Core Courses


Phil 1600 Ethical Well-Being

Do we have to seek out ethical values or can we find them in a book? What stops us from doing evil or from achieving goodness: What constitutes genuine fulfillment and happiness?  In this course, we will read historical and contemporary authors who asked those kinds of questions.  We will also learn the practical skills involved in ethics, such as thinking critically about ethical dilemmas, evaluating common problems, and developing our own views of ethical life.  The goal of the course is for students to come away with an understanding of traditional views of ethics, practical resources for their own ethical lives, and the ability to think critically, imaginatively, and sympathetically about diverse viewpoints and about their own place in the world.
ATTRIBUTE:  Fulfills UCC Personal Well-Being Requirement


Phil 1100   Introduction to Philosophy

This course provides an introduction to central philosophical problems, the major historically significant perspectives on these problems, and key applications of philosophical thinking to contemporary life.  Central philosophical problems include problems of the following sort:  (1) the problem of knowledge of the external world; (2) the problem of freewill and determinism; (3) the mind/body problem; (4) the problem of the existence of God; (5) the problem of justifying an ethical standard.
ATTRIBUTES:  Fulfills UCC Ways of Knowing Requirement-Philosophical Perspectives; Fulfills General Education Requirement in Philosophy 

Phil 1120   Philosophy of the Future        

We are intensely concerned about the future at three main levels.  The first level is personal: What will my future on earth be like?  What will happen to me after I die?  The second level is communal:  What will happen to the human race?   Will civilization disintegrate into dystopia or will it make progress towards utopian perfection?  The third level is cosmic: What is the future of the universe?  Will all life ultimately die out?  The philosophical study of the future aims to study the future at each level. 
ATTRIBUTES:  Fulfills UCC Ways of Knowing Requirement-Philosophical Perspectives; Fulfills General Education Requirement in Philosophy
Phil 1500   Concepts of the Person 

What does it mean to be a person?  This course brings a philosophical perspective to this question, and also discusses how philosophical and experimental perspectives on this question are connected.  Can people be made completely of matter, or do they have immaterial souls too?  Can we know what other people's experiences are really like?  What defines personal identity?  Should we recognize any rational agent as a person, and would that mean we should recognize chimpanzees and futuristic robots as people? 
ATTRIBUTES:  Fulfills UCC Ways of Knowing Requirement-Philosophical Perspectives; Fulfills General Education Requirement in Philosophy

Phil 2200    Philosophy of Religion 

This course presents an analytic study of the logical structure of religious thought. This course will cover various traditional and modern theories concerning: (1) the structure of theism (arguments for and against the theistic God); (2) the structure of atheism; (3) alternatives to theism (such as Neoplatonism, pantheism, or process thought); (4) the existence and nature of the soul (especially in its relation to the body); (5) various doctrines of immortality (e.g. heaven and hell; disembodied existence; reincarnation; the resurrection of the body).
ATTRIBUTES:  fulfills UCC Ways of Knowing Requirement-Philosophical Perspectives; Fulfills General Education Requirement in Philosophy

Phil 2320    Philosophy of Technology (Technology Intensive)

Philosophy of technology studies the structure and purpose of technology. This course examines the basic conceptual foundations of technology as a complex system with something like a life of its own. This course examines how deep biological and religious drives animate the development of technology. It looks at advanced technologies, especially those that involve modification of the human body or human nature.
ATTRIBUTES:  Fulfills UCC Area 3: Ways of Knowing Requirement;  Fulfills UCC Technology Intensive Requirement; General Education Elective    


Phil  2400   Ethics & Community Engagement            

In every society, a thoughtful individual must consider whether the professed values of the society are actually upheld in community life.  The individual must struggle with balancing his or her own rights and freedoms with his or her responsibilities towards others.  Ethics and community engagement examines what is required for community life and collaborative action.  The course considers individuals' relationships with our communities, including our responsibilities to ourselves and others, our capacity to make reflective choices with integrity and care, and the conditions for dialogue, connection, and reciprocity.    The course provides students with tools to engage with difficult issues in their own lives and their communities.
ATTRIBUTE:  Fulfills UCC Community & Civic Engagement Requirement; GE Elective


Phil 2270     Eastern Philosophy & Religion     

What is the meaning of life? What is human nature? What does it mean to be enlightened? For thousands of years, sages in Eastern cultures have addressed these questions from the point of view of logic, psychology and mystical intuition.  This course will examine their arguments with an emphasis on the works of Indian, Chinese, Japanese and Tibetan thinkers.    Special attention will be paid to the mutual influences and interactions between Hinduism and Buddhism in India, Buddhism and Bon in Tibet, and Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism in China, Korea and Japan.
ATTRIBUTES:  Fulfills UCC Global Awareness Requirement; Fulfills GE Non-Western Requirement


 Phil 4200 Philosophy of Science

Phil 4800 Philosophy Capstone Seminar


Phil 2320    Philosophy of Technology