symbolic Logic I
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Study of syntax and semantics of sentential and first-order logic. Symbolization of natural-language sentences and arguments. Development of deductive systems for first-order logic. Metatheoretic proofs and methods, including proof by mathematical induction and proof of consistency and completeness. prereq: 1001 or instr consent
PHIL 3234 - Knowledge and Society
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Critical discussion of concepts such as knowledge, objectivity, justification, rationality, evidence, authority, expertise, and trust in relation to the norms and privileges of gender, race, class, and other social categories.
PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Introduction to philosophical issues concerning the nature of scientific knowledge. Reading of historical and contemporary sources that describe major scientific achievements and controversies. prereq: One course in philosophy or natural science
PHIL 4101 - Metaphysics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Fall Odd, Spring Even Year
Philosophical theories concerning nature of reality. prereq: One course in history of philosophy or instr consent
PHIL 4105W - Epistemology (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Theories of nature/sources of knowledge/evidence. prereq: 1001 or instr consent
PHIL 4231 - Philosophy of Language
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Theories of reference, linguistic truth, relation of language/thought, translation/synonymy. prereq: 1001 or 5201 or instr consent
PHIL 4607 - Philosophy of the Biological Sciences
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Structure/status of evolutionary theory. Nature of molecular biology, genetics. Reductionism in biology. Legitimacy of teleology. Species concept. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or biology] or instr consent
PHIL 4605 - Space and Time
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 4605/5605
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Philosophical problems concerning nature/structure of space, time, and space-time. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or physics] or instr consent
PHIL 5605 - Space and Time
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 4605/5605
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Philosophical problems concerning nature/structure of space, time, and space-time. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or physics] or instr consent
PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Nature and justification of moral judgments and moral principles; analysis of representative moral views.
PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Development of aesthetic theories with applications to specific aesthetic problems.
PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Issues in western moral philosophy from classical age to present. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Intensive consideration of an author or theory in the history of moral or political philosophy. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Summer Odd Year
Philosophical accounts of concept/principles of justice. prereq: 1003 or 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 4330 - Contemporary Moral Theories
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Discusses view that evaluative judgments cannot be based on factual considerations alone, relation of this view to objectivity of ethics. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Survey of historical/contemporary works in political philosophy. prereq: 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Development of aesthetic theories with applications to specific aesthetic problems.
PHIL 4501 - Principles of Aesthetics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Problems arising in attempts to identify, characterize, or evaluate art. prereq: 3502 or philosophy course or instr consent
PHIL 4510 - Philosophy of the Individual Arts
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01331
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Aesthetic problems that arise in studying or practicing an art. prereq: 3502
PHIL 5510 - Philosophy of the Individual Arts
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01331 - Phil 4510/Phil 5510
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Aesthetic problems that arise in studying or practicing an art. prereq: 3502
PHIL 3301 - Environmental Ethics (ENV)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Philosophical basis for membership in moral community. Theories applied to specific problems (e.g., vegetarianism, wilderness preservation). Students defend their own reasoned views about moral relations between humans, animals, and nature.
PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Spring Odd Year
A study of the relationship among law, morality, and our role as critizens.
PHIL 3305 - Medical Ethics
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Moral problems confronting physicians, patients, and others concerned with medical treatment, research, and public health policy. Topics include abortion, living wills, euthanasia, genetic engineering, informed consent, proxy decision-making, and allocation of medical resources.
PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 1003W - Introduction to Ethics (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00814 - Phil 1003W/V/1103
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Are values/principles relative to our culture? Is pleasure valuable? Are there any absolute rules? These questions and others are addressed through critical study of moral theories.
PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Nature and justification of moral judgments and moral principles; analysis of representative moral views.
PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Issues in western moral philosophy from classical age to present. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Intensive consideration of an author or theory in the history of moral or political philosophy. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4330 - Contemporary Moral Theories
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Discusses view that evaluative judgments cannot be based on factual considerations alone, relation of this view to objectivity of ethics. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 3231 - Philosophy and Language
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Philosophical issues concerning the nature and use of human language.
PHIL 3234 - Knowledge and Society
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Critical discussion of concepts such as knowledge, objectivity, justification, rationality, evidence, authority, expertise, and trust in relation to the norms and privileges of gender, race, class, and other social categories.
PHIL 3607 - Philosophy of Psychology
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Major theories of mind including the "invention" of the mind by Descartes, classical empiricism, the impact of Darwinism, Freud's theories, Gestalt psychology, behaviorism, Chomsky's rationalism, contemporary functionalism, the computer model. prereq: One course in philosophy or psychology
PHIL 4101 - Metaphysics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Fall Odd, Spring Even Year
Philosophical theories concerning nature of reality. prereq: One course in history of philosophy or instr consent
PHIL 4105W - Epistemology (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Theories of nature/sources of knowledge/evidence. prereq: 1001 or instr consent
PHIL 4231 - Philosophy of Language
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Theories of reference, linguistic truth, relation of language/thought, translation/synonymy. prereq: 1001 or 5201 or instr consent
PHIL 4615 - Minds, Bodies, and Machines
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Mind-body problem. Philosophical relevance of cybernetics, artificial intelligence, computer simulation. prereq: one course in philosophy or instr consent
PHIL 4085 - Wittgenstein
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01328 - Phil 4085/Phil 5085
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
In "Philosophical Investigations" Wittgenstein challenged some of the most long-standing and entrenched intuitions of philosophers -- basic intuitions about mind, rationality, linguistic understanding, and the very nature of philosophical/conceptual inquiry. Many of these intuitions remain entrenched and Wittgenstein's challenge is as relevant today as it was in 1950. In Phil 4805 we examine the text and the secondary literature, and do so in the light of issues and debates that continue to demand attention.
PHIL 5085 - Wittgenstein
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01328
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
In "Philosophical Investigations" Wittgenstein challenged some of the most long-standing and entrenched intuitions of philosophers -- basic intuitions about mind, rationality, linguistic understanding, and the very nature of philosophical/conceptual inquiry. Many of these intuitions remain entrenched, and Wittgenstein's challenge is as relevant today as it was in 1950. In Phil 4805 we examine the text and the secondary literature, and do so in the light of issues and debates that continue to demand attention.
PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00816 - Phil 3001W/V/3101
Typically offered: Every Fall
Major developments in ancient Greek philosophic thought: pre-Socrates, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Hellenistic thinkers.
PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00540 - Phil 3005W/V/3105
Typically offered: Every Spring
Major developments in philosophic thought of the modern period: renaissance beginnings, Descartes through Hume. Some attention to Kant.
PHIL 4055 - Kant
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Major work (e.g., Critique of Pure Reason). prereq: 3005 or 4004 or instr consent
PHIL 5601 - History of the Philosophy of Science
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
History of logical empiricism, from its European origins in first half of 20th century to its emergence as nearly universal account of science in post-war Anglo-American philosophy. prereq: instr consent
PHIL 4010 - Ancient Philosophers
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01955
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Major work of selected ancient philosophers (e.g., Plato's Parmenides, Plato's Sophist, Aristotle's Metaphysics). Works discussed may vary from offering to offering. prereq: 3001 or instr consent
PHIL 5010 - Ancient Philosophers
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01945
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Major work of selected ancient philosophers (e.g., Plato's Parmenides, Plato's Sophist, Aristotle's Metaphysics). Works discussed vary. prereq: 3001 or instr consent
PHIL 1001 - Introduction to Logic (MATH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 1001/1001H/1021
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Application of formal techniques for evaluating arguments.
PHIL 5201 - Symbolic Logic I
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Study of syntax and semantics of sentential and first-order logic. Symbolization of natural-language sentences and arguments. Development of deductive systems for first-order logic. Metatheoretic proofs and methods, including proof by mathematical induction and proof of consistency and completeness. prereq: 1001 or instr consent
PHIL 5202 - Symbolic Logic II
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Elements of set theory, including the concepts of enumerability and nonenumerability. Turing machines and recursive functions; the results of Church, Godel, and Tarski and the philosophical significance of those results. prereq: 5201 or instr consent
PHIL 5211 - Modal Logic
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Axiomatic and semantic treatment of propositional and predicate modal logics; problems of interpreting modal languages. prereq: 5201 or instr consent
PHIL 5221 - Philosophy of Logic
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Attempts to answer, "What is logic?" Scope of logic. Disputes about alternative logics. Theories concerning logical truth (e.g., conventionalism: view that logical truths are contingent). prereq: 5202 or instr consent
PHIL 5222 - Philosophy of Mathematics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Major philosophical questions arising in connection with mathematics. What is mathematics about? How do we know the mathematics we do? What is the relation between mathematics and the natural sciences? Selected readings of leading contributors such as Frege, Dedekind, Russell, Hilbert, Brouwer, Godel, Quine. prereq: College level logic or mathematics course or instr consent
PHIL 1004W - Introduction to Political Philosophy (AH, CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 1004W/V
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Central concepts, principal theories of political philosophy.
PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Spring Odd Year
A study of the relationship among law, morality, and our role as critizens.
PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Summer Odd Year
Philosophical accounts of concept/principles of justice. prereq: 1003 or 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Survey of historical/contemporary works in political philosophy. prereq: 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 5415 - Philosophy of Law
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Analytical accounts of law and legal obligation. prereq: 1003 or 1004 or 3302 or social science major or instr consent
PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Introduction to philosophical issues concerning the nature of scientific knowledge. Reading of historical and contemporary sources that describe major scientific achievements and controversies. prereq: One course in philosophy or natural science
PHIL 3602 - Science, Technology, and Society
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Philosophical issues that arise out of interaction between science, technology, society (e.g., religion and science, genetics and society, science and the environment).
PHIL 4605 - Space and Time
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 4605/5605
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Philosophical problems concerning nature/structure of space, time, and space-time. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or physics] or instr consent
PHIL 4607 - Philosophy of the Biological Sciences
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Structure/status of evolutionary theory. Nature of molecular biology, genetics. Reductionism in biology. Legitimacy of teleology. Species concept. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or biology] or instr consent
PHIL 5601 - History of the Philosophy of Science
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
History of logical empiricism, from its European origins in first half of 20th century to its emergence as nearly universal account of science in post-war Anglo-American philosophy. prereq: instr consent
PHIL 5602 - Scientific Representation and Explanation
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Contemporary issues concerning representation and explanation of scientific facts. prereq: instr consent
PHIL 5603 - Scientific Inquiry
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Philosophical theories of methods for evaluating scientific hypotheses. Role of experimentation in science. How hypotheses are accepted within scientific community.
PHIL 5605 - Space and Time
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 4605/5605
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Philosophical problems concerning nature/structure of space, time, and space-time. prereq: Courses in [philosophy or physics] or instr consent
PHIL 5606 - Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Problems of interpretation in ordinary (nonrelativistic) quantum mechanics. Two-slit experiment, Schrodinger cat paradox (measurement problem), Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen paradox. Leading approaches to interpretation (Copenhagen, hidden variables, universal wave function) and their connections with philosophical issues.
PHIL 1005 - Scientific Reasoning
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01327
Typically offered: Every Fall
How does science work? What is scientific method? How to evaluate scientific information in popular media or specialized publications, especially when it relates to technology used in everyday life? General reasoning skills. prereq: [1st or 2nd] yr student or instr consent
PHIL 1005H - Scientific Reasoning
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01327 - Phil 1005/Phil 1005H
Typically offered: Every Fall
How does science work? What is scientific method? How to evaluate scientific information in popular media or specialized publications, especially when it relates to technology used in everyday life? General reasoning skills. prereq: [1st or 2nd] yr honors student or instr consent
PHIL 4995 - Senior Project (Directed Studies)
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Guided individual study leading to research paper that satisfies senior project requirement. prereq: instr consent, dept consent
PHIL 4995H - Honors Senior Project
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01751
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Guided individual study leading to research paper that satisfies senior project requirement. prereq: instr consent, dept consent
PHIL 3001W - General History of Western Philosophy: Ancient Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00816 - Phil 3001W/V/3101
Typically offered: Every Fall
Major developments in ancient Greek philosophic thought: pre-Socrates, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Hellenistic thinkers.
PHIL 3005W - General History of Western Philosophy: Modern Period (AH, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00540 - Phil 3005W/V/3105
Typically offered: Every Spring
Major developments in philosophic thought of the modern period: renaissance beginnings, Descartes through Hume. Some attention to Kant.
PHIL 3311W - Introduction to Ethical Theory (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Nature and justification of moral judgments and moral principles; analysis of representative moral views.
PHIL 3502W - Introduction to Aesthetics (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Development of aesthetic theories with applications to specific aesthetic problems.
PHIL 3601W - Scientific Thought (WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Introduction to philosophical issues concerning the nature of scientific knowledge. Reading of historical and contemporary sources that describe major scientific achievements and controversies. prereq: One course in philosophy or natural science
PHIL 4105W - Epistemology (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Theories of nature/sources of knowledge/evidence. prereq: 1001 or instr consent
PHIL 4310W - History of Moral Theories (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Issues in western moral philosophy from classical age to present. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4320W - Intensive Study of an Historical Moral Theory (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Intensive consideration of an author or theory in the history of moral or political philosophy. prereq: 1003 or instr consent
PHIL 4321W - Theories of Justice (WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Summer Odd Year
Philosophical accounts of concept/principles of justice. prereq: 1003 or 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 1004W - Introduction to Political Philosophy (AH, CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 1004W/V
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Central concepts, principal theories of political philosophy.
PHIL 1006W - Philosophy and Cultural Diversity (AH, DSJ, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 1002W/V/1006W/1026W/1102
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Central problems/methods of philosophy through culturally diverse texts. Focus is critical/comparative, reflecting range of U.S. philosophical traditions.
PHIL 3301 - Environmental Ethics (ENV)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Philosophical basis for membership in moral community. Theories applied to specific problems (e.g., vegetarianism, wilderness preservation). Students defend their own reasoned views about moral relations between humans, animals, and nature.
PHIL 3304 - Law and Morality
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Fall Even, Spring Odd Year
A study of the relationship among law, morality, and our role as critizens.
PHIL 3305 - Medical Ethics
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Every Spring
Moral problems confronting physicians, patients, and others concerned with medical treatment, research, and public health policy. Topics include abortion, living wills, euthanasia, genetic engineering, informed consent, proxy decision-making, and allocation of medical resources.
PHIL 3307 - Social Justice and Community Service (AH, CIV)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Typically offered: Fall Odd Year
Exploration of concepts of justice, charity, equality, freedom, community service in connection with current social issues. Perspectives from philosophy, history, literature, and student involvement in the community. Community service for at least three hours per week.
PHIL 3602 - Science, Technology, and Society
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall
Philosophical issues that arise out of interaction between science, technology, society (e.g., religion and science, genetics and society, science and the environment).
PHIL 4326 - Lives Worth Living: Questions of Self, Vocation, and Community (CIV, AH)
Credits: 4.0 [max 8.0]
Course Equivalencies: Phil 4326/5326
Typically offered: Every Summer
Immersion experience. Students live together as a residential community of learners. Works of philosophy, history, and literature form backdrop for exploring such questions as "How is identity constructed?," "What is vocation?," and "What experiences of community are desirable in a life?" Each student creates a life-hypothesis for a life worth living. prereq: instr consent
PHIL 4414 - Political Philosophy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Survey of historical/contemporary works in political philosophy. prereq: 1004 or instr consent
PHIL 3302W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).
PHIL 3322W - Moral Problems of Contemporary Society (CIV, WI)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 00437
Typically offered: Every Summer
How do we determine what is right and wrong? How should we live our lives? What do we owe others? Moral/ethical thought applied to problems and public disputes (e.g., capital punishment, abortion, affirmative action, animal rights, same-sex marriage, environmental protection).