Current/planned courses

Philosophy and Religious Studies Courses

Fall 2024 Planned Courses


PHIL 101 Introduction to Philosophy
(TBA, Multiple Sections)

In this class, we will consider fundamental questions about who we are, what we know, what reality is like, and what is right and wrong. More importantly, we will cover some of the most important, weird, and insightful answers that have been given to these questions throughout human history. Do you even exist?

PHIL 102 Introduction to Ethics
(TBA, Multiple Sections)

Is it morally okay to get an abortion? What should I do (if anything) about our changing environment? Should I stop eating meat and become a vegetarian? If these questions interest you, check out Introduction to Ethics! This class gives you a vocabulary to talk about morality, teaches you a variety of ethical frameworks to help make moral decisions, and will help you become a thoughtful friend, citizen, and employee.

PHIL 103 Introduction to Political Philosophy
(Dr. Jonathan Trerise, T/TH 3:05-4:20 PM)

Students will explore fundamental political ideas using immersive role-playing simulations. Students will recreate pivotal moments in political history to understand the political concepts that formed the world we live in. Questions about the value of democracy, and the boundaries of citizenship, freedom, and justice are all explored.

PHIL 105 Critical Thinking
(Dr. Cliff Sosis, T/TH 1:40-2:55 PM and T/TH 4:30-5:45 PM)

As a college student, I’m sure you spend many hours thinking about issues that are important to you in various domains. But how much time do you devote to thinking about how to think about things? When you think about questions that are important to your life, do you think about them rationally? If you take this course seriously, it will be one of the most useful courses you will ever take.

*NEW COURSE* PHIL 106 World Philosophy
(Dr. Katherine Englehardt, multiple sections)

The overarching goals of this course are for students to study some of the "big questions" in philosophy from a non-Eurocentric approach and to learn about similarities and differences in philosophical views across world traditions. Texts may include ancient, modern, or contemporary writing from African, Asian, Native American, and European philosophers.

PHIL 110 Introduction to Logic
(TBA, Multiple Sections)

You study logic to improve your thinking abilities, and that’s a good skill anywhere. In the class, you’ll learn about arguments, what some distinctively bad ones look like, and some important technical things about how an argument can be a real proof of its conclusion.

*NEW COURSE* PHIL 308 Ethics & Emerging Technologies
(Dr. Jonathan Trerise, T/Th 10:50 – 12:05)

Should we continue to develop artificial intelligence, given all its risks? We will consider the ethics of artificial intelligence, robot warfare, sex robots, and other issues that, while at the cutting edge of current technology, force us to ask deep questions about humanity and how we approach our problems.

PHIL 314 Social & Political Philosophy
(Dr. Michael Ruse, MWF 11:00-11:50)

An examination of modern political philosophers, their responses to political, social, economic and legal concepts and issues concerning liberties and rights in the authority-individual relationship.

PHIL 317 Bio-Medical Ethics
(Dr. Emily McGill, MWF 2:00-2:50 PM) (Prereq: Sophomore standing or higher, or permission of the instructor)

We all receive medical care throughout our lives. We must also make healthcare-related decisions for ourselves and our loved ones, and some of us might engage in medical research or administer medical care to others. Ethical questions arise in all of these arenas. What does it mean to give informed consent? Is genetic engineering morally acceptable? Is universal healthcare a requirement of justice? In this class, we will discuss ethical frameworks that help us approach these and many other difficult questions that surround medicine, healthcare, and research.

PHIL 318 Business Ethics
(TBA, Multiple Sections)

Is it right for employers to track the social media behavior of their employees? Is lying to a boss ever the right thing to do? What about a manager lying to an employee? Do businesses have a moral responsibility to invest in local schools and communities? Business creates a complex network of social connections that give rise to a special set of moral issues. In this class, we will examine several of these issues and discuss various ways ethicists navigate through them.

PHIL 309 Philosophy of Mind
(Dr. Renee Smith, T/Th 12:15-1:30)  

Is the mind the brain? Or is it something else? What is consciousness? We will look at solutions to the mind-body problem and the problem of consciousness in contemporary philosophy, including behaviorism, identity theory, functionalism, and property dualism.

PHIL 362 Philosophy & Christianity
(Dr. Nils Rauhut, T/Th 10:15-12:05)

This course examines the philosophical foundations of Christian thought and belief. Christian concepts such as the trinity, incarnation, original sin, atonement, the problem of evil, and life after death are examined by reading and analyzing the works of classical as well as contemporary philosophers such as Peter Abelard, Thomas Aquinas, Philip Quinn, Alvin Plantinga and Richard Swinburne.

*NEW COURSE* PHIL 367 Hellenistic Philosophy
(Dr. Dennis Earl, T/Th 9:25-10:40)

This course focuses on the philosophical developments in the Greek and Roman world from roughly the death of Aristotle in 322 BCE to about the 2nd Century CE. The philosophical schools of this time include cynicism, stoicism, epicureanism, skepticism, and others. The course considers how these schools addressed traditional questions of the time in physics, ethics, and logic. But most of all, the course addresses a unique focus of this period of Western philosophy: that of how best to cultivate the person, of what virtues to seek, and of how best to unpack the notion of philosophy as a way of life.


RELG 103 World Religions
(TBA, Multiple Sections)  

Introduces students to the academic study of religion and surveys the global range of religious traditions.  

RELG 104 Intro to Asian Religious Traditions 
(TBA, Multiple Sections) 

An introduction to the most prevalent and enduring ideas, images, and personalities of Asian religious traditions including Daoism, Confucianism, East Asian Shamanism, Shintō, Buddhism, and more. 

RELG 203 Studying Religions: Theory & Methods 
(Dr. Jeffry Halverson, MWF    12:00 - 12:50) 

An introduction to the theories and methods in the academic study of religion. The course encourages students to think critically about the role of religion in individual and collective life around the world.   

RELG 301 Hebrew Bible 
(Dr. Alan Todd, TTH 10:50 - 12:05)  

A critical study of the literature of the Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) emphasizing its historical development and meaning in Jewish communities. No knowledge of Hebrew is required or needed. Offered as needed. 

RELG 349 Japanese Religions


For more information, please contact the chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies,

Ron Green,, AOC2 332, 843-349-2782, or visit