Coursework in philosophy examines our fundamental beliefs concerning knowledge and reality, art and beauty, law and morality, God and religion, justice and society, culture and values, government and economics, logic and critical thinking, literature and interpretation, history and meaning, and science and theory. The minor in philosophy serves to provide individuals with a broader and deeper understanding of philosophy as a discipline and method of inquiry. Generally, coursework in philosophy provides individuals with the general concepts and critical thinking tools that can be useful in other areas of academic study as well as in life.
Bachelor of Arts or Science – Minor in Philosophy
1. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the basic issues, concepts, and standard arguments pertaining to the various subject areas of philosophy, for example:
a. ethics (are morals relative or absolute?)
b. aesthetics (is beauty subjective or objective?)
c. metaphysics (idealists vs. materialists philosophies)
d. epistemology (truth of reason vs. truth of fact; empiricism vs. rationalism)
e. theology (does God exist?)
f. social philosophy (what is social justice?)
g. logic (good vs. bad reasoning)
h. philosophy of mind (is the mind different from the brain?)
i. philosophy of will (is the will free or determined?)
j. political philosophy (which system of government is the best system of government?)
2. Students will demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the philosophical views/theories of major Western philosophers (e.g. Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Locke, Marx, Nietzsche, etc.) and classical Eastern philosophers (e.g. Confucius, Lao-Tzu, and Buddha), students also will demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of various schools of philosophy in the history of philosophy (e.g. Neo-Platonism, Stoicism, Scholasticism, Existentialism, etc.) and major ethical theories (e.g. Utilitarianism, Kantianism, Social Contract, Natural Law, etc.
3. Students will demonstrate skill at logical analysis, critical thinking, ethical evaluation, and the application of general philosophical and ethical theories to issues and cases.