Introductory Philosophy: Basic Problems (PHIL*1050)
Term: Fall 2016
This course is an introduction to some of the fundamental concepts, problems and skills of philosophy. We shall deal with such questions as whether God exists, whether there is a real or objective difference between right and wrong, whether it is possible for us to gain reliable knowledge of the natural world, and whether we have free will. The aim of the course is to enable students to think clearly and systematically about these sort of problems. Throughout the class our aim will be to develop the ability to critically discuss what you have read and heard, rather than merely to report on it. That is, you will need to develop and assess arguments for and against the positions you will encounter.
A. Bailey and R.M. Martin, First Philosophy: Fundamental Problems and Readings in Philosophy (Broadview Press 2011, second edition, ISBN: 978-1-55111-971-7) [Required]
Probably: Four short take-home assignments (32% of the grade), an in-class midterm exam (30% of the grade), and a registrar-scheduled final exam (38% of the grade).
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