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Philosophy (PHI)

Philosophy (PHI)

101 Logic
An introduction to the various ways of distinguishing correct from incorrect reasoning. The course deals with Aristotelian as well as propositional logic and includes discussions focusing on the nature of an argument, informal fallacies, validity, and the differences between deductive and inductive argumentation.
Three hours, three credits.

131 The Human Condition
An introduction to the fundamental philosophical questions which arise within the context of human experience and to various methods of addressing these questions. The issues are introduced through an illumination of the human condition in Biblical texts. Students ponder, among other things, the meaning of life, the nature of reality and human existence, the possibility of freedom, the existence of God, and the meanings of truth, goodness, and beauty.
Three hours, three credits.

211 Ethics
An examination of the theoretical foundations of moral decision-making and their application to contemporary moral problems. Participants deal with consequentialist and non-consequentialist ethical systems, natural law, the question of moral responsibility, ethical egoism, and ethical relativism.
Three hours, three credits.

221 Survey of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy
A historical introduction to the major thinkers and dominant issues in the Western philosophical tradition from the pre-Socratic period to the Renaissance. The course includes discussions of Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, and St. Thomas Aquinas.
Three hours, three credits.

222 Survey of Modern Philosophy
A historical introduction to the major thinkers and dominant issues in the Western philosophical tradition from the 17th century to the beginning of the 19th century. Beginning with Descartes, the course includes discussions of the rationalist and empiricist traditions and culminates in the philosophy of Kant.
Three hours, three credits.

301 Fundamentals of Writing Philosophy
Focuses on reading, analyzing, and writing arguments. Particular emphasis is placed on the use of logical principles in the composition and critical evaluation of philosophical essays.
This course is designated Writing Intensive; a grade of "C" or higher in this course is required for this course to count toward the six-credit-hour Writing Intensive graduation requirement for Ferrum College. A student cannot earn a grade of "C" or higher in this course unless he or she earns a "C" or better on the writing assignments required by the course.
Prerequisites: PHI 101 and ENG 102, both with a grade of "C" or higher.
Three hours, three credits.

311 Business Ethics
Investigates how philosophy may be applied to reach decisions about specific ethical problems that arise in business. Issues to be discussed may include the moral evaluation of contemporary economic systems, corporate responsibility, workers' rights, whistle blowing, affirmative action, truth in advertising, insider information, and responsibility to third world countries.
Three hours, three credits.

312 Professional Ethics
Examines major principles in theoretical ethics and considers how those principles can be applied to contemporary issues in the professions. Discussions may include issues related to the following: professional/client relationships, confidentiality, fair practices regarding availability of services, environmental protection, stem cell research, and the legitimacy of advertising.
Three hours, three credits.

316 Philosophy of Law
An examination of philosophical issues in law. The course may include discussions of various theories concerning the nature and justification of law (e.g., legal positivism, legal realism, and natural law), anarchism, the relationship between morality and legality, the nature of legal rights and obligations, civil disobedience, the role of punishment, the meaning of justice, and the possibility of international law.
Three hours, three credits.

321 19th Century Continental Philosophy
An examination of the dominant thinkers and themes of the 19th century continental philosophy. Beginning with a discussion of the retrieval and criticism of Kant by the German Idealists, the course proceeds to focus on the philosophy of Hegel and subsequent responses to it. The thinkers covered include Hegel, Marx, Kierkegaard, and Nietzsche.
Three hours, three credits.

326 Philosophy of History
An examination of the various approaches to the problem of the meaning of history. Issues to be discussed may include the following: the distinction between speculative and critical philosophies of history, the question of pattern in historical development, the nature and possibility of historical knowledge, the problem of historical causation and prediction, historiographic strategies and their philosophical bases, the role of interpretation in historical understanding, the relationship between history and nature, and the uses of history.
Three hours, three credits.

331 Metaphysics
An examination of some of the fundamental problems in metaphysics such as the nature of reality, space and time, causality, and God. Special attention is given to determinism and the question of human freedom, as well as the mind/body relation. The course may also include development in contemporary metaphysics of experience.
Prerequisite: one course of philosophy.
Three hours, three credits.

332 Phenomenology and Existentialism
Examines the thoughts of 20th century existential philosophers and the phenomenological method which many of these thinkers find indispensable to philosophical inquiry. The course also involves discussions of the significance of existential thinking and phenomenological methods for other disciplines, e.g., psychology and theology. Thinkers to be studied may include Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre, and Merleau-Ponty.
Prerequisite: one course in philosophy.
Three hours, three credits.

431 Philosophy of Religion
An introduction to the basic problems in philosophy of religion. Participants consider such topics as the existence of God, the nature of divine foreknowledge and human freedom, the perfection of God, the nature of faith, and the problem of evil. In addition to traditional formulations, the course also examines the efforts of some contemporary thinkers to understand religious symbols in the light of specifically religious experiences.
Prerequisite: one course in philosophy.
Three hours, three credits.

481, 482 Seminar: Topics in Philosophical Studies
An intensive study of a particular philosopher, a philosophical problem, or a philosophical perspective. The content of the course varies from semester to semester. The selection of the topic is made by the professor and the prospective enrollees during the semester prior to that in which the seminar is offered.
Prerequisite: one course in philosophy.
Three hours, three credits each.

498, 499 Senior Seminar in Philosophy
These courses are the final examination for philosophy majors. Their purpose is to draw the philosophy program together, showing each portion to be a part of a coherent whole, and to have the students demonstrate an essential understanding of the program, the discipline, and the students' place within the discipline. The fulfillment of this twofold purpose will require that students pass a comprehensive examination, and write a publishable senior essay which they will defend in a professional type of setting.
These courses are designated Writing Intensive; a grade of "C" or higher in this course is required for this course to count toward the six-credit-hour Writing Intensive graduation requirement for Ferrum College. A student cannot earn a grade of "C" or higher in this course unless he or she earns a "C" or better on the writing assignments required by the course.
Prerequisite for 498: Philosophy major and Senior Status; for 499 Prerequisite: 498.
Two hours, two credits each.