The Department of Philosophy is a place where students can pursue wisdom through the reasoned investigation of life’s “big questions.” What makes something “real” or “good” or “true”? What is the relationship between body and mind? What can we know, and how do we know it? Do human beings have free will? Does life have a meaning? What are our responsibilities to ourselves and others? What makes a just community? Consistent with the mission of the college, the goal of the department is to offer students the opportunity to consider philosophy as part of their own path to a reasoned pursuit of wisdom and to provide interested students with guided, reflective access to the vast store of literature devoted to such questions.
All philosophy courses focus on an exploration of some of the “big questions,” acquaintance with some of the philosophical positions regarding those questions, and serious opportunities to discuss concepts, ideas, and points of view openly and reasonably within the context of one’s life, personally, professionally, or as a member of one’s community. The department offers courses designed for all students, including philosophy majors, minors, and others who are interested in deeper explorations of philosophy. When choosing a course, students (in collaboration with their advisors) should take into account the significance of course numbering.
100 level-an invitation into philosophical discourse
200 level-focus on gaining knowledge and skills
300 level-focus on deepening knowledge and skills
400 level-focus on integrating knowledge and skills
The Department of Philosophy is committed to the idea that a well-rounded study of philosophy includes understanding diverse philosophical traditions including Western philosophies, Asian philosophies, Africana philosophies, Latinx philosophies, and Feminist philosophies. The Department of Black World Studies is housed within the Department of Philosophy.
No matter what your career goals might be, a degree in philosophy will enhance your capacity for critical thinking, logical argumentation, and written and oral communication. It will facilitate your ability to think about and analyze the world from a variety of perspectives as well as your ability to formulate a well-reasoned position about important issues of our times.
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