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Philosophy Banner

Introduction | Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
Conc in Social, Moral, & Legal Philosophy for the Professions
Minor in Philosophy | Philosophy Courses
Dept Homepage


DEPARTMENT CHAIR
Shari Starrett

DEPARTMENT OFFICE
Humanities 214

DEPARTMENT WEBSITE

http://hss.fullerton.edu/philosophy/

PROGRAMS OFFERED
Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy
Concentration in Social, Moral, and Legal Philosophy for the Professions
Minor in Philosophy

FACULTY
Mitchell Avila, Heather Battaly, Amy Coplan, Albert Flores, Craig K. Ihara, Emily S. Lee, JeeLoo Liu, Ryan Nichols, J. Michael Russell, Shari Starrett

ADVISERS
For advisement about the major or minor in philosophy, please contact Shari Starrett, the Department Chair, or J. Michael Russell. For information on the Concentration in Social, Moral, and Legal Philosophy for the Professions, please contact Mitchell Avila.

INTRODUCTION
Philosophy began when people first questioned the accounts poets and priests had handed down about the structure of the world and the meaning of human life. Since then philosophers have helped create and explore virtually every aspect of our cultural life, including science, religion, art and politics. To study philosophy, therefore, is to engage in a classic form of liberal education in which powers of reasoning and conceptual analysis are explicitly developed. The study of philosophy includes: (1) the development of critical thinking and writing skills; (2) the investigation of conceptual problems encountered in the course of reflecting about experience; (3) the assessment of assumptions underlying other sciences and arts; and (4) the exploration of intellectual and cultural history from a broad perspective. Philosophy is not a “high unit” major. It is possible for many students to obtain the benefits of a philosophically based liberal education while also majoring in another discipline. The Philosophy Department also encourages minors, which can be tailored to the student’s individual interests or other fields of study. Majoring or minoring in philosophy is an excellent way of preparing for law school and other careers that involve facility in reasoning, analysis and information processing.

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AWARDS IN PHILOSOPHY
The Paul C. Hayner Memorial Award, to the outstanding graduating senior in philosophy; the William H. Alamshah Memorial Prize, for the best undergraduate philosophy essay submitted; the Claire and Craig Ihara Award for contribution to the philosophical community.

BACHELOR OF ARTS IN PHILOSOPHY
The Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy requires a minimum of 120 units which includes courses for the major, General Education, all University requirements, and free electives. Students complete a minimum of 39 units in general philosophy or 39 units in the concentration. The general philosophy program requires the following:

  1. Philosophy 315 Philosophical Argument and Writing (3 units)
  2. Required courses in the history of philosophy before 1900 (9 units)
    Philosophy 290 History of Philosophy: Greek Philosophy (3)
    Philosophy 300 History of Philosophy: Rationalism and Empiricism (3)
    Philosophy 301 History of Philosophy: Kant and the 19th Century (3)
  3. Additional history of philosophy requirement (6 units)
    Two of the following courses: Philosophy 291, 323, 343, 350, 379, 380, 381, or 383.
  4. Other course requirements (3 units each from a. and b.)
    a. Ethics: Philosophy 345 or 410
    b. Metaphysics, Epistemology: Philosophy 420, 430, or 440
  5. Seminar requirement (3 units)
    Three units (one course) from Philosophy 447T, 455, 460, 470, 480 or 490.
  6. Electives (12 units)
    Choose 12 units of philosophy courses, no more than six lower-division, which have not been used to fulfill other requirements.

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CONCENTRATION IN SOCIAL, MORAL, AND LEGAL PHILOSOPHY FOR THE PROFESSIONS

This concentration requires a total of 39 units and prepares students for post-baccalaureate professional studies and eventually a career in their chosen field. Students who complete the Concentration in Social, Moral, and Legal Philosophy for the Professions while earning their Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy should be equipped with the intellectual skills (i.e., critical reading and analysis skills) necessary in order to successfully apply to, enter, and graduate from competitive professional graduate programs such as law, business, and administration.

  1. Argumentation and Writing Requirement (3 units)
    Philosophy 315 Philosophical Argument and Writing (3)
  2. Pre-1900 History Sequence (9 units)
    Philosophy 290 Greek Philosophy (3)
    Philosophy 300 Rationalism and Empiricism (3)
    Philosophy 301 Kant and 19th Century (3)
  3. Ethics, Social/Political Philosophy (6 units), choose from:
    Philosophy 345 Social and Political Philosophy (3)
    Philosophy 355 Philosophy of Law (3)
    Philosophy 382 Marx and Marxism (3)
    Philosophy 410 Ethical Theory (3)
  4. Applied Ethics, Social/Political Philosophy (3 units), choose from:
    Philosophy 312 Business and Professional Ethics (3)
    Philosophy 313 Environmental Ethics (3)
    Philosophy 314 Medical Ethics (3)
    Philosophy 320 Contemporary Moral Issues (3)
    Philosophy 377 Philosophical Approaches to Race, Class, and Gender (3)
  5. Core Topics in Philosophy (6 units), choose from:
    Philosophy 303 Intro to Philosophy of Science (3)
    Philosophy 323 Existentialism (3)
    Philosophy 348 Philosophy of Religion (3)
    Philosophy 380 Analytical Philosophy 1900 to 1950 (3)
    Philosophy 381 Analytic Tradition: 1950 to the Present (3)
    Philosophy 383 Postmodernism (3)
    Philosophy 420 Metaphysics (3)
    Philosophy 430 Epistemology (3)
    Philosophy 440 Philosophy of Mind (3)
  6. Philosophy 405 Advanced Topics in Critical Thinking (3)
  7. Philosophy 493 Senior Internship in Ethics and Society (3)
  8. Electives (6 units)

Six units of philosophy courses that have not been used to fulfill other requirements. No more than six lower-division units may count toward electives in the major.

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MINOR IN PHILOSOPHY
Students in other disciplines often find that a background in philosophy enriches their university experience and enhances work done in other fields in preparation for specific careers. The minor in philosophy requires 21 units in philosophy, at least 12 of which must be upper division. Up to nine units taken in fulfillment of general education requirements may be counted toward the minor. The Department of Philosophy offers two ways of pursuing the minor. The Alternative B minor is especially appropriate for students preparing for professional degrees in law or medicine.

Alternative A:
Among the 21 units, at least six units from among the following courses: Philosophy 290, 291, 300, 301; and either a seminar or three units of Philosophy 499.

Alternative B:
Among the 21 units, at least 15 units to be chosen from among philosophy courses correlative to the student’s major or intended post-baccalaureate field, as approved by the philosophy adviser.

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RECOMMENDED COURSE WORK FOR PHILOSOPHY MAJORS

A program in philosophy profits greatly from the study of psychology, the natural and social sciences, and literature. Students are advised to supplement their studies in philosophy with course work offered in these fields and in fields closely related to their philosophical interests.

Students who are planning to attend graduate school in philosophy are urged to acquire proficiency in a foreign language, and to include in their programs as many as possible of the following:

Philosophy 303 Introduction to the Philosophy of Science (3)
Philosophy 345 Social and Political Philosophy (3)
Philosophy 368 First Course in Symbolic Logic (3)
Philosophy 375 Introduction to the Philosophy of Language (3)
Philosophy 380 Analytic Philosophy (3)
Philosophy 410 Ethical Theory (3)
Philosophy 420 Metaphysics (3)
Philosophy 430 Epistemology (3)
Philosophy 440 Philosophy of Mind (3)
Philosophy 455 Seminar in Values (3)

Students interested in pursuing admission to law school are advised to include in their programs as many as possible of the following:

Philosophy 312 Business and Professional Ethics (3)
Philosophy 313 Environmental Ethics (3)
Philosophy 314 Medical Ethics (3)
Philosophy 345 Social and Political Philosophy (3)
Philosophy 355 Philosophy of Law (3)
Philosophy 368 First Course in Symbolic Logic (3)
Philosophy 410 Ethical Theory (3)
Philosophy 455 Seminar in Values (3)

TRANSFER CREDIT

Work done in philosophy at other institutions may be counted toward the major, subject to the rules of the university and the following departmental rules: (1) only seminars can fulfill the seminar requirement; (2) only upper-division work can fulfill upper-division requirements; (3) in no case can more than six units of lower-division work taken at another institution count toward the major requirement of 39 units. Six units of philosophy taken at another university may be counted toward the minor.

CREDENTIAL INFORMATION
The Bachelor’s Degree in Philosophy may be effectively combined with subject matter studies necessary for the multiple subject teaching credential (K-8). Undergraduates are encouraged to work with the Center for Careers in Teaching (714-278-7130) as early as possible in their academic careers to plan efficient course selections for general education, the major and electives. With careful planning, it may be possible to enter the credential program in the senior year of the bachelor’s degree. Postgraduate students should contact the Admission to Teacher Education office in the College of Education (714-278-3352) to obtain information on attending an overview presentation.

PHILOSOPHY COURSES
Courses are designated as PHIL in the class schedule.

PHIL 100    Introduction to Philosophy

Description: The nature, methods and some of the main problems of philosophy. Primarily for freshmen and sophomores. Not a prerequisite for advanced courses. (CAN PHIL 2)
Units: (3)

PHIL 101    Meaning, Purpose, and the Good Life

Description: Introduction to Western and Eastern approaches to perennial topics in philosophy concerning human flourishing and the nature of persons. Questions considered include, “What is happiness?” “What is the good life?” “Does life have meaning and purpose?” and “What is a person?”
Units: (3)

PHIL 105    Critical Thinking

Description: Development of non-mathematical critical reasoning skills, including recognition of arguments, argument evaluation and construction of arguments.
Units: (3)

PHIL 106    Introduction to Logic

Description: The logical structure of language and correct reasoning: deduction, induction, scientific reasoning, and informal fallacies. (CAN PHIL 6)
Units: (3)

PHIL 110    Religions of the World

Description: (Same as Comparative Religion 110)
Units: (3)

PHIL 120    Introduction to Ethics

Description: Problems of human conduct and moral evaluation: standards for moral assessment of conduct and persons; morality and its relation to mores, social demands and personal commitments.
Units: (3)

PHIL 290    History of Philosophy: Greek Philosophy

Description: The origins of Western philosophy, and its development through Socrates, Plato and Aristotle.
Units: (3)

PHIL 291    History of Philosophy: Medieval Philosophy

Description: Hellenistic philosophy and such figures as Plotinus, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham.
Units: (3)

PHIL 300    History of Philosophy: Rationalism and Empiricism

Description: Prerequisite: Completion of General Education Category III.B.2. The rationalism of Descartes, Spinoza and Leibniz, and the empiricism of Locke, Berkeley and Hume.
Units: (3)

PHIL 301    History of Philosophy: Kant and the 19th Century

Description: Prerequisite: Philosophy 300. Brief review of rationalism and empiricism as a background to Kant. A study of the revolutionary aspects of Kant’s critical philosophy. An exploration of subsequent trends in nineteenth century philosophy, emphasizing such figures as Hegel, Schopenhauer, Marx, Mill, Kierkegaard and Nietzsche.
Units: (3)

PHIL 302    Introduction to Intercultural Women’s Studies

Description: (Same as Women’s Studies 302)
Units: (3)

PHIL 303    Introduction to the Philosophy of Science

Description: Prerequisite: general education physical or biological science requirement. Logical and methodological features of scientific inquiry; nature of theories and interpretation of theoretical terms; scientific progress; impact of science on society and of society on science.
Units: (3)

PHIL 311    Aesthetics: Philosophy of Art and Beauty

Description: Prerequisite: Completion of General Education Category III.B.1 or III.B.2. The conditions and aims of art and of aesthetic experience.
Units: (3)

PHIL 312    Business and Professional Ethics

Description: Prerequisite: upper-division standing. Explores the nature and limits of the moral rights and responsibilities of business and the professions (including law, medicine, science, engineering, journalism, management and teaching). 
Units: (3)

PHIL 313    Environmental Ethics

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category III.B.2 or III.C.1. Examines the conceptual and moral foundations of environmental ethics focusing on ecosystem and wildlife conservation policies, animal rights, a land ethic, competing policy analyses, and obligations to future generations.
Units: (3)

PHIL 314    Medical Ethics

Description: Prerequisite: Completion of General Education Category III.B.2. An examination of ethical issues raised by recent technical developments in medicine, and of the moral rights and responsibilities of patients and health-care professionals.
Units: (3)

PHIL 315    Philosophical Argument and Writing

Description: Prerequisite: three units of philosophy. Philosophical concepts, distinctions and methods are used to teach philosophical and argumentative writing which is clear, critical, expressive and precise. This course is designed to satisfy the classroom portion of the upper-division writing requirement for philosophy majors.
Units: (3)

PHIL 316    Research Ethics

Description: Prerequisite: Philosophy 310 or completion of the General Education Category III.A. Examines the ethical principles and problems implicit in the conduct of scientific research, with special attention to issues of scientific integrity, fraud, deception, data accuracy, authorship credit, and use of research funds, especially when animal or human subjects are used.
Units: (3)

PHIL 320    Contemporary Moral Issues

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category III.B.2. Application of ethical and social/political theories to contemporary moral problems. Topics selected from current issues in law, business, medicine, sexual morality, and gender/multicultural studies, including such topics as abortion, racism, crime, punishment, welfare, domestic violence, and pornography.
Units: (3)

PHIL 323    Existentialism

Description: Introduction to existentialist perspectives on freedom, meaning, responsibility, authenticity and self-deception. The course typically includes discussion of Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger and Sartre.
Units: (3)

PHIL 324    Existential Group

Description: An investigation of how themes in the writings of existentialist philosophers pertain to the lifestyles, actions, and feelings of the class participants.
Units: (3)

PHIL 325    Philosophy of Sex and Love

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category III.B.2. Investigates philosophical approaches to love, friendship, marriage, and eroticism. Covers nature of love, relationship between sexuality and love, gender roles, and gender equality. Includes investigation of ethical and legal controversies in sexuality, marriage, and privacy.
Units: (3)

PHIL 333    Evolution and Creation

Description: Prerequisites: General Education Categories III.A.2.c, and III.B.2. Interdisciplinary study of evolutionary biology’s impact on culture in context of religious doctrines of creation. Examines both evolutionary theory and religious and philosophical reactions from Darwin to the present, including relevant educational and legal contexts.
Units: (3)

PHIL 341    Assumptions of Psychotherapy

Description: Prerequisites: completion of General Education Categories III.B.2 and III.C.1. Philosophical concepts and assumptions pertinent to the theory of psychotherapy, such as the Cartesian, the mechanistic and the deterministic assumptions of Freud.
Units: (3)

PHIL 343    Philosophy of Feminism

Description: Prerequisite: three units of philosophy or three units of women’s studies. A critical examination of philosophical issues connected with “second-wave” U.S. feminism. Alternative feminist theories, goals and reconstruction of traditional areas of philosophy. (Same as Women’s Studies 343)
Units: (3)

PHIL 345    Social and Political Philosophy

Description: Prerequisite: three units of philosophy. A critical examination of individualism, community, freedom, authority, justice, human rights and alienation, from the perspective of social and political theory.
Units: (3)

PHIL 348    Philosophy of Religion

Description: The role of philosophy in shaping theological doctrine, in critically evaluating religious experience, in arguing for or against the existence of God, and in considering the problem of evil. (Same as Comparative Religion 348)
Units: (3)

PHIL 349    Philosophy, Literature and Cinema

Description: A critical examination into the aesthetics of literature and film, with emphasis on how storytelling deepens our imagination and understanding of identity, culture, society, and values through use of word and image.
Units: (3)

PHIL 350    Asian Philosophy

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category III.B.2. Asian philosophies such as Taoism, Confucianism and Buddhism (especially Zen): world views, conceptions of human nature and the good life. Applications to martial and non-martial arts. Comparisons with Western philosophies, religions and values.
Units: (3)

PHIL 352    Philosophy of Asian Martial Arts

Description: Prerequisite: three units of philosophy or appropriate prior instruction in the martial arts. A philosophical examination of Asian martial arts and how they relate to Taoism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Shinto and Zen. Samurai ideals will be compared to those of the warrior traditions of the Middle Ages and Homeric Greece.
Units: (3)

PHIL 354T    Topics in Buddhism

Description: (Same as Comparative Religion 354T)
Units: (3)

PHIL 355    Philosophy of Law

Description: An exploration of the philosophical issues underlying the law, including the nature and justification of law, its relationship to morality, and the limits of free speech, criminal punishment, legal responsibility and affirmative action.
Units: (3)

PHIL 368    First Course in Symbolic Logic

Description: Prerequisites: entry-level mathematics examination. The recognition and construction of correct deductions in the sentential logic and the first-order predicate calculus. (Same as Math 368)
Units: (3)

PHIL 375    Introduction to the Philosophy of Language

Description: Prerequisite: six units of philosophy or six units of linguistics or three units of each. A study of philosophical issues about language including topics such as meaning, reference, predication, and truth. (Same as Linguistics 375)
Units: (3)

PHIL 377    Philosophical Approaches to Race, Class, and Gender

Description: Prerequisite: one upper-division philosophy course, or course focused on race, class, or gender. Philosophical and interdisciplinary analyses of race, class, and gender. Class time divided between assessment of influential theories and writers, and development of Internet and interactive research.
Units: (3)

PHIL 379    American Philosophy

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category II.B.2. American philosophy, beginning with Whitman, Emerson, and Thoreau on transcendentalism and nature philosophy, with particular emphasis on the pragmatism of Pierce, Dewey, James, and recent developments of neo-pragmatists Quine and Rorty.
Units: (3)

PHIL 380    Analytic Philosophy: 1900 to 1950

Description: Prerequisite: six units in philosophy. Investigation of the rise and development of the analytic movement in 20th-century philosophy. Works of such philosophers as Moore, Russell, Wittgenstein and Carnap will be studied.
Units: (3)

PHIL 381    The Analytic Tradition: 1950 to the Present

Description: Prerequisite: six units of philosophy or equivalent. A study of the character and development of post-war Anglo-American philosophy including the works of such thinkers as the later Wittgenstein, Quine, Davidson, Rorty and Putnam.
Units: (3)

PHIL 382    Marx and Marxism

Description: Marx and his followers in philosophical perspective. Theories of human nature, society and intellectual activity; conceptual tools for the analysis of social phenomena; sources; and followers, both critical and dogmatic.
Units: (3)

PHIL 383    Postmodernism

Description: Prerequisite: Philosophy 301 or 323, or equivalent. Such modern and post-modern movements as phenomenology, hermeneutics, critical theory, post-structuralism, deconstruction, the Frankfurt school, and French feminism; influences of these movements on political, literary, and psychoanalytic theory.
Units: (3)

PHIL 386    Philosophy of Biology

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education requirements in Biological Science. Conceptual foundations of biological science and especially of evolutionary theory. Applicability of such concepts as natural law, theory reduction, emergence and teleology to the investigation of living things from the molecular to the ecological level.
Units: (3)

PHIL 399    Directed Study

Description: Prerequisite: approval of department. Supervised individual study as an elective. May be repeated for credit with different content. No more than three units may be taken with any one adviser in any one semester.
Units: (1-3)

PHIL 400    Ethical and Professional Issues in Human Services

Description: (Same as Human Services 400)
Units: (3)

PHIL 401    Knowledge in the Arts and Sciences

Description: Prerequisites: Liberal Studies 304 and either Liberal Studies 303 or 305. A philosophical analysis and comparison of how the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the arts and humanities apply epistemological or aesthetic criteria to assess scientific and artistic activities. Discussion of the evolution of these criteria in their social and ideological context.
Units: (3)

PHIL 405    Advanced Topics in Critical Thinking

Description: Prerequisites: Philosophy 105, 106 or 368. Advanced study of logical argumentation, fallacies, and deductive and inductive reasoning. Includes application of critical thinking methods to applied topics in philosophy including legal ethics and legal reasoning.
Units: (3)

PHIL 410    Ethical Theory

Description: Prerequisite: prior course in ethics. An examination of major ethical theories as advanced by such authors as Aristotle, Kant, Mill and Rawls.
Units: (3)

PHIL 416    Advanced Research Ethics

Description: Prerequisite: Philosophy 310. For graduate students engaged in research, an examination of the ethical principles and problems implicit in the conduct of research, with special attention to issues of scientific integrity, fraud, deception, data accuracy, authorship credit, and use of research funds.
Units: (3)

PHIL 420    Metaphysics

Description: Prerequisite: six units in philosophy. Metaphysics and metaphysical issues such as reality, universals, space, time, substance, identity and difference, causality, permanence and change, freedom and determinism, minds and bodies.
Units: (3)

PHIL 430    Epistemology

Description: Prerequisite: six units in philosophy. The nature of knowledge, belief, certainty, truth, perception, and the a priori; examinations of skepticism, traditional responses to skepticism, and the foundations of knowledge.
Units: (3)

PHIL 440    Philosophy of Mind

Description: Prerequisite: six units in philosophy. The concept of mind, and such related issues as the mind-body relation, behavior, consciousness, voluntary action, weakness of will, and our knowledge of other minds.
Units: (3)

PHIL 447T    Seminar in Selected Problems

Description: Prerequisite: six units in philosophy. Intensive study of one philosophical concern, such as an individual philosopher or topic. May be repeated with different content for additional credit.
Units: (3)

PHIL 448    Death, Aging, and Meaning

Description: Prerequisite: completion of General Education Category IV. Various thinkers regard comprehending ones own death as a means to making sense of one’s life. This class combines intellectual inquiry and personal exploration into assessing death, aging, and living meaningfully.
Units: (3)

PHIL 455    Seminar in Values

Description: Prerequisite: appropriate course from among Philosophy 310, 311 or 410. Valuation or some important form of value: ethical, aesthetic, political. May be repeated with different content for additional credit.
Units: (3)

PHIL 460    Seminar in Logic and Language

Description: Prerequisite: appropriate course from among Philosophy 368, 369 or 375. Advanced topics in logic or philosophy of language; or foundations of logic and mathematics. May be repeated with different content for additional credit.
Units: (3)

PHIL 470    Seminar in Metaphysics and Epistemology

Description: Prerequisite: Philosophy 420,430 or 440. Topics covered include metaphysics and epistemology such as reality, substance, mind, action, cause, knowledge and truth.
Units: (3)

PHIL 480    Seminar in the History of Philosophy

Description: Prerequisite: an appropriate course from among Philosophy 290, 291, 300 or 301. Course covers some important work, figure, school or problem in the history of philosophy before 1900.
Units: (3)

PHIL 490    Seminar in Contemporary Philosophy

Description: Prerequisite: appropriate course work. Issues raised by such 20th-century philosophers as Russell, Moore, Wittgenstein, Austin, Quine, Husserl, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty or Foucault.
Units: (3)

PHIL 493    Senior Internship in Ethics and Society

Description: Prerequisite: six units of philosophy in ethics and/or social/political philosophy. Supervised internship in professional setting. Required course project on philosophical and ethical issues.
Units: (3)

PHIL 499    Independent Study

Description: Prerequisite: approval of department. To develop competency in research. May be repeated for credit. No more than three units may be taken with any one adviser in any one semester.
Units: (1-3)

 

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