Thiel College

Course Offerings


PHIL 127: Introduction to Philosophy
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

An introduction to philosophy through a study of selected problems. Attention is given to problems concerning God and evil, free will and determinism, moral judgments and knowledge and skepticism. Suitable for non-major.

PHIL 137: Introduction to Language and Logic
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

A study of various terms and methods for analyzing language and evaluating statements and arguments. Attention is focused on forms and functions of language, material fallacies, definition and deductive logic. Suitable for non-major.

PHIL 147: Introduction to the History of Philosophy: Socrates to Aquinas
3 CH   /  Offered Every Fall

An introduction to and survey of philosophical ideas that have influenced modern thought. Emphasis will be placed on Greek and early European philosophical development. Suitable for non-major.

PHIL 157: Introduction to the History of Philosophy: Descartes to Sartre
3 CH   /  Offered Every Spring

An introduction to and survey of philosophical ideas that ushered in the modern era. Emphasis will be placed on Descartes, the British Empiricists and selected contemporary philosophers. Suitable for non-major.

PHIL 227: Intro to Chinese Philosophy
3 CH   /  WIC

This course introduces the philosophy of Confucianism, Daoism and the philosophical elements of Buddhism. It introduces these schools of thought within the context of Chinese and Korean culture. Such contexts include traditions, art forms, geography and the political history of these civilizations.

PHIL 267: Ethics
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

A study of major systems of ethical decision-making, the language of morals and contemporary moral problems.

PHIL 277: Business Ethics
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester   /  WIC

The world of business increases in technological complexity and competitive pressure daily. Dealing successfully with problems in the business world requires, in addition to technical competence, a firm grounding in the ethical tradition of human culture. This class will provide practical assistance to those entering the business community and theoretical understanding for those studying how humans interact in the world.

PHIL 287: Symbolic Logic
3 CH

A course in deductive logic, emphasizing both basic principles and techniques. Theory of truth functions and quantification theory are introduced and alternative deductive methods within these theories are presented. Attention is focused on these methods in analyzing and testing the validity of various kinds of arguments. Offered every two years.

PHIL 297: Environmental Ethics
3 CH   /  WIC

This course provides an overview of topics in environmental ethics. We will examine Western attitudes and philosophies about the non-human world and how these attitudes have been applied in policy and actions, taking in both individual relationships with the natural world as well as the relationship of humanity writ large with nature. Questions concerning population, scarce and plentiful resource allocations, as well as determinations of fair access to common goods such as the atmosphere, open oceans and common trust lands will be exposed. Foundational ideologies such as the concepts of sustainable development, private property, animal rights, land ethics and eco-feminism will be noted. We will utilize basic ethical theories and attempt to apply them in this specific domain.

PHIL 317: Contemporary Philosophical Movements
3 CH   /  WIC

A study of principal movements in 20th-century philosophy. Attention is given to European as well as American topics. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every two years.

PHIL 327: Philosophy of Art
3 CH   /  WIC

An introduction to aesthetics and an examination of such problems as the nature of art, the character of the aesthetic experience, the relation of the arts to one another and the language of describing, interpreting and evaluating works of art. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every two years.

PHIL 337: Social and Political Philosophy
3 CH   /  WIC

An analysis of the major concepts of social and political thought, including justice, authority and legitimate coercive force. Special attention is given to attempts to justify various forms of social organization. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every two years.

PHIL 347: Philosophy of Mind
3 CH   /  WIC

An examination of human action, the relationship of mental events to brain events, the problem of free will and the essential and distinguishing features of the human being. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every two years.

PHIL 357: Metaphysics
3 CH   /  WIC

An examination of historically important theories of reality. Attention is focused on the works of Plato, Descartes, Kant, Hegel, Ayer and Quine. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every two years.

PHIL 358: Philosophy of Language
3 CH

An investigation of issues surrounding the nature of language and its relation to thought and the world: e.g. What is the nature of word and sentence meaning? What is the relation between those meanings and mental entities such as beliefs and desires? What do we use language to do? Does language influence thought? Could or do nonhuman animals and/or computers use a language? Offered every three years.

PHIL 367: American Philosophy
3 CH   /  WIC

A brief survey of early American thought, a detailed examination of the major themes in the philosophies of Peirce, James, Dewey, Royce, Santayana and Whitehead and a glimpse of contemporary work. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every three years.

PHIL 377: Legal Philosophy
3 CH   /  WIC

Seminar on legal reasoning, the relationship of ethics to the law, and justifications for theories of punishment. The idea of justice will be given central importance. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every three years.

PHIL 387: Medical Ethics
3 CH

Moral decisions in medicine. Topics covered include distribution of scarce medical resources, death and dying, organ transplants and euthanasia. (Suggested P: One course in philosophy) Offered every three years.

PHIL 397: Philosophy of Science
3 CH   /  WIC

Seminar examining theory formation, reasoning and experimentation in the natural and social sciences. (P: One course in philosophy) Offered every three years.

PHIL 417: Readings in Philosophy
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

A course designed to permit advanced students to read in an area of their interest. (P: Permission of instructor)

PHIL 427: Readings in Philosophy
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

A course designed to permit advanced students to read in an area of their interest. (P: Permission of instructor)

PHIL 455: Cooperative Education
Credit Hours Vary   /  Offered Every Semester

PHIL 467: Advanced Ethical Theory
3 CH   /  WIC

This course will focus on understanding principal ethical theorists. Reading assignments will consist of primary texts and selected secondary literature. These will drive in-class analysis in a seminar format, and will serve as the basis for extended writing assignments. Readings will include Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Mill, Rawls and others if possible. The student will acquire a confident comprehension of virtue-ethics, deontological ethics and utilitarian ethics. This course is designed to develop the capacity to write a nuanced position paper on applied ethical cases, built on firm theoretical foundations.

PHIL 477: Research in Philosophy
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester   /  WIC

A course designed to guide senior majors in their thesis research. (P: Major in philosophy and permission of instructor)

PHIL 497: Independent Study
3 CH   /  Offered Every Semester

An opportunity for further independent study. (P: Permission of instructor and the chairperson of the department)