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DEPARTMENT OF PHILOSOPHY (PHL)

Professor James Otteson, Chairperson
Office: 239 ten Hoor Hall

Requirements for the major in philosophy. The major in philosophy requires 30 hours including PHL 101 or PHL 103, PHL 201, PHL 251, and 12 hours of philosophy courses at the 300 or 400 level. A minimum of 12 hours at the 300 or 400 level must be earned on this campus.

Requirements for the minor in philosophy. The minor in philosophy requires 18 hours including 6 hours at the 300 or 400 level. A minimum of 6 hours at the 300 or 400 level must be earned on this campus.

Honors in philosophy. Designed for the especially able student, regardless of whether he or she intends to do graduate work in philosophy or has other plans, this program offers the opportunity to pursue a philosophical topic further than the seminar format permits. It also provides recognition both for having done a greater proportion of one's classes at the advanced level and for sustained outstanding achievement in all courses.

Those who graduate with honors in philosophy must meet the following requirements:

Students may enroll in honors in philosophy by informing the department's undergraduate advisor that they wish to do so. They may also be invited to enroll by members of the department's faculty.

The mind and brain track. This sequence of courses is designed for students who are interested in philosophical questions regarding the nature and functioning of the mind, of consciousness, and of the brain. Students majoring in psychology, communication, English, computer science, and anthropology will find that the mind and brain track makes philosophy an attractive minor or second major. The mind and brain track is comprised of the following six courses, each of which is offered on a regular basis:

PHL 101 Introduction to Deductive Logic or PHL 103 Honors Deductive Logic
PHL 252 Mind and Nature
PHL 354 Philosophy of Mind
PHL 380 Special Studies in Philosophy: language, mind, and reality
PHL 380 Special Studies in Philosophy: knowledge, error, and ignorance
PHL 380 Special Studies in Philosophy: philosophy of cognitive science

Students who complete all six mind and brain track courses may qualify for the minor in philosophy. Students who complete the mind and brain track and also complete PHL 201, PHL 251, and two additional PHL courses may qualify for the major in philosophy.

The philosophical foundations of civil society track. This series of courses will center on issues at the confluence of philosophy, law, and economics, with an emphasis on the American tradition in jurisprudence and political economics. It aims to prepare students for graduate studies in philosophy, law, or economics, or for careers in public policy.

Among the questions the philosophical foundations of civil society track will address are: What is justice? What kind of government should we have? What should the government's aims be? What kind of allegiance do citizens owe to their government? Should they be willing to die for it? What is more important—individual liberty or the public good? What is good leadership or statesmanship?

The philosophical foundations of civil society track includes the following courses:

PHL 104 Critical Thinking
PHL 210 Science, Technology, and Society
PHL 220 Political Philosophy

At least one of the following:
    PHL 225 Philosophical Issues in Criminal Law
    PHL 226 Philosophical Issues in Civil Law
    PHL 227 Philosophical Issues in Constitutional Law

At least one of the following:
    PHL 310 Theories of Justice
    PHL 380 Special Studies in Philosophy: political economy

At least one of the following:
    PHL 412 Philosophy of Law
    PHL 480 Seminar on Special Topics: statesmanship and leadership

Students who complete philosophical foundations of civil society track by taking six courses as specified above may qualify for the minor in philosophy. Students who complete the philosophical foundations of civil society track and also complete PHL 101 or PHL 103, PHL 251, and two other PHL courses may qualify for the major in philosophy.

The prelaw track. This sequence of courses is of particular interest to those students considering careers in the law or in politics. It is designed in part to enhance preparation for the LSAT, but more importantly to provide Alabama undergraduates a uniquely rich exploration of the deeper questions about the law. The sequence includes the following courses, at least one of which is offered every semester.

PHL 101 Introduction to Deductive Logic or PHL 103 Honors Deductive Logic
PHL 220 Political Philosophy
PHL 225 Philosophical Issues in Criminal Law
PHL 226 Philosophical Issues in Civil Law
PHL 227 Philosophical Issues in Constitutional Law
PHL 412 Philosophy of Law

Interested students may take all six courses or any part of the sequence. Those who take all six may qualify for the minor in philosophy by taking one further course at the 300 or 400 level.

Awards. The Marten and Marie ten Hoor Prize and the Iredell Jenkins Endowed Memorial Scholarship are awarded by the department each spring.

A Suggested Sequence of Courses for the Philosophy Major
FRESHMAN YEAR
First Semester
CourseHours
PHL 1003
EN 1013
MATH13
Natural science4
Foreign language or computer science3–4
___
16–17
Second Semester
CourseHours
PHL 1013
EN 1023
Natural science4
Foreign language or computer science3–4
History23
___
16–17
 
SOPHOMORE YEAR
First Semester
CourseHours
PHL 2013
EN 205 or EN 20923
Social and behavioral sciences23
Computer science or elective3
Fine arts23
___
15
Second Semester
CourseHours
PHL 2513
EN 206 or EN 21023
Social and behavioral sciences23
Minor3
Elective3
___
15
 
JUNIOR YEAR3
First Semester
CourseHours
Philosophy elective, 300 or 400 level3
Philosophy elective3
History or social and behavioral sciences23
Minor3
Elective3
___
15
Second Semester
CourseHours
Philosophy elective, 300 or 400 level3
Minor6
Humanities23
Elective3
___
15
 
SENIOR YEAR3
First Semester
CourseHours
Philosophy elective, 300 or 400 level3
Philosophy elective3
Minor6
Elective3
___
15
Second Semester
CourseHours
Philosophy elective, 300 or 400 level3
Minor6
Electives6
___
15
 
Total: At least 120

1MATH course number is determined by placement. MATH 110 or higher is required.
2A maximum of 6 hours in any one department may be applied to the humanities, literature, and fine arts (HU, L, FA) and history and social and behavioral sciences (HI, SB) requirements.
3Six hours in courses designated W must be included in the junior or senior year. A minimum of 36 hours in 300- and 400-level courses, including 12 hours in the major and 6 hours in the minor, must be completed on this campus.

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