Philosophy 100 – Introduction to Philosophy (31506)
Mondays and Wednedays, 8:00 – 9:25 AM, SS–103
Final: Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Jerry Law, Ph.D.
This course will focus on a single question: “What is philosophy?” In answering it we
will survey frequently encountered philosophical terms, concepts, and problems. The
purpose of this course is to give you a grasp of the basics of philosophy as a kind of
thinking - the questions philosophers ask, why they ask them, and the kinds of answers
they give - so that you have the tools to pursue further philosophical studies if you choose
to do so.
Student Learning Outcomes
Students will be able to:
1. present a critical philosophical analysis of a selected topic in philosophy that
articulates and evaluates the claims made.
Instructor’s Course Objectives
Upon completion of this course you should be able to:
1. define key philosophical terms;
2. understand key philosophical concepts, methods, and approaches;
3. recognize key philosophical problems and some of the answers given to them
by major figures in the history of western philosophy; and
4. begin to develop your critical abilities in evaluating these problems and
1. Five Scantron forms (the long, thin, blue ones – form no. 20788-PAR)
2. Required text:
Core Questions in Philosophy: a Text with Readings,
Sober (2009: Pearson Prentice Hall).
not required but may be of interest
From Socrates to Sartre: the Philosophical Quest,
by T. Z. Lavine (1984:
Bantam Books). An inexpensive, readable, and short historical survey of
philosophy, based on a PBS television series.
Introducing Philosophy: the Challenge of Scepticism,
by D. Z. Phillips (1996:
Blackwell Publishers). A brief, elegant introduction to philosophy that covers
the same topics as Sober’s book but from a different perspective.
Read all assigned pages prior to coming to class. Your grade will be based on the