Philosophy Courses

PHIL 1: Introduction to Philosophy

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

C-ID PHIL 100

This course introduces philosophical ideas and methods concerning knowledge, reality and values. Expected topics include the sources and limits of knowledge, and the nature of reality. Other topics that may be examined from a philosophical perspective include the nature of the self, truth, ethics, religion, science, language, beauty and art, political theory, or mind.

PHIL 2: Introduction to Logic

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

C-ID PHIL 110

This course introduces some principles of valid reasoning with emphasis on deductive logic. The course includes a study of formal techniques of sentential logic. The course may also include a treatment of inductive reasoning, language, or fallacies.

PHIL 3: Introduction to Ethics

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Prerequisite: ENGL 1A

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

C-ID PHIL 120

This course critically analyzes questions of value (what’s good and bad) and obligation (what’s right and wrong). It explores the ethical systems of Plato, Aristotle, Christianity, Kant, the utilitarians, and the intuitionists. These ethical systems are applied to contemporary ethical problems and social issues, such as abortion, capital punishment, feminism, euthanasia, animal rights, and racism. Much of the course is devoted to critical thinking and writing skills. The course requires the student to write a sequence of ethical “position papers”, which are evaluated for both qualities of analysis and English composition skills.

PHIL 4: Patterns in Comparative Religions

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Prerequisite: ENGL 1A

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

This course is an introduction to the critical, comparative study of religion. The student will be introduced to the responses offered by the major Western and non-Western religions to perennial problems of human life. Major topics include: characterization of the religious vs the secular point of view; arguments in favor of the religious stance; arguments in opposition to the religious stance; the relationship of religion to science, ethics, and philosophy; the nature and validity of religious knowledge; the beliefs of major world religions and how these beliefs are expressed; how different religious beliefs affect the culture and history of European, Arabic, and Asian peoples. Pass/No Pass Option

PHIL 5: Introduction to Social and Political Philosophy

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

This course is designed to introduce the student to the major theories in political and social philosophy and their practical application to relevant issues. How for instance, do we adjudicate the rights of the individual against the rights of the state and its authority? What constitutes the just state? And what effects do certain political ideologies (liberalism, Fascism and Communism) have on social relations? This course traces the history of these ideas from Plato to what is currently being called the Postmodern condition.

PHIL 17: Logic and Critical Reasoning

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Prerequisite: ENGL 1A

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

This course is an introduction to critical thinking and critical writing. The students have the opportunity to learn techniques of practical reasoning and argumentation, with emphasis on application of these techniques in the writing of a sequence of argumentative essays. Topics include: critical reading, argument analysis, recognizing propaganda and stereotypes, clarifying ambiguity, meaning and definition, evaluating evidence, logical correctness vs factual correctness, and common mistakes in reasoning (formal and informal fallacies). The class emphasizes critical writing strategies. Sample arguments from philosophy and from culturally diverse sources in other disciplines are analyzed.

PHIL 21: World Philosophers on Death

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

This course explores major philosophical questions about death and the meaning of life from an American multi-cultural perspective. The effects of class, gender, and ethnicity on conceptions of death and death rituals will be analyzed. The following issues will also be explored: the possibility of disembodied existence, the nature of consciousness, the nature and significance of individuality and personal identity, concepts of reincarnation or transmigration of souls as these appear in American religious traditions, the nature and significance of so-called “paranormal” experiences, and the meaning of salvation or liberation or transcendence in American religious traditions (concepts of heaven, nirvana, moksha, satori, etc.). Required readings will be taken from classic texts of Western and non-Western philosophy and religion, as well as contemporary American feminist philosophy, and African, aborigine, and native American sources. This course satisfies the 3-unit Cultural Diversity requirement for an Associate degree. Pass/No Pass Option

PHIL 22: Philosophy of Religion

3 units: lecture 3 units; lab 0 units

Acceptable for credit: University of California, California State University

In PHIL 22, we conduct a systematic inquiry into the philosophical foundations of the religious viewpoint. The course examines questions such as: What is the relation between faith and reason? Does God exist, and if so, what (if anything) can be said about God? Can we reconcile the goodness of God with human and animal suffering? What human experiences (if any) are religious experiences? Religions provide answer to these and many other fundamental questions.

last published: 5/30/18