Philosophy Philosophy Philosophy Philosophy Philosophy

College of Arts & Sciences

Philosophy

Questions?

Wioleta D. Polinska

630-637-5317

wdpolinska@noctrl.edu

Philosophy can be dangerous. The ancient Greek philosopher Socrates was sentenced to death for, among other things, corrupting the youth of Athens. We will not be corrupting you, but we will help you think about things you take for granted in your everyday life and explore their foundations.

Other areas of inquiry often ask "how" questions.  Students of philosophy usually ask "why" questions, questions that ask for reasons or justifications. These “why?” questions might be directed to such issues as the existence of God or ethical obligations toward strangers who live in other parts of the world. What do we mean by ‘God?’ Can we know God exists? What reasons can we give for the way we answer this question?

Similarly, do we have the same moral obligations to our best friend as we do to people who live in other parts of the world? What is the difference, if there is one, and how would we justify it? 

Our particular strengths are in the philosophical exploration of values (ethical, political, legal, economic, professional and theological) and in the history of philosophy from the ancient Greeks to the present. Join us in our quest! We can assure you that you’ll not meet Socrates’ fate.

Philosophy, B.A.

Philosophy emphasizes critical thinking, careful reading and reflection on the nature and purpose of human existence. Graduates are prepared for graduate study in philosophy and for a diverse range of careers, including education, social service and law. More importantly, they are prepared for a life of critical self-reflection and responsible citizenship.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Philosophy and Religious Studies.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 32 credit hours, with at least three Philosophy courses at the 300-level, including:

Required Courses

  • PHIL 230 - Logic & Critical Thinking

    PHIL 230 - Logic & Critical Thinking

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of inductive and deductive reasoning, formal and informal fallacies and rules and procedures for evaluating arguments.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 490 - Philosophy Capstone Seminar

    PHIL 490 - Philosophy Capstone Seminar

    4.00 credit hours

    Examinaton of a major philosopher or central problem in one of the areas of philosophy such as philosophy of mind, metaphysics, epistemology or value theory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    One 200-level Philosophy course; Junior standing.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Writing Intensive.

    Schedule Of Classes

History of Philosophy

Two of the following:

  • PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part one of the History of Philosophy sequence; Ancient Greece through the 16th century.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Global Understanding.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part two of the History of Philosophy sequence; 17th through 19th centuries.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part three of the history of philosophy sequence; the analytical & continental traditons from the 20th century through the present day.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

Normative Theory

One of the following:

  • PHIL 110 - Ethics

    PHIL 110 - Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of alternative bases for morality and the arguments by which moral claims are justified.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Community Engaged Learning.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 310 - Ethical Theory

    PHIL 310 - Ethical Theory

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of topics in contemporary and/or classical ethical theory. Course may focus on key figures in ethical theory or issues in normative ethics and metaethics. Topics have included virtue ethics, feminist ethics and relationships between normative ethical theory and social or natural sciences.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 340 - Social and Political Philosophy

    PHIL 340 - Social and Political Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    An investgation of political philosophy in the Western philosophical tradition. Students question how we ought to live together, organize social life, and structure our political institutions. Topics covered include individual freedom, the distribution of property, ideal forms of government, race, gender, and class.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, U.S. Power Structures.

    Schedule Of Classes

Metaphysics/Epistemology

One of the following:

  • PHIL 250 - Philosophy of Mind

    PHIL 250 - Philosophy of Mind

    4.00 credit hours

    An introduction to the philosophy of mind, including such topics as the mind/body problem, the nature of consciousness, perception, and theories of mental content. Special attention is paid to philosophical questions that arise in psychology, neuroscience, and cognitive science.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Examining Health, Innovating the World.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 280 - Philosophy of Science

    PHIL 280 - Philosophy of Science

    4.00 credit hours

    An inquiry into the nature of scientific evidence, laws, explanations and theories, as well as the nature of the relationship between the natural and social sciences.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Innovating the World.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 360 - Philosophy of Religion

    PHIL 360 - Philosophy of Religion

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of the basic issues in the philosophy of religion, including the relation of faith and reason, the problem of the existence and nature of God.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 363 - Science and Religion: Conflict or Dialogue

    PHIL 363 - Science and Religion: Conflict or Dialogue

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of the contemporary dialogue between science and religion in relation to different Western and Asian religious traditions. The course considers the implications of recent scientific theories for understanding and assessing the belief systems of various theistic and non-theistic religions.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 380 - Knowledge and Reality

    PHIL 380 - Knowledge and Reality

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of such topics as theories of knowledge, truth and justfication of belief, the problem of skepticism, the mind-body problem, the problem of universals and theories of being.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

Electives

Two additional courses in Philosophy.

Note:

One of the following courses may be substituted for a Philosophy elective:

  • RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of the meaning and mystery of death and dying from several religious, philosophical and scientific perspectives. The course also considers both spiritual practices and ethical issues connected to death and dying.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Examining Health, Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of primary texts from the history of religious political philosophy with an eye to their relevance for understanding current events and challenges at the intersection of religion & politics. Emphasis is on Jewish, Christian, and Muslim sources.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Two courses from Philosophy or Religous Studies.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    4.00 credit hours

    This research seminar examines the East Asian intellectual tradition based on the reading of primary sources in translation and focusing on the cross-pollination of ideas between the three major intellectual traditions of Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism. Each student designs, researches and writes a historical essay related to major course themes.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Junior standing.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Thinking Globally.

    Schedule Of Classes

Additional Requirements for the B.A. Degree

Students must demonstrate elementary competence in a foreign language. For more information, see the B.A. Degree Requirements within the Academic Regulations section of this catalog.

Philosophy Minor

Philosophy emphasizes critical thinking, careful reading, and reflection on the nature and purpose of human existence. A philosophy minor is an excellent compliment to any major, from business to science to art.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Philosophy and Religious Studies.

Minor Requirements

A minimum of 20 credit hours, with at least one Philosophy course at the 300-level, including:

Required Courses

  • PHIL 100 - Introduction to Philosophy

    PHIL 100 - Introduction to Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of basic questions in philosophy, such as how we can know anything, whether God exists, how moral judgments can be justified, whether people have souls and whether people have free will.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Engaging Civic Life, Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

History of Philosophy

One of the following:

  • PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part one of the History of Philosophy sequence; Ancient Greece through the 16th century.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Global Understanding.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part two of the History of Philosophy sequence; 17th through 19th centuries.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part three of the history of philosophy sequence; the analytical & continental traditons from the 20th century through the present day.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

Ethics

One of the following:

  • PHIL 110 - Ethics

    PHIL 110 - Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of alternative bases for morality and the arguments by which moral claims are justified.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Community Engaged Learning.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 210 - Professional Ethics

    PHIL 210 - Professional Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    Professional ethics in selected career fields including law, business and biomedicine. Students may apply basic concepts to the career of their choice, relate their personal ethics to professional ethics and become better informed consumers of professional services. This course begins with an examination of the alternative bases for making moral judgments.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Innovating World.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 213 - Health Care Ethics

    PHIL 213 - Health Care Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    Considers fundamental ethical questions concerning health care and applies ethics to contemporary debates such as aborton.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Examining Health.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 225 - Environmental Ethics

    PHIL 225 - Environmental Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    After a brief examination of philosophical ethical frameworks, the following will be considered: the history of environmental ethics; the problem of the "moral status" of nonhuman animals and other aspects of nature: the environment and "the good life," ethical issues related to population growth, sustainability, diminishing/vanishing resources and the use of cost benefit analysis in environmental policy.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 310 - Ethical Theory

    PHIL 310 - Ethical Theory

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of topics in contemporary and/or classical ethical theory. Course may focus on key figures in ethical theory or issues in normative ethics and metaethics. Topics have included virtue ethics, feminist ethics and relationships between normative ethical theory and social or natural sciences.

    Schedule Of Classes

Electives

Two additional courses in Philosophy

Note:

One of the following may be substituted for a Philosophy elective:

  • RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of the meaning and mystery of death and dying from several religious, philosophical and scientific perspectives. The course also considers both spiritual practices and ethical issues connected to death and dying.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Examining Health, Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of primary texts from the history of religious political philosophy with an eye to their relevance for understanding current events and challenges at the intersection of religion & politics. Emphasis is on Jewish, Christian, and Muslim sources.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Two courses from Philosophy or Religous Studies.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    4.00 credit hours

    This research seminar examines the East Asian intellectual tradition based on the reading of primary sources in translation and focusing on the cross-pollination of ideas between the three major intellectual traditions of Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism. Each student designs, researches and writes a historical essay related to major course themes.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Junior standing.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Thinking Globally.

    Schedule Of Classes

Philosophy, Law and Society Track, B.A.

The Law & Society track of the philosophy major couples a broad grounding in philosophy with an emphasis on legal, political and social theory. It is an excellent major for students considering law school.

For additional programs and courses in this department, see Philosophy and Religious Studies.

Major Requirements

A minimum 36 credit hours, with at least three Philosophy courses at the 300-level, including:

Required Courses

  • PHIL 230 - Logic & Critical Thinking

    PHIL 230 - Logic & Critical Thinking

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of inductive and deductive reasoning, formal and informal fallacies and rules and procedures for evaluating arguments.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Quantitative Analysis.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 240 - Philosophy of Law

    PHIL 240 - Philosophy of Law

    4.00 credit hours

    An introduction to the concept of law, including such topics as the nature of law, liberty and law, justice, legal responsibility, punishment and theories of legal interpretation.

    Prerequisite(s)

    POLS 203 or one Philosophy course.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, U.S. Power Structures.
    iCon(s)
    Challenging Inequity.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 340 - Social and Political Philosophy

    PHIL 340 - Social and Political Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    An investgation of political philosophy in the Western philosophical tradition. Students question how we ought to live together, organize social life, and structure our political institutions. Topics covered include individual freedom, the distribution of property, ideal forms of government, race, gender, and class.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, U.S. Power Structures.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 490 - Philosophy Capstone Seminar

    PHIL 490 - Philosophy Capstone Seminar

    4.00 credit hours

    Examinaton of a major philosopher or central problem in one of the areas of philosophy such as philosophy of mind, metaphysics, epistemology or value theory.

    Prerequisite(s)

    One 200-level Philosophy course; Junior standing.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Writing Intensive.

    Schedule Of Classes

History of Philosophy

Two of the following:

  • PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    PHIL 260 - Ancient and Medieval Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part one of the History of Philosophy sequence; Ancient Greece through the 16th century.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Global Understanding.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part two of the History of Philosophy sequence; 17th through 19th centuries.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

    4.00 credit hours

    Part three of the history of philosophy sequence; the analytical & continental traditons from the 20th century through the present day.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

Legal, Political or Social Theory

One of the following:

  • ANTH 352 - Law and Order in Cross-Cultural Perspective

    ANTH 352 - Law and Order in Cross-Cultural Perspective

    4.00 credit hours

    Systems of conflict resolution, resource and property rights and social control and punishment in cross-cultural perspective. Correlation of legal systems with sociopolitical organization across time and space. Examination of classic ethnography from legal anthropology and of cases of contemporary indigenous customary law systems. Development of cultural competency for criminal justice professionals. Opportunities for related field study experience offered occasionally through ANTH 445.

    Prerequisite(s)

    One of ANTH 145, PHIL 240 or SOCI 220.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Social Science, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Engaging Civic Life

    Schedule Of Classes

  • BUSN 205 - Business Law & Ethics

    BUSN 205 - Business Law & Ethics

    4.00 credit hours

    Surveys the major aspects of the law governing business and commerce including the domestic and international legal environment, the range of dispute resolution processes, legal liability including torts and negligence, contracts, employment law including employment discrimination, business entities, commercial transactions and intellectual property—all with particular emphasis on business ethics and ethical decision making.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Ethical Dimensions.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • COMM 335 - Freedom of Expression

    COMM 335 - Freedom of Expression

    4.00 credit hours

    Examines the First Amendment's protection of freedom of speech, religion, press and association, and its role as a cornerstone of American democracy. Students study foundational U.S. Supreme Court cases that have defined and delimited these freedoms. They learn how to analyze legal and moral arguments and conduct basic legal research. They also develop an understanding of the political and philosophical conflicts surrounding the exercise of First Amendment freedoms.

    Prerequisite(s)

    CARD 101; CARD 102 or COMM 100; Junior standing; or instructor consent.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Engaging Civic Life.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • IDEA 220 - Power and Statecraft

    IDEA 220 - Power and Statecraft

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of influential accounts and critiques of the relationship between power and statecraft in various cultural traditions, both Western and non-Western, from 1500 to 1800. Particular emphasis is given to the development of Western imperialism as the dominant global force during this period.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • POLS 335 - Constitutional Law

    POLS 335 - Constitutional Law

    4.00 credit hours

    Introduction to constitutional law, with an emphasis on the U.S. Supreme Court's interpretation of Articles I, II, and III. This means that the course will cover how the nation's Court of last resort has helped shape the powers of and constraints on the three branches of our federal government. Students will also discuss and analyze topics like: the development of law surrounding the separation of powers, congressional power over the commerce clause, and the creation and demise of the concept of substantive due process.

    Prerequisite(s)

    POLS 101 or POLS 203.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Social Science.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • POLS 336 - Rights, Liberties, and Justice

    POLS 336 - Rights, Liberties, and Justice

    4.00 credit hours

    Introduction to civil liberties and civil rights. We will focus primarily on the decisions of the Supreme Court in areas of religion, speech, privacy, criminal procedure, and discrimination. Along the way, we will discuss the historical development of constitutional civil rights and liberties and the politics of Supreme Court decision-making. Students will learn the major legal doctrines governing civil liberties and civil rights, as well as develop a better understanding of the process of Supreme Court decision-making.

    Prerequisite(s)

    POLS 101 or POLS 203.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Social Science, U.S. Power Structures,
    iCon(s)
    Challenging Inequity.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • SOCI 350 - Social Life & Social Theory

    SOCI 350 - Social Life & Social Theory

    4.00 credit hours

    An introduction, review and application of classic and modern sociological theories to everyday life. Emphasis placed upon the attempts to understand the emergence of modern and post-modern times and the underlying problems brought about by these social developments. Applications of social thought to issues of work, marriage, deviance, presentations of self, love, police work, gender, consumer behavior and punishment.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, U.S. Power Structures.

    Schedule Of Classes

Electives
  • Two additional courses in Philosophy
Note:

One of the following courses may substitute for a Philosophy elective:

  • RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    RELG 250 - Death & Dying

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of the meaning and mystery of death and dying from several religious, philosophical and scientific perspectives. The course also considers both spiritual practices and ethical issues connected to death and dying.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Examining Health, Being Human.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    RELG 344 - Religion & the Political Order

    4.00 credit hours

    An examination of primary texts from the history of religious political philosophy with an eye to their relevance for understanding current events and challenges at the intersection of religion & politics. Emphasis is on Jewish, Christian, and Muslim sources.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Two courses from Philosophy or Religous Studies.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.

    Schedule Of Classes

  • HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    HIST 330 - East Asian Thought

    4.00 credit hours

    This research seminar examines the East Asian intellectual tradition based on the reading of primary sources in translation and focusing on the cross-pollination of ideas between the three major intellectual traditions of Confucianism, Daoism, and Buddhism. Each student designs, researches and writes a historical essay related to major course themes.

    Prerequisite(s)

    Junior standing.

    Cardinal Directions Designation(s)
    Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
    iCon(s)
    Being Human, Thinking Globally.

    Schedule Of Classes

Additional Requirements for the B.A. Degree

Students must demonstrate elementary competence in a foreign language. For more information, see the B.A. Degree Requirements within the Academic Regulations section of this catalog.

Philosophy

PHIL 100 - Introduction to Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of basic questions in philosophy, such as how we can know anything, whether God exists, how moral judgments can be justified, whether people have souls and whether people have free will. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Engaging Civic Life, Being Human.

 

PHIL 110 - Ethics

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of alternative bases for morality and the arguments by which moral claims are justified. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Community Engaged Learning.
iCon(s): Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

 

PHIL 210 - Professional Ethics

4.00 credit hoursProfessional ethics in selected career fields including law, business and biomedicine. Students may apply basic concepts to the career of their choice, relate their personal ethics to professional ethics and become better informed consumers of professional services. This course begins with an examination of the alternative bases for making moral judgments. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Innovating World.

 

PHIL 213 - Health Care Ethics

4.00 credit hoursConsiders fundamental ethical questions concerning health care and applies ethics to contemporary debates such as aborton. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Examining Health.

 

PHIL 225 - Environmental Ethics

4.00 credit hours(Same as: ENVI 225.) After a brief examination of philosophical ethical frameworks, the following will be considered: the history of environmental ethics; the problem of the “moral status” of nonhuman animals and other aspects of nature: the environment and “the good life,” ethical issues related to population growth, sustainability, diminishing/vanishing resources and the use of cost benefit analysis in environmental policy. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.

 

PHIL 230 - Logic & Critical Thinking

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of inductive and deductive reasoning, formal and informal fallacies and rules and procedures for evaluating arguments. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Quantitative Analysis.

 

PHIL 235 - Existentialism

4.00 credit hoursAn introduction to existentialism as a 19th and 20th century philosophical and literary movement. Authors discussed typically include Dostoevsky, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Sartre, and Camus. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 240 - Philosophy of Law

4.00 credit hoursAn introduction to the concept of law, including such topics as the nature of law, liberty and law, justice, legal responsibility, punishment and theories of legal interpretation. 

Prerequisite(s): POLS 203 or one Philosophy course. 
Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, U.S. Power Structures.
iCon(s): Challenging Inequity.

 

PHIL 250 - Philosophy of Mind

4.00 credit hoursAn introduction to the philosophy of mind, including such topics as the mind/body problem, the nature of consciousness, perception, and theories of mental content. Special attention is paid to philosophical questions that arise in psychology, neuroscience, and cognitive science. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities.
iCon(s): Being Human, Examining Health, Innovating the World.

 

PHIL 260 - Ancient & Medieval Phil.

4.00 credit hoursPart one of the History of Philosophy sequence; Ancient Greece through the 16th century. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, Global Understanding.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 265 - Modern Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursPart two of the History of Philosophy sequence; 17th through 19th centuries. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Being Human, Engaging Civic Life.

 

PHIL 270 - Aesthetics

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of aesthetic experience, the norms which govern aesthetc judgment and the significance of the idea of beauty in our experience of art and nature. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Arts, U.S. Power Structures.
iCon(s): Being Human, Examining Health, Experiencing Place.

 

PHIL 280 - Philosophy of Science

4.00 credit hoursAn inquiry into the nature of scientific evidence, laws, explanations and theories, as well as the nature of the relationship between the natural and social sciences. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities.
iCon(s): Being Human, Innovating the World.

 

PHIL 290 - Topics in Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of questions or issues of contemporary philosophic interest. Check course schedule for current topic. 

 

PHIL 299 - Independent Study

1.00-12.00 credit hours

 

PHIL 310 - Ethical Theory

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of topics in contemporary and/or classical ethical theory. Course may focus on key figures in ethical theory or issues in normative ethics and metaethics. Topics have included virtue ethics, feminist ethics and relationships between normative ethical theory and social or natural sciences. 

 

PHIL 320 - Feminist Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursExamines feminist contributions to and criticisms of philosophy. Students are exposed to both historical and contemporary figures in feminist philosophy, including Mary Wollstonecraft, Simone DeBeauvoir, bell hooks, Audre Lorde, and Judith Butler. Topics include women’s rights, feminist politcal and ethical theory, the role of gender in identity formation, and gender at the intersection of race and class. 

Prerequisite(s): One Philosophy or Gender and Sexuality course. 
Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, U.S. Power Structures.
iCon(s): Challenging Inequity, Engaging Civic Life.

 

PHIL 340 - Social and Political Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursAn investgation of political philosophy in the Western philosophical tradition. Students question how we ought to live together, organize social life, and structure our political institutions. Topics covered include individual freedom, the distribution of property, ideal forms of government, race, gender, and class. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions, U.S. Power Structures.

 

PHIL 360 - Philosophy of Religion

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of the basic issues in the philosophy of religion, including the relation of faith and reason, the problem of the existence and nature of God. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 363 - Science and Religion: Conflict or Dialogue

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of the contemporary dialogue between science and religion in relation to different Western and Asian religious traditions. The course considers the implications of recent scientific theories for understanding and assessing the belief systems of various theistic and non-theistic religions. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 370 - 20th Century Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursPart three of the history of philosophy sequence; the analytical & continental traditons from the 20th century through the present day. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Ethical Dimensions.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 380 - Knowledge and Reality

4.00 credit hoursAn examination of such topics as theories of knowledge, truth and justfication of belief, the problem of skepticism, the mind-body problem, the problem of universals and theories of being. 

Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities.
iCon(s): Being Human.

 

PHIL 390 - Topics in Philosophy

4.00 credit hoursAn advanced examinaton of questons or issues of contemporary philosophic interest. Check course schedule for current topic. 

 

PHIL 399 - Independent Study

1.00-12.00 credit hours

 

PHIL 490 - Philosophy Capstone Seminar

4.00 credit hoursExaminaton of a major philosopher or central problem in one of the areas of philosophy such as philosophy of mind, metaphysics, epistemology or value theory. 

Prerequisite(s): One 200-level Philosophy course; Junior standing. 
Cardinal Directions Designation(s): Humanities, Writing Intensive.

 

 

PHIL 497 - Internship

0.00-12.00 credit hours

 

PHIL 499 - Independent Study

1.00-12.00 credit hours

 

 

 

Robert Lehe

Professor of Philosophy
Philosophy
+1 630 637 5338
Greg Lynch

Associate Professor of Philosophy
Philosophy
+1 630 637 5337
Shaheen Moosa

Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Philosophy
+1 630 637 5135

Faculty Emeriti

David H. Fisher
Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus
B.A., Carleton College, 1965; M.A., Columbia University-Union Theological Seminary, 1967; M.A., 1973, Ph.D., 1976, Vanderbilt University
dhfisher@noctrl.edu

Timothy P. Morris
Professor of Philosophy Emeritus
B.A., University of Iowa, 1973; A.M., 1976, Ph.D., 1984, University of Chicago
tpmorris@noctrl.edu

Extra-curricular and professional activities that will enrich your philosophy education.

Maybe you’ll pursue philosophy simply for its own sake, through a major or a minor, but you might also take philosophy to support other professional options. Some of our graduates have gone on to graduate school in philosophy, while others have found it to be invaluable preparation for careers in law, medicine and other professions.

As you take up your education in philosophy, you might want to

  • choose an Independent Study course, where you pick a topic of your own in consultation with a member of the philosophy faculty and pursue it in a one-on-one tutorial arrangement with that faculty member
  • select a course topic of interest to you that isn’t offered on a regular basis and pursue it, as a Directed Study course, in a tutorial arrangement with a member of the faculty
  • put together an internship proposal for an employer in the Chicagoland area that’s related to some area of philosophy and/or to some professional or career path you’re following
  • apply for a Richter Independent Study Fellowship, which allows you to engage in a sustained research project that may involve travel within the United States or abroad. You’ll work with a faculty member in advance to craft a proposal that will be read and evaluated by a committee outside the department. This is an excellent opportunity to connect, in a meaningful way, the classroom with real life experiences!
  • get involved in the College Scholars program, the College’s honors program. Specifically, you want to participate in the History of Ideas curriculum, a program in which you’ll read classical texts in the Western intellectual tradition, texts coming from philosophy, religious studies, history, the arts, the social sciences, and some of the natural sciences. This program supplements the study of philosophy very nicely no matter what you decide to do in terms of your career or professional path, and it’s been shown to be very helpful in certain professional or career paths.

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