2010 - 2011 Philosophy/Religious Studies Program (PHIL, REL)

Objectives | Program Requirements | Academic Major in Philosophy--BA | Academic Major in Philosophy--BS | Academic Minor in Philosophy | Academic Minor in Religious Studies | Philosophy Course Descriptions | Religion Course Descriptions

Faculty: Sabrina Hom, Nicholas D. More, Bridget Newell, Michael A. Popich

Program Goals

  • To become effective analytical and critical thinkers, and to communicate such thinking orally and in writing.
  • To gain familiarity with philosophical or religious history and its central issues.
  • To think and write in the form and by the method proper to the discipline of Philosophy or Religious Studies, i.e., rational argumentation in support of a significant thesis.
  • To pursue in depth one field of philosophy, either theoretical or applied.
  • To produce a substantial piece of original scholarship in Philosophy or Religious Studies.
  • To become more reflective of the human condition, and the effect of globalization and diversity; to understand the relevance of philosophical thinking to one's own life and public policies and practices.

Objectives

The Philosophy and Religious Studies Program offers an academic major in philosophy leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree or a Bachelor of Science degree, as well as an academic minor. It provides students with the critical and philosophical thinking skills necessary to examine human systems of value, knowledge, and belief, and to make rational analyses of ideas fundamental to living thoughtfully in the world. Philosophy is an excellent choice of study for pre-law students, as preparation for graduate school in philosophy, as a minor or second major for liberal arts students preparing for graduate school, and for anyone who would benefit from a discipline of clear thinking, writing, and problem solving in the pursuit of wisdom.

Religious Studies (available as a minor) is considered open to objective and scholarly investigation. Students learn to read religious literature intelligently and within context, and gain perspective on the religious impulse as it is expressed through the world's religions. Students majoring in Philosophy who plan to pursue an M.A. or Ph.D. in the field should plan for graduate school, with the assistance of the Philosophy/Religious Studies faculty, no later than the second semester of their junior year. Students intending to pursue a degree in theology are advised to major in English, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, or any broad liberal arts program, or minor in Religious Studies. The Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada recommends that students have a background in history, religions of non-western cultures, and a foreign language.

Students majoring or minoring in philosophy with a GPA of 3.5 overall and in philosophy coursework may be invited to become members of Phi Sigma Tau, the international undergraduate Philosophy Honor Society. Westminster College's Utah chapter is the oldest in the state.

Program Requirements

Students must maintain a minimum cumulative 2.3 GPA in courses required in the philosophy major.

*Students who want to major or minor in Philosophy and who have HON 201 (Humanities I) and HON 202 (Humanities II) must take PHIL 102 (Critical Thinking, LE) and either PHIL 100/100D (Introduction to Philosophy, LE) or PHIL 206/206D (Introduction to Ethics, LE).

For course prerequisites, please refer to the course description.

Academic Major in Philosophy--Bachelor of Arts Degree

Liberal Education Courses Credit Hours
The following courses, which fulfill LE requirements, are required for the Philosophy major.

PHIL 100/100D Introduction to Philosophy, LE
PHIL 102 Critical Thinking, LE
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE


3
4
3

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Foreign Language Requirement 8
. Philosophy majors must complete eight credit hours in a single foreign language. 8
II. Lower Division Philosophy Courses 18
. PHIL 100/100D Introduction to Philosophy, LE
PHIL 102 Critical Thinking, LE
PHIL 201 History of Philosophy I
PHIL 202 History of Philosophy II
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE
3
4
4
4
3
III. Upper Division Philosophy Courses 8
. PHIL 390 Thesis Research Preseminar in Philosophy (Fall only)
PHIL 490 Research Seminar in Philosophy (Spring only) *

*PHIL 390 is required before PHIL 490 for Philosophy or Religion majors.
4
4
IV. Electives 14
. Additional course work in Philosophy 14
V. Required Courses from Other Programs 6
. 300-level course work in History 6
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MAJOR 54

Academic Major in Philosophy--Bachelor of Science Degree

For a Bachelor of Science degree in Philosophy, students must fulfill the same requirements as for the Bachelor of Arts degree, except that students are required to take eight credit hours of a laboratory science in lieu of the history requirement.

Liberal Education Courses Credit Hours
The following courses, which fulfill LE requirements, are required for the Philosophy major.

PHIL 100/100D Introduction to Philosophy, LE
PHIL 102 Critical Thinking, LE
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE


3
4
3

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Foreign Language Requirement 8
. Philosophy majors must complete eight credit hours in a single foreign language. 8
II. Lower Division Philosophy Courses 18
. PHIL 100/100D Introduction to Philosophy, LE
PHIL 102 Critical Thinking, LE
PHIL 201 History of Philosophy I
PHIL 202 History of Philosophy II
PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE
3
4
4
4
3
III. Upper Division Philosophy Courses 8
. PHIL 390 Thesis Research Preseminar in Philosophy (Fall only)
PHIL 490 Research Seminar in Philosophy (Spring only)
4
4
IV. Electives 14
. Additional course work in Philosophy 14
V. Required Courses from Other Programs 8
. Two semesters of a laboratory science 8
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MAJOR 56

Recommended Plan of Study for Philosophy

. Fall Semester Spring Semester
Freshman Year* Language I
PHIL 100/100D
PHIL 102 (or in Spring)
Language II
PHIL 206/206D
Sophomore Year* PHIL 201 (or in Junior year)
PHIL elective (upper div.)
Science Lab course (B.S.)
PHIL 202 (or in Junior year)
PHIL elective (upper div.)
HIST elective (upper div.) (B.A.)
Junior Year* PHIL elective (upper div.)
HIST elective (upper div.) (B.A.)
(Or) PHIL elective (upper div.)
Science Lab course (B.S.)
Senior Year* PHIL 390
PHIL elective (upper div.)
PHIL 490 Thesis II
(Or) PHIL elective (upper div.)

* It is recommended that students take 2 hours of PHIL 300 during May term for all four years.

Philosophy majors can take a combination of upper division courses in order to meet the catalog requirements for 14 (minimum) elective hours in Philosophy for a Bachelor's degree. For example, in their sophomore and junior years they could take 2 or 3 courses as 300-level electives (offered in the Fall and Spring semesters) and then take several 2-credit May Term Philosophy 300 special topics courses.

Or, mutatis mutandis, the student could take several 300-level electives in their junior and senior years and several 2-credit Philosophy 300 special topics May Term courses over their sophomore, junior and senior years in order to reach the 14-hour (minimum) electives requirement in Philosophy.

Academic Minor in Philosophy

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 18
. PHIL 100/100D Introduction to Philosophy, LE
PHIL 102 Critical Thinking, LE

PHIL 201 History of Philosophy I (4)
or
PHIL 202 History of Philosophy II (4)

PHIL 206/206D Introduction to Ethics, LE
PHIL 390 Thesis Research Preseminar in Philosophy
Please see PHIL 390 course description regarding Philosophy or Religion minors.
3
4



4

3
4
II. Electives 6
. Additional coursework in Philosophy 6
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MINOR 24

Academic Minor in Religious Studies

Requirement Description
Credit Hours
I. Required Courses 15
. REL 101/101D Religions of the World, LE
REL 311 Philosophy of Religion
REL 312 The Bible: Jewish and Christian Scriptural Traditions
REL 490 Research Seminar in Religious Studies
3
4
4
4
II. Electives 7
. Additional coursework in Religious Studies 7
TOTAL HOURS FOR THE ACADEMIC MINOR 22