Learning Goals & Objectives
Student Learning Goal 1
Majors will acquire a broad knowledge of western philosophy (ancient - contemporary) — major figures, branches, terminologies, and traditions — and a working familiarity with philosophy from Asia, Africa, or Latin America.
- Objective A: Identify major western philosophers, their principal texts, their times, and the philosophical traditions of which they are a part;
- Objective B: Summarize in substantive philosophical discourse the principal contributions of important western philosophers by means of citing appropriate primary sources;
- Objective C: Articulate some important contributions of philosophical trends in non-western cultures to identify similarities and differences with traditional western thinking;
- Objective D: Recognize and explicate the principal issues of ethics, metaphysics, and epistemology, inclusive of their challenges, traditions, and specific terminologies;
- Objective E: Extract from important traditional moral philosophies their concern with values relating to justice, equality, and peace and to interpret them for contemporary times.
Student Learning Goal 2
Majors will acquire an enhanced capacity for communicating ideas specific to philosophy by both oral and written means.
- Objective A: Write cogent expository and discursive prose to communicate ideas effectively to both philosophical and non-philosophical audiences;
- Objective B: Present philosophical ideas cogently and effectively by means of oral presentations in a colloquial format;
- Objective C: Define terms specific to philosophic discourse with precision and to apply them appropriately in both oral and written communication.
Student Learning Goal 3
Majors will develop a sharpened capacity for thinking critically and for effectively assessing argumentation discourse.
- Objective A: Clearly distinguish knowledge and belief and to apply this distinction in assessing deductive, demonstrative, and persuasive discourse;
- Objective B: Analyze argumentative and persuasive discourse inclusive of both formal, logical matters and the information contained in such discourse;
- Objective C: Identify and properly frame problems in respect of their philosophical character and to develop strategies for their resolution;
- Objective D: Assess contemporary thinking by means of applying what is learned from the canon of western and non-western philosophy;
- Objective E: Specifically identify the moral and social values presupposed or underlying a philosopher’s argumentative discourse.
Student Learning Goal 4
Majors will become information literate as this applies to philosophical study and research.
- Objective A: Cite properly and to work effectively with important secondary sources and to become facile with reference resources discipline-specific to philosophy;
- Objective B: Critically analyze important primary sources with special attention to identify a philosopher’s underlying principles and to reconstruct his/her argumentation;
- Objective C: Find and use secondary sources and to develop research techniques appropriate for assessing philosophic discourse and argumentation.
Student Learning Goal 5
Majors will develop an ability to apply their study of philosophy to contemporary life in an increasingly globalized world.